Nurture your audience through engaging emails

1. Ask questions to which readers can answer 'yes' to keep them engaged and make them feel part of your story.

For example, Ryan Schwartz, copywriter for many big names, asks the reader a question related to the situation he’s describing. Ryan knows his audience well enough to know the answer for most people will be “yes”. This accomplishes something significant. On a basic level, it creates engagement as readers will stop for a second and think about their answer, but on a deeper level, it demonstrates to the reader that you understand them and that your content is relevant.

2. Encourage readers to reply to your email to nurture engagement.

This is not only a compelling way to engage as people need to take action by clicking on reply and physically responding, but it’s also a good thing to implement in your first email to boost your open rates. Asking a few different types of questions to vary the type of engagement is good practice. For example, some questions will be a simple “Ready?” or “Sound good?” while others will necessitate the reader to think a little harder. When you get people to respond early on, email filters see this and treat your future emails as regular emails, instead of dumping them in spam, promo, or update folders. In a podcast by LeadPages, the author of ASK, marketer Ryan Levesque, suggests asking a question to your subscribers 2 hours after they sign up to confirm they received the first email. He mentions it goes a long way in terms of increasing open rates, but by asking a strategic question simultaneously, he’s also able to get further insights about his audience.

3. Include links that provide your readers with quality information to get them in the habit of clicking

If you only link to sales pages, you’re not nurturing anymore, you’re selling, and people will become tired and ultimately less responsive or likely to open your emails. On the other side, however, by making it extremely valuable for the reader, you’ll be able to pique their interest every time you send something their way. People will want to check out what you have to share. Include multiple links to a single URL in one email to address different motivations to click.

4. Give your readers 'micro-wins' by offering tips that provide value with only a small effort on the reader's part.

An email marketing software could include a quick trick that boosts click-through, to try right away. Once people implement that trick and start seeing results, they will attribute it to the company that taught them the trick. These should always be tied to the greater problem your audience is currently experiencing. Keep it relevant, and when you help solve even a small percentage of a bigger problem through a quick win, your authority for the topic goes up, and people want to hear more from you. They want to keep getting wins!

5. Underline the importance of your emails by reminding readers of their bigger goal and their progress towards it.

Legendary copywriter Gary Halbert talks in the 11th chapter of his famous letters about mail being triaged by recipients into two piles: Pile A: The pile with all the mail you want to open. For example, letters from friends and family and important messages. Pile B: The junk pile where unknowns and marketing letters fall into. They never get opened and they go straight to the trash. You need your emails to be perceived as valuable by your leads because they will help them reach a bigger goal. You need to be in Pile A, the main inbox. What big goal are you helping them achieve? How are you speeding up their success? Once there’s a deeper purpose to your emails for the reader, when they can see you’re helping them achieve bigger things than just simple tricks, the meaning of your emails becomes more profound. You will undoubtedly be harder to ignore. When you get started with this, ensure how you define your leads’ problem is how they also define it: Are there consequences of ignoring the problems they ignore? Are they aware of the importance of a solution? Do they know the “pain” they might need to go through if they don’t take action? What does it mean for them? And for their company?