Getting new email subscribers is a worthy goal, but keeping them engaged is even more important.
Your relationship with the people on your email list is not unlike the other relationships in your life. They take work. It can be easy to sink into autopilot, churning out bland emails. But is there a point in sending emails that are met with indifference?
More than anything, your emails should be compelling and produce reactions. How do you do that? How can your content set a mood that makes people intrigued and not blasé.
In this article, I'll share five ideas to help you spice up your content, increase your open and click-through rates, and generate more interest in your company. However, there's one aspect we have to mention: email deliverability.
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To engage your email subscribers, make sure your emails land in their inbox.
Many marketers work hard to improve their email content, and that's admirable. Dedicating yourself to sending people enjoyable emails is the right way to approach email marketing. Nonetheless, it's vital to know that those emails are indeed reaching your subscribers.
Otherwise, your hard work may be in vain as people don't even see it. A study by ReturnPath showed that 21% of emails land in spam, and one of the biggest reasons is stale data.
Data decay is inevitable: Everyone ends up with a few invalid and outdated email addresses on their list. What you can do is take measures to stay on top of your email hygiene.
If your open and click-through rates aren't making you happy, take a look at your other metrics first. The most important ones to consider are:
- Your bounce rate – it shouldn't exceed 2%
- Your spam complaint rate – it shouldn’t be higher than 0.1%.
Whenever you notice these numbers increasing or see that your open rates are unusually low, it's a sign you should prune your list. Once you validate your contacts, you can resume sending and have more confidence in implementing these ideas below.
Tell your list about your best blog articles.
Every way you communicate with your audience should be working in unison to generate interest, inform, market and advance your brand. The good news is that you can create a piece of content for one platform and repurpose it in different ways for other channels.
For instance, if you've published a great blog post, don't miss the opportunity to share it in an email. Not all of your subscribers read your blog regularly, but announcing a new article via email is the perfect way to change that.
Once your new article is live, write a teaser and invite subscribers to read the rest on your blog. There are solid benefits to this, including that:
- You've worked hard to create that piece of content, and promoting it in an email will drive more eyeballs to it.
- Some prospects won't convert via email but may convert on your blog. Make sure to include several calls to action in your article.
- It could make your readers aware of the rest of your blog content and get them to spend more time on your platform.
You're now communicating to your audience through two channels: email and your website. They're fresh and complementary, and they help you create more brand awareness.
Have you considered sending infographics?
People absorb information in different ways. Some are avid readers, others love video and audio content, while others prefer infographics.
Infographics visually communicate ideas and concepts. Infographics can make your emails stand out like no other type of content. However, it' vital to test them before the big send to ensure the image renders well on all devices and across all email clients.
Alternatively, you can write a short teaser and invite your subscribers to see and download your infographic on the blog or website. Always make sure that when someone makes the decision to click a link – such as from your newsletter to your blog – that there is a reward to doing so.
Creating infographics is also a great branding opportunity. Include your website and possibly a watermark, but let the image be as crisp and professional as possible. Keep in mind that your infographic may get shared on social media. This is why it's important that it looks spectacular.
Interview industry experts and your team members.
Another content idea to keep your email list engaged is to feature interviews with industry experts. This provides fresh voices in your email newsletters. Seek to create the kind of interviews that you would find interesting and that also appeal to your audience's interests.
Apart from featuring industry experts, don't underestimate the incredible insights and talent on your team. Many of your subscribers would be interested in hearing from them. Furthermore, it will solidify their view of you as a trusted advisor. Interviews are engaging and a great way to unearth new information.
This is an area where you can look outside the box. For example, if someone who works at your company does something interesting, consider covering it, even if it's not directly connected with the day to day business. Interviews give you an extra way to humanize your business.
Invite your subscribers to join a webinar.
The market is oversaturated with webinars. But there's a reason for this: They can create engagement for your brand. Produce a webinar that will be of great value to your audience and watch your metrics increase.
How do you find out what's valuable to your audience? Go through the history of your reports, but also, ask. Conduct an email survey that will allow you to cater the webinar to what people most want to learn.
Additionally, let your subscribers know what the outcome of attending the webinar will be. Compare advertising an "Email Newsletter 101" webinar to telling your list that after attending your webinar, they'll learn "how to send email newsletters that create excitement and increase conversions."
Conduct original research, and share your results in an email.
Can your company uncover data relevant to your industry? Share that information in a press release, blog article and, of course, in an email.
According to Mantis Research, 9 out of 10 companies that conduct independent research report that it is beneficial for their businesses. Fresh, valuable information has immense value. Share your research with your email list.
If your emails become formulaic, people will become bored. Strive to make every newsletter vibrant and interesting.
Whenever possible, get someone to look over your email before you hit Send. First, they may spot something that could be misconstrued. Then, ask them bluntly: Is this boring? Observe their reactions as they read your email. Does it look like they are struggling to understand the message of your email? Is their attention is slipping? Perhaps there are changes you can make to ensure the email is more engaging.
Finally, if you want to keep your list engaged, use simple, relatable language. Emails are not a place to show off your robust vocabulary or highly technical language. You are more likely to engage your readers if they feel like they know you. So, let them know you.