All of us are overwhelmed with email on a daily basis — on average, we receive nearly 130 emails per day. Many of those emails never see the light of day. Given all the competition for your subscribers’ attention, how do you get them to see and react to your emails?
It’s all about the subject line. The content of your email is the most important part of the email, right? Wrong! The subject line is the difference between opening the email or sending it straight to the trash folder. The key to attention-getting subject lines is to use curiosity to grab the reader’s attention. Which email would someone be more likely to open: one with the subject line “New Job Opening,” or one with the subject line “Life-Changing Career Opportunity?” More people will opt for the second one.
Tell a story. People love a good story. Rather than just stating the facts, make the email’s content interesting. And while you’re at it, personalize it. Bring your own perspective to the story. The more open, honest and transparent you are, the more interesting your message will become to the reader.
Be consistent. Being consistent is the key to success. Consistency in email marketing means not only the frequency of your content but also the “voice” that your communications take. A random schedule of sending emails impacts the credibility of the message. Also, the way the message is conveyed must also be consistent to reinforce how you and your brand will be perceived.
Be friendly. Make sure the tone of your email is friendly and upbeat. It is easy for email messages to be misinterpreted and be perceived as negative or aggressive.
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Use simple language. Don’t write as if you’re drafting a textbook. The rule of thumb is to speak to your audience the way you would talk to a friend. A conversational tone is much more appealing and compelling.
Use social proof. What is social proof? Wikipedia defines it as “a psychological phenomenon where people assume the actions of others in an attempt to reflect correct behavior for a given situation.” Using links, referencing experts or celebrities, or citing what others are doing are ways to integrate social proof into your email content.
Be unique. Develop your own voice and stick with it. Though your topics will vary across campaigns, all your content should feel as if it comes from the same source. This will help you stand out and establish a following, which leads to credibility.
Engage the audience. So, your emails are interesting, and you get a respectable number of opens. All of that is positive and certainly supports overall brand awareness. But what moves an email to the next level? If you do not elicit a response or engage the audience, then you’ve missed the ultimate mark. In essence, you need a call to action, and it should be more than a simple “call today.” Offer something, ask a question, create a survey-style inquiry and challenge the reader to express an opinion. Do something to move from interest to engagement. This is where you take a leap to the next level and add to your revenue pipeline.
The goal of effective email marketing is to expose your brand to your target audience and ultimately grow your business. Creating effective emails that speak directly to your market is a great way to accomplish those goals.