Are you struggling to write emails for your business?
Writing emails can be tough especially if you are just getting started.
Some people can write blog posts without any problems but they struggle to write emails.
Why is that?
One of the reasons I have found is because most marketers don’t have a set plan and template they can use to write emails.
In this post, I’ll provide 5 email marketing lessons you can benefit from today.
Email Marketing Stats
Before we get into the lessons I am going to provide some stats for you on the power email marketing:
- Email marketing yields an average 4,300% return on investment for businesses in the United States.
- Companies using email to nurture leads generate 50% more sales-ready leads and at 33% lower cost. And nurtured leads, on average, produce a 20% increase in sales opportunities compared to non-nurtured leads.
- Email conversion rates are three times higher than social media, with a 17% higher value in the conversion.
- According to GigaOm research marketers consistently ranked email as the single most effective tactic for awareness, acquisition, conversion, and retention.
Are you starting to understanding the power of email marketing?
Now, let’s get to the lessons.
1 – Make It Personal But Not Too Personal
Write your emails like you would to a friend.
Make it conversational.
But don’t make it too personal.
You have to strike the balance between casual and business.
For example, a lot of marketers make the mistake of writing something like this:
What’s up? I’m going to be in your city this weekend 🙂
Let’s hang out sometime
This email is okay if you are talking to a close friend but it doesn’t make much sense when writing this email to your subscribers.
What Copywriting Can Teach You About Emails
This conversational strategy comes directly come from copywriting.
Pick up any copywriting book and they all say the same thing.
Your content should be clear, concise, and conversational.
Write in the language your audience will understand.
Writing to doctors is not going to be the same as writing to a carpenter.
Write To One Person
Another strategy that can help you write emails is to write your emails as if you are only writing to a single person.
This will help you focus on the content and the problems you are solving for this person.
Who should be this person?
This person is your buyer persona or customer avatar.
You can call it whatever you want, but I’ve found that writing to one person instead of a group of people is easier.
To help you identify this person check out the posts below:
- Defining Your Customer Avatar: Who is your Ideal Client?
- How Creating an Imaginary Friend Can Make You a Better Writer.
Once you’ve identified this person write to him/her as a friend.
Don’t make this mistake.
A lot of marketers and business owners make the mistake of sending pure pitch emails.
All they talk about is themselves and their company.
Would you like being around this person if they only talked about themselves all the time?
Most people would find this annoying.
Write your emails like you would to a friend and make sure to have a vivid picture of what the person looks like and what emotions they have.
2 – Split Test Your Subject Lines
Your emails are worthless if they’re not being opened.
Your email subject lines is the second most important factor in your open rates.
Email subject lines are just like headlines.
They need to attract attention and compel people to take action.
Here are some tips on writing email subject lines:
- Don’t be boring– Your emails will quickly be ignored if they don’t say anything.
- Invoke Curiosity– Curiosity is one of the most powerful emotions. People want to know what they don’t know.
- Make it personal– Using their names in the subject lines will increase your open rates.
- Use Power Words– Power words will instantly make your subject lines more powerful.
- Use Numbers– Use numbers in your subject lines to increase your open rates.
Now, that you know the elements of what makes a good email subject line how do you know for sure if what you wrote will work?
By spit testing.
Here are some tips on getting started with split testing your email subject lines:
The goal of split testing your email subject lines is to gather data and find what type of email subject lines work best for your audience.
Every audience is different and conventional wisdom might not be best suited for your audience.
For example, when Coschedule tested their email subject lines they wanted to know the answers to the following questions:
- Does having a number in the subject line help?
- Do longer or shorter subject lines do better?
- Which emails had the biggest and least differences in open rate?
- How does the EMV(emotional market value) play into email subject lines?
- Does asking a question make an email more attractive?
Time and Amount of Emails- before you start testing your subject lines you have to decide when and the amount of emails you want to send.
If you send a regular Wednedsay email you can test the day before at the same time.
Run A/B Tests.
Once you’ve laid out the ground rules it’s time to start testing your email subject lines.
Fortunately, most email service providers have built in tools that allow to A/B test your subject lines.
After a few months of testing, you should have a good amount of data.
This data can help you determine what type of email subject lines work best.
The conclusions often will surprise you.
3 – Segment and Tag Your List
In order for your email marketing campaigns to be successful segmenting and tagging your list is required.
Segmenting your email list allows you to speak more intelligently and more directly with your subscribers.
Mailchimp found people that segmented their lists had open rates increase by 19%, and their clickthrough rates increased by 22%.
Decide how you will segment your audience.
It doesn’t take much to get started.
You can start by using the data you already have and start segmenting your list.
You can segment based on the following:
- Buyer Personas.
- Job Titles.
- Buyer Behavior.
- Customer sign up date.
Define your data points.
Once you’ve learned how to segment your list the next step is to define what data matters the most to your company.
It’s different for every company and this will depend on what you are selling.
For example, it’s important for a company like Walmart to know if you have kids or not.
However, this information won’t be relevant for a company like Oracle.
Create a customer persona.
I already mentioned this part above.
Creating buyer personas will help you segment your list.
Choose Your Segments
Once you’ve identified the data points, it’s time to start experimenting to find what type of content each segment likes best.
Each segment can have specialized content that speaks to what their core desires are.
For example, if you are targeting web business owners you can find what type of content they like best and send them emails that helps them with their problems.
Fortunately, most email service providers allow you segment your list.
I provide a few links below to some of the most popular email providers below:
- Aweber Segmentation
- Active Campaign List Segments
- Benchmark Segments
- Campaign Monitor Segments
- Constant Contact Segments
- Get Response Advanced Segmentation
- Hubspot Segmenting Tools
- Pardot Email Segmentation
If you want to learn more about list segmentation check out the following posts below:
- How to Segment Email Lists for More Opens, Click-Throughs and Conversions
- How We Use Segmentation to Send Better Emails
4 – Set The Proper Expectations
How many times do you plan on emailing your lists?
Email frequency is different depending on the type of industry and the product/service you sell.
Unfortunately, the perfect email sequence doesn’t exist.
Hubspot looked at the data and found no discernible difference in email frequency.
Whatever frequency you choose you have to set the proper expectations.
This is simple to do.
All you have to do is to include this piece of information in your first email.
This is often called an indoctrination email.
The Indoctrination Email
This email serves as the first step in building a relationship with the prospect.
It lets them know the following:
- Who you are.
- What you can do for them.
- What problem you can help solve.
- Why are you different.
- What should they do next.
- Email frequency.
By sending this email you set the proper expectations of the relationships they have with you.
Some companies will have to send a series of indoctrination emails to fully educate the prospects on what their companies can do.
A good example of an indoctrination email is below:
5 – Include One CTA
What’s the purpose of your emails?
Each email should have a purpose.
The purpose should be getting them through the next stage of the buying cycle.
Digital Marketer breaks this down below:
- Indoctrinate – Teach them who you are.
- Engage – Get them to buy.
- Ascend – Get them to buy more.
- Segment – Learn what they want to buy next.
- Reengage/Win Back – Bring them back.
In every email you send a call to action should be included.
Here are some tips that will help you write effective call to actions in your emails:
- Make your call to action stand out– I have a preference for text only emails since they don’t trigger spam filters and are easier to read. A clear call to action with a link should make it stand out.
- Minimize the number of call to actions– One call to action is best. If you must include more than one call to action make sure to have your primary call to action stand out above the other.
- Keep it simple– The simpler it is the higher chances are that it will get clicked.
- Repeat your call to action– Use multiple links throughout the email and drive them to a single call to action.
- Test– Test different call to actions and see which works best.
Email marketing has the highest ROI of any online marketing channel for a reason.
It’s the most personal channel.
The benefits are obvious.
You own your list.
What do you think?
Have you used any of these strategies in your email marketing campaigns?