You don’t have to resort to cheesy methods to generate more click- throughs.
It turns out that successful business e-mailers use some of the same techniques that work when e-mailing with friends.
Recently, I was working with a client to analyze ROI on a cardiovascular marketing campaign. It was an integrated campaign that used a broad mix of traditional and non-traditional media. In reviewing the results, we were struck by the growing efficiency of our e-mail tactics. Both our open rate and our click-throughs have been increasing, which led to a discussion about what we can do to boost these metrics even more.
I think this article from Julie Rains of Wise Bread offers some tips worth considering:
1. Contain one main message in each email, or clearly articulated and delineated messages for newsletters.
Your recipient can quickly read, understand, process, and take action on one main idea.
Strong messages don’t “distract with extraneous information,” according to Jeff Finkelstein, who masterminds Internet marketing campaigns for client organizations and corresponds with clients via email as well as phone calls and face-to-face meetings for his company, Customer Paradigm.
2. Make a specific offer (or request).
Make a single offer, such as a heart-healthy cookbook (a recent big winner for one of my clients), a free webinar, an article on a hot topic, or a request to complete a survey.
3. Give a clear call to action, preferably one that requires swift or immediate response.
Explain the action needed to accept the offer or get more information. Tell the recipient how quickly that action needs to take place in order to receive the benefits of the offer.
4. Have a descriptive but compelling subject line.
Differentiate your emails and reference your offers in your subject line to inspire more curiosity.
Possible exception: In a few instances, Rains says highly anticipated newsletters can get away without a distinct subject line. However, in my opinion, you would need a very strong brand presence and an exceptionally strong message that has consistently been delivered over time for this to work.
5. Embed easy-to-find links that allow message recipients to take immediate action required to accept offers.
Ideally, there will be multiple gateways to offer pages through clearly identifying links contained in email messages.
Eye-catching images can be effective, but remember to provide text links that are more easily read on mobile devices.
6. Give customized recommendations that make sense to the recipient and, ideally, fulfill wants and needs or provide solutions to real-life problems.
Offers should be designed and messages crafted to reach customers based on segmentation or past behaviors
In an article on click-through benchmarks, Lyris, a provider of online marketing tools, states that click-through rates (CTRs) for “highly segmented and personalized email lists (B2B and B2C) are often in the 10 percent to 20 percent CTR range” and “trigger or behavior-based email campaigns (emails that are sent to recipients based on some behavior they showed, such as clicking on a product link, visiting a specific Web page, etc.) are often in the 15-50 percent range.”
7. Your company has permission to send and the recipient welcomes your contact.
Few click-throughs may signal a problem with your approach to getting contact information. Don’t pressure site visitors to sign up for special offers or newsletters (by requiring an email to access information on a landing page, for example). And try not to ask for registration so early in a site visit that the prospect isn’t fully aware of your mission, positioning, and scope of product and service offerings.