With growing ROI that has reached 4400 percent, email marketing is still the most efficient method to communicate with your target audience. Unlike with social media or direct mail, for every dollar you spend on email marketing, you can make $44 in return — that is, as long as you know how to do email marketing the right way.
Assaulting your email list with irrelevant newsletters and promotion codes just isn’t going to cut it. In fact, it makes leads more likely to hit the unsubscribe button than to make a purchase decision.
So to hit that $44 sweet spot, it’s time to upgrade your email marketing strategy and move past the spam. With that in mind, we asked our network of top email marketing experts to share the “magic” techniques that help them achieve big results with every email marketing campaign they send.
Write each email as if you’re talking one-on-one
Emails that make the recipient feel like you’re talking directly to them are always a good bet. The personalized approach makes your target audience feel valued and connected while still delivering content that furthers your marketing goals and eventually, sales goals.
Just take it from Phil Forbes of e-commerce hub Shoplo
Too many times, when we write emails, we picture ourselves standing in an auditorium with all our contacts literally looking at us, expecting us to say something.
Rather than writing your email like you’re addressing everyone that you will email, write as if you’re speaking to one person.
Remember, the person you’re emailing doesn’t know how many other people will get that email, so speak to that one person specifically.
Be original, unique and memorable.
My best performing email has an open rate of 83%.
The subject line is ‘Blatant Clickbait’. No one ever receives an email like that. So when they do, they think ‘who the **** sent me an email confessing that they’ve sent me clickbait?’
Intrigued, they open it. Then it’s up to your killer copy to convert them.
Split your message in two
Our next magic trick is to use the data from your email marketing service to target your most engaged subscribers first. Neville Medhora of Kopywriting Kourse uses this method to skyrocket his open rates to over 50%:
To get open rates over 50% I’ll split my broadcast messages into two: the first broadcast will go to people that have opened and clicked my emails three times within the last three months, and the second broadcast will be to the rest of the people. This has created super high open rates!
I used to be happy with anything over a 20% open rate as seen by all my open rates here, but with this trick I’m getting 50% or more on the first email!
Offer upgrades for your most popular content
Content upgrades are quite a formidable tool to have in your email marketing “back pocket”. They’re sort of magical in that they allow you to transform some of your best and highest performing work into brand new content that wins you brand new leads.
Sandeep Mallya of 99signals explains:
One of the easiest and most effective ways to grow your email list is to offer content upgrades. A content upgrade is bonus piece of information that complements a piece of content the reader is already interested in. Here are a few examples of content upgrades you can offer to your visitors:
- A checklist
- Case Study
- SlideShare presentation
But how do you go about creating content upgrades? After all, it could take forever to create upgrades for each and every piece of content you’ve created on your blog. For this reason, you should start by creating content upgrades for 3-5 of your most popular articles.
At 99signals, we have seen a substantial increase in our email subscribers after offering content upgrades for most of our popular posts.
Don’t just recycle old content and hope for the best, though. Be sure you update the content to make it current and timely, and add complementary visuals that draw the eye to where you want it. Great copy can only take you so far!
Treat your email campaign as a product
Matt Fenn from Jumplead, an online marketing and lead generation tool for small and mid-sized businesses, suggests treating your email campaigns as products in and of themselves:
By pitching/writing your email campaign as a course or educational sequence you can drive up open rates and engagement. I’ve seen cases where this technique has driven open rates over 60% as you are delivering super targeted and anticipated content.
Delivering a sequence of helpful free content has enormous selling potential because it assures your subscribers that you’re a) trustworthy and b) knowledgeable. That means they’ll be more likely to open future emails from you and feel confident clicking through on your CTAs!
Use strategic presell pages and open info loops
Stephen Altrogge reminded us of the utility of preselling pages. Presell pages are a streamlined way to segment your audience so you can guide each segment into the phase of your sales funnel that fits them best. Stephen says:
I consistently achieve open rates of between 50-60% using two things I learned from email marketing master Andre Chaperon and his Auto Responder Madness material.
First, I use several “presell” pages to hyper-qualify all my leads. Instead of just a squeeze page, I have semi-lengthy pages that both pump people up for the emails they’ll receive and turn off people who aren’t interested.
Then in the sequence itself, I consistently leave open loops where I give part of the information in one email and part in the next. This keeps people always engaged and forces them to open all the emails if they want all the information. By combining these two things, it guarantees an incredibly interested audience who always wants to know what I say.
Mix things up!
Sprinkling various types of content into your emails, like video, infographics, gifs, and photos create additional interest that copy alone can’t. In fact, emails that include video have open rates five times higher than emails containing only text.
My #1 most magical email marketing tip, as someone who’s been doing this for a little while now, is to mix it up. Balancing image-heavy with plain text emails has led to some unexpectedly great results. Most recently, I got an engagement score above 90 on a plain text email in Marketo with the average across my series around 65, which is unheard of.
I’d also say paying careful attention to journeys is still really important. Email marketing as a name is deceptive now; these journeys are actually taking people across several assets and channels, so optimization from email to ad to pop-up to social to a landing page is critical to enforcing your email messages and pushing your database to take an action.
-Be’Anka Ashaolu, RetailNext
And for our final trick…
Remember, just like clothing, email marketing isn’t one-size-fits-all! Let’s do a quick recap on how to do email marketing magic, according to the pros:
- Segment based on each subscribers level of engagement with your previous content
- Use content upgrades to get more ROI out of content you’ve already created
- Treat every email campaign as a product
- Use presell pages to guide your prospects towards content they’re interested in
- Mix it up by using images, video, and gifs that complement your copy
For more email marketing magic, click below to sign up for MailMunch everyone’s favorite easy-to-use lead capture tool!