Email @ Symbol All Swirly in Blue and GreenWhether you’re sending out a weekly e-newsletter or setting up your autoresponder series, there are some things you can do that will increase the performance of your marketing messages.

Keep it Simple: Make each message focused and informative. Try to keep it to one topic even if you have several things to say. Simple and to the point will win the day. That doesn’t mean it has to be super short — 500 words or so is perfectly fine — and it doesn’t have to be impersonal.

Personalize It: If you really want to connect with your readers you have to make your messages personal.

How many times have you received an email that starts with either no salutation at all or something generic like “Dear Friend”? When I receive these, I always think to myself, if they don’t even know my name, why should I stay on their list or buy from them? You wouldn’t greet your best friend by saying “Hi Friend” and you shouldn’t greet your subscribers that way either.

It only takes a second to collect a subscriber’s name along with their email address and most email service providers today allow you to personalize your messages in a variety of ways.

NOTE: Now, I like personalizing my emails so it’s important to me to collect a name along with the email address. But some recent studies are showing that you will get more opt-ins if you only ask for their email address. For me, it’s about building relationships, not just in the numbers of subscribers I get. But I thought you should know this so you can make your own decision about whether to collect that extra info or not.

Your email provider will either have a code you can add to your message that will automatically add the recipient’s name when the message is sent, or most of them, like Aweber, make it one click easy. Your salutation can be a simple “Hi Karen” or even something like “Great news, Margaret” or “Happy Friday, Leroy” — as long as it’s personal.

Make it Beneficial: Before you send any email — and preferably when you are writing it — always ask yourself “What’s in it for them?” What benefit am I providing to my readers? Why would they want to open this and read it?

If you cannot answer that question, then your readers won’t see the benefit either. Do not send messages that have no value. Instead, rewrite the message until it is clear what the benefit is.

As you can see, it doesn’t take much to ensure you are getting the most return on your invested time and effort. These three simple steps will help you increase the performance of your email messages every time.

What do you think? Anything you’d like to add? Please share in the comments section below.