How to improve email open rates

Email marketing is a cost-effective marketing method that offers an astonishing return on investment. Research last year suggested that every US dollar spent on email marketing offers an average return of $44. Wow. It’s no wonder that 89% of marketers say that email is their primary channel for lead generation.

Email marketing isn’t about sending a random email now and again and waiting with fingers crossed to see if something will happen. You need to carefully consider all of the best ways to engage your target audience if you want to improve email open rates.

As always, we’re here to help!

Know your audience

You should always conduct a little bit of research into your audience before you start an email marketing campaign. You might not want to send every single email to every single person in your database, all of the time. When you’re collecting leads, you should consider which information you need from your customers to segment your database effectively.

The more you know about your customers, the more personalised your emails will be. For example, if you know your subscribers’ birthdays, you can send out special birthday promotions. If you know where your customers live, you can make them aware of products, services or events available in their local area. If you’re a B2B business, you can split your customer base by organisation type or size to ensure the information you’re sending is always relevant to them. If an email feels personal, this should improve email open rates. Chances are your customer will open it.

Once you’ve determined your target audience, you need to consider the best time of day to reach out to them. Customer Intelligence discovered that 58% of adults check their emails first thing in the morning. And according to a study by Adobe, millennials are most likely to check their emails in bed (70%), in the bathroom (57%), or even while driving (27%) – please don’t check your emails while driving!

You can conduct your own testing to work out when your emails perform best. To improve email open rates, you need to know your audience inside out.

Use an attention-grabbing subject line

Sorry. We know it’s a bit Captain Obvious. But your subject line needs to entice your subscribers to open your email. You want to pique your audience’s interest just enough to get them to click.

You might want to try out funny, shocking, informative, mysterious or list subject lines – go ahead!  If you’re not sure which line will work, we recommend experimenting as much as you can. Just remember to track how the subject lines perform.

Why not use A/B testing to try out two different subject lines for the same email? You’ll be able to see which one performs better and then replicate that success in the future.

Keep it personal

We’ve touched on personalisation already. According to Campaign Monitor, marketers who use personalised subject lines see 26% more opens on each email they send. By personalising the content, subscribers feel like the email is specifically intended for them and that you have carefully considered their individual needs.

You want your subscribers to feel special, like you’re reaching out to them and them alone. But how do you do it? Well, you can use general personalisation, making clear that the email is exclusive and addressing your subscriber by name in the opening sentenceOr you can invest in tools that allow you to include your customer’s first name in the subject line.

Consider your content

HubSpot found that 65% of users prefer emails to contain mostly images, compared to 35% who prefer text. Of course, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t write anything at all. But you need to make sure you’re not waffling. Cut down your content and state the facts. Use high-res images and visually appealing infographics to make sure information is easy to digest and memorable.

And in terms of design, your email needs to work on mobile. That’s non-negotiable.

One last tip: Increasing open rates is reliant on a responsive database. Don’t be tempted to purchase a spreadsheet full of leads. Instead, you should build your database the organic way, using CTAs on your website, blog and social media pages.

Need our help to improve email open rates? Our email marketing services will take care of everything for you, including email design, email content creation and database distribution. For eye-catching email campaigns, call us now on +65 6830 8456.

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Ange Dove

About Ange Dove

Master copywriter and content marketer Ange Dove, AKA Copy Warrior, founded Proof Perfect in 2003 to improve business communication and marketing, one business at a time.

Ange and her Proof Perfect team focus on providing compelling copy backed by powerful visuals to make clients’ content stand out both online and offline.

She is adept at planning strategies for her clients and using the best of today’s technologies to automate their marketing so they can Get Ready, Get Seen, Get Business.