Email marketing is a powerful way to build and sustain a business and is still considered the most powerful technique to reach prospects and customers. Unfortunately, most companies are not very effective in how they use it. The reasons vary but are grounded in the lack of humanity. In other words, the email processes at many organizations fail to treat the recipient as a human, instead, it’s just an email address. There is a lack of personalization and often just a blast of ‘buy-buy-buy’.

As an email marketer, one of the first things to recognize is that we all go through our inbox with the intention to delete. We glance at the sender name and the subject line, making our decision in a split second. If you understand this when you’re creating the next campaign you can start to think differently about the process of getting the reader to open the email.

The ‘donotreply‘ problem. While the thinking behind using this as the sender makes sense, it’s highly impersonal. Minimally, you should consider creating a persona and ideally, it should be a real person. I can hear my large corporate friends talking about the inability to personally respond if the donotreply was jettisoned. I would argue that regardless of organization size, making things more personal will increase your open rates.

Lastly, if the email is going to truly connect with the human side, the message must be useful, informative, and relate to the customer’s needs and interests. If you’re sending completely blind, there should be a method to identify of this message is a hit or miss in terms of interest. Every message should be a part of a larger strategy to learn more about the recipient and adjust future messages based on their interests and situation. This requires an integration of content strategy and delivery. Not simple but rewarding if you take the time to plan your nurture marketing lifecycle.