I get a massage every month (yes, really, and yes, it’s worth it!). The massage therapy practice I go to uses email marketing, and though I love everyone at the practice, I do not love their emails. Their emails are … how do I put this nicely … riddled with mistakes.
Yes, everyone makes mistakes, and yes, they are massage therapists, not marketers. But because their emails are not professional, I will not forward them to my friends, and say, “Hey, check these guys out the next time your back is a tangle of knots!” First impressions are everything, and their emails won’t make a good one.
So, to ensure you sends out emails that are so awesome your clients want to forward them and spread the word about you, here’s a 5 point email marketing checklist:
1. Find a good writer
First and foremost, your email has to be well-written. You don’t need to hire a professional copywriter, but you do need to find someone who is good at writing, whether it’s an employee, friend, or spouse. Ask him or her to either write the email copy for you or copyedit/proofread it.
2. Segment your lists
Divide your customers into groups based on demographics, location, buying behavior, or even gender. Information and offers that are targeted to a specific group of people will convert into sales much more effectively than one that is generalized for everyone.
3. Spend time on your subject line
Because your customers will decide whether or not to read your email based on its subject line, spend time writing a good one. Don’t title your email “ABC Company January Newsletter.” Let them know what’s in the email. For example, if you are offering a limited time promotion or hosting a special event, say so.
4. Write copy that is scannable, short, and fun
When people read emails, their eyes travel down the left side of the screen. Use headers, subheaders, and bulleted lists, and keep the most important information to the left. Also be sure to keep the email short, as most recipients aren’t going to bother reading the whole thing anyway. Infuse the copy with your personality as well – just because it’s short doesn’t mean it has to be boring.
5. Include a call-to-action
Always, always, always include a call-to-action in your email. Tell people what to do, link it to a landing page on your website where they can take action, and make sure it stands out in the email!
Do you get emails from other small businesses? What do you like most about them? What don’t you?
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Monika Jansen is a copywriter and editor who is happiest pounding out blog posts, website content, and other marketing materials for her clients, who tend to be startups and professional service providers. She is a blogger for GrowSmartBiz and the managing editor of UberStories. You can follow her on Twitter (@monikacjansen) or find her on LinkedIn.