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If you want engagement, why aren’t you doing this?

email engagement

The secret to higher engagement isn’t that secret at all

When you’re struggling to improve your email engagement, it’s important to remember that one of your chief obstacles is the shrinking attention spans of our audiences. Studies show that the average consumer’s attention span has shrunk to just 8 seconds.

Sure, if you’re riding a bull in a rodeo, 8 seconds can feel like a lifetime. 

But when it’s someone glancing through your email to see if they’ll take action, we’re talking a totally different story. 

I don’t mean to over-simplify things, but the reality is that if you want more engagement from your readers, your copy and calls to action have to be more engaging. 

[And if you want to be more engaging, you need to be doing these eight simple yet powerful things.]

Why just say it when you can show it?

#1: Test text-only emails against emails with an image

Humans are visual creatures. As the cliche says, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Just because something has become a cliche doesn’t mean that it isn’t true. The right picture can capture attention and imagination. That’s what makes memes so insanely popular. If you’re offering a free report or a free download, don’t just use the word “free” to do all of the heavy lifting. Use tools like this to create a captivating cover. 

#2: Don’t overlook the power of gifs and videos

Static images can be powerful. But dynamic content is even better. Gifs and videos are both examples of dynamic content that people WANT to absorb. So, why leave them hanging? Gifs are also great if your ESP won’t allow you to embed video. Use a gif to link to a video without using any complicated plug-ins or coding to get the job done. And keep reading to find out why you should pair any video with transcripts. 

#3: Don’t just wonder if emojis work

There’s a lot of data out there that says including an emoji in your subject line can have a massive impact on your open rates. So, instead of just wondering if emojis will work for you, why not give it a shot? It takes about five extra minutes to conduct an A/B split test that will let you know if one of these universal emojis might unlock increased engagement in your readers. Just be careful not to overdo it. Don’t just trust your gut – look for guidance from your data. 

#4: Turn stats and facts into charts, graphs and other infographics

Remember how I told you that the average person’s attention span is just 8 seconds? That’s great to read, but isn’t this even more powerful?

(Image Source:

Canva is jam-packed with great infographic templates you can put to work in your email copy. If Canva isn’t your cup of tea, you can also check this tool out

Sometimes, less is more…

#5: See what happens when you make your emails shorter

Did you know that the ideal word count for email falls between 50-125 words? If every email you send looks more like a long-form essay, maybe it’s time to shake things up. Again, don’t just trust your gut, but use split testing to see what performs best. Embrace your inner editor and start cutting through the fluff. Even if you can’t get down to 125 words, slashing 500 to 250 is a great start. 

#6: Limit yourself to one call to action per email

If you’re cramming two, three or even more calls to action into an email, you might just be confusing your readers. When you’re coming up with your content, focus on one goal. If you want them to click to your sales page, make sure anything resembling a call to action links to it. The same for videos, forms, follows or any other conversion goals. It’s fine to have multiple links or CTAs inside of the email but make sure they’re all pointing to the same place. 

Don’t be afraid to get personal

#7: Are you personalizing your emails?

88% of users agree they are more likely to respond to an email favorably if it looks like it’s been specifically created for them. And 62% of emails are opened thanks to a personalized subject line. Oh, and 58% of revenue is generated thanks to segmented and personalized emails.That’s the power of collecting and knowing your reader’s first name. Isn’t that worth adding the first name field into your opt-in process?

#8: Personalization works both ways

Even if you decide against using personalized subject lines or other elements in your emails, that doesn’t mean you can’t add your own personal touch. Help your readers know that you’re a real person and you’ll be rewarded. Emails with signatures with a photo receive 32% more replies than emails without it.

Being engaging is a whole lot easier than you think, you just have to be brave enough to test (and measure) new ideas. However, be sure to be methodical in your testing. Don’t try introducing every single one of these elements into one email, or you’ll never know what is (or isn’t) working. Instead, slowly test one new idea or variation against your control to ensure your decisions are driven by data, not ADD. 

Knowledge Base

24 creator economy stats that will blow your mind while you learn them

A tale of two purchased lists (an enlightening case study)

One more reason why every video you share needs to have a transcript

Nine expert tips that will boost your email performance

Want better lead quality? Then do these ten things

Three reasons email will always excel amid a crisis

Are you ready for the Retail Reset?

Retailers across the sector must reckon with the great pandemic reset of consumer behavior, new realities of record inflation, and ever-increasing attention for Internet Eyeballs.

Is your company ready for it?

Here’s a fact: Retailers cannot convert if they first cannot engage the prospect in email online.

So what are your plans to make up for this ever-diminishing revenue in your model?

If you don’t have one, you’re already in trouble…

But inbox intelligence can change everything.

That’s why we wanted to extend a personal invitation to join us for an exclusive live webinar on October 6th at 12:00pm EST. Click here to register and mark your calendar so you can make sure you and your company are ready for the retail reset. 

Facts & Stats

  • 47% of people open emails based on the subject line and 69% of customers can report emails as spam based on the subject line only.
  • Emails with signatures with a photo receive 32% more replies than emails without it.
  • Emails with an emoji in the subject line show a 56% higher open rate.

Today’s Hack

Not sure which of the 8 engagement strategies to start with? Why not asking your readers what they want? You can use Google forms to create interactive forms that help you get the answers you want from your audience. And instead of just dropping a link to your form, you can help boost response rates by creating a simple survey graphic on Canva or another site so they can’t resist weighing in.