How to Encourage Email Engagement.

Oct 10 2014

Engaging with your recipients should be the core focus of your email marketing campaign. We keep seeing articles that reference the importance of user engagement, however, they don’t really explain many details on why it is important, or just how you go about doing it.

Engagement is the building block of your email campaign success. If users do not open your message they do not see what you have to offer. The goal is to have as many opens and clicks as possible to improve your reputation and return on investment. Okay, you already knew that.

What can you do to boost your engagement? When you first capture the end users email address it is a best practice to send them a welcome email so that they can become more familiar with your brand. Another great method is to run a double opt-in campaign to be sure the recipient really wants to be part of your marketing list; confirmed opt-ins are usually legally required in many countries.

Make sure that your email templates are designed to look great in all browsers and optimized for mobile. After getting recipients past your initial welcome mail start analyzing their behaviors: do not continue to email recipients who have not been engaging with your first few emails and immediately get them off your list.

Start listening to your customers: collect insight on how they are interacting with your brand. Try to understand their wants and needs before you send your next email. The goal is to have a conversation with them, not to try to push them to buy something. Remind them to buy something they might have an interest in. For example: use the information from your website to have a better idea on what product or service it was your customer last viewed. If they did not make a purchase, send them an email asking if they are still interested in the product, or send them an email about recent reviews related to the product. If your site also offers a “wish list” send the recipient a reminder once in a while about the things pending on the wish list.

Engagement really boils down to how relevant your content is to specific end users. One- size- fits- all no longer exists in today’s marketplace. Segmentation is also a huge factor in improving engagement: it is proven that using segmentation can give you a 30% increase in opens. If you have other information about your end user you can really use it to your advantage. For example: collect birthday information and send a special promotion or gift on their birthday. Send them a personalized email on the anniversary of how long they have had an account with your site. Show the recipient that you really value them being a part of your email list.

I was recently on the Shop Your Way website, and they have a great way of engaging users both on their website and in their email: they have an entire section on the site dedicated to entering sweepstakes to win merchandise, store credits, vacations, and more. However, the user must enter their information into each sweepstakes they are interested in for one entry, and if they want to gain a second entry they must check their email for the code word and then apply it on the website. This is a great example at giving the user a reason to open the mails you send.

Overall, you want your users to have a great experience and give them a reason to make your email messages memorable. Be unique, get creative, and keep the end user interested. Grow and expand your brand by building trust and making the right engagement moves with your next email marketing campaign.

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