Contrary to many beliefs, email continues to prove to be one of the most effective marketing methods today. Consumers turn to these branded messages regularly to see what is new and exciting from their favorite companies. However, businesses often find it a challenge to cut through the cluttered inbox and ensure that their message is not only opened, but well received. Below are five elements to a strong marketing email that all businesses owners should adopt to boost open rates.

Implement a Catchy Subject Line

Most email providers only show the first 50 characters (including spaces) of a subject line in the preview screen. By exceeding this limit, there is a higher possibility of misinterpretation of the message, so keep it short and direct to ensure that they understand the purpose before opening. A clear message will encourage open rates.

Also, try to be timely with your emails. Is it almost Super Bowl time? Is Mother’s Day right around the corner? Maybe there was national news that you would like to address. Leverage these events and create a unique message to make your email more compelling.

 Make them feel special

Consumers don’t like to be considered as a number, just one of many. They are one-of-a-kind and special so speak to them personally whenever possible. Addressing the email specifically to their name or customizing the content to specific user groups will make them think that you are sending the email especially to them.

Take it a step further and offer exclusive coupon codes or sales. Research identified 68% of consumers stating that coupons generate loyalty and have a positive impact on a retailer’s brand. Americans love to save money and if they think that they have something that no one else does, they are more likely to leverage it and favor the company in the future.

 Add a Call to Action

The point of a marketing email is to get the recipient to do something. Be it purchasing a product, attending an event, or following your social media accounts, it is critical to be clear with one call to action per email. If you leave the mission up for interpretation, you run the risk of confusing or even worse, losing customers. If there is a time constraint on the action, for example a limited time promo code or registration deadline, be sure to use language that communicates the urgency without being pushy. Addressing these points “above the fold” or before the reader needs to scroll, will improve the chances that readers will retain the message and act on the request.

 Be Social

Always provide ways in which the reader can further engage with the company on social media networks. This does not need to be limited to integrating a Facebook or Twitter button at the bottom of the email. If you are offering content focused text or a promotion code in the newsletter, encourage readers to share it with their friends on the social networks.

 Allow Readers to Unsubscribe

One of the best advantages to email marketing campaigns is the ability to build and further develop relationships with your customer base. Therefore, make sure your emails are friendly and not intrusive. Providing an option to opt-out of the emails at the bottom is a smart move. It may seem strange, but this will reduce the chances of recipients flagging your material as spam thus affecting how and if they get delivered to your mass audience.

When you begin drafting your next marketing email, take these tips into consideration but don’t be afraid to test. Every business’s customer base is different and thus reacts to strategies differently. Consider A/B testing to assess successful techniques. Give yourself about a week or two to generate the appropriate results and evaluate the effects these new strategies had on your open and click through rates. Email analytics are great tools to help you determine what is working and what needs to be improved to drive optimal results.

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