How To Improve Your Email Marketing For Better Conversions & Engagement
Market research in 2015 found that over a third of email marketing campaigns saw a ROI of £51 for every £1 spent. Why? Because email marketing allows businesses to market to an audience who are already interested in your brand.
Instead of trying to attract attention, your marketers can (mostly) skip trying to convince readers to be like your brand and focus instead on wowing them with great content and offers, giving them more of what they want.
Here are 5 email marketing tips to improve your conversion rates and engagement to ensure you’re in that top third of most clicked mails getting great ROI:
Do A/B testing and gather in house data
Both you and your marketing team have probably spotted a number of email benchmarking surveys which advise on the best days and times for your industry for your email marketing. But the best data you can trust is your own.
The problem with industry averages is that it does not necessarily take into account your business size and how your users interact with your brand specifically. Whether you’re using an outsourced or in-house marketing team, you should encourage them to carry out research and keep a record of all their data. You might be surprised by what you learn and how it improves your email marketing campaigns.
Around 50% of email marketing companies in 2014 said they did an intermediate level of email testing. That’s up from 36% in 2013 and likely to only increase, so now is the time to get on board!
Collecting your own data and using it to your own advantage makes complete sense but can be time consuming. But remember that time invested early on can save you money later (or rather, sooner) and will give you valuable knowledge about what your email subscribers respond to.
Marketers run A/B tests in a variety of ways, but some starting places for your marketing team should be:
- Days of the week: Start with the most popular days that users visit your site, you can find data for this in data tracking systems like Google Analytics.
- Times of day: Consider when users are likely to be accessing their emails rather than when they’d be on your site. These can be two very different times. Start with the times you check your emails. Don’t forget to make a distinction between personal and business emails, based on whether you are a B2B or B2C company. For example, you might want to target mid-morning for personal emails but early morning for business emails as people are checking their mailboxes at work when they first arrive.
- Alternate offers and content, like newsletters: Both types of content should be tested on various days and times. Their interactions however could be very different based on where the users is at in their day and how much time they have, such as do they have time to read your new content? They might if they are commuting to the office.
Write subject headings for mobile screens
In 2015 mobile usage surpassed desktop, meaning there is now an increased awareness of the power of mobile for marketing in general. Email marketing is no different. Campaign Monitor reported that email opens on mobile grew 30% between 2014 and 2015. This means you need to be smart about making sure your subject lines are compelling on mobile screens.
Subject headings are one of the most important ways of increasing your engagement for email marketing. Other than seeing who the email is from, one of the first parts that users judge, when deciding whether or not to open an email, is the subject line.
Subject line lengths, based on visibility, vary quite widely across different devices. Typically they are in the range of 40-60 characters.
Use varied media and content to engage readers
How often do you see pictures, videos and graphics in what you read? Likely, for the best content the answer is all the time. Gone are the days when bold, italics and underlined content looked engaging. Video is transforming the future of search and marketing in all its facets. Facebook are pushing towards live video, Twitter includes videos and we’re embedding more and more videos on our websites.
Speculation from media platforms suggests we might see online video consumption increase around 20% in 2016. This makes including video in your business’s email marketing campaign, rotating a range of email marketing pieces, a grea and future thinking idea. In fact, your marketing team is probably already using varied media for your social campaigns and content, so make sure they add it to your email marketing too.
Video content doesn’t have to be specially created. Your marketing team can include any videos you already have on you site, or they can share videos from your industry, along with relevant news stories or short, fun clips; whatever fits with your brand personality and customer profiles.
If you are creating your own video content, whether live or animation, get your marketing teams to embed this in your content on your site, then share via your email marketing campaign. This will help boost engagement not only within your emails but to your site.
The great part of email marketing is that you get to speak directly to your target audience and your only “challenge” is to engage them. And if that’s the case, then you should be doing everything in your power to keep them interested and subscribed by making it worth their while.