University Marketing & Communications

October 17, 2016

Three tips for using email as a marketing tool


What makes the difference between an email that gets dumped in the junk folder, and one that actually gets your message through? Just like any platform, there are tips and tricks to help you improve your email results.

A 2014 study showed that email was 40 percent more effective at acquiring new customers than Facebook and Twitter combined. But don’t forget, email is very different from social media. It can be incredibly powerful, but only if used effectively. Here are three key takeaways to help you better utilize this platform:

  1. Make sure your message has a clear purpose.
  2. Use metrics to support and improve your strategy.
  3. Set an expectation for the recipient to respond.
Establish an objective:
  • If the purpose of your email is not clear to you, it will be even less clear to your audience.
  • In order to maintain a priority status, focus on crafting messages that have a purpose and a call to action.
  • If you’re sending out more than one email a week, your audience might want to unsubscribe.
Use metrics:
  • Monitoring how many people open your emails and click the links gives you insight into what content does and doesn’t work for your audience.
  • If you have a low open rate, you might need to update your recipient list or test out more compelling subject lines.
  • If a large percentage of your audience uses mobile devices to open your emails, make sure all of your messages and links are mobile-friendly. This will help increase your click-through rates.
Encourage engagement:
  • Motivate your audience to respond by including a compelling call to action.
  • Be clear about how you want them to proceed (individual reply, RSVP, etc.).
  • Make it as easy as possible for your audience to respond by providing links and/or contact information.

For more reasons why you should be using email to engage with your audience — and how to do so successfully — read this Forbes article, download this Litmus “State of Email Report” or contact Elise Perachio, associate director of e-communications.

—Callie Hamilton