15 Best Practices to Generate Leads Through Email Marketing

Momina Asif
Momina Asif

Published on

September 27, 2021

One of the best ways to generate leads and increase sales is email marketing. According to research, with every $1 invested in email marketing, you get an ROI of $42. This fact clearly shows the effectiveness of email marketing. 

At the end of this article, you will learn what email lead generation is and how to generate leads through email marketing in the best possible way. So, let’s dig in! 

Want to generate leads faster? Sign up for Mailmunch’s lead generation suite (free forms, pop-ups, and landing pages with 100+ templates) and start generating leads.

What are email leads? 

Email leads are the people who share their name, email address, and other contact information with you. This is usually done through an opt-in form they fill out in exchange for an eBook, any discount, or a free gift. 

Once you have these leads, you nurture them with email marketing into a loyal tribe of customers. Your email leads are the foundation of your email marketing campaigns. 

What about buying email leads? 

Buying an email list is one of the worst decisions you can make for your business. There are four major risks involved in buying an email list:

  1. With laws like CAN-SPAM and GDPR, sending emails to a bought email list will most likely get your ISP blocked and prohibit you from sending emails at all.
  2. The people on the list don’t know your business. The chances of them opting out and leaving you with an empty list are high.
  3. Since they didn’t opt-in to receive emails from you, they’ll probably mark your emails as spam. This will result in you getting a low sender score and suffer from low deliverability rates.
  4. You probably won’t make any sales from the bought email list.

What is email lead generation? 

Email lead generation is a process through which email leads are collected using an opt-in form. The process revolves around gathering information about potential customers, such as their names and email addresses. 

An email lead generation strategy doesn’t just involve getting email leads. It also includes nurturing the collected leads and ultimately transforming them into paying customers. When done right, lead generation results in increased customer engagement and higher sales. 

Importance of having a lead generation strategy

If you want to grow your eCommerce business and boost sales, you need to have an effective lead generation strategy. Without such a system, your business will struggle to engage customers and grow revenue. 

According to research, over 50% of marketers believe that email marketing is one of the most effective strategies to generate leads online. A good lead generation strategy will benefit your business in the following ways:

  • It allows you to connect with your target audience. 
  • It helps you boost your brand awareness. 
  • More leads result in more customers, which means more sales. 

Let’s have a look at some of the best practices of generating leads through email marketing. 

Best practices of generating leads through email marketing 

I have listed 15 email lead generation best practices to drive a steady stream of leads to your business, resulting in higher customer engagement and more revenue. 

1. Identify your target audience

Let’s start with the basics. 

The first step towards a successful lead generation campaign is to identify your target audience. 

Your target audience or buyer persona is made of your ideal clients. To identify your target audience, determine the answer to the following questions: 

  • What is your target demographic? 
  • Where do they live?
  • What industry do they work in?
  • How much do they earn?
  • What are their hobbies?
  • How do they get their information?
  • How do they communicate?
  • What are their pain points and problems that you intend to solve? 

Now that you have a comprehensive understanding of your ideal buyer persona, it’s time to move on to your email marketing strategy

2. Create an irresistible offer

Now that you understand the pain points your target audience is facing, come up with an irresistible and valuable resource for them to use. The offer, also known as a lead magnet, has to be a solution that addresses your prospect’s problem and gives actionable tips as well. 

If your offer is irrelevant and doesn’t provide any value, your opt-in form will get no traction. 

3. Design concise and catchy emails 

For generating leads, the design of your emails is extremely important. Draft emails that are to the point and not overly long. Your emails should be as clean and concise as possible. Excess content in the email can distract your audience from the main point of the message. 

Let's have a look at this email from Morning Brew. The white spaces make the email easier on the eyes and the clear fonts make it easier to read. 

email from marketing brew


Some of the best practices to follow when designing your emails include: 

  • Use plain fonts that are easy to read. 
  • Choose a clean, simple template design that’s easy on the eyes. 
  • Use well-spaced, concise wording, and highlight the most important information to make it easy for your audience to digest your email content.
  • Your CTA (call-to-action) button must be well-placed, so it stands out from the rest of the email. It will be easy for your readers to see and click on the button if it’s prominent. 
With Mailmunch’s 100+ highly responsive email templates, create emails that delight customers and increase sales.

4. Add attention-grabbing subject lines

Your subject line is the most important thing that leads your subscribers to click on your email. Come up with ways to inspire the curiosity of your readers or add an element of urgency to your subject lines. 

You can customize your subject line with bold, italic font customization and emojis to capture the attention of your audience and draw their gaze to the subject line. 

By tweaking these little things, you can notice a huge increase in your email open rates resulting in an increase in conversion rates

If you have a lead magnet to reduce cart abandonment and you want to send an email to your email list, you will want to come up with a subject line that gets your audience to click on the email. Add an element of curiosity to get the attention of your subscribers. An example of a great subject line for cart abandonment lead magnet is: 

“Decreasing your cart abandonment rates is THIS simple?” 

This is almost certain to get opened as people are curious to see how to decrease abandoned carts and increase their sales. You can also add an emoji to make the subject line more prominent and catchy. 

Have a look at this subject line from Mailmunch. It causes a reader to think and increases curiosity about the contents of the email.

email from Mailmunch with subject line "Is this part of your email marketing strategy"

5. Make your CTA click-worthy. 

Your email needs to have a clear and compelling Call-to-Action (CTA) that is easy for readers to act on. To add a strong and click-worthy CTA to your emails, you need to be a little creative to attract your readers’ attention and encourage them to follow through. 

The most effective CTAs incorporate an element of urgency, excitement, and mystery. They are hard to ignore and get readers to take the desired action. 

Here are some ways to write a highly converting CTA: 

  • Use action-oriented text. Draw your audience in and compel them to take action by using text like "Get the Discount,” “Schedule Your Demo,” "Reserve Your Spot,” "Try for Free,” and so on.
  • Keep it short and concise. Keep your CTA text to just two to three words. If necessary, you can use up to four or five, but no more than that.
  • Create urgency and FOMO (Fear of missing out). Use phrases like "Shop Now!” “5 Spots Left”, “50% Off Today Only" to create a sense of urgency in your CTAs and get higher click-through rates. 

6. Set up automated campaigns to keep in touch 

To get the most of your email marketing strategy, add email automation to the mix. With automation, you can schedule emails based on your customers’ behavior and interaction with your brand. 

With automated emails, you can send welcome emails to your subscribers the minute they sign up. This helps establish brand trust and customer loyalty. Your customers will know that they have open lines of communication with you if they need help. Similarly, you can schedule thank you emails for every customer who buys from you. Send them a nicely crafted thank you email and tell them they are a valuable part of your business. 

You can also send cart abandonment emails when your visitors abandon their carts. Get them back and compel them to complete their purchase with some lucrative offer. All these emails are an example of an email automation strategy

With specific triggers, you can send the right emails to the right subscribers at the right time. Potential triggers could be when customers do any of the following:

  • Opt-in to your email list
  • Buy one of your products
  • Register for a webinar
  • Subscribe to a service
Mailmunch Automations lets you build intricate customer journeys so you can trigger emails based on your customers’ interactions with your business.

7. Leverage social media

With 3.2 billion active social media users in the world, social media is one of the best platforms to get leads. Use social media to generate leads by promoting your offer, lead magnet, or running paid ads. 

With social media, you get two benefits. Not only do you get email leads, but you also gain followers on social media. 

Your social media channels are a powerful tool in helping you grow your email list. Add CTAs to your profiles and schedule daily posts to help you promote your free lead magnet so that you continue generating leads on autopilot.

In addition to promoting your email list on social media, you should also promote your social accounts through your email list. With this strategy, you will be able to gain traction on both email and social media. 

Let’s have a look at some of the ways you can leverage social media to build your email list: 

  • Regularly add content to your blog posts and then promote them on your social media to grow your traffic and audience. 
  • Add a sign-up button and opt-in form to your Facebook page to give people even more opportunities to sign up for your list.
  • Use promoted pins and social ads to grow your list at a faster rate.
  • Add click-to-tweet to your blog posts or lead magnets so your subscribers can share your lead magnets with their networks, thereby expanding your reach.

8. Keep subscribers engaged with valuable content

Once your prospect has signed up to receive emails from you, they are officially a lead. But this is only the beginning of their customer journey with you.

You will have to keep them engaged with valuable content to nurture them into paying clients. 

Instead of sending “fluff content” for the sake of sending an email, focus on creating content that’s actually useful for your subscribers. Provide useful, targeted content that will keep your subscribers engaged and hungry for more. 

When creating content, always prioritize the value you are providing to your audience. To come up with valuable topics, you need to figure out the pain points of your audience. Then create blogs, how-to-guides, checklists, infographics, and other forms of content around those pain points. 

Let’s take an example. If your audience’s biggest challenge is building an eCommerce business, you will need to create high-quality content that’s focused on creating an eCommerce business from scratch, how to get customers or how to market your online business. You can also do a series of emails based on these topics. 

9. Use personalization to reel them in

One of the best practices of email marketing is to keep your customers engaged is personalization. Get enough data about your customers, like their name, how they interact with your brand, how many times they have bought from you, etc., and send them personalized emails based on these emails. 

This gives your brand a human touch and makes your emails endearing to your customers. You can send delightful emails on your prospects’ birthdays and provide them with an offer specially curated for them. There are various ways of adding personalization to your emails to make them more engaging for your customers. 

10. Keep your email list clean and updated 

The best thing you can do for your email list is to update it regularly. 

Why? 

By regularly updating your email lists, you can improve the data you have on your customers. Remove old and irrelevant information and add updated and new data about your subscribers. 

You should also regularly clean your email list to remove any unwanted or spam emails. This will ensure your emails never reach the spam folder and decrease your email deliverability score. By cleaning your email list, you can remove any disposable or fake email addresses you have to prevent bounce rates. 

Mailmunch’s Advanced Email Validation feature helps you build a strong and healthy email list free of fake, unwanted, and invalid email addresses.

11. Don’t use “no-reply” email addresses. 

A lot of businesses make this mistake. Many brands use no-reply email formats such as [email protected] to send marketing or transactional emails.

But this practice of sending no-reply emails is considered wrong. 

Do not use the No-Reply email address if you want to build brand trust and establish a bond with the customer. You want to give your customers the impression that you are there for them if they have any queries or complaints. With a no-reply email address, you tell them you can't be reached. 

Also, your subscribers might not trust such emails and may even mark them as spam or send it to the delete folder. As no-answer emails disable the reader’s chance to respond and react, they lose interest in them as a whole. It may cause a loss of potential leads, which no brand would like.

12. Send emails at the right time

The day and time when you are sending your emails are extremely important. 

Not all days of the week are suitable for sending email marketing campaigns to generate B2B leads for your business. While some think ‘Tuesday’ is the best, others consider Thursdays as the best day to send emails that get clicked and opened. But you shouldn’t follow any statistics blindly. 

Your business has its unique set of targeted audiences whose preferences, habits, and choices differ. Hence, what may work for your business, the same may lead to the opposite result for another company. 

So, study your customers as we’ve talked about in the first step and figure out the right time and day when sending emails would help fetch results in the form of leads. Similarly, there are many differences in opinion about sending emails at 8 am or 10 am, or 1 pm. It all depends on your target audience and when they are likely to check their inbox. 

13. Split test to continually improve your metrics

Split testing or A/B testing your emails is important for optimizing your copy and your strategy. 

There is always something that can be improved. By testing the different versions of your emails, you can find the best-performing emails to improve your conversion rates.

First, you have to decide what you want to test. Some of the things you can A/B test your emails are:

  • Subject lines and pre-header text
  • Send times and days of the week
  • Format and layout
  • Length of the email
  • Personalization tags
  • Featured image or copy
  • CTA placements and types, color, the shape of buttons

Once you've decided which elements to test first, you can then use the built-in A/B testing tools in your email marketing software to begin running the test. Select the one that is performing the best, and then send that one to your entire list. A/B testing helps you remain on top of your email metrics to improve your email marketing strategy. 

14. Optimize emails for mobile

According to research, around 53% of emails are opened on mobiles. Statistics like this indicate that the majority of people are opening their emails on their phones now. So, to provide them with a seamless experience, your emails should be optimized well for all kinds of mobile devices.

Let's take a look at this email from dotdigital. They sent an email for their masterclass which is highly optimized for mobile.   

email from dotdigital


Here are some tips to optimize your emails for mobile: 

  • Keep your subject lines under 25-30 characters.
  • Create short, scannable, and consumable chunks of content (i.e., bulleted lists, short paragraphs) 
  • Place your call to action near the top of your email. Make your CTA buttons at least 44 x 44 pixels.
  • Make it click-friendly by leaving enough white space around links and CTAs to make them clickable. 
Build high-converting emails optimized for all types of devices and deliver a seamless experience to your audience.

15. Segment emails according to subscriber behaviors

Segmenting makes your emails more relevant to your audience while providing them the best value. With segmentation, you can get more opens, clicks, and sales.

To provide the best value to your audience, you can segment contacts based on: 

  • Demographics (gender, age, geography)
  • Past purchase behavior (preferred product categories, number of purchases, whether or not past purchases were during promotions or sales)
  • Brand loyalty (new leads, longtime customers, VIPs)
  • Email engagement (customers who click on all of your emails vs. those who have never opened an email)

Conclusion

Each of these 15 techniques I have listed in the article has proven effective over time, especially for eCommerce businesses. Start implementing these email marketing tips and grow your customer base dramatically. 

Looking for a tool to help you do it all? With Mailmunch, you can do it all. Sign up today and start generating leads. Send your email list delightful emails and market your business effectively. You can even set up elaborate automation based on customer behavior and begin generating sales today!


Author Bio

Momina Asif

Content marketer by day and book nerd by night, Momina works at Mailmunch as a Marketing Communications Specialist. Momina eats, sleeps, and breathes content marketing. Her expertise ranges from ideation to production to distribution of content, thanks to 4+ years of experience in the B2B content marketing sphere.

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