Email is common practice among marketers, but some companies will see better results when they optimize for three factors.

Nearly 7 in 10 marketers say email is at the core of their business, and almost 50 percent send approximately 500,000 messages annually, according to ExactTarget. With so much riding on the results from email marketing campaigns, companies must continuously revise their strategies to ensure they’re taking the approaches that get people to open, click and buy.

A study by Campaigner found there are a handful of factors that influence consumers’ likelihood to open emails. The data speaks specifically to individuals opening messages on their mobile devices, but the same ideas can be applied to desktop sends to improve efficacy.

  • 45 percent respond to compelling graphics and copy*
  • 42 percent open if they recognize the sender’s name
  • 20 percent click when they see a compelling subject line

*note that Only 2 percent say they’re totally motivated by the graphics alone, so power of the copy in a successful email shouldn’t be underestimated.

What this data says is that marketers can’t set and forget their email campaigns just because they’ve been around longer than newer web-based tactics. It suggests that businesses should:

Brands can optimize their email marketing to become more successful.

  1. Optimize every message with compelling text and visuals.
  2. Primarily send brand content to people who have requested it. Brands may want to widen their prospect pools by blasting new contacts, but it could be a wasted effort if those people won’t open the messages.
  3. Use content analytics to revise subject lines. Look at previous campaigns to see which approach resonates best with contacts.

With so many companies relying on email messages to drive traffic to their websites and nurture leads, there’s a lot of competition for consumers’ attention. It’s evidenced by the number of emails sent every hour – 122 billion, according to Madison Logic. Companies that will see the most success with email marketing are the ones that learn which factors influence their results and optimize against them.

Lauren Kaye is a Marketing Editor at Brafton Inc. She studied creative and technical writing at Virginia Tech before pursuing the digital frontier and finding content marketing was the best place to put her passions to work. Lauren also writes creative short fiction, hikes in New England and appreciates a good book recommendation.