The golden goose of online marketing.
While other platforms have come and go, email has stayed firmly at the top of the food-chain. It has by far the highest Return On Investment of any major platform.
If you’re doing something on the Internet and you want people to know about it, then email needs to be in your game plan.
Do you know why?
Because everyone checks their email. They may not click on every message, but they’ll see them. And when they do open them, they are much more receptive.
They’re much more likely to click. Much more likely to share. Much more likely to be influenced by a cause.
You’re a different person when you’re on email compared to Twitter.
When you’re on Twitter you’re guarded. It’s every man for himself. There’s tweets raining in by the second. You’re jumping from subject to subject and web page to web page.
So chaotic, that there’s a good chance that even if you tweet the same thing 3 times in a day, that a majority of your following won’t see your tweet once.
But if you have someone’s email you have their attention. Their virtual inbox is precious real estate. They care what’s in it.
They are much more likely to see your message and act on it. Email has become one of the only reliable methods of reaching your audience online.
Think about it this way. When you’re audience is on Twitter it’s like they’re on a busy sidewalk and you’re trying to yell across the street to them.
But when they’re on email, they’re in a quiet room all by themselves and you’re whispering sweet nothings to them.
With email, you have their ear. With Twitter I don’t know what you have, but it’s certainly not your audience’s full-attention.
Which is why I’ll take 100 emails over 1000 followers any day. And twice on Sunday. Because I know what I have with the 100 emails. The followers on the other hand are a crap shoot.
Building an email list should be every content marketer’s priority. A large email list is arguably the best asset you can have.
No matter what you want to do, whether it’s selling an ebook or promoting a blog post; email is your best friend.
Today I’m going to teach you how to get the most out of your email list. How to send emails that get noticed, opened and clicked. Withour further ado, here’s 9 ways to craft a better email:
1. Specific Subject Lines
Your subject line should promise a specific benefit to your reader.
There should be an obvious benefit for clicking. General headlines that don’t promise anything will do poorly. Remember your audience is selfish, you need to tell them what’s in it for them.
Before sending an email, look at your subject: is the benefit for reading clear? Your subject line should sell your email. It should tell them exactly what’s inside and why that’s worth checking out.
2. Tempting First Sentence
For many email clients, the first sentence of the email is included in the preview.
Use this prime real estate to include a tempting first sentence. This should expand on your subject and preview what’s to come.
Also, make sure your first line isn’t wasted on something like, “click to view this email in your browser.” I’ve even started to skip the salutations in my emails so I can get the most out of the preview.
3. Find the Right Time
When you send your emails can make or break them.
Depending on your audience, you probably don’t want to send your emails on the weekends. Most people use their inbox for work purposes and have a higher intention of reading emails on week days.
As for what time you should send your emails, that’s up for debate. I personally send my emails in the morning, so I can get on top of my audience’s inbox. This has worked well for me, but every audience is different.
You’ll need to test to see what works for you.
4. Segment Your List
If you have different groups of subscribers, with different goals and expectations, you should have different list segments as well.
Email is all about relevancy. The more relevant your content, the higher the open-rate and better it will perform.
Segmenting your list makes it possible to send each segment of your audience the things they care about the most. If you’re sending the same thing across different audiences, your open-rate will suffer.
5. Keep it Short and Sweet
Get to your point and get out.
When we’re looking at email we’re often going through batches at a time. Which means if you start to dilly dally, your audience will skip you and not look back. People are busier than ever, they don’t have time to waste on something that doesn’t bring an immediate return.
It’s okay to have a long email, just keep it chock full of good content.
6. Use Call-To-Actions
If you’re really good, every email you send will have a goal.
Whether you want your audience to fill out a survey. Or send a tweet. Or download an ebook. You should aim for at least one clear offer in every email.
And don’t be afraid to repeat your call-to-actions. In my experience, including a call-to-action above the fold and at the end of each email works the best.
7. Always Be Testing
One of the best things about email is your ability to test everything.
You should always be experimenting and testing your open and click-through rates. Try sending your emails at different times and on different days.
Test your subject lines. Test your first sentences. Test different types of content. Test different segments. And so on.
Emails are made for testing.
8. Make it Mobile-Friendly
A lot of the time your audience is going to be getting your emails on mobile.
So you need to make sure your emails look just as good on your smartphone as it does on your computer. To be safe, I would recommend signing up to your own email list so you can check in on your emails once in awhile.
9. Set Up an Autoresponder
An autoresponder is usually a welcome email, followed by a series of emails that every new sign up gets. These drip emails are a fantastic way to get new people up to speed and keep everyone on the same page.
You can use them to catch people up on your best posts, to tell them a little bit about yourself, to survey people and more. Get creative with it.
An autoresponder series can be extremely valuable because you can set these emails and then forget it. And they’ll still work, even if you’re in Mexico sipping on Coronas.
There you have it. A super simple guide to email marketing. Remember, if you want to reliably reach your audience, email is a sure-fire choice.
While Twitter and Facebook are no slouches, they just don’t give you the amount of control over your audience that email does.
If you aren’t currently using email for your blog, I would recommend starting ASAP. There’s never a bad time to start building your email list.
Now if you found this post helpful, do me a favor and share it!