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Is the concept of open rates dead? In the world of email marketing, it sometimes feels like we’re in a graveyard of unopened emails buried beneath the piles of spam, promotions, and updates. It’s like sending messages in bottles, hoping they’ll wash up on the right shore, but never knowing if anyone will actually read them. But just because open rates seem lifeless doesn’t mean they’re beyond revival. Think of open rates like a dormant volcano: they may appear inactive, but beneath the surface, there’s still a fiery core waiting to erupt.

Email marketing has been a staple for years, but the fear is getting real with the rise of new privacy policies, such as Apple’s new privacy policy. Mail Privacy Protection is now an option for all Apple Mail users who have upgraded to iOS 15. It requires apps to ask for permission before tracking users’ data. This includes email tracking, meaning email marketers can no longer track when and how often users open their emails. Some senders use location and open time data for segmentation purposes, both of which will be hampered by MPP.

According to an analysis by Litmus, open rates for Apple’s email clients have already declined since the release of the new privacy policy. In June 2021, the open rate for Apple’s email clients was 31.9%, down from 34.1% in May 2021. While it is true that open rates have been declining, it doesn’t mean that email marketing is no longer relevant. In fact, email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to connect with customers and drive conversions.

One reason for the decline in open rates is the sheer volume of emails that people receive on a daily basis. With so many emails flooding our inboxes, it can be difficult for marketers to cut through the noise and get their message heard. 

So let’s take a deep dive into the state of open rates in 2023 and discover how to bring them back to life.

Escape the Spam Folder – Email Deliverability

1. Verify you are human!

A report by Experian found that incorrect email addresses accounted for up to 17% of undeliverable emails. Verifying email addresses at the point of signup reduces the chances of the email bouncing back to the sender, which can negatively impact your sender’s reputation. It further cleans your email list, improving your email deliverability rates and increasing the effectiveness of your email marketing campaigns.

2. What the Brand?

When it comes to healthcare, trust is everything. Patients want to know that their information is secure and that they receive authentic messages from their healthcare provider. That’s where BIMI comes in. By including Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) in your emails, you can increase patient recognition of your emails and boost their trust in the authenticity of the messages they receive, thus improving deliverability.

3. Avoid Spam Filters.

In the wild world of email marketing, spam filters are the bouncers of the inbox. They’re the gatekeepers that decide which emails get in and which ones get kicked to the curb. Avoid using trigger words such as “Make money,” “Work from home,” and “Investment” in your subject line and email content.

Break the rules with AI

The internet is buzzing with the recent release of ChatGPT and other AI-powered resources. A recent report by Forrester predicts that by 2025, businesses using AI in their marketing and sales efforts will see $1.2 trillion in additional revenue. With AI at your disposal, you can revolutionize email marketing altogether.

AI can help make better decisions, from analyzing the sentiment of email content and predicting how recipients will receive it to predicting the likelihood of opening an email. AI can also help you automate the process of analyzing your competitor’s emails. For example, tools like Mail Charts and Email Meter can automatically track your competitors’ emails and provide you with insights into their email frequency, subject lines, and content.
If you’re wondering how to get your subscribers to open your emails like it’s Christmas morning, AI has some tricks up its sleeve! It helps you create powerful subject lines (Subject Line Optimization) and even pick the best times to deliver the email to the contact’s inbox(Send Time Optimization).

If you’re wondering how to get your subscribers to open your emails like it’s Christmas morning, AI has some tricks up its sleeve! It helps you create powerful subject lines (Subject Line Optimization) and even picking the best times to deliver the email to the contact’s inbox (Send Time Optimization).

  1. “Hey [Name], Don’t Open This Email”
  2. “Last Chance to Save 50% on Your Favorite Products”
  3. “This One Trick Will Save You Hours of Time and Frustration”
  4. “You’re Invited: An Exclusive Event Just for Our Subscribers”

We created these with the help of an AI.

The Future is Personal – Hyper Personalization

Respect their privacy, but still wow them with personalization. Gone are the days of simple “Hi Teds and friendly “Welcome Phils. 88% of consumers say that a company’s experience is just as important as its products, and 73% of consumers believe that companies should understand their unique needs and expectations.

Hyper-personalized emails can drive up to six times higher transaction rates compared to non-personalized emails. And when you rely on zero-party data, you can take your personalization efforts to the next level, resulting in higher open rates and purchases.

For example, Sephora uses a quiz to collect zero-party customer data and uses it to personalize their email campaigns. By asking customers about their preferences and concerns, Sephora is able to create tailored product recommendations and beauty tips that resonate with each individual. This has led to a 54% increase in email open rates and a 15% increase in conversion rates.

Email Marketing Automation

To achieve these results, many companies turned to multichannel marketing hub (MMH) tools. As the 2022 Gartner Peer Insights Customers’ Choice for MMH, HCL Technologies stands out for its robust automation capabilities, which enable businesses to deliver highly personalized and targeted messages across multiple channels. With the offerings from HCL Technologies, businesses can streamline their marketing efforts and achieve exceptional results, just like the many satisfied customers who contributed to its Gartner Peer Insights recognition.

  • Save time and leverage pre-existing email templates. Within HCL Marketing Cloud’s Digital Messaging offering, personalized emails can be crafted based on templates. These templates are HTML documents that feature both fixed content areas and customizable spaces. Here, you can insert various content elements like images, text, and HTML snippets, which dynamically adapt based on the characteristics of the email recipient.
  • Automate list scrubbing, Using an email automation tool, you can set up rules and filters to automatically compare your email lists and identify any discrepancies. For instance, you can compare your email list to your CRM database to ensure that all the data is up-to-date and accurate.
  • Send automated transactional emails to remain top of mind. For instance, financial services companies utilize the HCL Marketing Cloud’s Real-Time Engagement to automate subscriber communications. When a subscriber begins filling out a new loan application, a nurture series is activated within the platform to ensure its completion.

Stand out in the crowd with relevant subject lines

  • According to Experian, Using emojis in email subject lines can increase open rates by up to 56%. The choice of emoji matters too – using the ‘heart eyes’ emoji can increase open rates by 26%, while the ‘star’ emoji can increase open rates by 10%.
  • Personalized recommendations. Did you know that Amazon’s recommendation engine is so powerful that it once recommended a book to a user about how to make bombs based on their purchase history of cooking supplies? Jokes apart, By analyzing past purchase history and browsing behavior, Amazon is able to suggest products that are highly relevant to the individual user in their email campaigns.,
  • Social proof is so powerful that even the famously skeptical New York Times called it the ‘new marketing superpower’ In fact, a study by BrightLocal found that 91% of consumers read online reviews before making a purchase decision. So don’t be afraid to show off your happy customers in your email campaigns and let their glowing reviews do the talking!”

Email marketing is critical to any digital marketing strategy, and its effectiveness is enhanced when your content is relevant, engaging, and personalized. Always optimize your subject lines, run A/B tests to ensure they’re sent at the most optimal times, and allow your customers to interact with your content timing. If you’re interested in learning how to build personalized cross-channel campaigns – from email to direct mail, reach out to us.

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