Marcus Wong·Marketing·03 October 2017

How to Send Better Email Campaigns

As a real estate agent, email campaigns are the most important tool in your marketing arsenal.  Email campaigns:

  • Makes you an expert in your area
  • Help you generate extra leads
  • Start a conversation that encourages enquiries
  • Lets prospects know that you’re active and out going in marketing

 

Here’s the ultimate guide to crafting the perfect email campaign, so you can earn more opens, clicks and leads next time you send one out.  It’s a long guide so feel free to skip ahead to the part that applies most to you:

  1. Choosing your audience
  2. Drafting a subject line
  3. Drafting copy
  4. Formatting
  5. Scheduling

Before you read further: Are you tired of spending hours editing generic templates on Mailchimp?

Sign up here for a free trial of Eagle CRM’s email builder.  It’s synced to your property database, letting you design custom professional emails advertising your newest listings in seconds.

Learn more here

Anyways, here’s the blog post- hope you learn a lot from it, and don’t forget to share it with your colleagues if you find it useful!

1) Choosing your audience

Your audience should dictate your content, not the other way round.

For example, should you really be annoying current vendors with listings?  Will new subscribers be likely to open your blog without previous contact?

There’s nothing worse than working to craft the perfect campaign, only for it to have a terrible engagement rate because your audience wasn’t interested.

Here are some examples of topics that would be appropriate to send to different segments:

  • Current vendors: company achievements, asking for referrals
  • Previous buyers: newest listings, latest blogs, customer feedback surveys, re-engagement campaigns
  • Interested buyers: relevant listings, buying advice, next inspection dates
  • New subscribers: follow up thank you emails, relevant listings

Learn more about incentives here with this great guide.

Use your email marketing software to define these users by sorting them into their own lists. You can even use segmentation to identify them even further, e.g prospects from website, inspections, etc to make your campaigns even more targeted.

Eagle CRM automatically segments your contacts lists into groups, based off user behavior, keeping your segments updated, constantly.

2) Drafting a subject line

Your email subject can make or break the success of a campaign.  Your readers will receive dozens of emails daily.  A bad subject will get overlooked, or worse, automatically moved into spam.

Your subject line should incentivize your reader to open the email to read the rest.  Some examples of incentives include:

  • Offer- free giveaways or deals e.g save 10% on your next purchase
  • News- fueling the need to keep up to date e.g latest property trends in Melbourne
  • Story- start by telling a story to gain interest e.g I was in the middle of an inspection today when…
  • Curiosity- asking a question, or being purposefully vague to invoke interest e.g 80% of new homeowners will make this mistake…
  • Urgency- a time deadline, e.g this offer will expire tomorrow

Writing the perfect subject line is a fine art, but this free subject line analyzer can help.

It will rate your subject line based on ideal word length, powerful words, and effective word balance, just to name a few factors.  It’s a great place to start if you’re unsure if your subject line is good enough.

3) Drafting copy

When it comes to writing copy for an email, the most important requirement is to be direct.  Whatever incentive you used to motivate people to open your letter- offer, blog, news, etc, is what they need to see right away.

State your business in a clear 1-2 sentences- this should be an extension of the subject line, and include an action for your readers, like “click here to learn more”, “sign up for this offer”, or “read more here”.

I’m a big fan of lists when writing emails.  They:

  1. Are easy to read.
  2. Help you get to the point

Lastly, I know writing doesn’t come naturally to everyone.  When I get the dreaded “writer’s block”, I often look at other examples for inspiration.

Believe it or not, one resource is your own inbox.  If you find yourself frequently opening an email newsletter, I’d take a serious look at their content to see what attracts you, and apply it to your own email campaigns.

Another resource is templates found online.  Here’s a great collection of over 100 successful email campaigns that you can learn from.

4) Formatting

Most email providers, such as mailchimp, offer templates that you can use.  They’re pretty good but are often generic e.g for e-commerce businesses, and require some tweaking to fit your needs.

Eagle CRM offers industry specific email templates designed with the needs of real estate agents in mind– we’ve got an inspection follow up email, new listing emails, successful sales emails, one for every situation.

Some general must-have inclusions in every email include:

  • Contact information- make sure to have your phone number and email in the footer.
  • Social media handles- include icons to Facebook, Twitter, your website, so readers can follow up or share your email easily.
  • Headings- a chunk of text in the same font is not only boring, it’s also difficult to read. Make reading easier by using headings to highlight the important point of each section.
  • URL’s- an email should always include 2+ hyperlinks to another page, like your website. Encouraging clicks boosts your site traffic and engages interested users with your brand.
  • Actions- don’t be afraid to paste your actionable offer multiple times around your email. Have one at the start as a hyperlink in the text, and also add a special “click me” button below your copy.

One final pro tip on formatting- make sure that your email is optimized for mobile.  Opens on mobile phones and tablets now make up 55% of opens.\

Some easy ways to do this include:

  • Adding plenty of line spaces and keeping paragraphs short
  • Not including too many images (slow to load on 4G)
  • Use a service that automatically adjusts the email for mobile phones.

5) Scheduling

The last step to take is scheduling.  Here’s some data from several major email services, like Mailchimp and Hubspot, that can help you make a decision:

  • Weekdays > weekends for open rates- makes sense as people tend to be ditch the devices in the weekend to relax
  • Peak open rate is around 10-11 am- various studies have found that late morning, before lunch is the best time.

So it would seem that weekdays at around 10 am would be the best time to send emails.  That said, you can use your own data to see when your audience is online.  Facebook and Google Analytics allow you to see when people visited your pages.  Here are some helpful links:

Getting better with analytics

Once you’ve sent your email out, what’s next is to evaluate it and make your next campaign better…

The bottom line is to not be disheartened if your first email campaigns don’t achieve success.  Every audience is different and there’s no guaranteed method to success.

How to read and make changes from email key performance indexes is an entire complete guide in itself, so stay tuned for the next blog post.

In the meanwhile, work on adding these tips to your next email campaign to get more opens, click, and leads!


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