Lead nurturing emails: how to get more opens

Posted by Abby Mitchinson on 03/11/17 12:18
Abby Mitchinson

Nothing is more depressing than putting time and effort into creating amazing lead nurturing emails … only to get disappointingly low open rates.

What’s going on? You’re doing everything right, your emails are interesting and certainly worth reading, yet still, the proof just isn’t in the pudding.

There are a number of steps you can take to boost your open rates, including some simple tricks which only take a few seconds to implement but which ultimately make a huge improvement to those open rates.

In B2B email marketing, the average open rate stands at 24.24% with a click through rate of 4.75%. These are useful stats to help you benchmark success for any of your email campaigns moving forward.Here are some tips to bear in mind when planning your next email to improve open rates:

Simple strategies to increase your lead nurturing email open rates-1

  1. Personalisation techniques going beyond a name

Only 5% of businesses personalise extensively and so let’s discuss the most effective way around this:

One of the simplest things you can do to increase your lead nurturing email open rates is to use your name in the ‘From’ field. The email’s sender is the first thing that most recipients will see, and if it says ‘marketing’ or ‘info’ or something equally impersonal, you are missing a trick.
  • Personalisation in the subject line can be a powerful way to get more opens. If you know the first names of your subscribers, try to use these. (e.g. Lucy, here’s something you might like.’)
  • Segmentation can also be a good way to boost open rates. For example, you can send one email to people who have recently bought one product and another to people how have bought something different. This ensures that the emails are relevant, leading to more opens.
  • Define your personas and doctor your content in-line with this. Potential ‘buyers’ are much more likely to engage with what you’re telling them and are therefore more likely to convert
  • Set-up automated trigger emails. These types of emails have a 152% higher open rate than traditional emails. Great for up-selling, cross-selling and re-engagement.
  • Finally, personalise emails and landing pages with consistent copy and branding as well as a personalised call to action.

It’s easy to overdo personalisation, and you might want to avoid using it in every email. But certainly split test your emails and see if it has an effect because it can be a very easy way to boost open rates.

  1. Provoke curiosity in the subject line

When it comes to open rates, the main focus of the discussion is on subject lines. And rightly so– apart from the ‘From’ field, the subject line is almost all the recipient has to go on.

One little trick you can use is to try and evoke curiosity. Suggest they will find something useful inside, something that will make it worth their while to open the email and read on – but don’t tell them what it is….This is often referred to as the ‘open loop’ method.

Here’s an example: ‘This is by far the best way to get more Facebook likes.’

The ‘this’ of the subject line remains a mystery. The loop is opened. Anyone who wants to know how to get more Facebook likes will be encouraged to open the email to find out.

NOTE: It’s also worth mentioning the words you should avoid in the subject line which are more likely to trigger spam filters. If your email ends up in spam, no one is going to be opening it, so check out a useful list of these here.

  1. Experiment with different sending times

Another simple trick is to change the sending times of your emails. If you always send them at the same time of day, switch this up. Send them on a different day of the week and at a different time, and test whether this increases your open rates.

There is no ‘right’ time – it depends on your business and your customers. However, research has been done that can give you a starter for ten.

A MarketingSherpa study found that the best open rates occurred at 8am, 9am, 3pm and 4pm, and that Tuesday and Wednesday are the best days.

So, try mixing it up and changing your sending times and see if it gives your opens a boost.

  1. Clean up your email list

Some people will simply stop reading your emails, and that’s fine. But you don’t want them on your list. More inactive subscribers can hurt deliverability, and you might also be paying more to maintain a large list that is not doing anything for you.

Find out who they are, and then either carry out a re-engagement campaign or segment them and exclude them from your campaigns.

Quality is important in your database – don’t assume that having more people on your database is always better. So carry out an audit twice a year and keep your database in good shape.

  1. What’s inside counts too

Finally, none of these tips have mentioned the actual content of the emails. But the fact is this: if your emails are worth reading, if they provide useful information, tips, offers and more – if they provide value – then they are far more likely to get opened more often. People will actively start to look out for your emails because they know they will find value in them.

Send your open rates soaring

Getting your emails opened is the first job of any lead nurturing emails you send. Don’t be frustrated if your open rates are low, instead, find out what’s going wrong, then use these tips to try and increase your opens.

Open rates are just one thing for you to worry about; a successful email marketing strategy involves perfecting many different factors….

That’s why we’ve created a complete guide to perfecting your email marketing campaigns. It’s yours free to download today, so use it to take your email marketing to a whole new level.


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Topics: Automation, How To?

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