In 2015, the Direct Marketing Association (now the Data & Marketing Association) reported email had the highest ROI of any marketing channel. Surely, they must have been on to something. By 2019, the number of registered email accounts is predicted to reach nearly six billion.
So much for email becoming a dying breed of marketing.
As a channel in your association’s marketing mix, email marketing is, indeed, one of the most effective forms of marketing on a mass scale. Over the years, and with a lot of practice, email marketing has become a science. But, you can still easily miss out on optimizing your resources and reaching your marketing potential if you don’t go all in.
While email is used as an integrated part of other processes, there are only a few ways to simply get a message across a large universe of users, and email is one of them. Email is effective at delivering segmented content, driving conversions and providing attractive ROIs.
To get you where you need to go with your emailing marketing efforts, Community Brands and Informz have partnered to compile a list of the 10 best practices for email marketing.
1. Subject line, subject line, subject line. Developing the subject line is the trickiest part of email marketing. This is the one shot you get at driving someone to open your email. Make the subject a summary of the email in as few characters as possible; 30 or less.
2. Brevity is key. A shorter, more direct email is more likely to generate clicks and responses. Too much information will be overlooked. Use descriptive headlines, bullet points and images to quickly get your point across.
3. Pre-headers are crucial. More email is read on mobile devices than a desktop. Because of this, you’re given extra real estate to expand on your compelling subject line and drive opens. You will see this pre-header as the next line of an email notification on your mobile device or even some desktops. Use it to get readers off their seat with a cliffhanger.
4. Personalize every time. Use names wherever possible. Readers react more to a personal email that’s specifically directed to them. Put first names in the subject line to grab attention. Use other information about your user base to make a more compelling email.
5. Think like a retailer. Use auto-responders when you can. This is hands-free email marketing for your already busy team. Generate automatic emails when someone completes a task, such as registers, purchases or attends a webinar.
6. Design for the finger. Again, more email is read on mobile devices than desktop. Make sure your emails are mobile-responsive so users don’t have to zoom in and out and put the puzzle together—a sure way to lose readers.
7. Ask users. Request subscriptions to your emails through your other channels. Provide a sneak-peek of any newsletters you have and direct them to a subscription page. These users will be your most engaged users.
8. Start the inbound train. Use your organization’s current services to develop a target group. When offering webinars, require users to enter their contact information. You now know they are interested in your organization and the material you are presenting.
9. Calls to action. Write compelling call-to-actions (CTAs) to entice users to click through. Put them at the top of the email and along the bottom. Use colorful buttons and bold text. Be short and concise with strong verbs. CTAs are key to drive conversions.
10. Viral social marketing. Put buttons leading to your social media pages in your emails. Ask your readers to share what they read. The most powerful form of marketing is through word-of-mouth.