Emails can provide your company with some of its highest marketing ROIs.Still, if your business is like most, you won’t receive the response you want after just one message. Instead, you’ll probably need to send at least one more before you get a positive result.
That’s why you need to understand how to write an effective marketing follow-up email. Otherwise, the high-ROI you are expecting may never show up.
Fortunately, there are 5 simple tips you can follow to quickly master this essential form of content. Any one of these will give you better results, but use them all from now on, and you’ll notice your email marketing campaigns really taking off.
1. Never send a marketing follow-up email too quickly.
Kara Corridan has probably received more marketing emails than most. She was the health director of Parents magazine and is currently the executive editor of Scholastic. Here’s what she had to say about marketing emails that come too quickly:
“Certain people that send me something on a Friday and then follow up Monday—it’s ludicrous. Even if we were interested, we couldn’t turn things around that frequently. You can try again in a month. Give us a chance to process.”
That’s not to say you need to wait an entire month to send your follow-up. Every industry has its own standard. However, this is also why it’s important to figure out what makes the most sense in yours.
Before deciding on the frequency of your follow up emails, first think about how you would feel receiving a follow up after you read the first marketing email from someone. How would you feel if the follow-up email hit your inbox a day or two later? Would you appreciate that or would you feel spammed?
There’s a natural tendency to want to get in front of prospect often so many marketers will send emails too frequent in a sequence. Instead, make your send frequency at least 4–5 days apart. Give the recipient time to process the first email and decide whether it’s worth taking action before they receive another email.
This takes time, but rest assured, there is no industry where following up every other day will get you the desired response.
2. Start with a reminder about your last email.
Don’t start from scratch with a marketing follow-up email. Your prospects probably receive dozens of similar emails every week – if not more. After all, in 2017, 269 billion emails were sent every single day.
So, there’s a good chance your recipient may not immediately recognize what yours is about. If that happens, don’t expect them to read it.
Therefore, reference the last email you sent in the first line after your greeting.
Don’t summarize it, though. On average, our attention spans are only about eight seconds, so never waste time with the openings of your email. Just reference the last one. If the reader needs a reminder, they can jump back into their inbox and find the last message.
All you need is a sentence or two to reference the last one and then begin explaining why this next email is so important.
3. Get to the point. You’re not just checking in.
Whatever you do, don’t begin your marketing follow-up email by “just checking in.”
The benefit of those three words is that it makes it clear you’re not trying to pressure them into anything. The drawback is that you’re delaying why the email matters: its main objective.
There are only four real reasons to write a marketing follow-up email:
- You need information
- You’d like to request a call, meeting, or some other kind of action
- You just want to catch-up
- You wanted to say thank you for one of the above or another opportunity
Whichever it is, get to it right after you reference the last email. Don’t get lost in small talk.
Remember, your recipient probably has a short attention span, and they may also be short on time—so start explaining why you deserve some of it.
4. Use action verbs.
In a moment, we’ll cover how to end your emails, but before that tip will be helpful, you have to understand what must be included in the actual content.
While you still want to keep your marketing follow-up email short, it absolutely must add value. You can’t simply send an email where all you do is ask for something. Instead, be sure you’re benefiting the recipient somehow, too.
This is especially important in B2B, where data shows that 74% of buyers opt to work with salespeople who first added value. That is a massive difference.
If your company utilizes account-based marketing, you’ll need to take the time to figure out what kind of value you can hope to provide the individual prospect.
On the other hand, if your marketing follow-up email is going out to your entire list, be sure to segment it. Then, based on buyer personas, come up with a valuable piece of advice or other content that will show recipients that you’re focused on them — not just your company’s needs.
Content upgrades can be great for this purpose. You can offer your recipients:
- Case Studies
- Invites to a Webinar
Any of these options are above-and-beyond the normal follow-up email. However, because they come in the form of a link or attachment, they won’t add so much bulk to your copy that recipients immediately decide to move on.
5. End your marketing follow-up email with a specific call-to-action.
Ideally, this marketing follow-up email will be the last one you need to send.
To increase your chances of getting the response you want, be sure to include a specific call-to-action at the end. “Hope to hear from you” and “Let me know what you think” aren’t very good CTAs, despite how common they’ve become.
Instead, consider one of the 75 CTAs we recommend. Here are some great examples:
- “Start your free trial”
- “Let us know how we did”
- “Reserve your seat”
All of these give your recipient something specific to do. If you use action words throughout your copy, you’ll also set up your CTA with a better chance of success.
Give your reader a CTA to be excited about
If there’s one real secret to writing an incredible marketing follow-up email, it’s to always craft messages your audience will look forward to. Never send one out unless you know you’re offering them something they want—not just something you want them to do.
That way, your recipients will actually be excited to open your email, read it through, and follow your CTA’s instructions.
After that, you won’t need to send nearly as many follow-up messages, but those you do send out will have much higher rates of success.