You’ve built up a substantial email list of warm leads or current clients and you’re excited to share more about your business with them. But did you know that if you’re not optimizing your emails for conversion, you could seriously be missing out on some marketing potential? While social media is trendy, fast and interactive, email marketing is still a tried and true method for converting leads into clients. Below we’ll provide you with nine simple ways to optimize your email newsletter to drive leads and create conversions.
What to Consider About Your Email Marketing Strategy
While it’s exciting to share your most recent blog posts with your email subscribers, think about what you want most out of your email newsletter: the email to be opened and clicks going through to your site. These are the two most telling metrics you can analyze to determine how effective your email marketing campaign is performing.
As you optimize your emails to best achieve these goals, it’s important to consider who your audience is. If someone is receiving your emails, they’re already interested in hearing what you have to say. Because they’ve previously been exposed to your business and services, you must treat these email recipients differently than you would if they were new visitors to your site. That’s because those who are subscribed to your newsletters are further down the sales funnel than brand new site visitors. Therefore, your email newsletters should be much more focused and actionable than the pages on your site. This concept can be reflected in the tips we’re sharing below👇
1. Take Advantage of Third-Party Services
While there’s nothing wrong with plain text emails, they just don’t compare to the bells and whistles offered through third-party email design services like MailChimp. An HTML based email allows you to create a visually appealing display that’s much more likely to draw the reader’s attention and entice a click through.
Aside from looks, third-party services can also help you track important email analytics, manage various client or subscriber lists and integrate sign-ups and form submissions. This makes third party services a time-saving “why not” option for busy financial advisors looking to beef up their email marketing campaigns.
2. Include Personalization
If you weren’t aware by now, mass marketing emails have officially become a thing of the past. Subscribers expect personalization in any interaction or exchange they have with your business, emails included. While these receivers understand your email newsletters are sent out en masse, the inclusion of a few personal details can make subscribers feel valued and more connected to your business. In fact, a lack of personalization can quickly land your emails in the “spam” folder.
A few details you can use to easily personalize your emails include:
- Receiver’s name
- Geographic region
- Age range
- Niche (pre-retiree, business owner, divorcee, etc.)
An effective way to collect this information is to include optional checkboxes or fields to fill out on your submission forms. If you’re using a third-party service, you can even create and manage multiple lists based on the personalized information provided.
3. Focus on the Subject Line
There are two determining factors as to whether an email will be opened or not: the subject line and the sender name. Why? Because those are the pieces of information a subscriber sees in their inbox before choosing to ignore, delete or open a piece of mail. That’s why focusing on your subject line can have a major impact on your email’s optimization.
A typical inbox shows about 60 characters of an email’s subject line, while a smartphone generally shows only 25 to 30 characters.
As we discussed earlier, personalizing an email can go a long way. If possible, try to include your subscriber’s name in the subject line. This is an effective way to immediately grab the recipient’s attention and stand out from other mass-marketed emails. Additionally, you’ll want to make your subject line relevant to what the email is offering, promoting or asking the receiver to do. Try to address a pain point if possible. Are you offering a solution to a common problem amongst retirees? Tease your solution in the subject line.
4. Choose a Sender Name
If this tip has your scratching your head, don’t worry! Selecting a sender name can often be an overlooked detail when sending out emails. We recommend creating a sender name that’s used consistently every time an email newsletter is sent. If possible, have the email sent from a person, not the company. For example, a recipient may find an email from “ABC Investments” to be spam, while an email from “Joe Smith” is more relevant and personable. Even better, have the email sent from your firm’s founder or chief principle.
Creating a consistent sender name will help establish credibility and recognition with the receiver. As soon as the email comes into their inbox, they’ll know who it’s from. Alternatively, changing the name too often could cause confusion and come across as spam.
5. Avoid Dense Copy
When a customer lands on your blog post, it’s because they made a specific search inquiry into Google and clicked on your listing to learn more. When your email newsletter lands in a person’s inbox, they’re not necessarily seeking out information at the time. Why is distinguishing the difference important? Because while blog posts can be comprehensive and informative, your email newsletter better be short and sweet.
You’re bringing information to a receiver, so it’s your responsibility to make it as painless as possible for them to read. Minimize your word count and avoid drafting any dense copy. This is not the place to cram in as much information as possible. Instead, make your email very specific and explicit in what you’re offering. Include one or two prominent calls to action (CTAs) and incorporate powerful visual aids.
When deciding what images or graphics to include in your email, we recommend avoiding generic stock images. Instead, get specific in relation to what you’re offering. If you want the recipient to download your e-book, include a picture of the e-book. This is an effective way to grab the viewer’s attention and emphasize the purpose of the email.
6. Create a Call to Action (CTA)
If you think about it, a CTA is the most important part of your email. Why? Because if click-through rates are your ultimate objective, CTAs are what make it happen. Don’t muddle the message by incorporating multiple CTAs that try to encourage viewers to visit multiple pages on your site. Instead, include one or two very distinct and obvious CTAs that lead to the same page.
When creating your CTAs, use action-oriented verbs such as “download,” “sign-up” or “register.” These commanding phrases are clear and concise, not vague or confusing.
7. Segment Your Messages
Once again, personalizing your messaging can make a big impact on your email’s optimization. If you serve several specific types of clients, try segmenting your emails to best match their needs. For example, young couples will have very different pain points and areas of interests than retiring business owners. Similarly, you may have clients interested in different services, such as estate planning, investment management or education planning.
Different clients have different needs, so why send them all the same email? Instead, tailor your emails to be relevant to each niche.
8. Include Social Sharing
Did you know you can include social sharing icons in your email newsletters to make it easy for viewers to share your posts? This can be a highly effective way to reach new audiences through your already-targeted recipients. Not only does this increase awareness and engagement with your business, but it allows your audience to create new brand impressions for you.
9. Optimize for Mobile Viewing
Chances are, you’ve checked your email on your smartphone in the last week or so, right? Just like websites, more and more people (around 40%) are reading their email on a mobile device. Therefore, there’s an increasing urgency to optimize emails for mobile viewing. Neglecting to do so can result in unreadable, oversized text or endless amounts of scrolling.
Maximizing Potential Through Email Optimization
Keeping your subscribers informed about your business’s services, blog posts and announcements via email is still an effective tool for staying connected with clients and warming leads. That’s why spending a few extra minutes to optimize your emails for maximum click-through rates can yield surprisingly effective results. Try out a few of the tips above, and A/B test small changes to find what resonates best with your subscribers.