11 Email Marketing Best Practices Every Marketer Should Know

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Written by Alexander Ang

Last updated June 21 , 2024

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Email marketing may seem insignificant if you have a small subscriber list or are just starting a business.

If you Google search "Email marketing is...", the first suggestion would be "dead."

Email Marketing Is Dead Screenshot

Well, statistics tell otherwise.

  1. 86% of consumers want to hear from businesses that they frequently visit. 

  2. 60% of consumers said that email would be their preferred method of communication. 

  3. 88% of people check email daily.

  4. Email drives an ROI of $36 for every dollar spent, 36 times higher than any other channel!

I understand why you could think that email marketing is not working or doesn't contribute much to your business goal. 

One of the few reasons I can think of is because:

  • Your email is boring. (e.g. Headline and email content) 
  • You bought an email list and broadcast it to these random emails.
  • Your email content has nothing to do with your subscribers.
  • You don't have enough subscribers to see a real revenue impact yet.
  • You don't send emails regularly.
  • You have no idea what type of email to send.

In this quick guide, I will show you how to improve your email marketing campaign results, each with examples to give you a better visual idea.

What Are The Top email marketing best practices?

  1. Use personalization a few times.
  2. Segmentize based on campaign source.
  3. Optimize font size for mobile view.
  4. Set up a "Welcome Email" automation series.
  5. Have a few calls to action in your email.
  6. Hyperlink with your brand color.
  7. Include a small size logo in your email.
  8. Write only 1-2 sentences per paragraph.
  9. Get them to reply to your email.
  10. Use bullet points and emojis to summarize your points.
  11. Remove non-open and non-active subscribers.

1. Use personalization a few times

Address the person's "First Name" a few times in your email.

Add one before the subject headline, in between the email, and one more at the end.

Here's a simplified example version to give you a perspective:

Subject headline:
"First Name," What Specific Challenge Do You Have?

Email Body:
I know times are tough, don't you think so "First Name"?

PS: We're in this together, "First Name." Over the weeks, I will send you a few more tutorials on how to pivot during this challenging time.

2. Segmentize based on campaign source

Create and segmentize your subscriber list based on how you grow your subscriber. For example, you could have a list for:

  • Subscriber list who downloaded your eBook.

  • Subscriber list who signed up for the newsletter on your website.

  • Subscriber list joined you from Facebook ads campaign

The idea here is to allow you to customize your email content based on how they have interacted with your business, launching a more targeted and personalized email campaign afterward.

3. Optimize font size for mobile view

85% of people use their smartphones to access email.
So, use 14px to 16px font size when writing your email.

Anything below that could compromise the readability.

4. Optimize "Welcome Email" series

Welcome Email Example

A welcome email has one of the highest open rates compared to another content email.

One reason is that it's new, and people are excited about what they can expect from your email the first time you send it to them.

So, put in the effort to write an engaging welcome email that provides a warm welcome and tonnes of value.

A structured welcome email will increase the chances of an open rate afterward.

5. Have a few calls to action in your email

Sample Email with Call to Action

Depending on the length of your email, this point is debatable.

Some businesses prefer having one at the bottom; others prefer having a few within an email.

From my experience, having 2-3 calls to action is just nice. 

It allows people to click on the link conveniently while reading your email without having to purposely scrolling to the bottom.

6. Hyperlink with your brand color

One of the ways to get people to remember your brand is the color.

Let me give you an example.

When you see yellow, what brand comes to your mind?
What about red color? What brand comes to your mind?

Use your brand color inside your email copy, or at least hyperlink with the brand color, to project consistency, showcase your professionalism, and enhance the overall brand recall impression.

7. Include a small logo in your email

Email with Logo example

Keep the logo size below 100KB, with 150-250 pixels.

Use PNG format if you need a transparent background. Otherwise, JPG is fine.

You can add the logo at the header of the email, just below your email signature, or at the footer of your email.

Note that size matters because large image file sizes might trigger email spam filters.

8. Write only 1-2 sentences per paragraph

example of one to two paragraphing email

This method has been widely recommended since I first learned about email marketing in 2013.

This method of paragraphing helps with few things

A. Enhance readability

Short paragraphs create white space, making the email less intimidating and more accessible to scan.

b. Quick comprehension

Readers can quickly grasp the main idea of each paragraph without feeling overwhelmed by large blocks of text.

c. Mobile-friendly

Short paragraphs are easier to read on smaller screens, where long paragraphs can require excessive scrolling.

9. Get them to reply to your email

Getting your subscribers to reply to your email, especially the welcome email, is not just to increase engagement but also to increase the inbox delivery rate in the future.

Email service providers (ESPs) like Gmail and Outlook use engagement metrics, including open rates, to gauge the relevance and quality of emails.

Therefore, if your subscribers don't open, click, or engage with your emails, they will be deemed "non-relevant" to the user, and it will hurt your inbox delivery rate.

10. Use bullet points and emojis to summarize your points

Email sample with bullet points

Having bullet points helps guide the reader's eyes. It makes it scannable and improves the reading experience.

Meanwhile, using emojis in emails will help give them an extra personal touch and emphasize your points.

Try using Emojis in your headline, too. The test is out, and you would be surprised by the open rate.

11. Remove non-open and non-active subscribers

It may seem harmless when you leave inactive subscribers on your list.

But did you know having too many inactive subscribers will negatively impact your sender reputation and deliverability rates?

A common mistake people make is that they hope these inactive subscribers will one day open their emails or are unwilling to accept the loss of an email address.

Don't worry about inactive email addresses; focus on the quality of your list, not just quantity.

Final Thought

Email marketing professionals are key players in the digital marketing landscape.

Their work not only involves crafting engaging emails and analyzing data but also improving companies' business profit and margin without spending extra advertising costs.

If you have a knack for public relations, creativity, and building relationships with your customers, your career in email marketing could be exciting and satisfying.

What other best practices do you think should be in this list?

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