5 Tips to Increase Email Open Rates

Everyone knows that the first barrier of email marketing is getting your audience to open your message. After all, if the email isn’t opened, then your marketing message is dead in the water.

To help increase email open rates, here are 5 tips that will make your email campaign a success.

1. Write short, descriptive headlines. Give the recipient an incentive to open the message. Use action words like “discover” and “learn,” as well as numbers, such as “5 Tips to Increase Email Open Rates.” You can also ask a question that is then answered by the message itself, for example, “Are Discount Dental Plans Worth the Money?”

2. Time the email appropriately. The best time of day to send your email varies according to your target audience. However, here are some basic guidelines: Take advantage of off-peak hours, such as lunchtime or toward the end of the day; keep in mind what time zone in which the bulk of the emails will be received; and try sending one email broken up into different time slots to find out which ones work best.

3. Maintain a clean list. By keeping a clean email list, you can ensure that messages are being sent to those who have a legitimate chance of opening it – therefore, increasing open rates. Weed out inactive addresses that routinely “bounce,” as well as any contacts that haven’t opened an email from you in a while. They are no longer interested in your services or the email is still “alive” but no longer active.

4. Watch your spam warnings. Run a spam check on every email before blasting it to your entire list. Certain words, like ‘free’ or ‘act now,’ can trigger a recipient’s email to mark your message as spam. The over-usage of different fonts and type sizes will also set off spam warnings. Also, including too many links or dead links, images and advertisements will raise a red flag.

5. Test segmented email lists. There are dozens of ways to segment your email list (such as by customer behavior or demographics) to test different marketing language on. You can try different subject lines, images or copy to see what resonates with your audience the most. Just remember not to create too small of a segment, since you still need enough of a sample to justify sending a unique email.

What are some of the strategies you have used in successful email campaigns? Share your tips in the comments below.

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