Email Marketing Tips: 5 Steps to Get the Biggest Bang for Your Buck
Email marketing can be a powerful lead generator. Outreach Media Group has processed hundreds if not thousands of emails that were targeted to church leaders. Some have had astronomical results; others, dismal. We want your organization to fit into the former category! Read on to learn how. Email marketing is a numbers game:*Advertisers are responsible for the proper format and optimization of the materials they submit.
- It starts with the list. The church email lists we offer are filled with quality leads: church leaders who want and are looking for resources for their ministry. Plus, our church email lists come from reputable brands: SermonCentral.com, ChurchLeaders.com, ChurchJobFinder.com, and OutreachMagazine.com are brands that are known in the church leader market. The “From” field in the email you send will always display one of these reputable brands. This means that when you use our church email lists, you are aligning your brand and product with a well-respected brand in this niche market.
- Next, it’s about delivery rates. Part of the delivery rate is influenced by the reputation of the sender. The other part is determined by the content and subject line. As an advertiser, you can do several things to reduce the spam rating and increase deliverability:
- Image and Text Ratio. In the actual body of the email, you want to have a combination of images and text. If you only have a single image, we highly recommend that you have your designer slice the image into multiple pieces (making no image larger than 480x480).
- Include text backing. This is a file with a text version of your email. This displays for subscribers that have “text only” preferences set on their email browser. You can provide this as a .TXT file.
- Put verbiage on your links instead of the actual URL. This means that instead of saying “Visit OurCompanyWebsite.com,” you have text that reads, “Click here to learn more about OurProduct” and that text hyperlinks to OurCompanyWebsite.com.
- Avoid/Limit “spammy” words in your subject line. Here are some examples: Amazing, Apply Online, Click below, Compare rates, Congratulations, Guarantee, No catch, No fees, Offer expires, Order now, Save $, Take action now, Claims not to be selling anything Note: FREE by itself is not a word to avoid.
- Limit punctuation in your subject line. However, keep in mind that some tests show that using a colon (“:”) in your subject line can help increase opens.
- Then, it’s all about open rates. Open rates make or break the ROI of an email blast. Out of the thousands of names on the list, how many of them will open your email? 5 percent? 20 percent? Or more? The open rate is 95% about the subject line. (The other 5 percent has to do with the strength of the brand in the “From” field.) After over a decade of email marketing, we know first-hand that “money is made or lost on the subject lines of emails.” There is a lot you can do to improve your subject line. To help, a church marketing expert with years of successful email subject line experience has provided 6 Tips for Writing Email Subject Lines that Engage and Electrify.
How many clicks can you get? There are a lot of things that happen BEFORE a subscriber sees your email. Now that they’ve opened it, you want to get the highest percentage possible to click through to your website. Here are some tips to increase your click rate:
- Put the most important part of your message in the top-left corner. This is the first thing a subscriber will see.
- Make sure the message in the body of the email goes with the subject line (i.e., if you say “free download for pastors,” make sure the free download is clearly highlighted in your email).
- Insert multiple links in the body of your email. Make sure ALL IMAGES have links and all text links are underlined as an implicit call to action. The idea is that the more “real estate” on the page that is clickable, the more likely you are to receive click-through results.
- Add ALT tags to the images in your email so subscribers have an indication of what your email is about if their email browser doesn’t automatically download images. This is something your designer should be able to do easily and quickly.
- Finally, it comes down to the effectiveness of your landing page. Having a user-friendly website that has a clear call to action will help you capture as many leads as possible.