Email Marketing: Foolproof Tips to Ensure Success
by Ron Cates

This is the latest in a series of practical columns on “digital marketing made simple” by Constant Contact’s Ron Cates.

No matter how great your email marketing campaigns are, it is highly unlikely that every recipient opens your emails. In fact, the average open rate on commercial email, according to most studies, is 20% or less. A 30% open rate is generally considered to be quite good.

Does this mean that 70% or more of the emails you send are ineffective?

Not at all.

Keeps you top of mind
Being noticed by even a small percentage of your audience has great value.

The average American receives more than 6,500 marketing impressions per day. Even if your service is amazing and your products fantastic, there are a lot of things competing for the attention of your customers and prospects.

Your customers may love you – but they also may forget about you. Permission-based email prevents this by keeping you top of mind on an ongoing, regular basis.

Email works – even when unopened!

Ron Cates
ron cates 

Header info is key
In most email clients or services – Outlook, Gmail and the like – recipients see both the “from line” and the subject line. In many cases, this is all they need to take action and buy from you. Why? Because good from lines and good subject lines tell them everything they need to know.

That bears repeating. Good from lines and attention-getting subject lines tell them everything they need to know.

When my favorite local tennis store sends me an email with the subject line, “Sale this Weekend: 20% Off All Shoes,” I excitedly plan a visit. I know who it’s from, due to the from line, and the subject line entices me to visit.

The ‘from line’
The from line typically has two components: your name and your email address. Some email clients display both, some just one or the other.

It’s important that both, on their own, clearly identify who an email is from. An email from an address with a real person’s name in it, whether the recipient knows the person or not, gets opened more than those from something generic like list@, or news@.

And if you send email using the “from name” ABC Travel Company, but your email address is and that’s all they see, you’ll create identity confusion.

Subject line smarts
The subject line is trickier.

First, it needs to be short. Between 30 and 40 characters, or less, including spaces, is ideal.

Second, the subject line needs to tell the reader exactly what’s in the email. That way, whether they open it or not, they’re still prompted to take action.

More proof
If you’re still not convinced that people take action based on reading the subject line alone, that is without opening the email itself, think about the extremely concise forms of communication that are so popular today. Twitter allows 140 characters maximum, and texting uses abbreviations that find me scratching my head at times.

Measuring results
To gauge the impact of your email campaigns, look at the spike in sales and traffic over the 14 days after your send. That’s your most telling statistic.

It’s also more meaningful than email open rates. Open rates are useful, but merely as a way of making apples-to-apples comparisons to judge the effect of different subject lines, time and day sent, etc.

Digital marketing expert Ron Cates, director of new market development for Constant Contact, is a popular presenter on the topics of social media and email marketing.

You must be logged in to leave a comment Login | Register
Tip of the Day
In the rare event of a circumstance requiring attention, no matter the scale, we will keep them fully informed and agents can be confident that we are with their clients all the way, taking care of all the details and making certain they feel at ease.
Phil Cappelli
President, Insight
Daily Top List

Top Destinations for Millennials

1. New York

2. Chicago

3. Las Vegas

4. Los Angeles

5. San Francisco

6. Washington D.C.

7. Austin

Source: Foursquare

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
ACTA Plans Travel Insurance Accreditation Program
ACTA Plans Travel Insurance Accreditation Program

ACTA is working with the Canadian travel insurance industry to develop an accreditation program for selling travel health insurance.

An ASTA/NACTA Timeline
An ASTA/NACTA Timeline

How well do you know the history of our two organizations?

Zane Kerby: Reaching Out To Consumers
Zane Kerby: Reaching Out To Consumers

Travel Market Report and ASTA president Zane Kirby spent some time chatting about themes that he will be addressing throughout ASTA Global this week.

Sneak Peek At Sabre Red Workspace
Sneak Peek At Sabre Red Workspace

Sean Menke, president of Sabre Travel Network, introduced the new desktop at Sabre’s Travel Technology Exchange in June, calling it “a great enabler” of airline merchandising.

ASTA Global Convention Puts Reno In The Spotlight
ASTA Global Convention Puts Reno In The Spotlight

The Biggest Little City in the World is seizing the opportunity to show agents all it has to offer, from stunning vistas to historical sites.

United’s Dave Hilfman To MC Advocacy Dinner
United’s Dave Hilfman To MC Advocacy Dinner

The travel agency channel delivers the majority of our revenues and the highest margins. 

News Briefs
Advertiser's Voice
Travel Market Report Spotlight: Celebrity Cocktails