April 15, 2021

How To Get People To Open Your Emails

Here at The Social Brand we are constantly talking about how to get your business in front of the right people, your people. You might think that once you have someone’s email, it’s game over and you’ve won! But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. 

After you’ve reached the milestone of acquiring an email address, you’ve now entered into a new world of strengthening a relationship with that person. It’s called, how to continue providing valuable content that will be successfully delivered to your audience and give them a desire to open your emails.

Your email lists subscribed to you for a reason, they want your knowledge and expertise to help them. 

But first thing’s first, you need to make sure that your communication lines are open and your email doesn’t get lost in their inbox. 

  1. Hitting the Inbox

Without realizing it, your emails can be flagged as spam. There are various reasons for this but a few are done innocently without any intention of acting “spammy” and you would never be aware of it without a professional’s help. Let’s address some of them. 

Try to avoid using spam “trigger” words in your subject line such as, amazing, click here, free, guarantee, and order now.

Sometimes email providers have built in tools that check for spam trigger words and will automatically list your email as spam. 

Not verifying your domain can also play a key role in getting your emails sent to someone’s junk or spam folder. If your email is hosted somewhere, you’ll need to verify your domain (@abc123.com) so that your email list’s email provider will trust where your email is coming from, knowing it isn’t spam. If your domain has not been verified in your email marketing software (Mailchimp, Hubspot...etc.), this could be a reason why you don’t have a high open-rate among your email list. 

  1. Keep it short and sweet

Are we talking about the subject line or the body of the email? Both, actually.

If your subject line is too long, the reader won’t be able to see the entire line since it will get cut off. There’s only so much space in a subject line. The shorter it is, the better your chances are at your reader understanding the subject of your email and ultimately opening it. 

What is an example of a short and engaging subject line that won’t mislead people?

“What you need to know about ________”

“Here we go”

“We thought you might like this”

“Your last chance”

“One day left”

Each title is focused on the reader. Using words like “you,” “we,” “your” and “I” will personalize the email and will help the reader to feel as you are talking “with” them and not “at” them. 

Maintaining a shorter length in the body is also a good idea. Think about how many emails your audience receives on a daily basis. How long are those emails typically? 

If you have multiple announcements and updates that need to be made in your email blast, try to shorten those announcements in snippets with a link that will send the reader to your website or social media pages. Or you can break up the email blast into an email sequence so your readers will be updated every few days or weeks about different topics, to avoid reader fatigue. 

The longer you require your reader to scroll down your email, the higher the chance they will exit out of your email without reading or clicking on anything. The less engagement your readers have with your emails, and the higher the chance an email provider will think your email is spam or junk and might send your email to the wrong inbox.

Finding the sweet spot on a good length to maintain the attention of your reader will help your open rates, increase your engagement within the email, and show your reader that you respect their time. 

  1. Value over promotions

When you lead your emails with how your reader can spend their hard earned money, this will only look as though that you want something from your reader. 

Instead, you’ll want to lead with value. Serve your audience first, then ask for the sale later. 

We all do business with people we like, right? So what is it about your business that your audience would like? What are some values that you want to share with them? 

What information do you have that would benefit your audience in some way? 

Oftentimes, a company newsletter or update is what readers enjoy most because they aren’t being asked to do anything. You are the one doing something for them. 

Only after providing value is when you should offer promotions. 

  1. Target the right people in your audience 

Congratulations on building up your audience! Now you need to put that audience into different categorized groups so you can make sure each group receives the most relevant content that would interest them. 

These categories will depend on your type of business. What are your different customer personas? Which buckets would they fall under? Are they interested in different things? Do they live in different types of areas? Are they different demographics?

You’ll need to evaluate who you are talking to and cater your emails to each category. 

If you run a medical office serving different age groups but you have an update about pediatric care, you’ll want to include that email to parents associated with your pediatric patients. You probably wouldn’t send that same email to your elderly demographic because it wouldn’t be relevant to their needs.

Having this targeted approach will improve your open rate since you’ll be sending specific types of emails to certain types of people. Those people are more likely to open the email, versus someone ignoring it because the topic doesn’t pertain to them. 

  1. Mobile optimization 

It’s 2021 and our smartphones are used for just about everything that a computer can do. To follow the theme of serving your audience, you’ll want to make it very easy for your audience to find and access your content.

Because of this increase in technology without phones, the majority of emails are opened via a mobile device.

Since 2011, open rates from mobile devices have increased by more than 100% and it is continuing to grow every year. (Campaignmonitor.com)

In 2020, 81% of emails were opened on a mobile device. This means your emails will need to be optimized for mobile devices so they can be read with ease. If emails are not optimized well for a mobile device, you will risk having a very low open-rate of your emails and may even increase the chances of your audience unsubscribing from your email list because they aren’t receiving any value from you since they can’t see it.  


Do you have any questions about digital marketing? We are always here to help and answer questions for entrepreneurs and small businesses about how you can find your people.




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