For those of you who send out newsletters and/or emails, you probably already know how difficult it can be to get your patrons to actually read what you send. For those of you who aren’t emailing out newsletters (or emails for that matter), be sure to check out Tony’s blog about using Newsletters as marketing tools for Your Library and definitely consider sending out newsletters!
Here are 6 Email Marketing Tips for Libraries to improve your email open rates:
1. Be specific and relevant. If the email doesn’t seem relevant to the reader, chances are, they’re not going to read it.
2. Let them know who you are in the headline. This is especially relevant if Your Library doesn’t have an email address with a specific domain name (ie. @YourLibrary.org).
3. Ask a question in your subject line. People are inherently curious, so if you ask a relevant question, people will open the email.
4. Avoid “spam” words. We’ve all received spam emails that are laden with words and symbols like “FREE!!! No $$$”. If you’re like me, you never open them; it’s a good chance your email recipients probably won’t either. Here are the top 10 spam words/characters as reported by Lead Formix:
As Seen On
Your Library probably won’t use many of these terms that often (unless you’re describing Your Library App). Litmus does say that it’s ok if you use the terms every once in a while, but don’t use them too often.
Along with the more traditional spam words, MailChimp suggested to avoid: help, percent off and reminder; people are less likely to open emails with these terms in the subject line.
5. Keep your subject lines short: Think 50 characters or less. You don’t want to write a story inside your subject line, you want more of a teaser of what’s inside. Another thing, avoid selling what’s inside your email—tell what is inside.
6. Localize! MailChimp found that while personalization doesn’t increase open rates, using your city/region/county’s name will.
Want to see the full infographic from Litmus? Read How to Write the Perfect Subject Line by Justine Jordan.