With all the buzz around social media marketing, it can be easy to forget about email, the marketing workhorse that continues to provide a huge ROI. Although email marketing is alive and well, the format has changed significantly since the days of long-format email newsletters. Effective email campaigns utilize the same strategy that Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat have all leveraged: the micro-message. Your small business can use this same concept to create a big impact with short, simple, and targeted messages.
In his book, Microstyle: The Art of Writing Little, Christopher Johnson writes, "Microstyle is all about expressive economy in language: getting a lot of idea out of a little message.” In a world where attention spans are dwindling and time is at a premium, a short, simple email can communicate your message effectively and engage busy consumers.
Here are some ideas to boost your open rates and engagement that are inspired by Microstyle:
Short, simple content will not do you any good if it is vague and meant for a broad audience. As you plan your email campaign, consider segmenting your lists and creating content that specifically speaks to that audience. Subscribers are much more likely to interact with an email that is meant for them. Targeted content helps to reduce irrelevance, creating more effective email campaigns. When segmented by interest group, click-through rates are nearly 15% higher than non-segmented groups.
Also see: 3 Tips for Building Your Email Marketing Subscriber List
You can only fit so much information into a short message, but that's okay. Your message doesn't have to say everything. Consumers only need enough information to engage. Short, descriptive emails and subject lines have significantly higher open rates than emails with boring, generic content. Emails with concise yet interesting subject lines had the highest open rates in a MailChimp study of over 200 million emails. If you can find the right balance between intrigue and brevity in your email marketing, then subscribers will definitely respond positively.
Wit and Humor
Use what you've learned from social networking and be funny! You probably know that "LOL" feeling you get when you see a hilarious tweet or Facebook post that you just have to retweet or share. Your aim here is to recreate that feeling in an email. Humor disarms consumers, builds trust, and creates better engagement, but use this advice with caution. Don't be afraid to use humor, but you should also provide enough information for users to be motivated to open the email or click through to your site.
Before you attempt to write a novel every time you send out an email, remember that less is more when it comes to email marketing campaigns. Johnson uses the obvious (yet helpful) metaphor of a key to explain micro-messages. He explains that "[a] message isn’t a treasure chest full of meaning. It’s more like a key that opens doors." Keep this metaphor in mind when planning your email campaign. An email doesn't have to tell the whole story; an email only has to guide consumers to the next step.
Be sure to stop by our Email Marketing services page If you need a helping hand to jump in and guide you through the challenging landscape of effective email marketing.