3 Secrets to Sending Better Email

On By - Best Practices - 2 Comments

Top Secret by Malakhi Helel, via FlickrIt’s no secret. Most of you know the return-on-investment numbers for email marketing are staggering compared to other marketing channels, which is why we’re all gung-ho for email. However, if you love email and know it can get you the most money, why are you spending the least amount of time to perfect it?

In a lot of marketing departments today, there are a few people doing a lot of tasks. Translation: Some tasks – even important tasks directly affecting ROI – get left until the last minute to do. Maybe you have a version of “email Wednesday” – you’ve heard that’s the best day to send emails, so Wednesday morning you spend an hour or two getting your email prepped and then you hit send.

Expecting a barely-prepared email to inspire opens, clicks, and conversions is expecting a miracle.

Want to see your campaigns succeed like they’re supposed to? Spend a little more time preparing them. Work on a specific strategy for the days and times your readers like to see emails – it differs across industries and companies.

Additionally, here are three other secrets to sending better email:

1. Include preheader text.

The preheader text, sometimes referred to as the super subject line, is the text visible after the subject line in most email client’s and device’s inboxes seen prior to a user opening your email. It’s pulled from the first text found in your email and depending on the device and the length of your subject line, it can be highly visible. Many marketers make the mistake of not including preheader text. You will commonly see “View in Browser” messaging taking its place.

In the WhatCounts Publicaster platform, you can automatically add preheader text to any email from the creative and campaign sending menus. The best part is, this tool separates the preheader content from the email content, meaning it doesn’t appear in the HTML message. If you wanted the preheader in both places, you can still do that. However, this allows the preheader to wow subscribers in the inbox while allowing you to leave it out of your email design.


preheader2As inboxes continue to grow crowded, getting an open is even more valuable now than in the past. Utilize the preheader text as additional space to expand on the message in your subject line and entice the user to open. The combination between a recognizable and trusted from name, a compelling subject line, and the added information from the preheader text can impact the open rates of your campaigns.

When it complements the subject line and includes a call-to-action, a preheader motivates a subscriber to open and read your email. Additionally, including preheader text in your HTML designs is especially important with the rise of mobile readership. Officially overtaking desktop, mobile opens are a thing of the present and the future.

2. Send from a real person.

You may be one of the email marketers who is testing different components of his or her email campaigns. Bravo! Testing is a great way to find out what your readers want to see – and to increase click-to-open rate.

What many email marketers don’t know is testing from address is equally as important as testing subject lines and content. Instead of sending from a generic company or marketing address, try sending from a person at your company. Subscribers might respond to an email coming from a real person. There’s only one way to know for sure: Test it!

3. Ask for help.

Sometimes no matter how much you want to put time and energy into email campaigns, you just can’t. Visit a forum or help center to find the answers you need. Or jump on Twitter and ping your followers or email marketing experts (like us!) with your questions. If your email service provider doesn’t have a customer service phone number with a real person on the other end, it may be time to find a provider that does.

At WhatCounts, we know figuring out how to optimize your email marketing can be challenging. That’s why when you pick up the phone or email us, a person is there all day, every day to help you. We love email!

Joy Ugi
Digital Marketing Coordinator, WhatCounts
Twitter: @ugigirl


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Answers almost everything with "for sure," enjoys craft beer, loves email, and is always good for a grammar pun. Wrangles content for WhatCounts.

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2 Responses to "3 Secrets to Sending Better Email"
  1. Jose Argudo says:

    Sending from a real person is something I have been about to try for a time. However I’m not sure about how people would take it once they find it’s still the business who is sending the emails.

    • Joy Ugi says:

      That’s a good point, Jose. However, it’s worth a test. If you see an increase in open and click rates when sending from a real person, it’s probably worth doing consistently in the future. Every audience is different, so you never know what will resonate with your particular audience. You can also include the name of the company in the reply-to address, as well as the name. For example, “Joy Ugi, WhatCounts.” This will let people know it’s coming from a real person at your company.

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