Despite the proliferation of digital channels and platforms, guess which channel or platform remains the #1 way to generate B2B sales leads? Yes, you guessed it, email. It’s perhaps the one communication platform that everyone checks every single day. However, just because you’re sending out emails to potential B2B sales leads on a regular basis doesn’t mean that people are reading those emails on a regular basis.
With that in mind, here are 3 quick hacks to make your B2B email marketing more effective.
Hack #1: Keep the email short and simple
It’s tempting to write long, highly detailed email messages explaining what you and your company can offer prospects. The only problem is, nobody reads long email messages that are more than 200-250 words long. Even the reader with the best of intentions quickly will file your email away in a place that they won’t access for days or weeks (if you’re lucky) if the email looks to be too long.
That’s why reducing the text size of your email matters so much. If you have a snappy headline, a quick intro, and an easy-to-see call to action, you have a much greater chance of someone opening your email, reading your email and then responding to the email. That’s why many organizations have looked for ways to embed graphical elements into emails – often a picture is worth a thousand words. At the very least, these images can help guide the reader’s eyes to your compelling call-to-action.
Hack #2: Find ways to make the email subject highly relevant
It’s too easy to fall into a pattern of: “If it’s Friday, it must be time to send out the email newsletter.” That’s exactly what you don’t want to happen – it makes it far too easy for people to ignore your email if it doesn’t seem timely or relevant. Remember: you’re competing for attention with lots of other brands, companies, organizations and individuals. You want people to open your emails, so you have to make them targeted and timely.
Here, you can steal a page from the campaign playbook of U.S. presidential candidates. They’re constantly appealing to their political base for financial donations via email – but the way they do it can make all the difference in how much money they eventually raise. Let’s do a little A/B testing here… Which email subject headline would you click on? (A) “Please support Hillary Clinton for President” or (B) “You won’t believe what Donald Trump is going to do to America.” Guess which one performs better?
Hack #3: Personalize the email as best as possible
You don’t have to write a completely different email to each person on your marketing list, but you do need to personalize the email according to what you know about the prospect. Maybe you send one email template to people you met at a recent seminar or webinar, another to people you met a recent convention or trade show, and another to people you met via online social networking. Each time, the messaging can change subtly to reflect the different context.
Putting it all together, you should always be testing and tweaking your B2B email marketing to make it work as best as it possibly can. Even improving the open rate by a few percentage points can work wonders for the bottom line. You don’t need to follow every new email marketing trend (e.g. putting emoticons into subject headlines!), but you do need to be aware of how new platforms and channels (especially mobile) are changing the way people read and respond to emails. If people are reading them on a mobile device, you want them to be as short and simple as possible – and you want to make your Call to Action as simple and as easy to follow as possible.
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