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Call to Action sign post

Click Here? Increase responses with a better call to action

It might seem obvious, but the reason you are sending an email to a customer in the first place is because you want them to do something like call you or go to your site. Email marketing is most effective when it is targeted and relevant to the reader, but even the best looking email at the right time and with a great offer won’t be effective if the reader doesn’t know what to do with it.

A huge amount of research has been done on working out what the most effective call to action looks like but the truth is it will depend on what you are saying and what you are asking the reader to do, but there are some universal truths you should apply.

Be specific

Tell the reader exactly what you want them to do with what they have read. ‘Call us now to get a quote’ or ‘Start your survey by clicking here >>’ both tell the reader exactly how to respond to the email.

It is worth thinking about where you want to direct responders to before you start. E.g. if the offer is only available on the website, then make sure that there is a link to the page they need with the offer.

Make it simple

Your reader may only focus on your email for a matter of seconds before deciding what to do about it. Nothing is worse than seeing a great offer and then not being able to figure out how to get it. However you want the reader to respond, make it obvious – make sure there is a link next to the offer so the reader doesn’t have to scroll down to find it.

Ideally build a link into your text, with TailorMail you can do this easily by clicking on the functions icon for the header or by ‘insert’ and then selecting the type of link you want to add. Also, make the link user friendly e.g. saying ‘see our blog‘ rather ‘visit http://www.tailormail.co.uk/blog/

[image_frame style=”framed_shadow” align=”center” alt=”Adding links to TailorMail” title=”Adding links to TailorMail”]http://www.tailormail.co.uk/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Links.jpg[/image_frame]

Using buttons

Buttons can be very effective tools to improve response. If done right, they are eye catching and easy to understand. Effective buttons are usually…

  • Brightly coloured, oranges and reds are traditionally the best colours
  • Brief, keep the text in the button as short as possible
  • Add arrows ‘>>’ to the button to improve click through. Sounds simple but it works.

Buttons are effectively just pictures, so if you are using a TailorMail template you can simply insert the button where the picture would go and add a link in the normal way.

Test, test, test

Testing may seem like a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be. Try using the A/B test function on TailorMail to see what links or calls to action work best for your emails. Even small changes such as changing a button from ‘Read more’ to ‘Apply now’ can have a massive difference on overall response.

[image_frame style=”framed_shadow” align=”center” alt=”AB testing in TailorMail” title=”AB testing in TailorMail”]http://www.tailormail.co.uk/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/ab-testing.jpg[/image_frame]

Review it

Finally, use the reporting tools to understand which links and calls to action were the most effective. Try looking at the Link Activity & Overlay report to see what links readers clicked on most. You can access this report through the reports screen by clicking on ‘Link Activity & Overlay’ on the right hand side.

As always with email – quality will almost always beat quantity, so spend a bit of time early on planning how to get your readers to respond and then keep reviewing it.

starting-line1

Getting started

Congratulations, you are only a few short steps away from sending your first emails. This guide will give you all the information you need, but please feel free to get in touch with us in the mean time if you have any queries and watch out for our updates on the latest new features and trends for TailorMail.

Step 1: Setting up your account

When you join TailorMail, we will send you an email inviting you to confirm your login details and set up your password. Once you have done this you will be taken through to your account homepage where you can create new lists, send campaigns and manage your account details.

In future you can access the site by clicking on my account on the home page of tailormail.co.uk and entering you account name and password.

My Account

On your homepage you will see a number of options. The first thing to do is to confirm your account payment details by clicking on the billing tab in the top right hand corner of the screen and then selecting the option to update your payment details. If you are using the free trial, you do not need to provide these, but you will not be able to send out your first campaign until you have done so.

Step 2: Loading your mailing list

Before you can send an email you will need to load a list of people to send them to. On the homepage, you will see a button asking you to import your subscribers, alternatively you can select the tab at the top of the screen entitled ‘Lists and Subscribers’.

Lists in TailorMail

The platform will take you through the process step by step. You can load your list in several ways, but probably the easiest way is to drag your Excel or .CSV file onto the screen when asked to do so. Please do take time to check that your addresses meet the requirements for TailorMail – you will be asked to confirm this before you can actually load the list. Check out our FAQ’s for a better understanding of why we don’t allow third party lists.

Much of the value of email is, the ability to personalise your campaigns, so make sure you load any relevant information you have for your lists e.g. full names, birthdays or last purchase date.

Step 3: Design your email

This is the fun bit. Depending on your account, you may already have pre-designed templates to select from, but if you have chosen to load or design your own templates, then you will need to got to the templates tab at the top right of the screen to set up a template.

Once you have done this or, if you are using a bespoke template, you will be able to enter the content for your email. On the account home page, click on ‘Create & Send’ and then on ‘Get started’ to create your first email.

New Campaign

Choose a name for your email, a subject line and who you want the email to appear from i.e. the sender name and click on ‘Next’. Now you can select the template to use. Once you have selected a template, you can use the simple editor to enter your email content including pictures, links and styling. Click preview to see what your email will look like when you send it.

Step 4: Send your email

All that’s left to do is assign the list that you have created to this email, so that TailorMail knows who you want to send the email to. Click on ‘Define recipients’ and select your list from the options. If you would like to send a test email to up to 5 people before you send the final campaign, just click on ‘Test and define delivery’ and enter the addresses here, alternatively you can skip this step and go straight to sending the email by skipping past this screen and going straight to the send screen and selecting a time to send the email out.

All done! You have finished your first email.

What next?

Even a basic email like the one you have just created can be very effective, but there is a lot more you can do to make your emails more effective, targeted and automated. To find out more, keep an eye on our blog, or get in touch for some simple ideas that would work for your business.

Happy emailing!

John.