Be Human: 10 Email Marketing Tips

Posted on by Beth Negus Viveiros

 Bonobos included clips of box loving cat Maru in some of its emails to customers.
Bonobos included clips of box loving cat Maru in some of its emails to customers.

Are your email messages really connecting with B2B prospects?

At the recent MarketingProfs B2B Forum in Boston, Michael Barber, Founder, Barber & Hewitt, reminded attendees of some of the basics you should keep in mind for creating a winning B2B email strategy.

  1. Limit yourself. Don’t have too many calls to action. You don’t want a reader’s first reaction to hour message to be “Um…what do you want me to do with this email?
  2. Get to the point. Clever is great, but don’t make your subject line too vague. Let the reader know why you want them to open your message.
  3. Get it right. Personalization is a top way to create engagement, but make sure you remember to actually fill in the name. “Dear [Name Here] creates a connection with no one.
  4. Let people unsubscribe. If someone wants to opt-out, make sure that your link to do so is clear and easy to find. But, give them options. Consumers will always take the path of least resistance—if “never email me again” is a choice, that’s what they’ll take. Your customers may still want to hear from you, just not as often. Offer the option to receive less email.
  5. Optimize for mobile. Get used to single column layouts, with big images and simple, clear calls to action. Don’t make your reader pinch and zoom—make it easy to get through your content with a single finger.
  6. Write for human beings. Don’t write copy for sales prospects. Treat your readers like they are living, breathing human beings—because they are living, breathing human beings. Remember to be polite, and don’t forget your manners. Say hello.
  7. Pull the trigger. Don’t forget to send emails related to specific events and triggers such as online activity or someone becoming a new customer. The power of a good onboarding series to share tips on how to get the most out of your product or service is tremendous.
  8. Let people know you care. Barber asked his eye doctor why he sent patients “Happy Birthday” emails. It turned that it wasn’t just to celebrate. While only 20% of people typically respond to an appointment reminder message, 67% call to book an appointment after getting a birthday email.
  9. Let images do the heavy lifting. The right images, particularly in mobile, can significantly impact email engagement. But don’t ignore the power of text, particularly for reader with smart watches.
  10. Have fun. Include a little something extra in your emails to emphasize that there are indeed real people behind your messages. For example, in some of its messaging, clothing retailer Bonobos included clips of online video sensation Maru the cat jumping in and out of a box, just for fun.

Related Articles:

Q&A: Ben Wang on Arizona Coyote’s Goals With Email

The Secrets to B2B Email Success? Urgency and Clarity

10 Tips for Creating B2B Copy that Connects


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