email open rates
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Here’s a staggering fact: 89 billion emails get sent everyday. However, the vast majority just don’t get opened.  If you’re running a small business, you need to make sure that your email strategy is counting on value, rather than volume. Just because almost 90 billion emails are sent each day doesn’t mean you need to settle for a .05% open rate for yours. A well-crafted headline can increase how often your emails get opened and read.

To help us wade through the many complexities of crafting a great email newsletter (and yes, how to improve your email open rate), business consultant and CreativeLive instructor Barry Moltz put together a tried and true list of tips you can apply to your email marketing headlines to make sure your emails get opened.

1. Think About the Title. It matters. More than any other factor, the title of your email will decide if it gets opened.

2. Go Negative. We’re all about positivity around here, but we get what he’s saying. Folks are eager to know what they shouldn’t be doing and they’ll click that title if helps avoid embarrassing mistakes, ex: “What Not to Include In Your Return Policy.”

3. Be Exclusive. Limited time and members-only offers are more enticing than generic email blasts. Do what you can to make your email feel tailor-made and time-sensitive.

4. No Capital Letters. NO YELLING, please. Thank you.

5. Be Controversial. Challenging popular notions with your email headline is a great way to grab attention. Is everyone buzzing about National Donut Day? Write a headline about why you loathe it.

6. Avoid Overused Words. Free. Help. % Off. Reminder. All of these words make your email blend in with the masses. Avoid them.

7. Use Odd Numbers. Readers like odd numbers. It makes them feel good. And click things. Which is what you want.

8. Keep it Short. Email programs often cut off headlines over 25 characters, make sure you whole title gets displayed by keeping it short.

9. Get Help. If your emails aren’t getting you anywhere, don’t hesitate to use pro tools or ask an expert for advice.

10. Be Thoughtful About the “From” Field. People want to hear from people, not companies. Make sure your “from field” has a name, not a department or anonymizer address in it.