15 Email Marketing Tips to Increase Your Sales

Content was originally published on Inc.com on September 27, 2017. 

I’m gearing up for a conference I’m keynoting in two weeks and one of the sessions I’m leading is an expert panel on email marketing.

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I wanted to share with you 15 of tips to improve your email marketing so that you can increase your sales.

  1. Value your list. Protect it; connect with it; add value to it; grow it. I’ve seen so many businesses that simple don’t collect names and emails effectively, or they debase their email marketing list simply by not emailing out to it frequently enough (see Tip 12 below.)
  2. Start capturing/gathering your list today. Centralize your list to one place. This means you need the right platform, which brings me to tip 3.
  3. Pick the right email platform for your company. Balance complexity with power. There is a cost to switching platforms that is many times the cost of the service. Choose wisely. We and our business coaching clients use everything from the inexpensive and simple to use Mail Chimp and Constant Contact to the serious and robust Infusionsoft or Hubspot.
  4. Test and find your most effective email format(s). (E.g. Text vs html. Short vs long form. Etc.)
  5. Make your email mobile/small screen friendly. This means you have to review your emails on a small screen before you send them out.
  6. Test your messages before you send them on multiple browsers and readers. Have a trusted checklist to review things like: do all links work? Are the landing pages set up and tested? Spelling and grammar? Did the fulfillment part of your funnel work to get the person the right things if she responded? Etc.
  7. Have a second set of eyes review your email. If this isn’t possible, step away from your email for an hour and then revisit it fresh.
  8. If you’re working with a new list or with a new format or email element, start with a subset of your list first (e.g. your gmail or yahoo emails) to make sure there aren’t any issues with deliverability or formatting. This one tip will save you so much heart ache; I’ve had emails going out to 100,000 people get stopped cold because of something we could have fixed if we had only eaten our own cooking on this tip.
  9. Invest in your subject line. This is the headline for your email. Avoid gimmicks and tricks. They may work once, but they erode trust and debase most brands. In fact, A/B testing your subject line is easy (just divide your list in two and track open rate, click through rate, and purchase/conversion rate on landing page by subject line A vs B. All other parts of the emails are the same, just a different subject line.) This lets you use email to build your best version of sales scripting to use on your website, offline marketing collateral, and even in your live sales person scripting.
  10. Have your email come from one specific person, and go to one specific recipient. Don’t write to crowds, and don’t write from committees or departments or companies. Give us a face; and look your reader in the eyes and connect. Write to one person.
  11. Send your first email now! The single biggest email marketing mistake we observe clients make is waiting to send any email until they have it “perfect”. Don’t wait until you have “enough” emails on your list.
  12. The clock is ticking. Your email opt-ins degrade, like an unstable ticking bomb. Make sure you email them as soon as possible to reset the clock. You need them to remember who you are and why they want to read your message.
  13. Make your emails valuable. This can be a key insight, a touching story, a special offer, or anything else that is relevant to your business and your audience. What do you talk with your prospects and customers about when you’re with them in person? What do they care about? How do you touch their lives? This is the core of your email messaging.
  14. Make sure all key images are “clickable” and all videos have a “play” button.
  15. If an email (or email campaign) was successful, re-use it. At the very least send it to all those people who didn’t open it the first time. And recycle it back to your non-buying prospects a second and third time down the road after an appropriate interval.

If you enjoyed the ideas I shared about email marketing, then I encourage you to download a free copy of my newest book, Build a Business, Not a Job. Click here for full details and to get your complimentary copy.

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Business David is a Wall Street Journal and Business Week bestselling author of 11 business and financial books. A syndicated columnist for Inc.com and HuffingtonPost.com, David’s articles have appeared in over 6,500 publications. As the founder and CEO of Maui Mastermind®, David has worked with 100,000+ business coaching clients and community members to buy, build, and sell over $5 billion of businesses.