Top 10 Best Practices to Improve Your Email Marketing

Samuel Edwards
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February 3, 2023

Businesses have been using email to promote their products and services since the 1990s. Since then, many new forms of marketing have come along: social media marketing, influencer marketing, YouTube ads, and more.And yet, email is still one of the most effective marketing tools out there.In fact, a report by McKinsey & Company shows that email marketing is 40 times more effective at gaining new customers than Facebook and Twitter combined!

email marketing is more effective than facebook and twitter

If you want to leverage email marketing to grow your business, you’ve come to the right place.Here at Marketer.co, we’ve developed some marketing email best practices that you can apply to your own email marketing campaigns for better results.Here they are:

1. Create compelling lead magnets

Before you can start sending marketing emails, you need to develop an email list, which is basically a list of email addresses from interested leads.One of the best ways to collect email addresses is to create a lead magnet.A lead magnet is a page on your business website that offers visitors a free resource in exchange for their email address and name. The free resource could be an ebook, webinar invite, white book, or newsletter sign-up. Whatever it is, it serves as an incentive for visitors to give you their email addresses.Once submitted, the email address is saved to your email list.

2. Segment your email list

One of the biggest mistakes that beginner marketers make is sending emails to their entire email list. Don’t do this.Instead, segment your email list into different groups. You can split them by demographics (age, gender, income, etc.), their interests, and whether they are new or old customers.Why do this? It allows you to tailor your marketing emails to different groups.For example, say you run a real estate agent business. Instead of sending an email about the homebuying process to your entire email list, you can send it to only your first-time buyer leads. That way, you avoid annoying subscribers who may not be interested in (or may already be familiar with) the homebuying process (e.g., seller leads or past clients).By segmenting your email list, you can create more tailored emails—emails that include only content, offers, news, and promotions that are relevant to the recipient in question. If an email isn’t relevant, a reader is more likely to ignore it, unsubscribe or even mark it as spam.

3. Write attention-grabbing subject lines

The Importance of Email Subject Lines

If the subject lines of your marketing emails aren’t compelling, it won’t matter how good the actual email is.Why?Because if your subscribers aren’t drawn by the subject line, they won’t click to open the email in the first place.In other words, the subject line is the most important part of a marketing email. To make it stand out, there are a few things you can do:You can create a sense of urgency with your email subject line: keep it short and sweet, pose a compelling question, tease what’s inside the email, use emojis, and make it personal. Whatever you do, don’t use all caps or multiple exclamation marks. This just makes you look desperate for attention and most recipients will shy away.

4. Personalize your emails

On top of personalizing the subject line, you want to make the entire email personal. This helps you connect with subscribers and earn their trust.Start by addressing the recipient by their first name. Most marketing email software lets you automatically customize emails with different recipients’ names.You have to make sure you collect and store people’s names alongside their email addresses.Another way to make your emails more personal is to write in the second person. That means using words like “you,” “your,” and so on (just like this post is doing). By addressing your desired target audience directly, you help them feel more involved and pull them through the email copy.Lastly, you can personalize your marketing emails by addressing your readers’ specific pain points, not just sending them to a generic blog post or landing page.Think back to how you segmented your email list. What are the particular needs and wants of the segment you are writing to? For example, if you’re writing to home seller leads, you may consider acknowledging how hard it can be to sell a house in the current real estate market.Whatever you do, make sure the email feels like it’s being written directly from you to your reader. The less corporate it sounds, the better.

5. Automate your email sending

As with many business processes, a lot of your email marketing success depends on how much you can automate.Email itself is a form of automation. Think about how much more time it would take to send physical letters to your subscriber list or, worse yet, to type each letter individually.But there’s more to email automation than that. Email marketing software lets you schedule emails to send at certain times. You can even automate an entire email sequence that’s triggered every time someone signs up for your email list (aka a drip email campaign). This could be a welcome series that educates new customers on your products and services to help build trust in your brand.The point is you can use automation through some of today's robust email marketing platforms and email service providers to become more efficient as an email marketer.The more you automate, the less time you need to spend on tedious work and the more time you can spend on more important work.

6. Ensure emails are mobile-friendly

Ensure emails are mobile-friendly

Did you know that far more people check email on mobile devices than on computers? According to statistics reported by Easysendy, nearly 1.7 billion users check email on mobile phones compared to 0.9 billion users who check it on desktops.This means that you need to optimize your marketing emails for mobile screens.Any images or videos contained within your emails should be easily viewed on a phone. Users should also be able to click on any links and promotions and be directed to your website on their mobile web browser.To ensure this is the case, test opening your marketing emails on different devices. They should adapt to various screen sizes without a problem.

7. Conduct A/B tests

If you want to succeed in email marketing long-term, A/B testing is a must.What is A/B testing?Basically, it’s creating two slightly different versions of various email templates, sending them to a sample email segment, and seeing which performs better on common marketing email metrics, such as open rate, conversion rate, unsubscribe rate, and so on.Once you have a winner, you can send the better version of two emails to the entire email segment.You can A/B test almost anything: subject lines, email copy, images, landing pages, font style, links, and more. The key is to keep the variation between the two email versions subtle. That way, you can better home in on what it is that’s making the difference.Then follow what the data tells you.By regularly performing A/B tests, you can gradually improve the performance (i.e. open rate, click through rate and general ROI) of your marketing emails overall.

8. Find the best time to send emails

best time to send emails

A surprising amount of your marketing email success comes down to timing.Think about it. A recipient may give an email less attention if it lands in their inbox in the middle of the night or on the weekend compared to at the start of their workday.Of course, it all depends on your recipients’ schedules and time zones. The point is that timing is a real factor.So, use analytics software to help you determine when the best send time is for your subscribers (you can do this through the A/B testing method explained in the last point). You might find that your open rate is better when you send emails in the morning rather than in the evening or vice versa.Whatever the case may be, double down on whatever gets you the best results. Schedule your emails to automatically send when they have the highest chance of being opened.From there, you can try to develop a regular email cadence. That way, your subscribers will also learn when they can expect to hear from you and be more likely to look out for your emails as a result.

9. Allow subscribers to manage their email preferences

Getting emails, you can’t unsubscribe from is incredibly frustrating. Don’t be that company that sends marketing emails without providing a way to opt out with an unsubscribe link.Better yet, let your subscribers customize their email preferences. For example, you could let them select how frequently to receive your emails (daily, weekly, monthly, etc.) or what types of emails to receive (news, promotions, special sales, educational pieces, etc.).The more autonomy you give email subscribers in managing their email preferences, the less likely they are to get annoyed with you. If they no longer want to get your emails, they’ll know exactly how to get off your list.

10. Regularly scrub your email list

This may sound counterintuitive, but you should regularly rid your email list of any subscribers who haven’t opened your emails in a while.Why?First, if they’re not opening your emails, they’re not doing you much good anyway.Second, by cleaning up your email list, you avoid annoying people and giving them a negative impression of your brand. And third, updating your email list helps boost your scores on common email metrics like open rates.If you want more accurate email performance data, you have to regularly scrub your email list.

Partner with Marketer.co

Implementing an effective email marketing strategy is both art and science. It’s not something that you can master overnight. But if you follow the tips above, you’ll see improvements in no time.Don’t have the time, skills, or resources to run successful email campaigns?No worries. Marketer.co can help. Our talented team of email marketers can help you take your business to the next level by adhering to every email marketing best practice outlined here and other marketing strategies.Contact us today for a free consultation. We look forward to chatting!

Author

Samuel Edwards

Chief Marketing Officer

Throughout his extensive 10+ year journey as a digital marketer, Sam has left an indelible mark on both small businesses and Fortune 500 enterprises alike. His portfolio boasts collaborations with esteemed entities such as NASDAQ OMX, eBay, Duncan Hines, Drew Barrymore, Price Benowitz LLP, a prominent law firm based in Washington, DC, and the esteemed human rights organization Amnesty International. In his role as a technical SEO and digital marketing strategist, Sam takes the helm of all paid and organic operations teams, steering client SEO services, link building initiatives, and white label digital marketing partnerships to unparalleled success. An esteemed thought leader in the industry, Sam is a recurring speaker at the esteemed Search Marketing Expo conference series and has graced the TEDx stage with his insights. Today, he channels his expertise into direct collaboration with high-end clients spanning diverse verticals, where he meticulously crafts strategies to optimize on and off-site SEO ROI through the seamless integration of content marketing and link building.