HOW TO FIGHT EMAIL FATIGUE
205 billion emails are sent daily – a 12.14% increase since 2013. With more and more emails flooding the average inbox each day, it’s starting to become a challenge for companies to send out promotional emails that won’t be overlooked by the recipients. We have all heard of banner blindness, but what about email blindness? Consumers are tired of seeing the same promotional email bombarding their inbox. It is time to change the way companies are sending out emails and fight that email fatigue feeling we all feel every time we open our inbox!
Unlike open and delivery rates, which have dramatically improved since 2014, click-through rates are on a fast decline. According to the 2015 Association Email Marketing Benchmark Report from Informz, the average delivery rate for emails is 98.34%, the average open rate is 35.49%, and the average click rate is 15.87%. What could be leading to this decline, and is there a way to turn this declining motion upward? Marketing researchers suggest that a balance between research, testing and creativity will provide the perfect solution for fixing this problem. Read on to find out how you can fight against email fatigue.
Step 1: Research
The Right Time:
They say timing is everything, and according to the Email Marketing Benchmark Report, this is definitely true. Informz discovered that sending out emails on a certain day of the week has very little influence on open and click rates – but the time of day you send the email does have an impact. Emails that are sent at night had the highest open rates, and messages sent midday had the highest click-through rates. Take this into consideration the next time you send out an email.
The Right Audience:
One of the biggest challenges facing marketers today is reaching customers that would most likely purchase or use their products or services. Every company should have a specific target audience they are trying to reach for every marketing campaign. In order to target an audience, however, you first need to define it. Only once you have defined your audience can you then go after it. Once you’ve defined your audience, the most effective way to manage them is by creating a database list – and the most effective way to create a database list is three-fold: assemble, segment and manage.
The Right Message:
As marketers, it is our job to market the right product, to the right person, at the right time. Marketing messages need to hold value to the recipients – something they want to see, like including a coupon in the email. Communicate your brand and products to the recipients, but also focus on the customer’s needs and wants. Identify a specific goal, personalize sender information, use actionable language and encourage sharing. Don’t ask for value – create it within your content.
Step 2: Testing
The Right Test:
In today’s world, testing isn’t an option; it’s necessary – and is becoming more and more widespread as marketers fully understand the value of testing. According to the 2015 Association Email Marketing Benchmark Report, subject line testing among clients increased by 26.3% and send time optimization usage increased by 24.5%. Subject line testing is the most common form of testing done by email marketers, but other tests such as pre-header text, call-to-action, creative layout, and time and day of send enables companies to create a more effective marketing email campaign. Testing for the sake of testing won’t get you far, however. Make sure that the elements you’re testing are relevant to your goals.
The Right Subject Line:
When it comes to email marketing, the subject line is the first thing customers see when they login to check their emails. The subject line is an introduction to the email, the company and its products or services. More importantly, for most recipients the subject line is the deciding factor between “Should I open this email?” or “Should I trash this email?”. Testing subject lines can help you find a more effective way to communicate with your customers. For help on writing effective, attention-grabbing subject lines, check out the blog post “3 Guidelines for Writing Email Subject Lines.”
The Right Results:
Once your test is complete and results are in, it’s important to accurately and carefully record and report your findings. Remember, even the smallest differences or findings can be significant. Maintaining a log of your testing and keeping it up-to-date is very crucial. The point of testing is to learn and improve your marketing initiatives. Recording the wrong information could jeopardize your results and everything you have worked for.
Step 3: Creative
The Right Update:
Keeping things interesting and eye-catching can be a challenge. Companies need to make sure their creative is current with marketing trends, as well as their business’ image. If you make any changes within your company – mission statement, brand, logo, etc. – make sure all marketing forms receive an update as well.
The Right Branding:
While it’s important for your marketing email to correlate with your website, the two shouldn’t directly parallel each other. When an email is sent, the recipient should be able to determine who the email is from by simply recognizing the company’s logo or name. And when an email recipient clicks the link to the company’s website, they should be able to navigate through it seeing consistency across all levels of the website. While brand consistency is important, it’s not necessary for the email to exactly match the website. According to iContact, having the website directly match the email would create confusion and distract the recipients from the main purpose of the email’s call-to-action.
The Right Layout:
The majority of email hosts don’t allow images to be seen unless the user clicks the download images button. With this barrier in place, marketers need to include text as close to the top of the email as possible. The wording of the text needs to be able to grab a recipient’s attention and cause them to take action – like click the download images button or the link to the website. Same goes for mobile devices. 52% of cell phone owners use their cell phone to send or receive emails – so if your emails aren’t mobile-friendly, you’re really missing out. Make it easy for consumers to read and navigate the message on their phone. This includes making the email finger-friendly! If you’re including links, make those links accessible.
Fighting email fatigue can be exhausting, but having the right tools and strategies can help put a stop to “email blindness.” If you think email fatigue is affecting your business, contact our full-service agency to learn more about Conduit, our marketing software tool with eMarketing capabilities, and receive a free demonstration.