You know all those emails from companies that you never read? I’ve got a ton of those in my inbox, and I don’t open them because there’s no reason for me to spend time doing it – it will not be a good use of my limited time, and I’ll be no better off for doing it. That’s really not what they wanted when they spent time creating it and sending it to me. So what does make me open an email, read it, and even click something in it? That’s why they’re sent, after all…Here are three things that not only get me to open an email, but look forward to them coming in, too.


Reason One – I’m going to get something I want

So I’m interested in your business, and want to be on your list. Now I need a reason to open that email, and the best way to get that time from me is to give me something in exchange. Don’t forget you’re competing with many other emails and messages from many other sources, in a limited amount of time. So you need to make sure you’re giving something away that your reader wouldn’t get otherwise – you need to make them feel BETTER OFF for opening it, and that they will miss out if they don’t.

I don’t mean you need to start dishing out discounts and vouchers – although you certainly can if you want to – I mean give a way a little expertise, some of the experience that makes you an expert in what you do. Open the door to your knowledge a little, and hand them a gift.

For example: I’ve spent this week drafting a multitude of emails for a client who’s an estate agent, so they’ve got their year’s worth of emails ready to go when they need them. Every one contains something useful, interesting or entertaining – tips for preparing your home for sale, or a potted explanation of the legal process, or how to decide on an asking price. Anyone who is looking for a home, or selling a home, is going to find a use for that information – so they’ll get a high mail opening rate, and cement their reputation as a knowledgeable and approachable agent to trust.


Reason Two – it’s what I expected

And I mean this in a few ways. The quickest way to put people off is to deliver something that’s different to what you promised, so make sure you’re sending what they signed up for. If it was to get updates about events you’ve got coming up, tips, a link to your blog – whatever it was that you advertised on sign-up, make sure that’s in there, and your emails don’t just become adverts for what you do.


Reason Three – it’s consistent 

If you’ve already convinced me that your emails are always worth my time, make sure that’s always the case. If I’m expecting that little piece of gold in your emails, I’ll be looking out for it in each email. If you give a little something the first few times, then stop and change the content, that’s going to turn people off too – because they’ve no longer got that golden reason to give you their time.

Keep the regularity consistent, too – it’s more important than frequency. If you say you’re going to email weekly, then stick to that, and don’t start doing it daily. You’ve already bought one piece of someone’s time by getting them to sign up, and trying to sneak more of it is going to get on their nerves – so you risk them not bothering at all.


Golden Rule – review your mailing lists

I’m on a load of mailing lists that I probably shouldn’t be, because the marketing emails don’t interest me – and that’s why a lot of my emails are unopened. The onus is on me there to unsubscribe, and I really ought to go through and do that – but as a mailing list owner, you can do some work on that too, and it’s vital for improving your read rate.

Go through that list of recipients and make sure they should be on there. According to GDPR regs you should do this anyway, because nobody should be on an email list without their consent – but your mailing list should be made of people who have actively signed up to receive your communications. When you’re satisfied that everyone wants to be there, you’ll be able to shape the content that’s going to tempt them in.


Make your emails useful, interesting and of value – Refreshing Lively Content that hooks them in, keeps them reading, and compels them to click. Because isnt’ that why you put the time into doing it in the first place?


If you’d like some help with your email campaign content, I’d love to help – let’s start by talking about you in a free half hour chat:

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