Search engine optimization for small and very small businesses.

Archive for the email Category

Why Doesn’t Your Newsletter Get Read?

You do have an email newsletter, right?

Sending out a periodic email newsletter can help draw customers and prospects in to important pages on your website or to relevant blog posts. But how many read them?

How many recipients open your email newsletters?Very often statistics from your email newsletter host will show that a relatively small percentage of readers actually click on any links to your website or blog. In fact, you’re likely to find that lots of recipients don’t even open your newsletter. (Some may view it in preview mode and unless they click on something that doesn’t count as an open. But still, a low open rate indicates a problem.)

Mistina Picciano of Market It WriteMistina Picciano of MarketItWrite offers 8 tips to make sure people read your newsletter. If you have a low open rate, focus on her tip #2: Use subjects that say “read me”. A compelling subject line to your email will get people to open them. That’s a subject we at Rank Magic discovered late in the game. For years our monthly newsletters had a subject line something like Rank Magic SEO Newsletter for April. Does that make you want to stop and read it? I didn’t think so. Last month’s newsletter hinted at some of the content inside with this subject line: Disappearing Rankings | SEO Myths | Google on Article & Social Media Marketing. A bit better, but not as compelling as it could have been. A better subject line might have been Why Did My Rankings Disappear? or perhaps Don’t Believe These Dangerous SEO Myths!.

Better newsletter subjects is something we need to work on, and chances are it’s something you need to work on, too.

 

What Does Your Email Address Say About You? (Part 2)

What does your email provider say about you?Back in September 2009 we blogged about what your email address tells people about you.

Recently CNN had an article on the same subject, with some very amusing perspectives on email addresses, specifically who your email provider is. If your email address ends in:

@aol.com

  • You probably have the same e-mail address you had in 1997.
  • You also might be 70.
  • Fair or not, if you send an e-mail from an AOL account, the recipient is likely to expect it to be spam, a forward of some thoroughly debunked conspiracy theory or pictures of kittens.

@hotmail

  • Not much different than AOL.
  • Hotmail is another ISP that was huge in the Web’s earlier days but has lost cache among the technorati.
  • “It’s like a silly cat sweater,” she said, “Ironic on a hipster, awkward and anachronistic on a middle-aged housewife.”

@yahoo.com

  • We ended up with a hung jury on Yahoo mail.
  • Many folks in our incredibly nonscientific polling said they have Yahoo accounts, which they only use as an address to provide on sites they expect to flood them with spam.

@gmail.com

  • A Gmail user “most likely knows their way around a computer” and “when the internet stops working, actually tries rebooting the router before calling a family member for help.”

me@mywebsite.com

  • Owning your own domain name pretty much puts you at the top of the e-savvy stack.
  • No one will think you’re a rube when they get your e-mail. They may, however, think you’re self-centered. And possibly a megalomaniac.
  • Not that you care.

Work/school email

  • If you insist on using your work e-mail for all your personal messages, then people may make two assumptions about you:
    • 1. You spend too much time at work.
    • 2. You want everyone to be impressed by your @whitehouse.gov e-mail account.
  • And if you’re more than a few years out of school, dump the alma mater’s account. If you’re still using @harvard.edu 20 years after graduation, you’ll just be the digital equivalent of the middle-aged guy still trying to squeeze on his letterman’s jacket.

What email do you use? Let us know … and tell us if these analyses are any more accurate than a horoscope.

What Does Your Email Address Say About You?

Just published an article about how to make sure your email address represents you well. It’s often the first impression a new customer or prospect gets about you. Here it is:
Your email address says a lot about you. Make sure it's positive.We all know how important first impressions are. Today, your e-mail address may be the first thing anyone knows about you. And what it tells them may surprise you.

Most people recognize that having a return e-mail address of  sweetcheeks75@whatever.com isn’t as professional as yourname@yourcompany.com. But there are many other ways to have an e-mail give a less than professional impression of you.

I’m always surprised to be handed a business card from a small business owner that proudly displays the address of their website but lists a non-matching e-mail address. If you have a website, you should by all means have an e-mail address that references your website even if you prefer to retrieve your e-mail through Hotmail or Gmail. Your web host can provide an e-mail alias that forwards your e-mails to your Hotmail or Gmail account. All of your customers still know you as a steve@onecoolflowershop.com without knowing that your e-mail is really being forwarded to studmuffin@Hotmail.com. Such e-mail aliases are usually offered as a free service by the people who host your website.

Perhaps the most egregious e-mail address to use is an AOL e-mail address. Fair or not, many people view AOL users as clueless novices who don’t know any better. In many cases that’s far from the truth, but you don’t want to be painted with that brush. Fortunately, AOL is aware of this problem and is now offering something called My eAddress. This service lets you register a domain name and use it with your AOL account so that bob4583@aol.com can become bob@superdupergarage.com even if you don’t have a website.

Best Time To Send An Email Determined

emailMarketingCharts.com reports that a new eROI study has found the “best email day.”

That day, it turns out, is Wednesday. “The average open rate on Wednesdays in the third quarter was 25.4%, and the average click rate was 3.9%,” reports MarketingCharts.

As for the time of day – this study really got into the details – “there’s a marked upward trend as time passes,” and  click rates peak around 4 PM, while open rates top out an hour later.

I guess that means I should send out our monthly newsletter about 3:30 on a Wednesday afternoon. Pretty cool.

Phishing Filter Prevents E-mail Identity Theft

Scientists at Carnegie Mellon University have figured out a way to almost entirely detect and filter out phishing e-mails. These findings have a tremendous potential to reduce identity thefts.

Phishing is the practice of sending emails that look like they come from a familiar financial institution and direct you to confirm your user name, password, or PIN. In fact, these emails direct you to a phoney site that harvests the information you type in in order to steal your identity.

Brian Livingston has an interesting column on the in Datamation.