Does it seem like after reading all these email deliverability blogs that your emails are still landing who knows where? You’ve probably had a difficult time figuring out why some go into the Promotions or Clutter folders, while others have zero chance of sustaining a two-way conversation.

We conducted an analysis of emails sent by one of our clients, and what we discovered may cause you some neuro discomfort. We see it over and over again – the same snafus when it comes to email deliverability. [Find out more on Why Deliverability and Engagement will Elude You]

Here’s a list of helpful hints to get your emails and subscribers on the same page.

With perseverance and confidence, we’ll help get your emails to the inbox.

Links are not fulfilling their promises

How many experiences have you had with links that promise one thing but deliver another? Talk about the fastest route to dissonance! Links play an important role in emails – from shortening copy to keeping the “open-loop.”

For example, our client inserted a link to a “story,” but in fact, the link wasn’t going to a “story” at all; it was directing subscribers to an item in its portfolio with a fairly dry description about a project they did. Needless to say, the readers weren’t happy – as seen in the speed of bouncing right off the linked page… and… unsubscribes.

Always ensure your links are active and directing the reader to the promised rewards, otherwise you’ll quickly build a “bait-and-switch” reputation with your email list and they will stop clicking on your links.

BUT be careful with how many links you’re adding to an email. Too many links in an email can trigger spam filters and alerts.

Deliver unique, valuable, and real-time insights

As individuals, we love to be the first to broadcast the latest news or show ourselves as the one who has discovered the latest strategy. Give your audience that exclusivity. Rise above the clutter. Instead of blending in with your competitors by duplicating the same content, offer up your own content that has your unique take on things. This will assuredly create a galvanizing phenomenon with your audience.

Make your audience feel as though they’re privy to content that no one else has yet received, show them that you’ve got something valuable to offer, and you’ll see your audience come back again and again.

Ask precise questions to personalize engagement

The fastest and easy way to connect emotionally with your subscriber is to ask questions that provide a glimpse into what could be. A survey [but don’t say survey when asking for feedback] can be a great tool to use as a reminder or as an indicator of change. Surveys can also uncover problems your subscribers may not know they have.

But, unfortunately, so many survey emails seem to be sent without any semblance of creativity or user engagement (with WPmktgEngine, you can create personalized surveys that target and address the unique struggles of your subscribers, and design the emails that evoke interest in responding).

For your best success – and the best feedback, ask open-ended questions like:

  • What’s your top challenge regarding [your topic area]?
  • How are these challenges impacting your [thing they most want, that you solve]?
  • What do you think would be the best way to overcome the challenges you’ve expressed above?
  • Is there a hot topic that you know your audience wants to hear your opinion on? 

Pick a side and defend it

Don’t be a “flip-flopper.” Your audience is looking to you as the expert. We love experts because they guide us from A to Z without adding friction by recommending numerous theories or practices. Solidify your expertise by eliminating unsupervised thinking and guide your leads along their path to making a decision.

Here’s the thing: if you continually offer differing opinions, it’s very likely your readers will get frustrated and move on. People loathe having to figure out which way to go, especially when time and resources are limited, so your guidance and authority are crucial.

But, first, in order to be considered an expert, you must provide valuable insights and take a confident stance [no flip-flopping], that should be reflected throughout your entire engagement marketing strategy. 

Psychology of storytelling 

Who doesn’t like a great story? Stories are about collaboration and connection. They engage us by tapping into our emotions and connecting us to others who have shared experiences.

Stories allow us to understand ourselves better and to find commonalities with others.

Our brains are constantly longing for a great story. We spend much of our lives daydreaming because we are constantly looking for a distraction, and the only time we stop daydreaming is when we have a good story to read.

Here are five powerful story types to weave into your engagement marketing strategy:

  • Case studies/testimonials – tell stories from current or past customers
  • Origin – tell stories of where you came from to differentiate from others
  • Reason why – explain story behind your offer
  • Vision stories – share your aspirations
  • Rapport building – tell stories that have a personal element

Don’t tell the whole story

Tell your stories in your blog, and then use email to deliver enough of a teaser to get people to click through and read your blog post. You can use that click to measure the engagement in your emails and to understand what interests each of your leads. If they click through, respond to that with deeper content. If they don’t, that’s okay – see what they click on in your next email.

Keep your emails short and to the point, with a high-value click that you can measure and react to. Another hint – keep the click “above the fold” – in the first paragraph or two of the email – and that will pay off for you. 

How an “oopsie” can be disastrous

We get it; you’re busy and don’t have time to conduct a substantive edit on every email. Some people think occasional typos are fine and add a certain human element, but typo too often and subscribers will stop taking you seriously.

About Jason Hoelzel

Freud would've diagnosed him as a "walking conundrum." We just call him Jason. He's a blossoming copywriter and marketing automation specialist who enjoys surfing, golfing, sarcastic bantering, and eating boatloads of guacamole. Jason has the ability to turn any frown upside down with his clever one-liners and radiant smile ;)

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