I love working on a good strong email campaign and I am currently working on some emails to promote healthcare services so I thought I’d share some tips for effective email campaigns:
- Relevance – only send emails to people that will be useful or interesting for recipients. Think before starting an email, is this something that someone is likely to want to open and read about? If necessary, segment your recipients to send specific messages to different people.
- Brief – keep it brief. I always like to keep email content brief and direct people to the website. Then you can provide as much or as little information as people require and you can monitor how many people have clicked through to your website.
- Website back up – ensure your website has relevant content that you can link to from the email campaign. You may wish to set up a page specifically to back up the email campaign, which looks and sounds like the email they have just read.
- Subject line – spend time thinking about a strong subject line that will lead people into your email. Think about your audience and what is in it for them. Time is valuable and people are increasingly picky about the emails they open. Ensure your email delivers on the promise of the subject. I hate opening emails on the basis of an enticing subject only to find a disappointing message inside or an amazing offer that really doesn’t exist. Avoid words like “Free” “Offer” “Win” that may mean your email goes straight to the Junk files.
- Lists – allow people to leave. It can be upsetting to lose subscribers, but contacting people who do not want communications is at best irritating and may be illegal if you do not have permission to contact them. Best practice requires a double opt in for emails where users request communications and follow this up with an agreement to receive emails.
- Monitor emails – most email software packages offer amazing analysis allowing you to monitor the effectiveness of your email campaign. You can watch how many people open the email and how many click through to your website. If you monitor a few campaigns you should start to learn what interests your audience.
- Be friendly. I normally like to use a conversational tone of voice as this is usually the most engaging style, however avoid being over-familiar is this can be a bit creepy.
- Personalisation – this is highly debatable. When this is done well, it can be great. However when it is poor, it is a real turn off. If there is any risk of you sending emails starting “Hi Miss Catherine” or “Dear Abel Catherine” then don’t do it. As a recipient, I am generally not a big fan and certainly not from a brand I am not familiar with.
- Images – I think images are great for breaking up text and helping with your message. Be sure to pick carefully to support your message rather than take away. Try to choose people that most likely reflect your target audience. There are lots of great websites with bags of images to choose such as Fotolia. You have to pay a bit, but then you can use the images on your website.
- Calls to action – include clear calls to action. What do you want readers to do? Contact you, go to your website, download something. Be clear and reinforce in different ways e.g. include links within the copy, add a button link, create links from images.
I hope this list is a useful start point for anyone that wants to create an email campaign. If you would like any help developing and sending email campaigns then please contact me to discuss.