How many times do you catch yourself deleting emails before opening them because you know they are bulk emails you do not have time to read? Who has time to read every email? We all receive too many emails every day and, to save time, many are move into the trash folder even before opening it. So how do we make sure our sales emails do not fall into this “auto-delete” category? The more influential the recipient is, the higher your changes are of being ignored. Despite your attempts to make each email seem very personable, you cannot avoid sending bulk emails or making cold calls to your prospects. As a sales professional, you have to master all communication channels and get the maximum benefit from each of them.
So… How do we increase the open rate and make sure people at least read your email? Here are some tips that will hopefully increase the amount of replies in your Inbox.
1. Make a good first impression – catch their attention with a strong subject line!
Did you know that about 69% of email recipients consider email as spam based only on its subject line? That is why the email subject is so important! Make it clear and honest, but also engaging. Try to avoid using words like “free,” “sell,” “offer,” and other over used sales terms. The over use of exclamation marks, symbols, and words in all capital letters also can reduce your chances of readership.
Don’t add the subject at the last minute – you should spend time creating the perfect, attention-grabbing subject. Use personalization when you can – add some personalized details you know from previous interactions with this customer or prospect, such as products or services the client may have asked about before or something relevant to this person’s background. Try to keep it short though – research shows that 50 characters should be more than enough.
2. Be precise with the purpose of your email
Most people do not want to spend their personal time reading emails from people they do not know. Even less interest in spending time trying to understand what you want from them! You should combine all requests in one simple sentence, then your recipient can quickly understand your purpose and decide if they can help you. Do not ask too much – try to establish relationships while keeping it simple. You need to make good first impression, then later communications can develop your relationships and ask for more.
3. Do your research – use information you can find online about this person
Use different information sources around the internet to find some background information about your prospect such as personal interests and previous employers to find something in common with this person. Start form your CRM system, view relevant social profiles, try to find mutual friends, look for hobbies as well. Research your contact’s relationships, recent likes and visits, and their communication style in social settings. Try to use this background information to build your email content that will be interesting and valuable for the person, and if possible – do not use templates. It may take extra time to build the content from scratch, but showing your personality through your content and structure will likely draw more attention than pre-made templates.
4. Offer Strong Value
Highlight what you have to offer – make it easy for the average reader who only has time to skim emails to find the value quickly. Also, give some new facts that cannot be freely obtained from other resources. You may offer the reader a free download of a document or study which is relevant to what the reader’s needs. By adding valuable facts or a free download, you are building rapport and are not using the email message solely as a tool to deliverer sales or marketing materials – give the reader value beyond your product. Share some useful, high quality information the recipient could find valuable even if they do not buy your product right away. While still keeping the message short, give them value beyond your product to demonstrate your appreciation of the recipient’s time and willingness to read your emails.
5. Avoid spam filters
As we all know, before your email gets to recipient’s inbox it has to be checked by spam filters. These filters give each message a score to decide if its content is spam. If the email score hits the threshold, it will be automatically moved to a spam folder and all your future letters will be moved there without your knowledge.
To avoid crossing this threshold, avoid certain overused words in your subject or email such as “sales,” “discount,” “deal,” etc. Even if the spam filter skips the email, those words are also often indicators for the reader that the purpose of this email is to impose a product or service which the reader likely assumes is not needed.
6. Optimize email content for mobile
In today’s fast paced society, we use our smartphones and tablets for everything! The vast majority of today’s recipients read emails on their phone while on the go as opposed to their computer. Make sure your email will look good when viewed on a mobile phone, especially if it contains infographics, smart text or images. Many email providers include a preview of what your email will look like on a mobile view, but it will be well worth your time to send a test to yourself and/or coworkers so you can see exactly what it will look like on an iPhone or Android. Find a pier in your office who has a type of cell phone operating system different than yours so you can view it from both prospectives.
7. Choose the time for sending your email wisely
Timing is key! When you send it could make all the difference. Always keep in mind what time zone your recipient is in. If you send the email too early or too late it may get lost in shuffle with other emails they automatically delete, so it is recommended to send the email in peak email-reading hours. These hours are usually in the morning and right after lunch time. You want to send the email at the beginning of those peak times so your email will be on top of the recipient’s inbox.
You also may want to consider which day of the week to send the email based on typical employee behavior to increase your chances of it being read. For example, on Monday, most people have tons of unread emails that piled up over the weekend. To keep from overwhelming them, you might have better luck if you wait until Tuesday when they have gone through the backlog of emails and planned their week. Also sending the email on Friday might not be the best idea, as most people just want to finish everything quickly so they can get out of the office on time. Plus, you can anticipate the recipient will not answer you right away and will likely forget about your email by the time the next week rolls around.
To help you increase your chances of your email being read, we can offer you even more insight on your recipients’ behaviors with SmartCloud Connect! It now has the “Magic Pixel” feature – a simple code embedded into your email the recipient does not see, but gives you insight into your customer’s actions. You will always know who, when, and where opens your email. History of openings is all available inside the email for your viewing – just click the icon and you will see the details!
Try SmartCloud Connect today for FREE!