Getting conversions from email marketing is one of the more difficult aspects of e-marketing. Conversion at a website is defined as the visitor actually buying a product or a service, or performing an action the web owners wish them to perform. Conversion for email marketing can be defined as the receiver reading the email and clicking on the call to action hyperlink.
In the world of spam filters and junk folders, the only kind of email marketing that can have a relatively high conversion rate is email marketing through subscription, where the receiver signs up to receive emails.
With many new avenues opening up in the field of e-marketing, one would think that email marketing would have fallen out of favor by now. However, that is not the case and it is projected that investment in email marketing will go up to two billion US dollars by the end of 2014.
Following are a few tips to help you avoid being deleted without being read, and can increase you conversion rate.
1. Setup an Email Marketing Plan
This involves answering a few important questions. Such as:
a) What kind of content will you be emailing?
b) Who will you email it to?
c) When will you email it?
It is important to define your subscriber list, you must know the type of people they are and the kind of content they like. Content aimed at young adults should most certainly be different than that aimed at a mature audience. Segment people in your subscription list into different groups, and send content that would be interesting to each group. If you send the same email to thousands of people, it will have a lower conversion rate than a different email sent to smaller groups within the same thousand people.
Scheduling your emails is also very important. The first email sent to a subscriber must contain a clear statement about the email schedule, the person who receives the email must know exactly why he/she is receiving the email, and how often would the emails come in.
2. Subject Line
The subject line is the first thing your subscribers read. The majority of them will decide whether to open the email or to delete without reading, based on the subject line.
Most email marketers use capital letters and exclamation marks in abundance when it comes to the subject line, some even go as far as using the asterisk and other symbols. All those tactics make your email look like spam.
We recommend that in the subject line, you use a direct approach and be concise and clear about what the email is about and why it interests the reader.
3. Length of the Email
As a consumer, you do not wish to read lengthy emails about new products offered by a company. As an email marketer, you should think like your consumer and send them precise, to-the-point content with clear information on what the email is about, why should the recipient be interested, and where can he/she get more information if needed. Adding a hyperlink to a landing page with more information is a good idea in this regard.
4. Call to Action
The same advice given for the subject line holds true for the call to action statement at the end of the subject. The statement must be simple and concise, and the subscribers should have a clear idea of where their clicks would lead them.
5. Deliver on Your Promises
In order to gain subscribers’ trust, and to build an effective business relationship with them, you must deliver on your promises. If the email promises something “absolutely free” or a “100% money back guarantee” then that is exactly what the subscriber should get. The conversion rate and even open rate can fall if the email promises something and then the organization fails to come through on the promise. Relationship building becomes easier when your company delivers on its promises and as a result subscription rates and conversion rates increase.
6. Give Power to the Subscriber
The difference between spam and a legitimate marketing email is that of control. Spam is email sent automatically to thousands, maybe millions of people with no regard of their likes and dislikes, and without taking into consideration whether they wish to receive the email or not.
As an email marketer, you should give your subscriber the power to control what kind of emails they receive from you, and how often they receive them. You should also give them an option to select whether they want the email in HTML or plain text formats. Maybe your company deals in a variety of products and services, but the subscriber is interested in hearing about only one product. They should have the ability to customize their subscription in order to receive emails only about the products they are interested in. Such emails have the highest conversion rate.
The top two reasons why people unsubscribe from email lists are:
- Too many emails
- Irrelevant content
By giving them the power to control the kind and frequency of emails they receive from you, you naturally increase the chances of conversion and the number of people who unsubscribe annually is significantly reduced. If you do not give power to the subscriber, your subscription list may reduce by 25% each year.
7. Test, Analyze and Review
It is a good idea to test several subject lines and call to action statements, along with the email body, before sending them to the subscribers. There are also online services and software application available through which it can be ensured your email doesn’t get categorized as junk or spam.
Keep a close eye on analytics, facts and figures. Which email generated the highest conversion rate and why? Which of your emails was deleted without even being opened? What kind of people are subscribing to your list and who is unsubscribing? Constantly look for answers to these questions. This will help you improve your email marketing strategy by identifying the strengths and weaknesses in your current strategy.
Did you find these tips helpful? Let us know through your comments.