We know how tough it can be for a small business to get its message out to customers. And the world’s greatest ideas, products, or services are completely useless if no one knows they exist. E-marketing can solve this problem, but only if you can convince the masses to open your emails.
We’ve seen small business e-marketing done the wrong way. We’ve seen it done in an OK way. Heck, we’ve seen it done six different ways to Sunday! Now it’s about time we explain how to do it the right way.
Timing is Everything.
Nearly a quarter of all emails are opened within the first hour of their receipt. After 24 hours, there is a 99.37% chance that your unopened message is sitting in a trash folder somewhere. To lower your email mortality rate, send emails out between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. or 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. In our experience, these are the magic hours when the most emails get read. Sending an email too early in the morning or late in the day can cause it to get lost in the daily shuffle.
Get Your Foot in the Door.
Give your readers a reason to open your email. Offer a discount, contest, or incentive. Solve a problem, answer a question, or make them smarter with helpful facts. A catchy subject line helps, but don’t be overly sales-pitchy. “A Great Opportunity” and “Open Me!” aren’t going to cut it in today’s spammy world. You also need a reputable email address, preferably one that includes your business name. The sender line is one of the first things your readers see. If it looks suspect, your messages will be sentenced to a lifetime in the junk folder.
Knock Their Socks Off.
Once you get people to open your email, you need to grab their attention in a hurry. Take a tip from the former journalists on our team: “Don’t bury your lead!” Tell your readers quickly and concisely what you want them to know, and do it in a way that keeps them reading. Keep the text of your email simple and to the point. This isn’t the place for a dissertation or long-winded pitch. Save those for… well, never. Do you have time to read a 1,000-word email? Neither do your customers. Providing links to your website, products, or other relevant material is helpful, but don’t go overboard. Nobody wants to read or click through a jumble of links. One or two per email is plenty. Finally, work on your format. It may not be fair, but the prettiest emails usually get the most attention.
E-marketing for small businesses can be a slippery slope, and it takes a lot of trial and error to get it right. You don’t have to go at it alone, though. Mischa Communications has the tools, knowledge, and expertise to help your e-marketing campaigns succeed. All you have to do is ask!