Mobile email marketing has reached its tipping point. According to a 2013 Q3 Experian Marketing Services Benchmark Study, 50 percent of unique email opens now occur on mobile. With this swiftly growing shift to consumers engaging with email on mobile devices, both smartphones and tablets, we’re challenging you to put your email marketing to the mobile test.
Take these four simple steps to ensure your email marketing message is driving traffic to your website and into your dealership.
- Know your audience: Before you start working on your next email marketing campaign, take a look at the performance of your most recent campaigns to gain a better understanding of how your customers are engaging with your emails. If you’re utilizing one of the major email marketing services, you can easily pull results that will show you not only how many of your customers are opening your emails, but you’ll also have access to information on which devices your customers are using to open your emails. Take advantage of this intel and test your next campaign across your most popular platforms including Android and iOS to ensure your message looks exactly how you envisioned for each and every customer who opens it. A great tool to take the guesswork out of your email testing is litmus.com. This helpful site lets you preview your campaigns across more than 30 email clients and devices.
- Mind your subject line: Mobile opens are driven by compelling subject lines. Without giving mobile users a good reason to open your email, your message will likely get lost in your customers’ daily marketing email purge. To create an engaging subject line, think about your customer and their needs instead of concentrating on your awesome weekend special is. “Test ride the 2014 Suzuki V-Strom 1000” vs. “New Suzukis in Stock.”
- Keep your message short and simple: Your clear and direct subject line should be reflected in your concise messaging. Multiple calls to action can get confusing in mobile. State what you want email recipients to do early and make it easy to do so. Draw their interest in with a single striking vehicle image and engage them with a clear call to action, like: “You know you want to ride it! Schedule a test ride today!”
- Rethink your design: If your email looks like the front page of a newspaper with multiple sections, lots of images and multiple columns, it’s time to simplify. Utilize a single-column, so that mobile users aren’t required to pinch and scroll to see your entire email. Another option is to utilize a responsive email template that will allow your emails to be optimized for both desktop and mobile display; explore the options available through your email marketing service to ensure your email templates look great on mobile as well as desktop. It is also important to note that while Apple’s iOS automatically displays images, other platforms including Android automatically disable images. Utilize image descriptions (commonly referred to as alt text) to replace any text that is displayed on your images.
Follow these steps, and your next marketing email is sure to connect with the mobile set. Never assume that your emails will perform in mobile. Test your emails across platforms and take advantage of reporting tools to ensure your message doesn’t get lost in your customers’ mobile inbox.
Bob McCann is ARI’s director of education. ARI creates award-winning software solutions that help equipment manufacturers, distributors and dealers Sell More Stuff! — online and in-store. ARI removes the complexity of selling and servicing new and used inventory, parts, garments, and accessories for customers in automotive tire and wheel, powersports, outdoor power equipment, marine, RV and white goods industries. More than 22,000 equipment dealers, 195 distributors and 140 manufacturers worldwide leverage our website and eCatalog platforms to Sell More Stuff!