5 Reasons Your Emails Never Get Read

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Regardless of whether you’re sending an advertisement, a website link request or a business offer, there’s a good chance your emails never get read. Email users opened just over 23 percent of the commercial email sent in early 2011, according to statistics from the Direct Marketing Association and Epsilon International. More than three out of four messages immediately hit the “Trash” folder.

Fierce Competition

Part of the problem involves competition for the inbox. A survey conducted in 2008 found that three out of five American small businesses primarily use email for holiday-oriented marketing, according to Constant Contact. With so many offers, newsletters, polls, notifications and other material arriving by email, it’s tempting for people to press the delete key as much as possible.

Improving Your Results

Luckily, you can reduce the number of your emails that people never read by identifying some of the other reasons why this occurs…

1. Boring or lengthy subject titles: People see your email title first and won’t open the message if it doesn’t interest them. Some recipients’ email programs shorten long titles to fit the width of their monitors; don’t leave the interesting part to the end.

2. Poor “From” address: If the “From” address looks unfamiliar or questionable, some people will immediately delete the message. Use a short address like “admin@example.com” and set your email software to show your full name or company name as part of the “From” address.

3. Inadequate salutation: Another reason why your emails may never get read involves the very first line. People feel a greater obligation to read an email if it personally greets them, rather than using a generic statement such as “To whom it may concern,” or “Good morning.”

4. Poor message content: Even if people do open your emails, they might never read beyond the first few sentences. Misspelled, poorly-worded sales messages inspire little confidence in potential customers. It’s worth hiring a professional writer or translator.

5. Incorrectly targeted: Regardless of how appealing your email titles and messages are, some recipients will never read them out of a complete lack of interest. Trying to sell snowmobiles to people in Belize or men’s magazines to women won’t yield any results.

The bottom line is that most of your emails will never get read unless they immediately attract the reader’s interest, without having the appearance of “spam” or virus carriers. When possible, they must also cater to individual recipients by using names and providing content tailored to specific interests and geographic locations.

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