If you’ve ever run an email campaign, you know how just effective they can be. Email marketing campaigns are an easy and direct way to interact with your customer, and have been proven to increase loyalty and engagement across the board.

Consider this: 90% of adults and 74% of teens regularly use their email, and being able to tap into this network is the perfect way to boost brand commitment. However, a poorly executed campaign can have the opposite effect: it can do great harm to your company, going so far as to actively drive away your customers.

Luckily, there are some tried and true tools you can take advantage of when planning your next email marketing plan to help your business succeed. Read on to discover what more you can do to ensure your future efforts are more impressive than ever.

Understand What You’re Trying to Achieve

Your first step when launching an email campaign should be to make a plan for how to get your point across to your customer. Know what it is you want to gain from running this by asking questions like:

  • Are you trying to inform your customers of a new product launch?
  • Do you want to increase membership to a service
  • Are you trying to let users know about how and where they can access new features from your brand?

Once you’ve thoroughly understood what it is you’re trying to alert your readers to, you can use this to create a guideline for yourself.

Your desired goal should be in the forefront of your mind through each step of the process. By ensuring you take time to plan ahead, you eliminate chances for potential error, like having your message go off topic. The longer you spend formulating your goal, the more direct and fully realized your campaign can be.

Keep Track of What Works

Once you’ve made up your mind on what aspect of your business you’ll be highlighting, it’s important to set out clear procedures for how you want to track your success. An easy and tangible way to do this is by monitoring the emails you send out.

By verifying email addresses, you can make sure your content is actually landing in inboxes. If your clients don’t receive your emails, you have no chance of achieving your goal. Ensuring the addresses on your list are valid can help your inbox rates soar which saves you time, money, and resources.

This is also an easy way to increase your numbers: did you know that if more than 10% of emails are bad, less than 44% of your messages will reach their intended destination? It’s far more important to have a small list of highly active subscribers, than a large list of inactive ones.

Another advantage to closely following progress is that you can make adjustments to your campaign as soon as you notice something isn’t working. This means that instead of continuing to send out content that isn’t garnering the attention of your client, you can make adjustments often to increase the likelihood of attracting customers.

Test your emails by changing up your layout, subject lines, and even something as simple as the time of day they’re sent out.

Be Honest With Your Reader

The first piece of information your reader will see from your email is the subject line.  This makes it imperative that you have an attention-grabbing headline to help motivate your customer to open your email.

Be cautious with this, however: Make sure your subject line is relevant to what the body is about. If your subject line copy is off-topic, readers who opened the email expecting to see one thing will not follow through and read your whole email when they realize it doesn’t relate to the email content.

This means you won’t have follow through on their end, resulting in a failure to achieve your goal. If the reader doesn’t open and click through the email, there’s no chance of them following your CTA and converting.

Don’t worry about changing your brand message in order to get a higher open rate. Getting too elaborate or going off topic as a way to try and attract new viewers can end up alienating loyal customers and misleading your new audience.

A major perk of having an accurate address line is that the people who do open your email are most likely already interested in what you want to discuss. An interested party is also more likely to follow through on your CTA, which can in turn help you achieve your email marketing goal.

Take Advantage of Your Space

Inboxes show the first lines of your email. This is additional space that you can harness to attract your readers attention. By expanding the header from one line to two, or simply by using the beginning of your email to summarize its contents you can engage the reader and capitalize on that extra preview space. This will help your customer understand what relevance your email has to them.

When you share important information at the start, your customers won’t have to go searching for it. A clear subject line that tells the customer what they can gain by opening your email will also make them want to know more.

Additionally, remember that users are all different, and that they’re all at various stages of the customer life cycle. You should make sure that you are adjusting content appropriately to reflect these changing needs.

People are individuals, and your brand should acknowledge that through customization and personalization techniques. Making your customer feel like you have a personal interest in them is a great way to get their attention and make them want to interact with you. An easy way to integrate personalization and attention-grabbing content is by addressing the reader by their name.

Edit, and Then Edit Again

Above all, make sure that you are continuously editing your email’s content. Edit for both clarity and conciseness. Without these, customers are likely to close the message before reaching the end.

An over-packed, long-winded email is sure to lose your viewer’s attention. There is too much stimuli and content available on the internet already, and even within their inbox from other senders. If you don’t get to the point quickly, customers will go somewhere else to spend their time in a way that they deem valuable.

It can be hard to edit your own content, as every piece of information you include will seem absolutely necessary to you. A good way to check this is by sending your work to trusted coworkers and friends. A fresh pair of eyes can make all the difference in helping you get rid of any excess clutter so you can get straight to the point you want to make in your email.

Stay Up-to-Date

Don’t become unviewable: make sure your content is mobile-friendly. More internet users than ever before are opening their emails on their mobile devices. In 2014, HubSpot released a study which found that 39% of customers were using an iOS device to open email. Imagine how much that number continues to grow year over year.

You can make sure your content appears the way you intend it to across all devices by implementing a few standards.

  • Use short paragraphs
  • Include clear headers for organization
  • Incorporate interesting visuals that help add to the contents absorbability

Using images can help as they can guide the reader’s eye where you want it to go. Take care that if you do decide to use images, you also make sure to include alt-text as many email servers (and sometimes the users themselves) disable images. Having both an HTML option and a plain text option can ensure that all audiences are able to receive your message, thus increasing follow-through rate.

Design templates should be made before writing your email so you can ensure your content is scannable, and these will also help keep you on track while you write. Scannable content means that your reader should be able to get all pertinent information from you, even if they only give the email a quick look.

However, be aware that following too closely to a ‘blueprint’ can harm your outreach efforts as well. Using your own creativity will help capture readers’ attentions faster and more effectively than an email that reads as though it could have come from anyone.

Make Your Emails More Successful

It’s clear that by integrating just a few easily standardized procedures into your email writing process, you can markedly increase the success your marketing campaign will have. Simple things like ensuring emails are landing in inboxes and that you’re properly utilizing all the space available in your email heading can increase your views. This in turn will strengthen your customer interaction.

If people start unsubscribing to your email blasts, make sure you go back and change things up to identify what hasn’t been working for you. Don’t rely on yourself alone to edit: having multiple points of view and people who look at your drafts can alert you to problems you may have missed.

Finally, ensuring you properly prepare your emails to be viewed multiple ways on different platforms can keep customers happier and more willing to continue interacting with your brand.

Rae is a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing, of course.

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