The ABCs of Effective Emails

How to stand out with effective insurance marketing emails.


Looking to ramp up your insurance emails? Here are my ABCs for an effective email marketing program that will help you stand out from the crowd. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or starting out, it’s important to keep these 26 tips handy.



Make your emails easier to read for those with limited accessibility. Use header <h1> and paragraph <p> HTML tags. Add alt text to images. Use font sizes 14px or larger. And, avoiding bad color contrast.



Check in with your email metrics to see how they compare your previous campaigns. Compare them with the insurance industry averages, too. These benchmarks can uncover issues or pain points. They can give you valuable insights about audience engagement. MORE: How Do I Know if My Email Marketing is Effective?


Call to Action (CTA)

Every email you send should have a clear call to action (CTA) that tells readers what step they should take next. CTAs can be in the form of a phone number to call, hyperlinked text, or a button. MORE: Calls to Action: Why They Matter and How to Create Them



Make sure your emails are eye-catching. Provide visual appeal that supplements your message and inspires recipients to act. Align font styles and colors with your agency’s branding. This creates a seamless engagement experience while showcasing your creativity and relevance. MORE: 5 Email Designs to Copy Now



Your marketing emails should be interesting and elicit action from subscribers. After all, if they’re not engaged, they won’t engage back. Every email should have a clear CTA and provide the content necessary to convince and instruct recipients to take the next step.



Test every email to ensure it renders and displays properly in popular email clients, devices, and systems. Check for alignment and sizing to create a consistent experience for all subscribers.



Define your target market by zip code, city, town, or county. You’ll gain a better understanding of the market's community and the unique risks they face. The more you know about who you want to sell to, the better. Communicate with them in a way that appeals to their needs and makes them open to taking out a policy. MORE: Introducing the Concept of Geomarketing



HTML creates email elements such as images, font styles, layouts, and more. With the fundamentals of HTML, you can create appealing emails subscribers will love. MORE: Foundations of HTML Coding


Inactive Subscribers

Contacts who do not open or engage with your emails can have a significant impact. Consider running a re-engagement campaign to regain their attention. Or, launch an unsubscribe campaign and remove them from your list. MORE: So…They’ve Stopped Answering Your Emails. What’s Next?


Junk Folders

Subscribers can’t engage with your emails if they never open them. Getting to the inbox is a top priority for email marketers. Optimize your emails to improve your inbox placement and get your emails read. MORE: Get Your Emails into Inboxes



Keep it simple, silly. Your emails shouldn’t be long-winded and full of rhetorical fluff. Stick to the main points you want to make, and use simple, concise language. Your subscribers will thank you for not wasting their time. MORE: TL;DR – The Shorter, The Better


List Hygiene

Data is at the heart of every successful email campaign. So, your subscriber list should be as detailed and clean as possible. Good data helps you determine which campaigns you should run and who you should target. It even delivers more accurate statistics and insights. MORE: 3 Habits to Keep Your Data Clean from the Start


Mobile Optimization

Responsive design is when a website or email adapts to the device used to view it. For example, a website or email would look different on a desktop that it would on a tablet or smartphone. This increases the probability the recipient will interact more with the email. MORE: All Your Emails Should Be Responsive



Nothing is more frustrating than a poorly organized email that is hard to read and even harder to follow. Make sure your email content leads readers through a logical sequence from beginning to end.


Online Reviews

Email is a great way to request online reviews from your clients. A targeted campaign can reach contacts at the right time to encourage feedback. Review campaigns can help encourage your clients to leave online reviews for your insurance agency. MORE: 5 Ways to Get 5 Stars with Email Marketing



As with any piece of information you send to clients, proofread before hitting the send button. Check the subject line, sender, content, and display. Then come back the next day with a fresh set of eyes and review it one more time.


Quality > Quantity

Too often we get so obsessed with how many people have subscribed to our emails. But, we forget about the real important number: How many subscribers are actively engaged with the emails we send. It isn’t impressive if your book of business is six figures if only three figures are engaging with you.



Check in with email marketing trends as well as pop culture news to maintain relevance. There might be a popular online challenge. Or, an insurance update subscribers might want more information about.



Use segmentation to send the right content to the right people at the right time. Then you can generate real results and conversions. MORE: Let’s Talk About Your Data



You are doing yourself an extreme disservice if you are not using A/B split tests in your email campaigns. A/B testing can give you actionable insights about what your subscribers want more of. And, what will make them open (and read) your emails. MORE:  A/B Split Tests Your Agency Should Try Next



Don’t be afraid or disappointed if someone unsubscribes from your emails. It may not be a bad thing! You want your subscriber list to include people who want your emails and want to engage with you (See Quantity > Quantity above).



On average, videos can increase open rates by up to 19 percent and click-through rates by 50 percent. When implemented well, a relevant video can increase the value of your email. And remember, value is the one of the most important parts of insurance email marketing. MORE: The Right Way to Use Video in Emails


Welcome Email

First impressions are everything. So, make sure your first email to new subscribers or clients lays the foundation. Make the message brief, pack in a lot of value, and identify your insurance agency as a trusted adviser. MORE: You Had Me at Your Welcome Email



As you add to your list of things to do for email marketing, be sure to have a list for things not to do. Avoid spammy content, don’t buy subscriber lists, and don’t oversaturate inboxes. MORE: 10 Email Marketing Faux Pas You’re Probably Making



At the end of the day remember it’s not all about you, it’s about your audience. If your email campaigns don’t provide some kind of value to your subscribers, don’t send them. Period.


Zero Excuses

Having trouble getting started? Don’t know where to go with your existing campaigns? Now is the time to get over any fears or roadblocks standing in your way of email marketing for your agency. Stop making excuses and start getting more out of email. MORE: Create a Successful Email Marketing Strategy



What are your ABCs for effective email marketing? Comment below!

About the Author

Heather Cherry

Heather Cherry provides training and support on AgencyBuzz to ITC customers, leads AgencyBuzz Academy and presents on email marketing at Masters of Marketing. She has a bachelor’s degree in rhetoric and writing from The University of Texas at Austin. Heather’s email marketing specialties include newsletters, unique content, contact segmentation, and targeted marketing. She is also a self-proclaimed social media junkie, cat lover, hopeless romantic, and music buff.

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