Looking to take your customer relationship to the next level in 2021? Fine-tune your email marketing campaigns. 

If done right, email marketing can be one of the most impactful ways to build brand loyalty and trust. Why? Eighty percent of professionals believe email marketing boosts customer retention. Better yet, every dollar spent brings an average return of $42

So what exactly does it take to achieve this kind of long-term demand? How do you enhance your email campaigns to give your bottom line the love it deserves? 

With 2021 just around the corner, there’s no time to waste. Start using these 10 email marketing tips today, and bring your best foot forward into the new year. 

Learn more about advice for spending in 2021:

1. Send Your Emails at the Right Time

When do you generally send out your emails? Even though there are studies that convey ideal times and days to reach out to leads, the right time really depends on your audience, industry, and business. 

For example, sending out emails during the late afternoon hours might work for B2B industry folks (office employees with 9-5 jobs who are likely hitting that “afternoon slump” between 2-4 p.m.), but this timeframe may not work for those in the B2C space, where customers have varying schedules. 

Discovering the right time requires experimenting with: 

  • Different times. Send out emails in the morning, afternoon, and evening for a month until you find that sweet spot. Look at your email open and click-through rates (CTR) to see whether people are more engaged during one time versus another.
  • Different days. Tuesdays and Thursdays are generally the two most popular days to send out newsletters. But this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t test out Wednesday or heck, even a Saturday. Think about your audience—when are they likely to have some downtime and check their emails? 

2. Find the Right Frequency

Like a lot of good digital marketing tactics, email marketing takes consistency (and a fair amount of trial and error) to achieve lasting results. 

But what exactly defines consistency? In other words, how often should you reach out to your contacts? How much is too much? 

This can get pretty tricky. You don’t want to inundate inboxes, but you also don’t want to disperse emails sparingly (this can lead to missed revenue and loyalty opportunities). 

To strike a fine balance in frequency: 

  • Tap into your business goals. What do you want to maximize? Whatever they are, let them guide you in deciphering what optimal frequency looks like for your campaign. For example, if your goal is to boost conversions during a quarter, you may want to send out two emails each week instead of one.
  • Analyze your contacts/prospects. What are the buying habits or engagement histories of your people? Could some benefit from that extra email more than others? If so, consider splitting up your contacts into two or more groups. This can help you hit the right number of emails AND personalize your campaigns, which brings us to our next point.

3. Personalize through Segmentation

Segmentation is a strategy that streamlines and groups your leads based on specific characteristics (age, geographic location, buying habits, engagement history, etc.). You can then send unique messages to each group and better nurture your audience.  

We know—segmentation sounds cool, but it also sounds like a lot of work. Well luckily, you can automate this process through marketing automation

With the intent to automate your lead-nurturing campaigns, marketing automation software can segment leads for you. Marketers who use segmented email campaigns see a 760 percent increase in revenue

So take a look at your list of contacts—what are some defining characteristics that set some people apart from others? Could a specific category of people benefit from a particular product or offer?

In a digital world, where people are bombarded with numerous emails, your email needs to stand out. Segmentation allows you to give your prospects what they want and a reason to open yours out of a hundred others. 

4. Implement Lead Scoring

Want to take your email personalization even further? Create a lead-scoring model. 

With the help of marketing automation, this model assigns a value to each of your contacts, which prioritizes them. By implementing a lead scoring tool for Roof Maxx, Big Leap’s marketing automation team was able to bring our client a 200 percent increase in the number of sales meetings. 

You can base your model on various factors like: 

  • Email engagement: Give higher values to those who have engaged with your emails the most (you can refer to their CTRs).
  • Company information: Depending on the types of businesses (for instance, B2B versus B2C) you’re trying to target, you may want to assign a higher value to a contact based on their industry.

5. A/B Test Subject Lines & Content Designs

How to execute good email marketing tactics requires testing. A/B testing, or split testing, involves sending one variation of your email to one subset and a different variation to another. 

The goal is to identify the one email that generates better results. Once the winner has been selected, the winning variation is sent to the rest of your recipients. 

The great thing about A/B testing is you can test a variety of components against each other. For example, you can test: 

  • Subject lines: Your subject line is the first impression that may or may not compel someone to click on your email. Try testing out a subject line that poses a question versus one that’s an unfinished statement. Which one will entice your audience to open your email? Testing your subject lines can help you learn the kind of language and tone that will work best for your recipients.
  • Content designs: Does your audience respond better to a text-only email or an image email? Some people like plain and simple emails—it may come across as more personable. But some may respond better to image-focused emails. Testing these variations can help you find creative ways to garner more clicks and engagement. 

6. Weave in CTAs

You need to inspire your prospects to take action. Whether that’s reading your latest blog post or unlocking a free offer, you’ve got to give them a little push. You’ve got to give them a CTA that kicks ass. 

A good CTA:  

  • Carries compelling action verbs. For example, say you’re providing a free offer. Instead of saying, “Click Here”, you can say, “Unlock My Offer”. “Unlock” carries mystery that incites interest and action, and the use of “My” gives it that extra touch of personalization.
  • Has been tested against other CTAs. You can conduct an A/B test to try different types of CTAs. Consider testing them out as buttons versus links. Global technology company, Campaign Monitor, found that a button-based CTA boosted their CTR by 28 percent compared to a linked CTA. 

7. Make Your Emails Mobile-Friendly

How’s your email design looking on your phone? Not only does mobile make up more than half of the worldwide traffic, but it also makes up 46 percent of all email opens

Your recipients could be anywhere when they receive your email. They could be on the train ride home or waiting in the check-out line at the grocery store. Wherever they are, you need to give them a seamless user experience. 

This might require: 

  • Simplifying your copy. Copy tends to look a lot more bloated on the smaller screen. Most email platforms, like Hubspot, allow you to preview your email on both the desktop and mobile formats. So see how your copy looks on mobile and cut it down if necessary. Using numbered lists and bullet points are always good options to help with readability.
  • Making your email click-friendly. This means leaving enough white space around your buttons/links. This makes it easier for people to click without accidentally clicking something else (people have large fingers!).
  • Being more strategic with your images. Not all mobile devices display images by default, so it’s good to plan for a non-image experience. This means your email should still make sense in the case the picture doesn’t show. 

8. Track Relevant Metrics

There are a lot of metrics when it comes to your emails. Before you get overwhelmed, think about the purpose behind your tests and campaigns. Then use that to help you focus on the right metrics. 

Here are the three common metrics you’ll see: 

  • Open rates: If you want to see how effective your subject lines are and/or how relevant the theme of your email is, look at your open rates. This is the percentage of the total number of people who opened your email. A good email rate tends to be 20.94 percent on average.
  • CTR: Trying out a new email design/template? Striving to boost engagement? Testing out CTAs? Your CTR will be a good indication of your contacts’ level of engagement and commitment to your messages. It reflects the percentage of subscribers who have clicked the links/CTAs in your email. The average CTR across all industries is 7.8 percent.
  • Unsubscribe rates: An unsubscribe rate that’s below 0.5 percent is generally good. Anything above that indicates you’ve got work to do. We know, it hurts! But remember, finding out what doesn’t work for your audience will help you find out what does work. 

9. Whatever You Do, Don’t Bombard People—Focus on Authenticity

We get it, you want more engagement, leads, and sales. But this doesn’t mean you should send out emails like rapid-fire with the hopes someone will notice you. 

Whatever you do, don’t overdo it. People will get annoyed and, even worse, feel inclined to unsubscribe or throw you in their spam folder. Instead, channel that energy into getting to know your audience more and brainstorming new ways you educate and engage. Focus on authenticity. 

10. Elevate Your Email Marketing with Marketing Automation

We’ve mentioned this earlier, and we’ll mention it again (because it’s that important!)—marketing automation. You need marketing automation to maximize your email results. 

Marketing automation carries the tools to help your team reach more people on a more personal level. It’s the fuel that energizes your email campaigns with the longevity they need to win leads, customers, and above all, trust. So be sure you layer your email campaigns with marketing automation tools to get ahead in 2021. 

Connect with Big Leap—a Hubspot Gold Partner

If you’d like some assistance with your email marketing, consider reaching out to us. At Big Leap, we offer marketing automation services that can help your emails reach new heights. 

Better yet, we’re a Hubspot Gold Partner! This means we know our stuff when it comes to emails and automation software. Not to mention, we’ve been able to consistently meet our client’s expectations. So if you’d like to discover unique ways to build authentic connections, reach out to our team. 

Janet Lee