Often, we marketers can get so hung up on elaborate designs and content that we forget the reason we are building these communications to begin with. Most of the time, it’s all about engagement. Whether for new prospects, existing customers, partners, vendors, or members, the point is to drive interaction, and we do that through a value proposition and call to action.
But sometimes, we can end up saying things just for the sake of saying things, and we spend valuable time, energy, and resources going down a path of self-serving metrics to validate the time that was probably misallocated.
This can be especially true for email marketing.
While open rates and click rates, whether unique or total, can be good indicators of whether or not a recipient has experienced your email, it is not necessarily the tell-all truth as to the quality of the interaction. This can be even more cumbersome if you are overwhelming the inbox with links and calls to action, or worse yet, you create inconsistent bait-and-switch style messaging.
Remember, if the point is to drive engagement, then it is likely that your goal is to send the recipient to your website or blog to find the information prefaced in the email. One way to increase engagement from email is to use fewer, more relevant items in your emails. Don’t overwhelm the reader with too many links scattered throughout your message. While content is still king, you don’t have to pack it all into one big email. In fact, it may even be more beneficial to send out weekly updates in lieu of a monthly consolidated mailing. You could end up with more frequent conversions.
Another simple way to optimize your emails for maximum engagement is to design consistent and obvious calls to action. We’ve all received an email where there is an image that looks like it could be a link, but no matter how many times we click on it, it doesn’t take us anywhere. Or perhaps you’ve been the recipient of an email where you click on a link and are taken to a page that had little to do with what you just clicked on. You don’t have to be a “spammer” to come off as “spammy” in the eyes of your recipients. In our recent newsletter, the main call to action is front and center, letting people know about our upcoming event, and inviting them to register:
When clicked, the link leads them directly to the conference website with a registration form. Each month, our newsletter has a similar call to action that features our top story or opportunity for that month. The design is consistent, and the call to action is not only obvious, but it delivers on its message.
There are definitely other ways to optimize your email marketing efforts, but you don’t have to boil the ocean. Taking small steps to simplify and properly position calls to action while setting clear expectations for recipients will help drive true conversions in your emails.
Written by Nick Waverek, Solution Success Manager at ClickDimensions
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