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The White List #8: 50% Open Rates on Emails?

I sometimes find it funny that I work in a field where a 20% open rate is considered a success. Let’s face it; where else would you consider that percentage successful? What if we could get 20% on a test at school and still pass? Or God forbid we have drivers out there who only scored 20% on their driving test, and I’m sharing a road with them?! I shudder to think. So while a 50% open rate isn’t what the ultimate goal is for any email, it’s actually extremely successful considering that 31% of email addresses change every year. Imagine reaching half (or more) of your customers and getting your message to them. Do I dare dream that big?

Well according to Stephanie Miller of Marketing Profs, she has some great advice to manage your lists and get that spike in opens – and keep them opening!

It’s simple: If you want superior response rates, you have to provide a superior subscriber experience. And that means…

  1. Keeping your file clean. Source data well, and clear out dead wood early and often.
  2. Watching frequency.
  3. Improving the content and relevancy through segmentation and content management.
  4. Responding to subscriber behavior, as well as self-selected preferences.
  5. Segment even in wide cuts (e.g., new subscribers vs. longtime customers or customers vs. prospects) to improve relevancy, reduce complaints, and improve inbox placement and response rates
  6. Remove nonactive subscribers from the file. Such a painful discipline will be rewarded in higher response rates, higher inbox placement, and higher lifetime value for those who do find your products and services valuable.
  7. Customize content and subject lines as much as possible, even if it’s only to move more relevant content to the headline.
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