Content is King!
With the amount of email that each user receives on a daily basis rising, users no longer have the time to review each e-mail and all of the content. When they do open your email, make sure that the content is relative, insightful and provides a purpose.
Create Relevant Subject Lines
Most people go through their inbox at least once a day to irrelevant email. There's just too much email and too little time. That's why it's critical for your email to have a subject line that makes people want to open it. They are looking for an excuse to delete your newsletter — don't give it to them!
Use HTML with Text Backup
While text only emails were common practice a few years ago, times have changed, and most people prefer to receive their email newsletters in HTML format.
With the growing number of PDA's cell phones with email capabilities and the handful of recipients that cannot read email in HTML format, a text backup version guarantees that all users can read your campaign.
Length and Frequency of your email message
The more frequent your newsletter, the shorter it should be. People will happily open a short "Joke of the Day" or their daily horoscope; but almost no one wants to get something longer than that every single day! So, keep dailies short and use week weeklies to elaborate. Biweeklies (every two weeks) and monthlies can be longer — only if you have truly fascinating information to share. Never go longer just for the sake of length.
Make it Easy on the Eyes
With the use of HTML email templates, the ability to create a colourful and stylish design is available. Bring some excitement to your content with the use of banners, photo's, and other graphic elements to complement your message.
If they can't read it, they won't. As great looking design won't benefit your campaign unless your users can read the text. Pick the right text size so that all users can read your message. Many designers use smaller fonts as they appeal to their design scheme, however this content is being viewed on screens of all sizes and users of all ages. Clear easy to read text guarantees your message will be read.
For long email newsletters, provide a table of contents at the top: On-screen readers don't want to work hard to find pieces of information that are valuable to them inside your newsletter.
In fact usability studies show that most people won't look beyond the first screen of information if there's not something immediately interesting to them. Give them a reason to scroll down!
Tone and Attitude
Every brand has its’ own tone and manner, which is adapted to various contexts – formal for official documents with legal implications, more casual and direct for promotional materials. While print newsletters tend to be somewhat formal, email newsletters are a different beast. The best email marketers in the world, no matter what industry they are in - from fun consumer sites to serious business-to-business portals – say the same thing: make your newsletter's tone personal and casual. People crave a little humanity behind the corporate mask. They respond much better to newsletters that are written by one particular individual at a company who they can get to know over time.
Know your Audience
Your e-mail marketing strategy is only as good as your contact list. If your audience does not know you, they are not likely to open your e-mail. Building your list using currently clients or through a website opt-in form is the best way to ensure that your contacts know you and are expecting communication from you.
Using purchased e-mail contact lists or harvesting your own list can be a form of spam. Perform Marketing does not permit the use of harvested or purchased lists and recommends an organic method of creating a relational contact list that is sustainable for the long-term.