Are you looking to find more success with your emails? Whether you’ve got an established email program or just dreaming of email nirvana, here are four tips to help your email efforts.

 

1. Get Permission

There are a lot of ways to grow your list, but not all of them are good for your database. Ensuring you’re growing your list with people who are actively seeking out your content is the best way to ensure you have an engaged database.

There are simple and effective ways to grow your list. Start with prominently placing signup widgets throughout your site and within your most popular content. Another sure-fire growth idea is through email opt-ins on promotions like sweepstakes, photo contests, and ballots.

2. Create Compelling, Actionable Content

So you’ve got a list. Now what do you send them? Always consider your audience and test your content until you get the perfect fit. While your assumptions may be dead-on, it’s important to make sure you’re developing the content they want, or they may not stick around.

Not sure what to send? Weekly recaps and breaking news alerts keep your audience in the know, leverage your already-existing content, and drive people to your site. Marketing and subscription emails such as subscription status and payment instructions are useful emails for any subscriber. Birthday emails share a bit of brand personality and also make excellent reengagement campaigns to previously unengaged users.

3. Only Send to Those Who are Interested

Even your most zealous fans can become disengaged over time. The biggest reason readers stop opening emails is because they feel the content isn’t going to be relevant to them. While unsubscribes are inevitable at any company, creating a strategy to keep your current readers is always more powerful than winning back those you’ve lost. So how do you ensure your content is meaningful?

Start by looking at the timing of your emails. While there isn’t one specific golden hour to send emails, make sure you’re avoiding sending at dinner time, late at night, or on Sunday mornings. Second, leverage segmented lists to ensure you’re sending specific content to the most relevant subscribers. If your email is about a women’s health expo, consider sending just to your female subscribers.

4. Test Your Assumptions

If there’s one thing certain about your audience, it’s that it is always changing. As you add new people to your engaged database, you need to consider what worked for your audience last year, might not be as effective this year.

Much like a scientist, knowing what works best requires experimentation and testing. While there are dozens of elements you could test, start by looking at the following: sender name, subject line, preheader text, layout options, call-to-action, and send times. Test out various aspects to see which your audience responds to best. But while there are lots of items to test, only test one item at a time to ensure your experiment is accurate.

 

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More about Tim: Tim is the Director of Email Success at Second Street and has extensive background in media. Tim is dedicated to helping local media companies find success through their email programs while leveraging promotions to grow their database and achieve their company’s goals.

 

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