When was the last time you unsubscribed from an e-mail campaign? For me, it was last Wednesday.
I recently subscribed to a mailing list because I was interested in finding out more about a digital marketing tool. The assigned account rep committed two of my cardinal sins of email.
1 – He used spammy subject lines.
2 – He emailed me too frequently.
On average, this account emailed me every 36 hours. He also used overly hyped subject lines that were okay at first, but didn’t deliver on what the actual content of the email is.
It begs the question, how am I doing with my emails? I’ve come up with a few little tips for you to judge the content and approach of your emails.
When it comes to subject lines, I’ll pick my favorite two of these 5 rules:
1 – Don’t be spammy. If you use ALL CAPS, more than one “!”, or you’re overly vague like the guy above by saying “Check this out!”, you’re not only likely to get flagged by spam filters, but you’re also likely to get thrown away by your customer. Quickly.
2 – Keep it short. You have about 3 seconds to convince someone to open your email. If they can’t read your subject line in that time, you’ve likely lost them. Keep it under 45 characters (that’s 7 to 8 five-character words including spaces). Under 5 words is best.
If you have a super special message for your customers (i.e. a huge discount, a very timely offer, or something more than a newsletter), try using a subject line that references them. Something like “Your Next Chem-Dry Cleaning” or “Your Granite Counter Tops Will Thank You.” HOWEVER, doing this too often will cause it to lose its efficacy, so use this tactic VERY sparingly.
E-mail marketing is so cheap, that we’re often tempted to use it as often as we can. But we MUST resist this urge. I’ll tell you why.
E-mail in the service industry is best used as a “CRM” (Customer Relationship Management) tool. The biggest reason to use it is to stay “top of mind” with your customers. E-mailing them more often doesn’t necessarily get them to buy more often. Think of getting your carpet cleaned like getting your oil changed. You don’t do it until you need to. Your customers are the same way.
Much like a greeting card, the best use of e-mail for a Chem-Dry franchise is to remind your customer how much you love and appreciate them. Reaching out too often just gets creepy.
In general, if you’re emailing once a month, you’re fine. I wouldn’t go more often than every 3 weeks. I would also email at least once every 3 months. Any less than every 12 months, you might as well forget it.
- Keep your e-mail subject lines short, enticing, and relevant.
- Don’t e-mail your customers too often, or you could risk alienating them.
- Look at your own inbox and look at one of the e-mails you get from a vendor or website. How often do they come? Would you want to hear from them more or less often?