Whenever you need to scale an SEO process, you have to send emails.
While phone calls and Facebook or LinkedIn messages are great for creating meaningful relationships and closing deals, they are pretty bad for marketing purposes.
When you do a promotional activity, you need to focus on quantity and pray to God that you nail something.
In fact, the email open rate is the best way to measure your efficiency.
Given that this is one of the main lead generation methods, you cannot neglect it.
Why is email outreach so hard?
Everybody has the basic understanding of email outreach.
But like with anything else, this basic knowledge will not provide the needed results.
Back to the subtitle: why is email outreach so hard?
- Basic knowledge is not enough
- Everybody does it
Back in the day, there were numerous promotional channels.
For example, if you wanted to sell a toothbrush, you could do it with a door-to-door campaign, leaflets, billboards, radio and TV commercials, newspaper ads, etc.
In the Internet era, it all comes down to two things: email outreach and PPC (not considering banners due to their low conversion rate).
You can argue that there are also other methods.
But, imagine if you ran a campaign by adding people one by one on Facebook, waiting for them to accept the request and then sending the message.
It would be way too slow.
Although PPC is great, it costs a lot. Most bloggers/website owners do not have that kind of money.
Also, PPCs main focus is on potential buyers while email outreach can be used for almost any type of promotion.
There is another great benefit of email outreach: it is proactive.
Unlike PPC where you wait for a person to click on your link, email outreach allows you to pitch any number of people.
However, I need to mention that PPC has better conversion rates.
How to improve your email open rates?
As an email marketer, you need to ensure that a person opens your email and then clicks on your link.
Ideally, you should also get a response later on.
Let’s check the best ways to increase the open rate of your emails:
Before we even consider emails, it is necessary to mention targeting.
Most people who have issues with email open and click through rates are in fact struggling with poor targeting.
If you messed up this initial step, no email tricks will help you.
Need help finding good leads?
- Always make your own email lists
- If you’re not making the list, make sure that someone who knows the industry makes them
- Research target demographic
- Constantly update the list to keep it up to date
List buying is something that is rather common.
However, this job is usually underpaid and handled by people who don’t have any clue when it comes to a particular industry. This is why it needs to be done by a trustworthy person.
Naturally, you need to know your clientele.
Next, you will have to constantly update your list, mark people who are regular customers and remove those who never respond or unsubscribed.
Finally, I’d strongly suggest that you do NOT buy any email lists at all unless you really know what you’re doing.
Email title and sender’s name
Sender’s name is the first and most important factor determining whether your email will be opened or not.
In other words, that’s a simple way to boost your email open rate.
People cling to authority and if they see a familiar (famous) name they are more likely to open the mail.
However, we cannot change our name (unless we fake it, which is not a good idea) so no point in discussing it any further.
Thing which can be changed is the email title.
According to Neil Patel, here are the main 5 elements of every email:
The ideal title should be between 6 and 10 words with 8 as optimal.
As you can see, first and foremost it is necessary to create curiosity and sense of urgency.
This way you can ensure that there is an emotional connection with a person.
That’s not enough though!
A person should also see personal interest in opening your email.
If the prerequisite have been met, there is a high chance a person will open the email.
Got it? Great!
But, wait… this is only the first step!
Every word matters for email open rate
Recipients shouldn’t read your emails. They should be led through them.
Like with any other type of content, the first thing you have to realize is that every word matters.
You can gain or lose a customer on any sentence and even word.
This is why your email needs to be perfectly formulated. Each word and its impact on reader should be measured.
Here are some things you need to know in order to improve your email open rate:
- Perfect email is between 50 and 125 words long
- It has to be user oriented
- Email needs include a call-to-action (usually a link)
Most people think that by adding more words and sucking up to recipient, the results will be better.
Although emails have to be personalized, you need to bring it to minimal.
Ideally, you can write an efficient email that is 2, 3 sentences long. This way, each word will have more significance and will be more impactful.
Main thing here is for your emails to be “user oriented”.
It actually doesn’t matter how long your email is or what you put in it as long as your offer is good.
But, the main catch is that you need to come to benefits quickly or you will lose the person.
Personalization is very important. But, how can you tell when personalization is excessive?
According to research, emails that have recipient’s name in the tile have 5 % more chances to be opened.
And reality is that you have to write emails that are tailor-made for recipient, addressing them personally, talking about his industry, possible common goals, etc.
However, there’s a situation where you start praising people and talking about their articles, achievements and so on.
Although this is great in theory, it adds too many lines to your text.
This reduces the hype and the positive initial emotion.
Like in sales, you need to ride that emotion in order to close the deal.
If the email becomes too lengthy, recipients will have a bad taste in his mouths by the time they’re finished.
Ask (the right) questions
The first thing people think when they see a new email is “I probably don’t need this”.
Your task is to persuade them otherwise thus improving your email open rate.
By asking a question is the title, this thought changes into “I might need this”.
There are two main reasons why you should ask questions in your emails:
- To place focus on your message
- To force person’s hand to answer
Recipients are rather dismissive when they see an email from an unknown sender.
In the end, why wouldn’t they be? We get a lot of spam all the time.
Oftentimes, these offers are not even targeted. Instead, they get random offers/invites for things they simply don’t care about.
In order to prevent accidental deletion of your email, you should ask a question in your title.
For example: “Nik, would you like more white hat links for your website?”
This instantly tells us that the person sending the email wishes to help you get more legit backlinks.
Even later on, in email’s body, you can ask questions such as “Why should you pay more for something?”
Every question you ask has to have a point.
It needs to force a person to think highlighting all the benefits of this deal.
Worst thing you can do is write forceful messages such as “You should accept this at all costs!”
This may be true but people do not like to be forced to do anything.
Instead, you need to lead them to a conclusion; a conclusion which they will make themselves becoming a new reality.
Email timing is crucial
Imagine walking down the street, holding your partner’s hand and having some quality time together.
Some guy approaches you and tries to give you a leaflet.
You will most likely decline and continue enjoying your free time. Same principles work for emails.
Timing is very important when it comes to email open rate.
These are some of the main things you need to know to boost your email open rate:
- Avoid sending emails on Mondays or during the weekend
- Best days for sending emails are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
- Avoid sending emails during lunch time
- Late afternoon and early morning are a great choice
Let’s analyze this.
First of all, nobody likes working on Mondays.
This day is usually not so productive and people are reluctant do anything else besides their basic activities.
Same goes for Fridays.
During the weekend people prefer spending time with their friends and family.
The ideal time for sending emails is when people are in the work mood which means from Tuesday to Thursday:
- in the early morning (as they prepare for work day and have some extra time)
- after work (when they check all other miscellaneous information)
Although work days are ideal for receiving emails, you should avoid peak hours of productivity.
During this time, recipients will avoid any type of message that doesn’t concern work.
Emailing is a sales game.
Like a normal pitch, every move you make needs to be surgical. Every sentence needs to lead to a closing.
All else should be considered as excessive and inefficient.
Given that the emailing process is based on sales principles, it is easy to understand that the client is the main focus.
As long as recipients see the benefit of cooperation, they will be inclined to do business with you.
Nevertheless, your email needs to be timely and properly formulated.
No matter how rational we try to be, we will always be affected by our feelings.
You are the one that needs to harness those emotions and persuade a recipient that your email is more important and more lucrative than any other email they have received that day.
What is your biggest issue when it comes to sending emails? Do you think your email open rate is good? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!