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7 Ways To Improve Your Email Marketing In 2023

business advice digital marketing agency email marketing entrepreneurship social media marketing Jan 02, 2023
Business owner looking at a laptop that shows their businesses email marketing analytics

It may not be as flashy as social media, but email marketing is still the best way to grow and scale a business.  I mean, there’s a reason why email marketing has been around so long and continues to grow every single year!

The statistics vary, but for every $1 you spend on your email marketing, you can expect a return of anywhere from $38-43 . . . that’s massive!  It’s also said that every email subscriber you have on your list amounts to $2 in business revenue every year.  Have thousands of subscribers and that’s a pretty nice revenue boost!

Even though email is a proven strategy for revenue growth, a lot of businesses still don’t have an email list, or even worse, they’re not utilizing the list they have to its fullest capabilities.  So today, we want to talk about 7 things you should be doing when it comes to your email list if you want to take convert these leads into paying customers!

Personalize Your Subject Lines

This first one seems simple enough, but out of the hundreds of emails I receive each day in my inbox, only 1-2 actually have my name or something personal about me in the subject line . . . can you believe that?

It’s as simple as saying, “Hey Michael, did you see this?” instead of, “Hey, did you see this?”  All you have to do is embed the code and it will auto-populate the person’s name inside the subject line.

While it doesn’t seem like a big deal, it means a big deal to the person receiving the email.  How much of a big deal is it?  

Well according to The Digital Marketing Institute, by simply using the person’s name in the subject line can increase a business's sales by up to 34%!  Imagine that, getting a 34% increase in your sales every year simply because you made this tiny, seemingly insignificant change . . .

If you’ve read the book, “How To Win Friends And Influence People,” then you know people appreciate hearing their name when spoken or written to.  It shows that you care and that they’re not just a statistic to you.  Make this simple change, and if nothing else, your subscribers will appreciate that you took the time to care!

Use Engaging Visuals

When people open an email, web page, etc. their eyes always go to anything visual first.  That’s why using photos to compliment your emails can be such a powerful attention grabber . . . especially if the photo leads into what you’re talking about.

The thing to remember when using any kind of visuals is to make sure that they are of the highest quality.  Nothing will detract people more than if you have low-quality images in your emails.  Even if you have to use stock photos, there are some amazing sights out there that have photos you can use for free!

Now when it comes to video, I know that a lot of people are now saying you should use video content in your emails, but after talking to a bunch of different email providers, I can tell you why it’s a bad idea . . .

After talking with these providers (ActiveCampaign, Kajabi, and Convertkit), they all said that using video in your emails, it gives that email a greater chance of being flagged as spam.  Obviously, this isn’t good because then a vast majority of your audience will never see the email, which in turn, lowers your open rates.

If you’re going to use visuals, stick with photos for now or else get ahold of your email provider and ask them if it’s safe to use video in your email campaigns.

Keep Them Short & To The Point

Have you ever opened an email, expecting to read something really quick only to find that the person sending it felt the need to write an essay?  When this happens to me, I can tell you that instead of reading the email, 9/10 I immediately click out and never read it again.

Not only are people bombarded with hundreds of emails every single day, but they’re also busy, which means they don’t have time to sit there and read and email essay or your life’s story . . . and to be brutally honest, they don’t care that much.

The whole time they’re reading an email, they’re thinking, “What’s in it for me?”

That’s why keeping your emails as short and to the point as possible is the best route to go.  Get this: did you know that some of the highest open rates come from emails that have less than 10 words?  It’s true!  Because they’re simple, they get the point across, and they don’t waste people’s time.

If you have something to say to your audience that’s a longer message, think about putting it somewhere else, like on social media, a blog, or a YouTube video.  Save your email marketing for concise value and entertainment that’s easy for them to consume and keeps them coming back for more.

Segment Your Audiences

This point is especially true if you have multiple freebies that you’re running (which you should).  If people opt into your email list for different freebies, then common sense says that they are going to want different information . . .

However, most people simply funnel everyone to one list.  I understand the thought process . . . it’s a whole lot easier to simply manage one list and create one email a week rather than have separate lists and separate emails.  But by not doing this, you’re confusing your leads and losing out on a ton of conversions.

For example, we have four separate free resources.  One is on growing your social media business accounts, one has to do with utilizing Facebooks ads, one is how to get 15K monthly website visits, and the other one is three freebies every business should be creating.

While all of these fall under the digital marketing scope, each person who opts in for these freebies is opting-in for a very different reason.  That’s why we have introductory sequences for each freebie that builds value on top of the free resource they just received.

We might eventually funnel everyone to our weekly newsletter, but not before we make sure they get the help they need for the problem that they were having.  Make sure if people are opting into your email lists for different reasons, you’re tailoring your content to each segment of your audience.

Continually Be Testing

If you want to get better open rates and conversions on your emails, then you’re going to need to be continually testing the format and way you send emails.  Some of the different things you should be testing are the:

  • Photos you use
  • Your subject lines
  • The length of your emails
  • Your copy
  • Your email signature
  • Using links vs. no links
  • Different formats

According to Mailchimp, the average email open rate for businesses is around 21%.  We thought we could do better, so over the last three years, we’ve continued to make changes to the way we send emails in hopes of upping that percentage.

After three years of testing (and many changes), I’m happy to say that we now have an average open rate of 49% on our weekly emails.  That means one out of every two people we send an email to will end up opening it.  This has not only increased our open rate, but our outbound link clicks in our emails, and has hugely helped our bottom line!

The money is in the list, and by simply accepting the status quo of 21%, you’re leaving huge amounts of engagement, conversions, and most importantly, money on the table.  Always be testing, because there is always room to improve that open rate for your email marketing!

Regularly Be Cleaning Up Your List

When was the last time you cleaned up your email list?  If I’m going based on our past experience, then the answer is probably never.  Let’s take the clients we’ve worked with for example.  When they hired us to do their email marketing, none of them had done a list cleanup before . . . EVER!

So why is doing this so important?

Well, chances are that if you were to look down your list you might see something called a hard or soft bounce.  This means that your email was unable to be sent for some reason.  Your email provider MIGHT automatically remove emails being sent to this person, but they might not, and if they don’t, these will hurt your email open rate.

There are also people that may be receiving your emails but simply not be interested anymore, but for some reason, they don’t unsubscribe.  Chances are if someone hasn’t opened an email of yours in 6 months, it’s either gone to spam or they aren’t interested.

What we like to do is send them one more follow-up email simply asking if they are interested in continuing to receive emails from us.  If they respond back or open it, we’ll leave them on our list.  If they don’t respond, we’ve got our answer, and we’ll take them off our list.

So why is doing things like this so important?  Because the lower your email open rate, the more chance your emails can end up in someone’s spam folder.  It also makes no sense to have an email list of 10,000 people if only 100 open them.  Email lists aren’t about the quantity but about the quality.

Take some time before you send your next email and check your bounce rate as well as stagnant subscribers and see if there are some ways for you to clean up your list.

Add An Extra Layer Of Value With Links

Email marketing isn’t just a great way to turn your leads into conversions, but it’s also a great way to add extra layers of value through the other content you create across your social media and marketing channels.

For example, say we’re talking about the importance of Instagram Reels for your business in 2023.  What we could do is link a recent blog post that we wrote entitled, “15 Ways To Increase Your Instagram Reels Views In 2023.”

This would allow us to keep our email shorter, and if people wanted more information on how to optimize their Instagram Reels, we could direct them to the blog for a more deep dive analysis.

Another reason this is great is that it then allows us to increase our website visits as well as our visits to our blog.  The main thing to remember when using links in your emails is that they have to serve a purpose.  Don’t just link something without giving context or link something just to put a link in there.

Your link should either be to a product you’re talking about or a resource that enhances the value and learning of the topic you’re discussing.  Doing this is a great way to grow your social media channels as well as things like your blog.


If you want to continually grow your business every year and eventually run a multi-million dollar business, then your sole focus should be figuring out the best ways to get people off things like social media and onto your email marketing list.

From there, your next goal should be to figure out how to provide the best value and entertainment to ensure you get the highest open rate you possibly can.  Because when you have a high open rate, it shows that people are interested, and when people are continually interested, they’re also usually interested in purchasing a product or service that you have.

We’re proud to boast a 43% open rate across all of our client's email marketing lists, and we’d love to chat with you about how we can help you not only increase the size of your email list but also convert those subscribers into revenue.  Click HERE and let’s chat more about helping you with your email marketing!