Is it possible to get your church emails read since there are low open rates? Is there a trick to it? Yes.
Most churches need to talk with their congregation throughout the week. Whether it’s to remind, promote, encourage, or motivate, churches want a regular way of communicating with their congregation. You just have to master a few practical tips to get your church emails read (and opened)!
Most churches use a program (ie. your church management system, Constant Contact, Mailchimp, etc.) to send emails. This is wise since it easily schedules email delivery and manages your list. Plus their analytics also reveal open rate (people spending longer than a few seconds with the email before closing it) which is an excellent gauge whether your communication is reaching your audience.
How to get your church emails read? Here are 5 highly practical tips:
- Segment your list. Effective communication rises and falls on how well you know your audience. Why? Because if you know them well, you can talk directly to them. If the list has “everyone” on it, the message needs to be broad. It would be better to segment the list based on groups you’d like talk to. Perhaps: Members, non-members, visitors; or Men, Women, Kids; or Seniors, Families, Unmarried, Students, Kids. It’s entirely up to you based entirely on how you would communicate differently to them.
- Make the subject feel personalized. Now the list is segmented, make the subject line directed to that audience. Many email programs allow you to use a placeholder “code” for a first name in the subject and body of the email. Use that ability! But don’t overuse it. It should feel natural and conversational like you’re writing the email for that individual.
- Don’t overdo frequency. If you send too many emails, less people will open them. Once a week is probably standard; but if you don’t have much to say (or find yourself repeating information), don’t send as many times. Once-a-month emails may be all that’s needed to get your church emails read!
- Keep them short. If someone opens your church email (because the subject is interesting to them), they’ll scroll quickly through the email. If it feels too long or full of paragraphs, most won’t read any of it. They’ll leave it to read later (right!) or delete it immediately. The shorter it is, the more chance to get your church email read! So edit, edit, edit. Preview the email on a phone (where most receive it) and see how many swipes you need to get to the bottom. Much more than 2? Edit some more.
- Make them scannable. Most people only read headlines. So make the subject line something that makes someone open the email; then have 3 or 4 subheads that allow someone to get the idea of the email. Need to provide a few details under the subheads? Use bullet points and not paragraphs. Add website links for the details. This keeps your emails shorter and still provides relevant information.