Check Analytics for Timing to Improve Email Open Rate
The Sprocket Report
Last time we gave three reasons why email communications are still valid options in today’s marketing mix. But, as they say, “timing is everything!”
Do you know the best time to send email to your customers? Are you sure about that? The only way to be certain is to actually look at the statistics, which is a step that is too often overlooked. It’s a bit embarrassing, but we have been taken by surprise ourselves.
Here’s the story: The majority of our clients are B2B companies, selling to other businesses rather than to consumers. There are certain commonalities in B2B marketing that serve as starting points from which we can test and tweak to personalize the experience for a specific business audience.
We had one client, however, that was B2C and their audience was made up of retired consumers. We brainstormed some assumptions such as 1) retirees are “early to bed and early to rise,” 2) retirees don’t work, and 3) retirees have leisure time at home in the morning. So we sent out emails about 8:00am and open rates were just okay.
One day a slip-up sent the email at 8:00pm instead of 8:00am and the open rate spiked. Curious, we started testing and tweaking during the evening hours and consistently found a much better open rate around 6:30pm than any of the morning times tested.
Why was evening a better time to send email to these retirees? Honestly, we can’t quite explain it as we didn’t have the budget to do further research. The real point of the story is that you just don’t know the right time to send your company’s email until you try a few tests and check out your statistics.
Sure, you can find generalizations online by searching for “the best time to email” or even in the “tips” section of whatever email service you use. For instance, most B2B emails are not opened on weekends or in the evening. But that’s not always true. If you are trying to reach entrepreneurs who have to work around their day job, weekends and evenings might actually be the best time to reach them.
Fortunately, there are all kinds of measurement tools that will help you figure out the perfect time to send your company’s marketing emails to your specific audience. Start with whatever service you are using such as MailChimp or ConstantContact. If reading the reports and testing and tweaking is not your thing, just give us a call. We’re happy to help you analyze where you are now and what to do next to improve.