Low open rate in your Cold Email campaign?

As we all know, Cold Email Marketing could be a digital marketing strategy with a great ROI. But it is not as easy as you may think. You can experience Low open rate for your cold email campaign if you are not following some good practices.

In the following blog post, I am going to discuss the reason why you are getting a low open rate.

How Open Rate is tracked

Starting, we need to understand what is an open rate and how all email marketing tools track this metric.

Open Rates are tracked by adding a small image to the body of your email. This image is transparent and it is usually 1px by 1px size.

By default, all Email clients will block the images of an Email. They do this to prevent downloading the image if the user is not interested in its content. If the tracking image is not getting loaded it will not trigger the open rate tracking resulting in your stat to remain as a Delivered or Sent Email.

This means that Open Rates tracking is not accurate and it is not a 100% representation that the email is going to the Inbox or Spam folder. Don’t get frustrated if you get a low open rate and instead focus on another aspect of your email marketing campaign.

As a reference, depending on what type of market you are you can expect a generalized open rate of 15% for cold email campaigns. So if you are currently getting let’s say a 9% open rate then it could be easy to increase the open rate at least to the 15% marked by the industry.

Put attention to your subject line

The Subject line, by far, is one of the most important contents in your Email. It is important as it is the first thing a contact will read before clicking in your Email.

The recommendation is to avoid looking spammy by keeping your subject line more conversational.

You could also use custom fields or tags to personalize the subject line. This will make every email going out to look unique. A unique subject line will help to prevent being easily flagged as spam.

Avoid short and meaningless subject lines. While keeping it short is good it is important to provide a subject line that describes well the content of the Email.

Implement A/B testing for your subject line. A/B testing will result in selecting a more engaging email.

Put attention to the Sender’s Name

The second most important content is the sender’s name. Usually, contacts will take a look first at the subject line and if the subject line is appealing to them they will look at the Sender’s field. For this reason, it is important to take into consideration what to put there.

A good suggestion is to put your full name, meaning your first name and your last name. Be personal, nowadays people do business with people and they will not easily hand their money to a faceless business.

Avoid using a short sender’s name. I have seen the sender’s name like From: John <xxxx@yyyy.zzz>. John is a very sneaky sender’s name 🙂

Put attention to the Email Content

There are many suggestions to follow for the body of the email. The main one is to keep it short and to the point. Nowadays, no one will read a ten paragraph email. There is no time for this. Make sure to write short and appealing content.

Avoid using more than one image and more than one URL. Make sure the URL has some type of call to action before it. Another thing to avoid is heavy HTML content. Avoid structured tables and instead, just use plain text.

The benefit of using plain text for your email body is that for the contact, it is not required to load an image in order to read the email. While this is bad for Open Rate tracking as it will not trigger the open rate stats it provides your contact with a readable content.

Other things to avoid are spammy words. For this, a good suggestion is to run the spam check at MailRush.io to get an evaluation of the words and phrases used in your email.

Make your Emails content to be unique

As we discussed earlier a unique subject line is desirable. The same happens with the content of the email. Try to send unique, personalized content on every Email sent.

To accomplish this you may use MailRush.io Content Spinning feature where you can build an email template with a set of wording options for a particular section of your body.

For example, you can start your email with {Hello|Hi|Hey} and MailRush.io will randomly select one of these three options. You can do this multiple times in your content body with single words, phrases or full paragraphs. The more you use this feature the more unique your emails will be.

Your Sending Frequency is very important

Many clients complain about the speed that we use for sending emails. They want to send 10,000 emails as soon as possible.

The fact is that major Email providers like Gmail, Outlook and Yahoo will trigger spam filters depending on the amount of SMTP connections you request to them at a certain time and the amount of emails they get from you hourly and daily.

The slower you send the greater the chances to reach the inbox folder. Implement a warm-up campaign. You can get a mathematical approach for warming a domain or IP by using our IP warming scheduler tool.

Avoid sending Emails 24 hours a day 7 days a week

It is very common to see email marketing campaigns running all day all week. While this is technically possible it is not the usual user behavior and could be a sign of the use of an automated sending script that may be flagged as spam.

Instead, use a more suitable sending schedule. As an example, maybe a good schedule is to send during usual business hours and not send on weekends. You can use MailRush.io Sending Hours feature to accomplish this type of schedule.

Use Email automation for follow-ups

It is common that the contact will not open your email on the first email you send to them. You can possibly double your open rate by sending follow up emails if the contact did not open the email the first time.

MailRush.io provides a drag and drop interface for programming follow up emails. Use it.

Build your own contact list

It could be appealing and fast for marketers to buy or rent a cheap email list and start blasting emails to that list. It is a bad idea as it will harm your sender’s reputation.

Why it is a bad idea? the purchased list often includes spam traps triggering blacklists, invalid emails will result in high bouncing rate, you will be in violation of GDPR, you will trash your email deliverability.

Building your contact list is a very important step to consider. If you build your own list you can have control of your reputation. By using MailRush.io WordPress plugin is a good start to get a new subscriber. (Opt-in subscribers) The plugin will generate a subscription form you can use everywhere on your website.

Build a sending reputation

It is a good idea to start low. The sending reputation is how ISP qualifies your IP and domain name. Depending on your sending reputation your email can reach the inbox or any other folder and in the worst case get blocked by the provider.

Our suggestion for long term email marketing campaigns is to gain higher control of your reputation by getting a dedicated IP account at MailRush.io this way you get more isolation and you can use your own domain name so you will be in control of the IP reputation and the Domain name reputation.

To build a good reputation you need to follow good sending practices.

Targeting Gmail and Gsuite

As you may know, Google email services are equipped with the most sophisticated email filtering meaning that this provider will be the most challenging of all.

Here are some tips I have found to work the best with this provider:

1- Isolate your reputation. Get your own dedicated IP account so get more control of your reputation.

2- Use a subdomain of your own domain name. This could be risky for your own domain if you do not manage well your campaign.

3- Make sure to have a Google Plus account/profile for the email sender.

4- Content is king. Make sure you personalize and make your body and subject conversational.

5- Try to be less marketing and more conversational

6- Always personalize your Email content with your contact name and don’t forget to add your signature

7- Avoid images, avoid complex HTML content

8- Do not send an email blast. Make your campaign to be targeted to those individuals you know may be interested in your offering. Choose only a few or limit the number of emails you want to send per day.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are multiple factors that may affect your open rate in general. By making use of good practice you can increase the chance of reaching your contact inbox that hopefully will result in a conversion.

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