10 Proven Ways to Boost the Open Rates of Your Marketing Emails

Most people believe that email marketing is ‘dead’. “It’s a thing of the past”, they say. Little do they know what we, as marketers, understand. Email marketing is still the most effective form of digital marketing and yield the highest return on investment. This, of course, requires a certain understanding of your users’ persona and optimizing the information you receive using the various email marketing tools out there like MailChimp.

Source: Salesforce

Here are 10 proven ways how to increase open rates of your marketing emails:

1. Keep your list updated:

This may seem simple enough, but has an impact on the open rates of your email. Sometimes subscribers that were interested in your brand are not anymore, or they’ve simply changed email addresses. We do it often enough! Best practice is to keep removing inactive users every quarter. An inactive user is someone who hasn’t opened your email communications for the past 6 months or more.

2. Send a final follow up:

Before removing a subscriber from your list, always make a last-ditch effort by sending out an email asking them whether they would like to continue receiving the email newsletter from you. Some respond some don’t. Remove all of the subscribers who don’t. You can always send out a humorous email with a catchy subject line like ‘Is the Love Gone?’ or ‘Where Is The Love?’. In the body of your email, you can always give them a couple options like the sample shared by Optinmonster below.

3. Avoid buying a list:

This is basic hygiene. It doesn’t matter how many email subscribers you have on your list if none of them open your emails! You are supposed to tend to your list like tending to a blossoming rose, removing dead leaves and watering them just right. If you’ve purchased a list and have no idea who you are emailing, most likely your emails will end up in the spam folder, never to see the light of day.

“ A small list that wants exactly what you’re offering is better than a bigger list that isn’t committed.” – Ramsay Leimenstoll

4. Write a catchy subject line:

Subject lines are the first thing a person sees when they receive your email, make sure they don’t have sales driven lingo like FREE, OFFER, DISCOUNT, SALE, URGENT. Avoiding these words also helps you avoid getting caught in the spam filters. Adding humor and numbers to your subject line is also a technique that is proven to increase email open rates.

Source : Salesforce

5. Use a friendly tone, not a professional one:

In today’s world, no one has time to waste. People are just looking for a reason to not open your email, and sounding like any other marketer will ensure people see right through that notification. Try using a friendly tone, and adopting the style of speech your users would be using to communicate with each other.

6. Perfect your timings:

There is no definitive method that encapsulates the entire global market. Each industry has its own preference, so it’s best to understand your audience and their habits and perform a few A/B tests to see which time works best for your communications. Avoid weekends though.

7. Resend campaigns:

Sometimes people just miss an email without meaning to. Try resending an email only to the people who haven’t opened it, you will see some who click through on the second go.

8. Segment your list:

Make sure you understand and compartmentalize your list since no audience is going to be the same. There will be some part of your list that responds to humour and some part that only engages when freebies are being shared. Make sure you package your communications specifically for each segment, sometimes this means writing a separate communication yet higher open rates.

9. Write to one person:

Even though you are writing an email to thousands of individuals sometimes, you must make sure you sound like you are communicating with just one. This adds a more personal feel to the email, and as you have understood from the point above, personalization is everything.

10. Don’t forget your mobile users:

According to BlueHornet,  67% of email users check their email on their smartphones. This means you must send emails keeping in mind the screen size. A few quick tips to keep in mind would be to make sure your email looks good without images, never keep 2 links on top of each other since the user could click on the wrong one, and always make sure your CTA button is large and easily clickable.