Inboxes are full of email marketing from companies we’ve registered with and others we haven’t. As I come across tips or best practices, I usually save them to Evernote and share with clients when it’s appropriate. Here are a few I’ve found helpful in communicating best practices to add value through email marketing and stop spamming people. I’ve also included some excerpts from each I found most helpful.
- Quit wasting people’s time. Only email when you have something truly valuable or helpful to say.
- Be useful. Don’t just email when you need something from your readers. Be helpful. Be generous. Be friendly. Be like real friend.
- Don’t be creepy. Feel free to personalize emails, but don’t repeat people’s name too often, because it makes you sound like a call center script.
- Be on their side. Remind people that they’re not alone. Tell them you understand their struggles. Empathize with them, and ask how you can help.
- Give people a reward for reading. Make sure people benefit from reading your emails. How? Share a useful tip. Make them feel better. Inspire them.
- Use a number. Because digits — like 4 or 37 — stop wandering eyes.
- Point out common mistakes. Because nobody wants to be perceived as silly.
- Quit cleverness. Simple, specific subject lines beat clever alternatives every time.
- Experiment. Be a rebel and try something new. Dare to be different. You’ll be surprised by what works and what doesn’t.
- Learn from the masters. Subscribe to excellent email lists and analyze their subject lines. You’re guaranteed to learn something.
- Keep it short. Edit your emails with rigor. Long and unwieldy emails slaughter your readers’ interest. Challenge yourself to cut your text by half next time you edit.
- Ask questions. Imagine having a face-to-face conversation with your reader. You’d ask questions in that situation, wouldn’t you?
- Don’t follow a strict formula. Blueprinted emails quickly bore the boots off your readers.
- Add a personal touch. Because you’re trying to get readers to know, like, and trust you, aren’t you?
- Don’t automate your greeting. Try warm wishes, best regards, or greetings from sunny England. Mixing up your greetings makes you less robotic, and more personal.
- Develop a natural voice. Stop thinking about email marketing. Consider your emails to be a way of talking to your customers or readers.
- Add personality. Use words and expressions only you can use. Be human.
- Stop being dull. Understand the telltale signs of boring writing. Write short, strong sentences. Be to the point. And break high school rules.
- Highlight benefits. Don’t sell your product. Instead, sell the benefit it offers your customer.
- Don’t follow a strict formula. Because formulaic emails sound robotic and are boring as heck.
- Work toward your aim. Tell interesting stories that lead to your sales message.
- Insert multiple links (to the same page). Because it increases your chances of people clicking that link.
- Have an impeccably clear call to action. Tell your readers exactly what you expect them to do next, and remind them why it’s in their best interest to buy.
- Only communicate when you have something useful to say
- Regular empty emails bother people
- Don’t direct people to parts of your site they can’t access
- Think about what’s valuable to your customer, not your business
- Avoid ‘free’, ‘help’ , ‘percent off’, and ‘reminder’
- Keep your subject line to 50 characters.
- Subject lines framed as questions can often perform better.
- Avoid repetitive subject lines
- Mistake #1: Not testing enough.
- Mistake #4: Writing like a spammer.
- Mistake #6: Not including an unsubscribe link.
- Mistake #7: Sending emails “out of the blue.”
- Mistake #10: Not using full paths in your images and hyperlinks.
IMAGE: MASHABLE COMPOSITE ISTOCKPHOTO, RUNEER
I’ve been reading lately about causes of churn, specifically as it relates to web based products, and ways to prevent it or at least reduce it.
I stumbled across these great slides that speak simply to both:
Causes of Churn
Stop churn before it starts
When looking to improve your product, weigh your idea against these 4 questions:
- Will this idea improve an existing feature?
- Will this idea get more people to use the product?
- Will this idea get people to use the product more?
- Is it a new feature to support a new workflow?
If you can answer yes to and of these questions, your idea might not be worth implementing at all.
*Image Credit: @
It’s important to exist in an environment that provides inspiration and fuels creativity. A large part of that for me has involves reading. Since most my my day is spent on the computer, most of what I read comes from articles and blogs. Over time, sources have a way of rising to the top or dropping off into the abyss of endless meaninglessness. Typically, if I find my self reflecting on something hours or even days after I read it, it’s usually a source I revisit.
Right now, these are two sources I check almost everyday. Enjoy!
A clear call to action is User Experience 101. Hats off to the team at https://getfinal.com/, I think they nailed it.
A great reminder to not take yourself too seriously and perhaps a taste of what it takes to get noticed these days.