Have you ever subscribed to a mailing list? Perhaps you’ve purchased an item online or followed someone online and opted into their email newsletter.
Over time, you stop checking these newsletters as frequently. Months may go by without opening an email from a particular source. Eventually, you completely stop paying attention to these emails.
This is a common problem faced by most businesses – and musicians that are managing their own career.
Whether you’re struggling to maintain your mailing list or grow your social media followers, it all comes down to one main issue – engagement.
You need to keep your fans engaged.
User engagement refers to regular interaction. This can include regularly opening your emails and clicking on the links, sharing posts, retweeting, and visiting your site.
It’s fairly easy to determine if you’ve got a problem with engagement. You can look at your stats and analytics to see the percentage of people that open your emails. You can also see the number of people that shared a post and compare this to the number of followers that you have.
When these numbers are low, you’re having trouble keeping your audience entertained. They’re losing interest in what you’ve got to offer.
Here are 5 marketing tricks that you can use to help keep your fans engaged with more effective emails.
#1 – Create an Effective Email Subject Line
The first thing that a fan sees when they receive an email is the subject line. If it doesn’t get their attention, they may not notice the email.
Nearly a third of all email recipients base their decision as to whether or not to open the email based on the subject line.
The subject line should be short. In fact, don’t use more than 7 or 8 words. It’s also a good idea to create a sense of urgency or ask a question:
- Are you looking for new music?
- Want to listen to some great music?
- Check out our latest track before it’s released!
- Save on our complete discography!
- Get the latest deal on our new album!
- Preview the latest hit music right now!
The idea is to keep it short and to the point. Start with the topic. Are you sharing new music, promoting a sale, announcing a tour, or sending a newsletter? Then, mention that topic in 7 to 8 words or less.
The open rate of your emails refers to the percent of people that open your emails. A low open rate could mean that your fans are no longer engaged. With an effective subject line, you should start to see a boost to the open rates.
#2 – Include Sharing Options in Your Emails
Unless your call to action directs subscribers to your social media profile, you should always include social sharing buttons or links in your emails.
Emails that include these buttons have a 158% higher click through rate. The click through rate refers to the percent of subscribers that have opened the email and then clicked on a link contained in the email.
By adding these share buttons or links, even if a subscriber doesn’t follow your call to action, they may choose to share your email with a friend or family member.
Make it easy for people to share your emails through social media, as it provides another way to gain more fans and keep your existing fans engaged.
#3 – Choose a Single Focus for Each Email
Having a single focus will also help keep your readers engaged. If the click-through rates are low, your emails might lack a clear message.
Before you write an email, you should know exactly what you want your readers to do. After they read the email, where do you want the link to take them?
- Landing page or fan magnet on your website
- Social media post
- Special offer or external source
- Form or online poll
Decide where the reader should go and what message you want to deliver. If you’re announcing a new gig or tour, make sure that you include the dates.
Generally, you’ll want to keep your emails to 500 words or less. Also, use short sentences and paragraphs. Use 3 sentences or less in a paragraph.
Keeping the email short also helps you stay on track and stick to the point.
#4 – Write a Clear and Direct Call to Action
The last part of an effective email is the call to action. If you want people to follow through with a specific action, you should give them specific instructions.
For example, if you want your subscribers to click on a link to check out your latest song, your call to action may look like:
Click here to listen to SONG TITLE now!
The call to action should be short and direct. It should give a clear instruction that lets readers know exactly what’s going to happen when they click on the link. This means that it needs to describe an action:
- Click here
- Follow this link
- Click on this link
- Click now
You’re telling them what to do right now and what will happen – they click on the link and they’ll get to listen to the song. Here are some more tips for writing an effective call to action:
#5 – Use A/B Split Testing
The final solution for increasing engagement is to use A/B split testing. This allows you to test out two different versions of the same email. You can use this to determine what engages your audience.
For example, you can write two different headlines for the same email. Half of your email recipients receive email A and the other half receives email B. You then compare the open rates and click-through rates of emails A and B to learn what works best.
You can use this for headlines, calls to action, or the overall structure of your email. But, you should only change one element of the email with each test. There should only be one variable that is different between the two emails.
Final Thoughts on Improving Fan Engagement
Increasing engagement requires you to offer value. But, you’ve also got to present your emails in the right way.
You don’t want to use fancy fonts and large graphics. Your emails should be simple. They should have a clear, direct message.
While these tips are intended for email marketing campaigns, you can also use them for your social media marketing. Many of these same tips apply:
- You should use attention-grabbing headlines in your Facebook posts
- Recommend that people share the post or “RT” the tweet
- Each social media post should have a single focus
- Each post should have a clear call to action
The only tip that you can’t easily follow with social media is A/B split testing.
If you don’t already have an email marketing plan, you should get started. You’ll need to build a mailing list and send out regular emails. For more info, check out other blog posts on online music marketing.