The 3 Most Critical Email Marketing Mistakes that Lower Open Rates
Email marketing is an effective marketing tool, with 49% of consumers agreeing that they would like to receive a weekly email from their favorite brands and 81% of small businesses relying on email for lead generation and customer retention.
Here are the top three mistakes to avoid in your email marketing. Fix these issues, and your open rates will improve.
1. Writing Lazy Subject Lines
The subject line is the main factor in encouraging customers to open your email. But writing the subject line is often an afterthought. And few small businesses analyze the performance of past subjects to see how it affects open rates.
To get a better open rate, compare the subject lines of your best-performing emails and apply that analysis to future subject lines. Write your subject line first, before creating any other content.
2. Sharing Content as a PDF Attachment
Many small businesses create an attractive newsletter in Microsoft Word, convert it to PDF, and then attach that document to their marketing email. This process is easy for the business, but delivers a terrible customer experience. To the right, see an example of an actual marketing email I received with PDF attachment.
Here’s why to avoid attaching PDFs to mass emails:
- An email with a PDF attachment has a much higher chance of being sent to spam or flagged as a virus. Your customers may not even realize you’re trying to send them an email.
- Customers aren’t presented with your content as soon as they open your email. Requiring the extra step of opening a document means significantly fewer customers will engage with your content.
- Your links might not work for your customers. Different PDF readers will disable clickable links.
- Customers may not be able to open a PDF. Almost all businesses can handle PDFs, but customers may not have the ability.
Instead of attaching PDFs, create an email marketing account with a company like MailChimp and build a beautiful, HTML email template.
3. Sending Emails at the Wrong Time
It’s tempting to send out a marketing email as soon as it’s finished. But sending your email at the wrong time guarantees a lower open rate. For instance, B2B customers don’t have time to open marketing emails on Monday morning, and don’t want to look at marketing emails Friday afternoon. It’s best to pinpoint a day of the week and time of day when your customers aren’t overwhelmed with the number of emails they are receiving and have some spare time to welcome communication.
With most modern email marketing platforms, it’s easy to schedule a day and time that will be convenient for your customers.