Hello! I just attended a one hour webinar from Constant Contact and I want to share the tips they offered with you. The data they compiled is from ALL of their customers, covering ALL industries. Keep in mind, the best practices for your specific industry may vary from these recommendations. The webinar was called The Art and Science of a Great Email.
How to increase OPEN RATES:
Keep subject lines to 50 characters or less, about 5-7 words. Sometimes subjects like “December Newsletter” will work for your subscribers. Or you might want to get more creative and use something like “December Must Read Highlights” or “What to know from XXX for the month of December”.
Highest amount of OPENS occurs for emails sent between 6-7AM on Monday mornings. The open rate declines as the week progresses.
How many emails should you send a MONTH? 1-20. After 2 or more, the open rate decreases. More emails = less opens.
Keep in mind, this information was from ALL Constant Contact customers across ALL industries. Some of these practices I agree with 100%, others I think are open to more flexibility. I will however, go back and review the results I’ve been getting for myself and for my clients and see how they compare to these recommendations based on their statistics.
How to STRUCTURE your email:
Communicate with images, 2-3 seems best, too many gets distracting, unless your industry demands it like food images for restaurants or property images for real estate.
20 lines of text between images offers the best click-through rate. Avoid very lengthy text. My recommendation, if you need to share a longer document or article, consider putting just the first paragraph or two in the email, then create a READ MORE button that brings the user to the rest of the information that has been posted on your website or blog (recommended) or elsewhere.
Fonts? Best results were when one single font was used but up to 4 is ok. More than that drastically reduces your clicks and your email starts to look like spam, not good.
Colors? Stick to colors of your brand, up to 4 is ok, not including color photos of course.
Use Emphasis carefully, like if you have a quote, about 15 words or less is best. Not too many different styles like ALL CAPS, italic, bold, etc. Again could start to look like spam.
Click Rate vs # of Links:
The more LINKS you have the more CLICKS you will get, right? Not so, according to the statistics. If you offer too many links, subscribers will ignore the majority of them and only click on a few.
1-3 links are best. More links = less clicks/link.
Determine Your Super Fans:
I use the term “raving fans” frequently in marketing. They are your clients or customers who LOVE you and they talk about you frequently across all media and word of mouth. Hopefully you know who your raving fans are. If not, Constant Contact recommends you review WHO is opening your emails and treat those Super Fans to something special. You can identify WHO opens your emails and do a variety of things. Look at the Reports section of your account, view who opened a particular email. You can COPY those contacts into a new list called something like OPENERS or Super Fans. Do that for the last few emails you sent. It won’t duplicate them if the subscriber opened all of your emails. Let me know if you want help with this.
Once you have a new list of your Super Fans, determine what you can do to make them feel special. Maybe send your next email to them earlier than the others. Maybe send a special version with a coupon or other thank you gift (time is a gift too, not just products). Or simply send them a Thank You email for being so engaged with your campaigns.
Did you know that 5% of your email subscribers are responsible for 38% of your opens? And 10% of your subscribers open 51% of your emails. So that top 10% is very important to you, treat them as important in various ways a couple times a year or more.
In review, here are the tips from Constant Contact for the IDEAL EMAIL:
- Send at the best target time and day of the week. Monday 6-7AM.
- Use a short subject line. 50 characters or less.
- Use your brand colors. Up to 4.
- Communicate through pictures, up to 3.
- Minimize the number of links to 3.
- Avoid lengthy articles or copy.
- Find your Super Fans and treat them well.
If you would like to set up a Constant Contact account, allow me to refer you. Both of us will get a $30 credit from Constant Contact! I can help you import your list and get a custom template started for you, as well as help you manage your content and your campaigns or teach you how to do it yourself.