How to Get People to Read Your Emails Faster

Getting People to Open Your Emails FasterAh email. The pre-Twitter/Facebook social media. Chances are good that your organization sends out informational, opt-in emails about their projects. If you’re in the NEPA/urban planning world, check out the February newsletter for the More for 1604 project. Or check out the award winning, non-profit email campaign by the Word Wildlife Foundation Deutschland.

Even if you’re not involved with sending out project or organization emails, I bet you wish you could get other people to read and reply to your emails sooner. Below are awesome take aways from HubSpot’s “The Science of Email Marketing Presentation” that you can use to get people to read your emails faster. The data used in this presentation was from MailChimp and from a survey conducted by the presenter, Dan Zarrella. Scroll down to see the presentation.

How to Get More People to Open Your Emails

  • Days with the highest open rates: Saturday and Sunday
  • Days with the highest unsubscribe rates: Monday and Tuesday

Take Away: Try sending emails on weekends

What Time of Day Do People Read Emails?

  • Morning (90%+), then Afternoon, then Evening & then Night (70%)
  • Times with highest open rates: 5AM to 6AM in morning
  • Don’t send emails at 11PM (low click rate and high unsubscribe rate)

Take Away: Send Emails Very Early in the Morning

People Read Emails on Mobile DevicesPeople read email on their smart phones.

Take Away: Optimize email design for Mobile Devices.

Best and Worst Words to Include in the Email Subject Line

  • Best: posts, jobs, survey, week’s, e-newsletter, issue, digest, bulletin, edition, giveaways, tips, video
  • Worst: Confirm, features, upgrade, magic, raffle, requested, rewards, christ, follow-up, 10.00%, coupon, 15.00%, discount, savings, offer

Effect of Number of Links on Click Rate and Unsubscribe Rate

  • The more links you have in your email, the more clicks you will get.
  • If you really want someone to click on a link, add that same link over and over
  • The more links you have in your email, the lower the unsubscribe rate.

Take Away: Use lots of links in Your Emails

Using Email as Archive

  • People search through their emails. How do you make your email “worthy of archiving”?

Take Away: Include reference information in your email (data, statistics, tools)

How Many Emails Are Too Many Emails?

  • Emails sent only once a month, have the highest click rate (6%)
  • But emails sent out 3,4 or 5x a month have the same click rate as emails sent once a day (around 4%)
  • You’ll get the most unsubscribes if you send out only once a month.
  • You’ll get fewer unsubscribes if you send out more often.

Take Away: Don’t be afraid to send more good email


  • If you send regularly, people expect your emails. Your emails become part of their routine.
  • Unsubscribe rate are highest when people first sign up for your email list.
  • Newest subscribers are your best clickers.
  • As your email subscribers get older, they tend to click less.

Take Away: Send newest subscribers more emails.

How much email do people really read?

  • Over 50% people say they read most or all of their email. WOW! “Email is not dead.” This is a myth. Mainstream users read their emails. People hate seeing unread emails
  • Majority of people will not forward, tweet or share your emails.

Take Away: Ask people to follow you on Twitter or Friend you on Facebook, not to share your emails.

I’m going to apply several of these ideas to Cubit’s organizational emails. I want to make sure our newsletter design is mobile friendly. I’m going to test sending an email on Saturday and change our social share buttons to social liking buttons. What? You aren’t signed up yet for Cubit’s email newsletter? This newsletter has been called “dynamic”, “informative” and “fun.” You should sign up now.

Check out Dan Zarrella‘s entire presentation here:

Got any other tips to get people to read your emails faster? What take aways are you going to implement to get peopel to open your emails sooner. Let me know in the comments.

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