For many education marketing companies, email is still one of the best and most cost-efficient ways to get a message to specific audience. However, it’s safe to say that creating an attention-grabbing email is still both art and science.
To get you started, we’ve compiled the seven key parts of an effective education marketing email, from the pre-work of audience segmentation to the actions you should take after your email has been sent:
Think about audience segmentation and the desired response
Like many tactics in marketing, an effective education marketing email begins with the end in mind. Before you begin composing content or pulling together imagery, ask yourself two questions: who is the intended audience, and what action do you want them to take? The design and content of an education email is just half the equation – it must be paired with a list of carefully selected recipients. If your database isn’t up to the job, work with a reputable list provider to define key attributes of the audience you’re looking for.
Nail the subject line
According to this blog from HubSpot, 33 percent of email recipients will open an email based on the subject line alone. With those kinds of numbers, it’s important that a subject line be: 1) attention grabbing, 2) descriptive, and 3) short. Be crisp, direct and descriptive in the subject line – ditch the flowery language in favor of words that “pop”. And, as the majority of emails are opened on mobile devices, 4-7 words (or 40-50 characters) seem to be the sweet spot for a subject line – the maximum most mobile displays will show without truncation.
Engage with branding and imagery
Photos, illustrations, fonts and colors – these components tell your brand story and differentiate you from the competition, so it’s no secret they should also be a part of your education marketing email strategy. If you use bright colors and emotional imagery on your website or in your social media posts, make sure that look and feel informs your email marketing.
Write brief body copy relevant to your audience
Now that you have a compelling subject line, how do you ensure that your prospect stays engaged? Tell your prospects about the benefits of your product rather than simply listing features. What challenge does your product solve for them? How can you help? In addition, brevity is everything when it comes to email content. The point of the email is not to tell the entire story of your brand or product – it’s to entice them to click through your call to action and get more information. And be likeable. You can let your brand personality show through and still deliver an informed, compelling message.
Create a compelling call to action
If you’re sending an email it’s usually to encourage the prospect to take a specific action – visit your website or download a piece of helpful, relevant content. Be sure any call to action you craft – whether it’s a simple hyperlink or a colorful CTA button – opts for simple, practical action-oriented phrases (“Download Now”, “Go Inside”, “Learn More”, “Click for Details”). And design the destination to align with the action you’ve asked them to take – build custom landing pages that are optimized to capture the campaign’s traffic.
Give additional ways to connect
No two prospects are alike, which makes it difficult to predict how a particular prospect may prefer to engage with a company. That’s why it’s important your email offer multiple opportunities for engagement. Designate a toll-free number for your email marketing efforts, and display it prominently on your footer templates. If your brand has a robust social media presence, be sure your social media pages are hyperlinked in the footer.
Make it easy to unsubscribe
This might seem counter-intuitive – you want more prospects to look at your content, not less, right? But it’s important to provide an unsubscribe option. As HubSpot says, it’s necessary so that unqualified people on your list don’t skew the data undergirding your email performance numbers, and it will actually pay off in the long run if you’re trading a large unsubscribe rate for better performance. As well, people expect any legitimate marketing list to provide a working unsubscribe option. There’s no value is antagonizing potential prospects by sending email they don’t want.
These seven steps are only the beginning of a truly effective education marketing email. The actions you take to spark your prospects’ interest and engagement is where the real work begins. It takes multiple impressions to build brand awareness – and more than one touch to make a sale. Determine which audience actions prompt additional communications and test which work the best – whether it’s a follow-up phone call, a direct mail piece, or another email.
Looking for a marketing strategy that integrates email marketing with social media and public relations? We can help. Drop us a line.
If you enjoyed this CB&A education marketing trends feature, check out these companion articles:
- Why You Need a HubSpot Onboarding Plan: Make your HubSpot onboarding process a breeze with this simple plan.
- Achieving EdTech Revenue Goals Through Sales and Marketing Collaboration: Sales and marketing plus collaboration equals achieving your brand’s edtech revenue goals.
- Add Value to Your Brand with Native Advertising: Education marketers have more options than ever. Here’s how to add value with native advertising.
- How the Adoption Curve Impacts Your Education Marketing Strategy: Every education marketing strategy should take the adoption curve into account.