If you’re writing an e-newsletter or promotional e-mail for your company, remember: That “free” e-newsletter costs your readers time. And that could be the most valuable thing they possess.
Persuading readers to click and read is more challenging than you might think. The upside is that the more they click, the better job you’re doing.
Heed these tips and tricks from the experts for writing more effective marketing e-mail:
1. Keep it short and simple. Try to cram in too much information, and you may overwhelm—and lose—your reader.
“Readers are brutal with deleting e-mail,” says Tim Watson, operations director at smartFOCUS. “They are looking for reasons to delete, and you have seconds to stop that from happening.”
2. Create value in your e-mailing. Give them a reason to subscribe and stay subscribed. Think of ways to engage readers.
For example, suggests Steve Cates, VP of multichannel marketing at Carrot-Top Industries, “Have polls or solicit open-ended questions and give them a place to respond.”
3. Promote your e-newsletter strategically. Make it easy for customers to sign up for it on your web site, where they can choose what information they want from you.
“Offer something of value, such as a guide or e-book, and provide it for free to anyone who opts in with his or her e-mail addresses,” said Mike Matson, a copywriter who writes on the blog “Marketing InfoWrangler.”
4. Include strong calls-to-action. A call-to-action moves the reader forward, toward your goal. And those “click here” calls-to-action make it easier to measure success.
5. Test, test and test again. Test everything from the time and day you send e-mail to which subject lines you use.
Gerry Black, a marketing consultant, suggests doing this: “Create your e-mail promotion and write out three subject lines. Take your best subject line and include it with your first e-mail. Let’s say you e-mail 1,000 people and 150 open it. Delete those names off your ‘send’ list and resend the e-mail using a different subject line.” You could triple the number of people who open your e-mail by using this strategy, he says.
Caution: Just don’t send all the e-mails on the same day.
— Adapted from “How to Improve Your E-Mail Marketing,” Tiffany Black, Inc.