• 5 Ways to Improve Your Email Open Rates

    Alex Pettus  •  November 29, 2018

Email Marketing is one of the most powerful tools you have for reaching your current players and potential customers. It allows you to quickly and efficiently send personalized marketing messages right to your specific audience. While other marketing methods have their benefits, none can quite compete with the reliability of email marketing. But once you’ve reached your audience, how do you make sure your emails are actually opened?

We’ve run into this problem a lot and get questions about it all the time. Luckily, improving your email open rates isn’t as difficult as you may think. With these 5 methods, you can help increase your open rates and create more opportunities for your business:

Put some thought into your subject line

The subject line is probably the most important part of your entire email in relation to open rates. Just like the tagline of an ad or the headline of an article, the subject line is the hook of your email, meant to draw the recipient in and entice them to see what you have to offer. Generic lines like “Newsletter” or “Course Updates” won’t get a big reaction from most people. Here are some ideas you can use to build up interest in your email right from the subject line:

  • Add attractive adjectives like “Simple ways to improve your game” vs “Improve your game”
  • Include numbers in your subject “8 things you can do to improve your game”
  • Use call to action words “Try this method to improve your game”
  • Ask a question like “What can you do to improve your game”

These are just a few examples, and you can always get more creative. Just think what would entice you to open an email or read a blog and avoid bland or nondescript subject lines.

Think about your "from name"

Can you remember what your “from” name or “from” email address was the last time you sent out an email to your subscribers? It's easy to just use whatever your default setting is, however this is where you authenticate yourself to your users. An unrecognized “from” email is easy to disregard and may even be caught in spam filters or marked to be blocked in the future. Make sure you use something your users will recognize and find familiar. Using an email address with your course name rather than a personal account is always the best choice when communicating with customers.  

Work on your timing

Sending your correspondence on certain days at certain times can have a much bigger impact on your open rates than you may think. It just takes a little work to find the optimal time. Start by breaking up your list into 2 or 3 segments of equal size and send out the same email to each segment at different times throughout the day (one in the morning, one in the afternoon, and one in the evening). Keep track of which ones are getting the highest open rate. By doing this for a few weeks and on different days of the week, you can find which day and time your readers are most likely to open your emails. The best email in the world is only valuable if it is read, and the more people you can engage each time the better!

Understand your audience

You know your regulars and your members, but how well do you know the one-timers who signed up for your email list or the people who never played but wanted to receive deals and updates? Understanding what your audience is interested in is critical to improving your email campaigns. Dedicating a few emails to understanding your email audience is simple and can help generate better results in the future. A quick survey on what they like and are interested in learning about or a poll of what topics are most important to them are great ways to glean some information while also making them feel like part of the process. In-person engagement with the customers you do see and asking them questions is also an excellent method of getting to know your email audience on a deeper level.

Reevaluate your sign-up process

Improving your email open rates starts as soon as someone signs up. You need to make sure they understand what it is they are signing up for and meet the expectations they have for you.  Review your online sign-up form. Are you offering them some value to join? Are they receiving something after signing up? Are you sending emails regularly? These are all important questions you should be able to answer for each and every subscriber. Additionally, be aware of WHO you are signing up and don’t add people who haven’t opted in. Sending emails to people who haven’t joined themselves is a waste of your content and their time. It will also have a negative effect on your open rates if your sending emails to people who didn’t ask to receive them.


There’s no worse feeling than spending time and money on an email campaign for them to go unread. With some effort and using the steps above, you can ensure that more of your content is going to the right people and that they are getting your message. For more help with optimizing email campaigns or with any of your digital marketing needs, call 1-2-1 Marketing at 407-395-4701 or email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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