It pains my strategy and word-lovin’ heart to get emails from brands I want to love that feel… subpar.
I mean… I get it. There aren’t enough hours in the day to do alllll the marketing for your business right. Especially if you have a lean team.
But email is a critical sales tool for eComm businesses. With an ROI of ~4200% (according to Hubspot), it’s a channel that you can’t afford to ignore — or phone in.
Once you realize that you can (and should) generate at least 30% of your revenue from email marketing (remember this is a channel that you OWN, unlike paid advertising), you’ll find that optimizing your email marketing should rise to the top of the list.
So, how do you optimize your email marketing?
Here are a handful of ways you can stop phoning it in & improve your email game to make more money, build better relationships with your audience, and get a piece of that killer ROI pie everyone is talking about.
1. Mix up the styles of your emails.
Send some beautifully designed emails as well as some plain text emails. The brain likes variety. And the unexpected. Your readers will appreciate the diversity in their inboxes. They’re more likely to stay engaged with your brand when you mix it up. That means better open rates, click rates, and that they’ll make more frequent purchases.
2. Write killer subject lines that build intrigue without being clickbait-y.
Subject lines are your first chance to grab your reader’s attention — so don’t phone it in! Be creative and build intrigue… make it irresistible for them to open your email. Numbers perform well in subject lines. And if emojis are on-brand for you, try sprinkling them in from time to time (but don’t overdo it).
But don’t be clickbait-y: make sure you deliver the story or offer that you dangle in the subject! Give your readers what they expect in the content of your email. If you don’t, you’re going to lose their trust. Fast. And you don’t want that for your brand.
3. Link your products and emails back to the calendar.
When your content matches the current calendar, it feels relevant and timely and creates the urgency for your audience to buy your products. Use the seasons, holidays, and current events to find connections to why your products are relevant during certain times of the year.
4. Stop pushing constant discounts.
Nothing cheapens a brand more than constantly discounting your products. You’re training your audience that your products aren’t worth the full price. They’re always going to expect a sale… and they’ll never pay full price. Plus — what is this doing to your margins?! Oof. 🤦♀️
5. Open a loop with a story.
If you have an engaged audience, storytelling is a great tool to keep them reading your emails and craving more. Opening a loop with a story that has them on the edge of their seat… and dangling the conclusion so they can’t wait for your next email can be a great tactic to get an open for your next email. Just don’t forget to close the loop!
6. Show, don’t tell.
People don’t want to buy products; they want to buy a life transformation. Show them how their lives look after they’ve purchased and used your products. (For example, if you’re selling skincare products, it’s not about what your product is — it’s about how your skin looks and feels after using it.)
7. Counter objections.
Do your research by studying your customers. Find out what holds them back from buying your products. What are their hesitations? And their fears? Answer FAQs. Explain what you’ve done to refute their concerns.
8. Brand your transactional emails.
It’s common to brand your marketing emails, but eCommerce companies often overlook the branding of transactional emails. Do not miss the opportunity to build brand trust, loyalty, recognition, and authentic connections with your customers by creating brand continuity at all touchpoints of your customers’ journey. (For example: if your order confirmation, order shipped, order delivered emails are coming from Shopify — edit the template and the copy so it flows with your brand messaging on your site, in your social posts, and in your marketing materials/emails.)
If this list feels overwhelming, remember that even a few simple tweaks can help you improve your email marketing. Start with baby steps. Making changes, no matter how small, is better than not taking any steps toward optimizing your copy. You can start by testing subject lines, then preview text, and ultimately the body copy in your emails to see what works. Every audience is different! So test what works for YOUR audience. It may not be what you think it is (emoji or no emoji? that is the question).
Want better email open rates, higher conversions, and more profit in your pocket? Yeah, you do. Learn how to improve your email game in this guide.
Good vibes only, promise.