Emails that go unnoticed by renters cost you time and resources. Get the engagement you deserve for the hours you spend writing, approving and building your email campaigns with these performance-focused best practices. From rent specials to policy reminders, these tips will ensure your messages aren’t ignored.
Note: Before pressing the Send button, be sure you have permission to send to everyone on your list. Knowing CAN-SPAM regulations will save you future headaches, email complaints and hefty fines.
Your subject line is the ultimate first impression.
Take the time to create strategic subject lines and preheaders (summary text that follows the subject line as a sort of preview in inboxes) that are attention-catching or persuasive. You’ll encourage your readers to open the email and increase your chances of getting the response you’re looking for. Here are a few rules for making subject lines pop:
- Keep it simple. The first three words are the most important real estate in your subject line. Avoid jargon and lengthy sentences, and always accurately describe what the email is about.
- Be concise. Always keep your subject lines under 50 characters long. Fifty characters is the industry standard, but Marketo also found that email subject lines of around 40 characters get the best overall engagement¹.
- Get personal. Personalized subject lines have been found to increase open rates by 29%, and they yield even higher click-through and customer satisfaction rates². A simple way to personalize is to include the recipient’s first name.
- Pique reader curiosity. Use interest-based elements in your subject lines like numbered lists (10 parties you can throw in the common room), emojis, and surprising announcements to draw recipients in.
Go short and sweet.
Most of us don’t read an email word-for-word from top to bottom. We open it, scan it for important information, and then close it. Make your emails more engaging by keeping your copy concise and including eye-catching graphics. Other best practices include:
- Think bold. Break up information with bold headlines so the reader quickly absorbs important information. Think about how you can organize your email layout so readers don’t become overwhelmed by large blocks of text.
- Don’t overload. You may have a lot to say, but short content can be powerful. In most cases your email can serve as an overview that leads them to a blog, website or social channel for further details. This allows the recipient to read on their terms and to dive deeper into the material they’re interested in.
- Choose good graphics. Don’t be afraid to include photos, links to video, GIFs and colors in your email. These elements will stimulate the eye, boost reader interest, and can emotionally enhance your email story (remember, a picture is worth a thousand words).
Send with consistency.
Subscribers like consistency and will be thrown off if you send on an erratic schedule or blast them with too many emails. Email fatigue can result in an unsubscribe, which you can’t undo. Here are some good practices:
- Don’t over-send. Be intentional with the emails you send so that they are not too frequent, otherwise recipients may start to ignore them. A good practice is to create a written plan for your email campaigns so that you can time them strategically with specials, events or dates (i.e., holidays).
- Consolidate topics. Choose your topics carefully and try to establish a consistent cadence for your messaging. Send weekly or monthly newsletters, for example, that collect multiple topics in a single place.
- Time emails wisely. You may have heard that Tuesday and Thursday mornings can increase open rates³. However, collective data shows that the best send times vary depending on audience, industry and location⁴. Running A/B tests will give you a clearer picture of send times that work for your unique audience.
Send with a performance goal in mind.
You can continually improve your emails when you have a clear idea of your KPIs (key performance indicators). Reports generated by your email marketing platform can help you identify the most effective send times and see what types of devices readers use. Email KPIs can also show you how well different elements of your email are resonating with readers. To understand how well your campaign is performing, look at:
- Open rate. This indicates how effective your subject line and preheader text are at enticing the reader to open the email.
- Hard and soft bounces. This shows how many emails have gone to a dead address, and therefore how clean your list is and how good your sender reputation is.
- Click-through rate. This helps you determine how engaging the content of your email is by measuring how often readers “click” through to the next step for taking action.
Above all, think like a renter.
Once you have your email all set to send, put yourself in the renters’ place to make sure it simply makes sense from their perspective. Send it to yourself, read the subject line (in the inbox), and then open and try to scan the message. Once you have an attention grabbing subject line, a clear message and an engaging design, you can send with confidence knowing that you created an email that will resonate with your readers.
By Rachel Richardson
¹Marketo, “What Email Subject Line Length Works Best?”
²Quick Sprout, “How to Increase Open Rates with These 7 Email Subject Lines”
³Moosend, “26 Actionable Email Marketing Best Practices to Skyrocket Your Growth in 2019”
⁴Optinmonster, “The Best Time to Send Emails to Boost Opens, Clicks and Sales”