Innovation & data-driven digital marketing.

We’ve heard tales that “email is dead.” But that’s a digital marketing myth. Even in our world of content overload, email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to reach your customer or client. According to recent data, email marketing has an average ROI of $42 for every $1 spent, and 61 percent of users enjoy receiving weekly promotional emails.

So, how do you turn your newsletters into clicks and conversions? We’ve shared our fave email marketing best practices below; try a few out! 

Increase Open Rates 

According to Super Office, the average open rate for emails in 2020 was 21.3 percent—a slight decrease from the past year. While not an alarming dip, it’s still something to be aware of. Because customers are slightly less likely to open emails, you need to make sure that you’re delivering the best content possible. 

How can you increase your email open rates? 

Focus on consistency

Consistency is a key email marketing best practice. Remember, your subscribers signed up to get your newsletters for a reason, so it’s critical you deliver in terms of consistency. 

  • Content: first, give your consumer whatever you’ve promised (discount codes, product summaries, coupons, insider information, etc.), then deliver consistently with every single email. People will stop clicking and opening, if you send irrelevant or boring info. Moreover, don’t make emails too promotional, balance your content to offer a mix of value and advertising;
  • Tone: keep your style, voice, and content uniform. A Lucidpress report found that consistent presentation of your brand could increase revenue by up to 33 percent; 
  • Timing: consistent sending patterns mean higher engagement. Choose a specific time each week (or each month) when you plan to deliver your newsletter. When consumers expect it, they’re more likely to open it. 

Pay attention to the subject line

Most of the battle of an emailer is fought in the subject line. How can you make yours stand out? 

  • Personalize: there’s something about that sense of recognition that makes us more likely to open an email that calls us out by name. Plus, it’s easy to use this function on your email service provider. An email that addresses your personally stands out in a sea of anonymous inbox entries;
  • Keep it snappy: the most successful subject lines are short—no more than seven words (approximately 100 characters) long. You can push it to ten at the absolute most, but we recommend keeping it more concise, especially for mobile users; 
  • Use symbols and emojis: these characters are unexpected, they’ll pop out. As simple and well-used as they are, emojis still pique your potential reader’s interest and invite an initial click; 
  • Incroporate powerful, results-focused words: humans are inherently selfish—we want to know what’s in it for us. Use active, succinct language that drives home the benefit for the reader, i.e., what can I expect from opening this email?   

Don’t forget A/B testing

Email marketing best practice always involves testing. No one knows what resonates with a consumer on any given day without data to back it up. Moreover, behaviors and preferences frequently change. 

A/B test to ensure success for your campaigns. For example, we recommend trying out at least two different subject lines and comparing their open rates. This data point is a fantastic indicator of what interests your audience and can pave the way for future strategies. 

Promote Conversions

The good news? Email is much better at converting your customers than social media—just check out these stats from Optin Monster. But that doesn’t mean lazy efforts will bring you results. Getting your subscribers to open an email is the first step, sure—but what happens when they get there? Use the following tips to optimize the overall experience and drive conversions. 

Prioritize mobile

We’re on our phones almost 24/7 these days, so prioritizing users’ mobile experience is an absolute email marketing best practice. Assume that at least half of your audience views your email on mobile versus desktop, and leverage for that experience. We recommend starting by shrinking images (newsletter headers and feature images can be giant on a mobile screen), focusing on responsive design and ensuring that a clear, clickable CTA is visible for the reader without scrolling. 

Zero in on your content and audience match

If your open rate is fair, but subscribers aren’t clicking CTAs or spending enough time in your emails, your content may be to blame. Top-performing newsletter content offers readers fresh and insightful information, relevant tips to incorporate in their life/work and attractive offers on your product/service. 

To figure out what your audience wants, ask them. Polls or surveys are a great way to better serve their needs. (Hint: you could even survey on social media platforms, your audience there is likely similar to your subscriber list). Consider adding a few industry-relevant links or resources to reinforce the idea that you’re here to help your subscribers—not just to sell to them. 

Audit Your Audience

All your best efforts will be useless if you have an out-of-date subscriber list. It’s considered email marketing best practice to go through all your email lists and delete subscribers who haven’t opened an email within the past six months. (Many platforms have automatic list clean up options, so check yours). 

Use Email Marketing Best Practices to Level Up Your Performance 

Email marketing is full of potential, but it needs strategy and vision to deliver. Just because you have an engaged audience, doesn’t mean you can send out thin content on an irregular schedule and hope for results. Like any digital marketing tactic, you need to be targeted and strategic. Dive into your data, test new options, and most importantly—send content your audience wants to read.