Best Practices to Captivate Your Audience with Email Marketing


We know that as a small business owner, you wear many hats and your time is precious. That's why we've put together an article packed with email best practices specifically tailored for you. Discover how to save time, simplify your email marketing efforts, and achieve better results. Get ready to boost your business with these best practices!

Click to view and download guide.Click to view and download guide.Customize Your Templates


Customize your template to reflect your unique brand identity. In the world of email marketing, branding is essential. Your brand is the core of your business or organization, representing who you are and what you offer. When recipients open your emails, they should instantly recognize your brand. Achieve this by prominently featuring your logo at the top and incorporating your brand colors throughout the template. For a fully branded experience, ensure consistency in your content's tone, imagery style, logo placement, and even the customized footer. And don’t forget to optimize your emails for mobile devices!

Write Eye-Catching Subject Lines

You have a mere three seconds to capture someone's attention and entice them to open your email. The subject line of your email may consist of just one line of text, but it holds the power to determine whether your email gets opened or discarded. A concise and direct subject line that accurately conveys the benefits for your subscriber can be highly effective. However, depending on your brand's tone, you might consider incorporating personalization, emojis, numbers, or even a sense of urgency when appropriate. You can always utilize A/B testing to determine what resonates best with your audience.

Optimize Preheader Text

Imagine your email inbox. Can you visualize a snippet of the message displayed below the subject line? That's what we call preview text, or if you want to sound fancy, an "email preheader." And guess what? It functions just like a movie preview. First, someone reads the subject line and becomes mildly intrigued. Then, they catch a glimpse of your captivating preview and suddenly feel the urge to click! It's undeniably one of the most gratifying best practices in email marketing. To cut through the noise and earn those clicks, create a short and compelling preview text using Constant Contact's email preheader feature.

Segment Your List


Segmentation involves dividing your contact list into smaller groups to deliver tailored and personalized information and offers. Begin by considering what aligns with your objectives and resonates with your audience. This could include creating smaller lists based on interests, demographics, or preferences for specific products or ser.... You can automate the segmentation process by tracking the actions your contacts take within your emails. For example, the click segmentation feature in Constant Contact automatically adds contacts to a segmented list when they click on a link in your email.

Avoid Using a "no-reply" Sender Address

Demonstrate your commitment to your subscribers' experience by utilizing an email address that is actively monitored. After perusing your email, subscribers may have inquiries, and it should be effortless for them to seek answers. What could be simpler than clicking the "reply" button conveniently located at the top of their email? Opt for an email address that exudes approachability and assures recipients that a member of your team will respond. For example, use a reply email address associated with an employee or a customer service inbox, such as "," "," or ""

Send Welcome Emails


Consider welcome emails as the gracious host of a delightful dinner party. The host should greet your subscribers with a smile, introduce them to the experience, and provide a tantalizing glimpse of what lies ahead. A well-written welcome email lets guests know what to expect and sets the tone for the kind of information you share — and, more importantly, how valuable that information is!

Offer a Way to Unsubscribe

Make sure every email has a clear and user-friendly way to unsubscribe. It's not just a legal requirement to comply with anti-spam laws, but it's also important to respect people's preferences. You should honor any unsubscribe requests within 10 business days.

Unsubscribe buttons also come in handy for keeping your email lists free from inactive subscribers. By removing those who don't engage, you'll have a higher chance of reaching more recipients and increasing your conversion rates.

Link to a Landing Page

Landing pages are dedicated web pages designed specifically for your marketing campaigns.They serve as a guide for readers, directing them to the next step in their buyer's journey. Unlike a homepage or a general products and services page, landing pages solely focus on what you're promoting. When done right, landing pages can significantly improve your conversion rates. By using a landing page, you can keep your prospects focused on the specific action you want them to take. It allows you to maintain consistent promotional messaging and seamlessly aligns with your branding.


Keep it Simple

According to a recent study by Litmus, 23% of email readers quickly skim through messages, spending less than eight seconds on each. This means that by making your emails easy to read at a glance, you can recapture the attention of about a quarter of your subscribers.


To create skimmable emails, follow these best practices:


  • Use short paragraphs and provide enough white space.
  • Include descriptive headings and subheadings.
  • Highlight important points in bold.
  • Incorporate value-rich images.
  • Ensure your call to action is visible and compelling.


When crafting your email content, have a clear focus and goal in mind. Stick to one topic per email to avoid distractions and prompt readers to take a specific action. Keep your message concise by answering three key questions:


  • What are you offering?
  • How will it benefit the reader?
  • What should they do next?


Use a simple and authentic brand voice that reflects your organization's personality and resonates with your target audience. By maintaining a consistent brand voice, you can establish a stronger connection with your readers and enhance your overall brand image.

Use Images that Make an Impact

Captivating images that resonate with your audience can make a real difference in driving results. When selecting visuals, aim for ones that spark an emotional response from readers. Steer clear of overly staged or artificial-looking images by opting for authentic photos that showcase your day-to-day operations.


To create a lasting impact, consider capturing behind-the-scenes action shots, genuine moments between your team and clients, and images that showcase your products in use. If you need additional visuals, use stock imagery sparingly.


There are plenty of stock image sites that offer high-quality visuals, some of which are free to use. Just make sure to choose royalty-free images to avoid any copyright issues. Remember, it's best to avoid using images found through search engines to stay on the safe side.


You can also use animated GIFs or design eye-popping graphics in Canva to insert directly into your email campaign!


Click to view and download checklist.Click to view and download checklist.

Mix Things Up

Nobody wants to feel like they're constantly being bombarded with sales pitches. To really make an impact with your email strategy, it's important to share a variety of emails and focus on building relationships with your audience. Here's a handy principle to keep in mind: the 80/20 rule.


Spend 80% of your email efforts on nurturing relationships, showcasing your expertise, and earning trust by sharing valuable information. Then, reserve the remaining 20% for promotional emails that drive sales, encourage donations, or prompt readers to take action. This balanced approach ensures that you're consistently providing value to your readers while still achieving your goals.

Drive Traffic with a CTA

Call to action (CTA) buttons can make a big difference in driving traffic to your desired destination. You should include one in every single email you send! For example, you might want customers to:


  • Access the information you promised them.
  • Make a purchase for the highlighted product or service.
  • Register for the event you mentioned.
  • Easily make the requested donation.


So, what makes a call to action button great? Here are a few key characteristics to keep in mind:


  • Make sure it stands out by using a contrasting brand color that catches the reader's eye.
  • Keep it short, snappy, and crystal clear so there's no confusion about what action you want them to take.
  • Use it as an opportunity to collect valuable data for marketing analytics and to segment your email list effectively.
  • Make sure your CTA button leads directly to what the reader is expecting. Don't make them search around your website.

Review, Revise, and Repeat

Want to make sure you come across as a pro? Don't let those pesky errors and typos ruin your image. Remember that strict high school teacher who marked up your paper when you didn't proofread? Well, channel that inner teacher and give your message a thorough read-through. Look out for any mistakes and make sure your message is crystal clear, focused, and easy to understand. And most importantly, make sure your readers can take the action you want them to. In Constant Contact, you can use the handy "Check & Preview" feature to catch common mistakes. It'll scan your subject line, preheader text, from name, email address, hyperlinks, buttons, and even your content for missing website links, images, and text. You get to decide the brand voice, so make it your own!

Run A/B Tests


It's crucial to continuously fine-tune your email strategy for optimal results. After all, every business or organization has a unique audience, and different folks respond to different things. That's where A/B testing comes in handy as a valuable tool in your email marketing arsenal.


A/B testing, also known as split testing, is like conducting an experiment. You create two versions of your emails – let's call them option A and option B – and send them to different groups within your email list. The goal? To see which version performs better and resonates more with your audience.


By strategically implementing A/B testing, you'll gain valuable insights into what content, design elements, subject lines, and even call-to-action (CTA) buttons work best for your specific audience. It's all about finding the winning combination that truly connects with your readers and drives the results you're aiming for.

Analyze Your Results


Once you hit that send button, a treasure trove of metrics awaits you, revealing how your email performed. These insights will give you a clear picture of what's working and what might not be worth your effort in the future.


Over time, you'll start noticing trends and patterns. You'll be able to identify who's actively engaging with your messages, who's clicking on your links, and even use this data to segment your email list for more personalized content.


Here are some key reports you'll come across:


  • Opens: How many people opened your email.
  • Bounce rate: The percentage of emails that didn't reach their intended recipients.
  • Click-through rate: The number of people who clicked on links within your email.
  • Spam reports: Any reports of your email being marked as spam.
  • Unsubscribes/opt-outs: The number of people who decided to unsubscribe from your emails.


Now, it's important to note that open rates may not be as reliable due to Apple's Mail Privacy Protection feature. While historical open rate data can still provide insights, it's recommended to focus on other metrics like clicks and conversions moving forward.


Within the reports, there are three key metrics you should track:


  • Unsubscribe rate: This indicates the percentage of recipients who unsubscribe, often because they don't find your messages relevant.
  • Click-through rate: It shows the percentage of people who click on links in your email, showing their interest and taking the next step towards making a purchase.
  • Conversion rate: This measures the ratio of readers who take a desired action, such as making a purchase or joining a loyalty program.


By analyzing these metrics over time, you'll gain valuable insights into what resonates with your audience and can tailor your email strategy accordingly. It's all about finding what works best for your unique audience and driving those desired results.


We want to hear from you! Tell us about your strategies with email marketing, if any of these best practices resonated with you, or your success story!

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‎03-14-2024 04:04 PM
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