3 Ways to Increase Your Email Open Rate

As a smart marketer, you want more people to open your emails. But how can you make that happen? 

After analyzing the open rates of 2 billion emails, Constant Contact discovered the following:

3 Ways to Increase Your Open Rate 
  • Segment Your List/Personalize:  Are you still sending the same message to everyone? The data shows that campaigns sent to 35 subscribers or less (suggesting a more targeted audience) have phenomenal open rates compared to campaigns sent to very large lists.

    Graph 1

  • Make Readers Feel Invested: The data shows that nonprofits generally enjoy a higher open rate than business-to-consumer (B2C) or business-to-business (B2B) senders. Why? Evidently, people feel passionate about the causes with which they associate. What can you do to make your readers feel invested?

    Chart 2

  • Update Your Contact Lists: When was the last time you took a look at your reports to see which email addresses are consistently bouncing? Not sure what an email bounce is or what you should do about it? [Read More]

Happy Marketing!

Still Marketing Like It’s 2015?

Recently we updated our email template . . . again! Yes, it looks very similar to the update we did last January. So why would we update again? (Hint: Read on!)

3 Reasons to Update to a Mobile-Responsive Template

1. Mobile-friendly is no longer enough. It may have been okay in 2015 to use a template that was designed with mobile devices in mind (think one-column, limited pictures, etc.). However, it is now a best practice to choose a template that is actually coded to reformat itself depending on the reader’s screen size. Our new mobile-responsive template actually increases font size and moves pictures around as necessary for increased readability. Mobile-friendly templates are out. Mobile-responsive templates are in!

2. Your readers expect it.When email doesn’t look good on a mobile device, 75% of your readers will delete it, and 30% will unsubscribe. Remember: More than half of all email is now being opened on a mobile device.

3. It’s easy to upgrade to mobile-responsive emails. If you’re using an email service provider like Constant Contact, you already have access to dozens of mobile-responsive templates at no additional charge. Need help finding those templates? Schedule a complimentary consultation with me by clicking here.

2016 Resolution: Build Your Contact List

January is a time for resolutions and regrouping. Building relationships by growing your email list is a great 2016 resolution for any small business or nonprofit. Why? Watch Dave’s video below to find out. (Spoiler: Did you know that email is 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined?)

P.S. Tired of using pen and paper to collect email addresses? Try the new free list builder app from Constant Contact; it makes collecting email addresses a snap!


Email Marketing Works — Even for Imperfect People

PerfectionismIf you ever want to know if people are reading your emails, just make a mistake. We did, and you let us know it. In a recent newsletter, we featured head shot photo
blunders and linked to the wrong site.

But guess what!

We still got a great open rate, plenty of reader engagement, and enhanced our brand. Why?


Because email marketing works . . . even for imperfect people.


Too often people have analysis paralysis when it comes to creating emails. In the pursuit of perfection, they become overwhelmed and then don’t communicate regularly with their audience.


Such was the case with Kathy. She was spending a lot of time trying to find the perfect picture. When she couldn’t, she just wouldn’t email.


But email marketing doesn’t work if you don’t hit the SEND button!


After a brief consultation, Kathy and I developed a plan to simplify. Together we came to the conclusion that her best option would be to send out an imperfect email. And it worked!


She writes:


Amazing! I already got the campaign done in just a couple of minutes.


Jeez! I wish I had thought of just keeping it simple, but sometimes we get so bogged down with other stuff we don’t always see the simple solutions.






The pursuit of perfection can be a good thing. But communicating with your audience on a regular basis — even in an imperfect way — can be even better.

3 Ways to Have Others do YOUR Marketing

Do you ever feel like you don’t have time to market?

While this blog post won’t let you off the hook, it will give you some ideas on how others can do some of the heavy lifting for you.

3 Ways to Have Others  Do YOUR Marketing

• Testimonials: Your customers are saying great things about you. Start documenting and sharing those positive comments.

• Partner and Co-Promote: I recently partnered with three other ladies on a Back-to-School for Women in Business series. Combining all our marketing resources multiplied our reach, i.e., four email lists, four sets of social media accounts, four sets of contacts, etc.

• Be a Guest:  Always be on the lookout to be a guest. Could you share your expertise as a guest speaker at a live event? Do you know someone with a podcast? Or could you write a guest blog post or be featured on someone else’s blog?

Read Constant Contact’s Recent Post About Us

Try one of these ideas this month and see how your marketing improves with the help of others.

My husband will be receiving his MBA soon and decided it was time to update his LinkedIn profile, including his professional photo.  

Is it time to update your professional photo? Read on to make sure you don’t make any of these mistakes.


5 Professional Headshot Blunders

1c3e1330-eefb-4ddc-a919-3611f8bc0874You cropped your headshot out of a scanned vacation photo.



939a0c5a-15d1-4e8c-bee5-e094fc0b110eYou took your photo with your cell phone in front of a white wall.



9a6f4a45-cef8-48b6-8776-f8b05aebaaedYou are using a photo that is more than 10 years old or that looks like it’s your high school graduation portrait.



See More Photo Blunders

A big thanks to Image Outfitters Photography for supplying my husband’s professional headshot as well as these headshot blunders.

36 Free Image Creation Tools

36-Free-Image-Creation-3In July’s Maureen’s Marketing Moment, I shared how important images are in marketing and provided you with 14 free stock photo sites.

So, now that you have the images, what should you do with them?

How about creating a logo for your new business? Or designing an infographic to share tips on Facebook? Or perhaps you simply want to build the perfect Facebook Page cover photo. Whatever you want to achieve, chances are one of these 36 tools will make it easy. So what are you waiting for? Start Creating

P.S. I created the image for this blog post using Quozio, one of the 36 tools.

Why You Should Use Images in Your Marketing

In this post, we’re sharing a short (60-second) video explaining why images are a critical component of your marketing.

Ready to use the power of pictures in your marketing? Fortunately, there are a number of websites that offer stock images for free. Check out these 14 Free Photo Websites.

7 Reasons to Work at a Small Business

Al GonzalezIn a recent survey by Constant Contact, more than half of small business owners said they feel they can never be away from their business. In fact, more than 40 percent said they don’t take vacations. Yet, an overwhelming 84% of small business owners said that they would do it all again. Read on to learn some of the reasons why you and your peers love what you do.

What’s Great About Working at a Small Biz?

– Having a wide variety of challenges and experiences -Rick R.

– Being in control of my own destiny -David M.

– Having time to do the things I need to do -Suzanne E.

– The autonomy to do what I feel is right and to respond quickly -Franklin B.

– The freedom and flexibility -Michelle W.

– The power to work more efficiently — my people know the boss is accessible. -Kimanh D.

– The chance to be creative and be the one making business decisions -Elaine B.

Marianne CoombesIn April we celebrated YOU, our Dudley & Nunez Community, with a giveaway. As part of the entry form, we posed an optional question: What do you enjoy about working at a small business or nonprofit?

Once again, the Dudley & Nunez Community did not disappoint. We received an outpouring of responses — so many that we will be featuring some of our favorite nonprofit responses this month and saving the small business responses for next month.

What’s Great About Working at a Nonprofit?

 – Making a difference and having fun while doing it! -Susie G.

– Wearing so many different hats. Every day is different and never boring! -Marianne C.

 Fighting local hunger. -Gopal K.

– Knowing I am part of a team working to protect natural land for future generations. -Janet V.

– Having a flexible schedule and direct influence on the programming and mission of our organization. -Mary P.

– Giving back to the community in which I live. -Mark S.

– Getting to spread the word about the great things the Shriners Hospital does for the kids. -Bob J.

A big thanks to the Dudley & Nunez Community for these great responses.