How to Counteract Irrelevance

B2B marketers' emails receive roughly half the clicks B2C marketers' emails do, according to the Direct Marketing Association, which sampled over 37 billion emails sent by 12 different ESPs to reach that conclusion. And mail click-through rates are dropping.



One reason B2B marketers' emails receive fewer clicks: many are simply informational, requesting no action from the recipient. But what about the rest of those emails? Why are click-through rates on the decline?



In a word: irrelevance.



So how do you make your B2B emails more relevant to more recipients?




  • Trim your subject lines. Many B2B decision-makers read email on their phones, which show only about five words (40 characters). Write short subject lines to improve click-through.



  • Make your subject lines motivating. Subject lines are a call to action: you want recipients to read (and click through) your email.



  • Be concise. Recipients prefer consumable bits of information and won't likely stick with long, windy writing, much less scroll through it to get to the point. Write tight copy and use images sparingly.



  • Personalize. Personalization boosts response. Simply including the recipient's name can only help. And targeting a recipient based on her job role can help measurably.



  • Fine tune frequency. Choose a consistent frequency, then study your email transmission reports for signs it's a smart choice. The ideal frequency differs for different lists and organizations, so there is no hard-and-fast best practice. The reports will tell you if you’re in sync with recipients (strong opens and clicks), missing the boat (weak opens and clicks), or getting on their nerves (opt-outs).

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