the science of email | key findings

If there is one thing homebuilders and community developers understand – it’s how to build an interest list. How to effectively communicate with those people via email…can always be better.

Consider: more than 93% of online consumers have provided their email address to at least one company or brand. 88% of U.S. online consumers check email daily, and 94% use email at least once a week. Add to this that more than 50% of consumers make purchases as a direct result of email—it drives more conversions than any other channel.  (source: ExactTarget.com) Expect more from your email marketing, other categories do.

science of email study findings

Here are some surprising findings of the extensive Science of Email Study by HubSpot to get you better results.    There is 1 catch – for any of this to apply to your marketing program – you have to be creating emails for your subscribers that relate to their interests. Content needs to be “useful and/or even fun” (aka relevant).

People read their email-mostly. 70% of people read all or most of the email they receive. 25% read about half and 5% read very little of it.

Only 1 real in-box & 1 fake. 88% of people use 1 email account for both personal & business. However, 58% also have a “Junk In-box” . This is that email you use when you don’t ever want to hear from the company again, but they are offering something NOW that you want. Go for a relationship & avoid the Junk In-Box.

Best time to send an email How does 6 am on Saturday grab you? or Sunday… Turns out people tend to look at commercial email as “Homework to do on the weekends”. Consider: emails sent Saturday & Sunday averaged Click-through-Rates (CTR) of about 9.4% & 8.7% respectively, compared to emails sent during the weekdays which averaged about 4.7% .   Also, CTR peaks for emails sent at 6am with about 10.8% compared to the trough of 4% for emails sent at 4pm.

Majority read email on a phone. 80.8% of users read email on a mobile device. Make sure you optimize  for mobile.

Email Content Tips:  Include reference information in your emails- people will refer back to them. Serialize your emails in the subject line so people expect them (Highest CTR words in Subject line include, posts, week’s, e-newsletter, issue, digest).  Give subscribers REAL special access to something. Send the email from someone they’ve heard of for higher CTR. Include lots of links – only 1 link has the lowest CTR at 3%, compared to 4 links at 4% and the peak at a rather obnoxious 19 links garnering 4.5% CTR.

People will NOT share your email. Consider: 60% will forward a commercial email less than once a month or never. As far as tweeting about your email – 73% are less than once a month or never.  Ask people to follow you instead.

Worth it:  View the Science of Email Marketing webinar ;  Download Email’s X- Factors

Data: The Hubspot data used included over 9 billion commercial emails from MailChimp, focus group data and survey data. I really like that the majority of data is based on actual behaviors rather than self-reported behavior. People don’t mean to be inaccurate, they simply can’t help it.  

Any other good tips to make email more effective? Thanks!

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