6 Characteristics of a Great Marketing Email

June 22, 2016


72% of consumers choose email as their preferred method of communication with companies they do business with and 89% of marketers say that email is their primary channel for finding customers. So we know consumers like to receive email newsletters from merchants. The question is how to make your email stand out from hundreds of other marketing emails. Here are 6 characteristics that can guarantee your email’s effectiveness.  


1. It is highly value-driven.

Including deals and coupons can instantly give your email monetary value but deals are not the only value you can bring your readers. Great marketing emails don’t necessarily sell directly. Offering information as an added value to your services is also a great idea. It not only creates a consistent brand image by maintaining contact but also develops customer loyalty by helping your readers make the most of your services. Relevant information, such as the latest trends in your business or your homemade how-to videos, often brings great value to your readers, which leads to positive response and engagement.


2. It is relevant.

If you want your busy readers to read your emails and respond to your messages, you need to show them that you know who they are and you are sending them the information they care about. Your readers will consider your content valuable only when it’s relevant to them. Segmenting your readers based on needs is a good place to start. Tracking how your readers interact with your emails can tell you more about their interests. If you regularly deliver content relevant to what they are interested in, gradually they would look forward to receiving emails from you.


3. It includes a clear call to action (CTA).

Make sure your readers know what action to take after reading your email. If there isn’t any action you expect your readers to take, you probably didn’t need to send an email in the first place. The CTA should be clear to everyone reading it, and everything in your email needs to be centered around that CTA. If you want them to “visit the website”, you need to make the link easy to find and click. If you want them to call, provide direct personal contact information, instead of generic store information. For example, you can list your name along with the phone number so your clients know who to ask for when they call. It is more likely for your readers to reach out and start a conversation if they feel like they are talking to a real person.


4. It is visually scannable and compelling.

A picture is worth a thousand words. People tend to scan rather than read emails and their eyes are more drawn to images than words. Including the right images in your emails can increase engagement and click-through rates. On average, 94% more total views are attracted by content with compelling images than content without images. Formatting your text properly is also important. Clear headers and the appropriate use of white space can create an easy-to-follow eye path that effectively guides your readers through your content and improves their reading experience. Bullet points can be used to emphasize key lists of information.


5. It is sent at the best time.

There are two types of good timing. Trigger-based messages are sent only when triggered by buyer activities, such as purchasing a product, or signing up on your website. Studies show that triggered message open rates and click-through rates are much higher than their non-triggered counterparts. You will be able to take advantage of this method if you start collecting buyer data. For example, if you have their birthday information, sending them a personal note on their birthday with a special offer on their wishlists will greatly increase the chance of purchase. It works even better if you can predict when your clients will run out of your products, or need your services again. You can send your clients a reminder email then and it will be both considerate and effective.


Another type of timing depends on consumer behavior patterns. Generally, Tuesdays get the most emails opened and morning between 9 and 11 is the best time of the day to send emails. In addition to these general observations, you can also test out what times work the best for your readers. If you can understand consumer habits relevant to your business, you can make sure your campaign hits when your readers are most likely to act.


6. It is thoroughly accessible.

A good marketing email should fully deliver the message to your readers no matter where and how they open your email. In 2015, mobile email opens (50%) have surpassed desktop opens (33%) for the first time and 69% of mobile users delete emails that aren’t optimized for mobile. Optimizing your email for mobile devices is essential. Some email programs automatically optimize for mobile, but you should test on your own phone before sending. Your emails should also be designed to properly deliver the intended message without relying on images. Some of your readers may have images turned off by default — in fact, nearly half of Gmail users have images turned off. A good solution is to include explanatory texts in addition to images so it still looks great even if no images are displayed.


Being accessible also means your message can be easily accessed by non-subscribers. Your email campaign will have a much larger impact if you can make it easy for your readers to share whatever is in the email with their friends and followers. Social media channels “share” and “like” buttons and links are some very useful tools. Keep your social media profile buttons at the top of your emails so if your readers can easily connect with you on other channels. This will greatly benefit you too. Since your email readers also follow your social media feeds, you will always be able to keep in touch with them.


Learn more about marketing for your business here.  


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