Case Study: Extreme Email Makeover

Situation:
One of my clients communicates using more than 30 email campaigns per month. However, the email response rates had been dismal for years.

Approach:
To understand the client’s strategy, I analyzed 20 sample emails and considered:

  • If I received this email, would I even open it?
  • Is it clear? Do I understand why I have received it?
  • Is it concise? Would I read the entire email?
  • Is it compelling? Would I perform its call to action?

Recommendations:
My analysis yielded problematic patterns, which I addressed with these suggestions:

  • Reach the right audience: Use an accurate, up-to-date email list.  The distribution list contained errors, including a website in lieu of an email.
  • Use a known sender: Wherever possible, make sure the sender is either an person or organization the audience already knows to increase the recipient’s willingness to open the email.
  • Make the subject count: Since the email subject line is your headline, choose short, specific words for clarity.
  • Answer ‘What’s in it for me?’: Winning copy stresses the benefits of performing the call to action.
  • Let your copy breathe: White space is your friend, so add blank lines between paragraphs for readability. Use short sentences, not dense copy.
  • Keep it simple: Sophisticated designs may impress readers; however, if images take too long to load, the recipient may delete the email before reading it.

Results:
After implementing these best practices, the client’s reach and engagement improved. Email open rates increased five-fold. Response rates increased by up to 60%. The number of phone calls and emails requesting clarification significantly decreased.

What email best practices do you use?

Lisa Goller
Lisa Goller is a marketing and communications professional with over 15 years of experience serving B2B, technology and retail companies. She helps businesses tell their story through irresistible content marketing and strategic communications.

 

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2 thoughts on “Case Study: Extreme Email Makeover

  1. Pingback: Pinpoint Your Target Audience « Strategic Communicator

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