The Only Rule of Email Marketing You Should Care About

Because emails are still here and they aren’t going anywhere.


Emails. Wow, they are still here aren’t they.

And they aren’t going anywhere. Although a lot of companies are increasingly substituting them with chat for internal communication, emails still remain the most popular form of communication outside of the company.

So popular, we send over 122.5 billion emails every hour!

When it comes to email marketing, we have all read a ton of rules. Rules about headlines, body, A/B testing, time of scheduling etc. The more we read them, the more we realize that there is one, and only one rule, that stands the test of time and comes out shining:

Thou Shalt Not Be Boring.

That rule by definition gives you the license to break all the other rules.

Like books, marketing emails are pieces of content that require the attention of readers. Think about it, if authors go to extreme lengths to tell creative stories through books, why do we marketers fear so much about diverging from standard rules? In the case of books, the readers have already performed the intended action (purchase), as opposed to marketing emails where they have to be convinced. All the more reason that we should be more ambitious.

And based on our own experience, we can say that it does pay off.

Inactivity email is the email that SaaS enterprises send to users who are becoming less active on their app. It’s only natural that a percentage of people who sign up, drop off after a few weeks. It’s one of the more challenging emails in your company’s email lifecycle for two main reasons:

It is sent to users who are losing interest.
If done well, it can bring a lot of people back to your app.

In our case, we send the inactivity email if users are not active on the app for one week. This is what we sent to our users a few months ago:

Looks like every other standard slipping away email, doesn’t it?

Now think about it — the person who is getting this email hasn’t used your application in weeks, probably hasn’t even opened most of your emails. Is this the kind of email that will get him back? Short answer — no.

More importantly, does it follow the only rule of email marketing? No, it doesn’t. It’s anything but interesting.

To get users interested, you have to sound interesting. You can’t plead them into giving you a chance.

So we changed that email to a new one.

And our users liked it! They even wrote to us about it.

And they shared it with rest of the world as well.

Unique, interesting and creative emails don’t just delight the people who receive it, they also help your stats. After all, click/open rates measure the success of your email marketing.

The goal in this case was making users active again on Taskworld. The new email got us 3X more activations!

And this wasn’t just a one off event. Take a look at our new slipping away email. The slipping away email is sent to users after three weeks of inactivity. It usually is the last chance for SaaS enterprises to get users back to their app.

So what do the numbers say?

29% higher open rate and 38% higher click rate.

Sometimes while working as a content writer, you become so engrossed with the nitty gritties of business, you can forget the one thing that made you fall in love with writing — the thrill of creative expression.

Never shy away from trusting your instincts and experimenting with unique ideas. More often than not, they will end up working.

Have you ever created unique emails that worked for you? Let us know in the comments or share with us on Twitter @Taskworld