Email marketing is somewhat of a favorite among marketers, and not just because it’s so efficient. It also represents a great way for you to keep your finger on the pulse of your audience and get in touch with them with new offers and updates. But, most of all, email marketing can and should be used as a tool for generating more leads. The trouble is, people’s inboxes are swamped with emails from different companies and businesses, which means it’s getting harder to get them to actually open your emails and click through until they have reached one of your landing pages.
Furthermore, you should also focus on your conversion rate. So how do you set yourself apart from your competition and create a winning email message? We have put together a list of essential parts every email needs to have in order to intrigue your audience members.
Name and Address of the Sender
Needless to say, an audience member will be more inclined to open the message if they know who it’s coming from, otherwise it will come off as a scam. You should include a name that sounds real and genuine, as well as an address which contains the name of your company, your name, initials, or the name of your particular department.
One of the most crucial elements of the bunch. Not only is it the first thing a reader notices after the name of the sender, but it’s also a brief description of what your message is actually about. Therefore, you should focus your efforts on coming up with the most effective subject line you can imagine.
Another important element of your email message is the snippet, which usually contains the beginning of your email message, and can be seen after the subject in case the user is using Gmail (which is often the case) or checking the inbox using their mobile phone (even more often). It provides the reader with additional insight into your message. In case there is none, the only thing a user can do is open the message in its entirety, without not being sure what it’s about.
Also the first element a reader will see when they open your email. This is a good opportunity to include some visuals which your company is known for, such as your logo or color scheme. This will present the reader with something they are familiar with, making them more likely to read the whole message.
Sending a text-only message is probably not the best way to go about your email marketing. Instead, enhance your emails with some compelling images which can bolster your written content. People respond to visuals, which is why infographics are so popular.
This is your actual message, the place where you choose what you will say to the readers, and how you are going to say. Make sure it’s clear and concise, and laid out in way that is easy to follow. In case you are sending them a newsletter, you can afford to make it longer, but if making a sale is your goal, make it short, sweet, and intriguing.
Call to Action
The whole point of email marketing is to get your readers to click on your message, and then proceed to one of your landing pages, where you have a higher chance of converting them into customers. This is the reason why including a call-to-action inside each and every one of your emails is essential.
Social Media Sharing Links
It’s pretty obvious that you want your readers to check out your content. But, it’s even better if they decide to share it with their friends, and you can make it easier for them to do that by including sharing links to the most popular social networks. Not only are you expanding your reach and your audience this way, but you are increasing your chances of finding new leads, as well.
Now, those were pretty broad strokes. Here is a more detailed explanation on how to go about creating a compelling email message your readers won’t be able to resist:
1. Create a clear and concise subject line. We have already discussed this, but what you should also keep in mind are these 10 ingredients of a great subject line. Also, the content of your message should match your subject line. If you have promised your audience something in the subject, it has to be there once they click and open your email. Otherwise, not only will your click-through rate dwindle, but it may also affect your open rate, since you haven’t delivered what you have promised. Also, be specific. For example, “19 New Ways You Can Grow Your Online Business Today” will be a lot more effective than “New Trends for Online Businesses Owners”, which is pretty bland.
2. Be personal. Don’t just put together a vague, generic message. One trick you can use here is to address your audience in the second person, which means using “you”, “your”, and “yours” whenever appropriate. What this does is shift the focus from yourself to your useful. They will only be interested if there is something in it for them, not just you and your brand.
3. Make your message brief and succinct. Your average reader will only dedicate so much time to reading your message. In fact, about 80% of the people will just scan the content, looking if there is anything in it that will get their attention. So, short and sweet is the way to go, but you should also make sure that your content is easily digestible and scannable.
4. Spelling and grammar should be flawless. According to Jack Lee, who is a content marketing strategist at Essaysontime, good grammar is more important than you think: “If you haven’t bothered to make your message perfect, your audience might think you have been equally sloppy when it comes to your product or service. Also, while exclamation marks and upper case letter can be effective when used in moderation, overusing them can have an adverse effect.”
5. Use simple and direct language. It’s okay if you are enthusiastic about all things your new product can do, but flooding your message with technical data will just turn the reader away. You should communicate what you have to say in a simple language. Why use a fancy $2 word when there is an equally, or arguably more effective 10 cent word for it?
6. Spark their curiosity. For example, you could say something like “10 Ways to Improve Your Business”, but a better solution would be to sound more provocative, like “10 Devastating Reasons Why Most Businesses Fail”. The latter is a lot more effective, and gives you the opportunity to elicit an emotional response from the reader with power words like “devastating” and “fail”. A little drama and flair can go a long way here.
7. Break up your message visually with spaces, bullet points, or lists. In case your message goes on for a bit, divide it into sections which are easier for the reader to consume and scan. This can be achieved by creating a list, leaving plenty of white space, or relying on bullet points. Of course, this should also be used in moderation, and using more than 3-4 bullet points would defeat their purpose.
8. Focus on the benefits rather than features. Whether you are trying to justify the increase in price for your new product, or providing discount for it, instead of going on about all the features it has, focus on the benefits its user will experience if they decide to purchase it. Once they know how it will make their personal or professional life better, they will know its full value, and will be able to understand that it’s worth the money.
9. Demonstrate enthusiasm and confidence in your product or service. This is one of the ways to show your audience that you have a truly fantastic product on your hands. If you are projecting a “meh” vibe, they will respond accordingly. If you are not sure how to sound enthusiastic, try writing your message quickly to make it sound more spontaneous.
10. Clean designs. You can use designs elements such as colors, shapes, and even images to guide the readers’ eyes to where you want them to go, or to emphasize the most important parts of your message. Also, if possible, include colors which reflect those found on your logo or official website in order to bolster your brand’s identity. You can also use professionally designed email templates for regular, recurring content you plan to send like newsletters, sales announcements and more.
11. Make your call-to-action as clear as possible. This applies both to its visibility, as well as its message. Your readers should be clear on what happens next, and reinforce your message on why it would be beneficial for them to take you up on your offer. While not necessarily a rule, it’s always good to have just one call-to-action, instead of several competing ones.
12. Create a sense of urgency. Another method you can use to make your email message more effective would be to create a sense of urgency. For example, let your readers know that your fantastic offer is for a limited time only, and that it will expire in several hours. Or tell them there are only 10 invites left, and those who buy them will get exclusive access to a premium version of your website, where they can find even more useful content.
With these tips and tricks, you will be able to craft an irresistible and compelling email message and boost your email marketing efforts. You already have something to offer to your audience, but it’s up to you to make them realize that.