If you’re sending an email newsletter but feel like it’s not getting much attention….or perhaps not even getting read at all, it may be time to change your approach.

The purpose of email marketing is to build relationships, not just occupy inbox space.  It’s one of those low-cost “touches” that help people get to know, like and trust you, so that they feel comfortable doing business with you down the road.

But if you’re not being heard, or worse, your email is not being delivered–all of your efforts will be in vein.

Before we get into the 5 steps you can take to get more mileage out of your ezine , an important first step would be figuring out your current email marketing “stats” as they stand.  This will help you to track your results as you implement some of the suggested strategies below.

Specifically, pay attention to your current open rate and deliverability stats if you have them.  Then try some of these small, but powerful changes to increase your engagement and help ensure your hard work doesn’t end up in the virtual “trash”:

1. Spark curiosity with your subject lines– If your email open rates are low, start using creative subject lines that make opening your email irresistible. Pull something from the ezine that leaves them hanging so they feel the need to click and learn more.  Here’s a few examples of highly clicked titles we recently used for our clients: “My Valentine,” “I stole the chairs,” and “I never saw this coming…”.

2. Open with a personal note– People want to do business with people–not law firms.  Don’t be afraid to add a few personal tidbits before your article each week to help people relate and connect with you on a personal level.  Talk about your family, vacations, weekend activities…and even include some pictures, too!

3.  Avoid too many “promotional” or “spam” words– One reason your emails may not be getting opened is that you are using too many words that cause your email to be filtered into spam.  Free is a big one, and so are other promotional phrases like “50 % off!”  and “call now !”.  In some cases, email providers won’t even deliver these messages to their users at all…filtering them instead into the black hole of the internet.

4.  Make your email newsletter interactive.  Ask your readers questions and seek out their opinions.  You can even go outside the box and ask questions that have nothing to do with the law.  One of our clients recently moved into a new office, so we asked readers to share their favorite places to find inexpensive artwork and décor.  Responses came pouring in from people she hadn’t heard from in years.  It’s great to know that people are listening, asking questions helps to build relationships without sacrificing too much of your time.

5.  Tell people what you want them to do– If people aren’t taking action after reading your newsletter, it might be that you aren’t telling them clearly enough what to do. Don’t be afraid to include clear calls to action asking readers to sign up for an event, take advantage of a discount, follow you on social media or forward your email to a friend.  As long as you are providing quality content and are not being overly promotional, people will appreciate you helping them take the next step.

Try implementing these changes and pay close attention to your results.  If more people are interacting with you and open rates improve, you’re on the right track!

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