Tired of Your Emails Being Ignored? Try These Tips to Improve Your Open Rates

January 31, 2018 / Danielle Dean

Breaking: If you’re tired of your emails being ignored, try these five tips to improve your open rates.

Read time: 3 minutes

It’s a heartbreaking scenario: you’ve worked long hours and expended all kinds of brain power to craft a wonderfully-worded email message for your subscriber list, but after you’ve hit “send” and waited a few days, you check your stats only to discover that your open rates are absolutely dismal. What gives? If you’re tired of your emails being ignored, below are five powerful tips that will help you improve your open rates.

1. Create an attention-grabbing subject line.

In this day and age where the average Internet user is being bombarded with marketing messages 24/7, it is an absolute must for brands to figure out a way to capture their customers’ attention. This is especially true when it comes to figuring out how to stand out from the crowd amidst a cluttered email inbox. Since the subject line is the very first thing your target prospect is going to see, it only makes sense to make it as interesting and eye-grabbing as possible. Make your subject line casual, brief and personal, as countless studies have shown that lengthy, impersonal email subject lines typically fail to garner the attention of their intended recipients. Many marketers have found success by paring their subject lines down to just one or two curiosity-provoking words, such as “Strange,” “I’m Sorry,” or “Nevermind.” Just be careful to use these types of intriguing words and phrases judiciously by making sure you’re connecting them with the actual content of your email; otherwise, you’re stepping into bait-and-switch territory, which is never a good idea.

2. Change your sender name.

According to a marketing test conducted by Hubspot, emails that feature a person’s name in the “From” field tend to have higher open rates and higher click-through rates than those that contain the company name only. In other words, the average subscriber will typically be more inclined to click on your email when they see that it comes from “Dave at Blue Widgets Inc.” instead of just “Blue Widgets Inc.”

3. Avoid using words in your subject line that could trigger spam filters.

Some of the most common offenders include “free,” “quote,” “save,” “reminder,” and “percent off.” If your subject line contains words like these, it is highly likely that your carefully crafted message won’t see the light of day, as it will end up in the dreadful abyss known as the junk mail folder.

4. Negativity can sometimes produce positive results.

This may seem a little counter-intuitive at first, but when you think about it, most of us are drawn to controversy to some degree; this is one of the reasons why tabloid magazines will probably survive a nuclear apocalypse. Try giving your subject line somewhat of a negative slant to connect it with ideas that speak to the pain points of your audience. For example, instead of saying “Five Reasons Why Hiring a Plumber is a Good Idea,” your subject line could read “Five Plumbing Disasters and How to Avoid Them.”

5. Harness the power of the numbered list.

If we’re being honest, most of us are skimmers – in other words, we tend to look for the main points within the content before we decide to settle down and read the entire thing. Numbered lists are perfectly suited for this type of reader (i.e., almost everyone), because the list-style format makes it easy for users to determine how long it might take to read the content of your email message.

Your email marketing campaigns don’t have to be plagued with low open rates. Use the tips outlined above to garner more clicks, better engagement and ultimately more conversions for your business.

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