Trash-Proof Your Wellness Business Emails
Anecdotally, most people don't feel like Mitch.
I have a friend who has literally over 10,000 unread, unarchived emails in his inbox.
I have another who I have to text every time an email needs her attention because she just stopped checking it one day.
That many unread emails makes the Virgo in me want to scream into a bottomless pit and the marketer in me want to cry and hop the first plane to an ashram with no wifi.
And as a businessowner, I'm sure you have your fair share of email stories that make you feel a little bit crazy, too.
According to MailChimp, for the health and wellness industry, an open rate around 20% is about average for emails. While that might look pretty good all things considered, it still means that 40% of people that get your emails don't even bother to open them.
You pour your blood, sweat, and precious time into every email you write just for them be thrown in the trash like yesterday's kombucha.
But with more than 4 billion email users expected by 2021 and email marketing still being shown as the most effective digital marketing channel, you can't exactly just ignore email marketing altogether and hope for the best.
Instead, you can make your emails better, watch your open rates climb, and rise from the trash folder like the beautiful marketing phoenix you are.
Heya -- don't have time to do the whole reading thing right now? No prob.
Read at your leisure.
"I'll do more with email marketing when I have a bigger list."
"I don't have time for email right now. It's my busy season."
"I've got plenty of clients, I don't need to doing email marketing right now."
It's just you and me here. Tell me...have you ever said any of these?
Or thought them to yourself as you filled another hour with social media? (It's got it's place but we both know that social media marketing time can quickly and seamlessly morph into puppy and cake frosting video time.)
The fact is you should always have email campaigns running. Whether it's a follow-up sequence to an opt-in you haven't promoted in a while or a re-engagement campaign for customers you haven't heard from in a while, the right time to be working on your email strategy is approximately *looks at invisible watch* now.
With email marketing as with so many other aspect of our businesses, it's way too easy to wait for the perfect time when everything is in place and you're absolutely sure it's going to go perfectly aaaaand oh would you look at that you're dead from waiting.
The perfect time is now.
Don't have a huge list? Start with the one you've got and strategize to grow it even bigger.
Have a list that hasn't heard from you in a while? It's not too late to get them re-engaged, to reintroduce yourself to them and add value to their lives.
If want to trash-proof your emails, you have to actually send 'em out.
Who Are You Even Talking To?
The key to making sure that your emails get opened is RELEVANCE.
*one more time for the people in the back*
How you make sure that your emails are relevant takes a little bit of practice and a lot of listening.
Chances are that you have more than one type of ideal customer and those customers have differing (although perhaps overlapping) interests and needs. As soon as someone gets on your email list, they should be categorized and tagged based on what you know about them.
Then, rather than send one email out to your entire list, you can send emails that are specific to different segments.
The best way to learn what kind of content your customers actually want from you is to ask them. You can send out a post on social channels, ask them in an email, or reach out to your best customers individually and find out how you can help.
The more value you can provide that is relevant and helpful to your customers, the less likely they are put your emails in the trash.
Always Be Connecting
Successful email marketing is about making personal connections. It might not feel that way when you're loading your email copy into MailChimp but in fact every email you send out is a piece of you. And the more you share of yourself, the more effective your email marketing is going to be.
The list that you spent all that time building (or that you're still working on) isn't a way for you to make constant sales pitches, it's a way for people to get to know you, what you offer, and how you can help them.
Switch it Up
No matter how long you've been at this, you have more to learn. You, your business, and your customers are going to change and grow over time.
Example -- I signed up for an email list a few months back. It was a message I was interested in at the time but I didn't hear from them for weeks and weeks. When I finally did, the subject line was READ NOW. A dutiful email reader, I did!
It was a newsletter. No particular value, just notifying me about a new blog post.
Then I got another email the next week with the same subject line. "Really?" I thought and opened it again. Same low-value content.
Eventually, even though the subject lines changed, I was so annoyed by the lazy tactics of the first handful I got that I stopped opening anything from the sender.
But I would bet a lot that that first email had phenomenal open rates! And the third or fourth one had rates that may as well have been negative.
Your list can quickly get used to tricks and tactics. Strive to stand out and don't fall into patterns. What works for your first month, quarter, year, won't work forever.
Luckily, the data that you can collect on your emails -- open rates, click throughs, unsubscribes -- can all help you to be better day after day and send after send.
I get it, email marketing can feel more than a little overwhelming. If you still have questions, I've got a few options for you:
(1) Download my Really Basic and Not at All Patronizing Guide to Email Marketing for Wellness Brands