Higher Education Marketing: 6 Ways to Prevent Email Fatigue

Higher Education Marketing: 6 Ways to Prevent Email Fatigue

If you’ve noticed a dip in the open rates, click-through rates, and click-to-open rates for your higher education marketing campaigns, there’s a good chance email fatigue could be to blame.

Email fatigue occurs when marketing teams:

  • Over-communicate by sending too many emails to subscribers
  • “Blast” emails to everyone in their database rather than segmenting their list and considering message relevancy
  • Fail to keep their messaging fresh and engaging

When we see open rates or click-through rates drop below 25% or 3%, respectively, it’s a reliable indicator that subscribers are experiencing email fatigue.

Fortunately, schools can take simple steps to prevent this problem and keep prospective students engaged.

How to Prevent Email Fatigue in Higher Education Marketing 

Here are six tips for establishing healthy email outreach:

1. Limit one-off emails and time them strategically

If you’re sending one-off broadcast emails in conjunction with automated nurture sequence emails, limit the number of broadcast emails you send so subscribers don’t feel overwhelmed. Additionally, we recommend using a suppression list to ensure subscribers don’t receive two emails from your school in one day.

You should also get in sync with other departments that are sending email communications to prospective students. For example, if an enrollment advisor is communicating with a prospect 1:1 via email, you’ll want to incorporate your email strategy with their cadence.

2. Segment your audience

Segmenting your audience based on behavior, demographics, interests, and other easily defined traits will help you better target your emails based on what information is interesting or relevant to specific prospects.

3. Practice good email list hygiene

If you aren’t regularly reviewing your email lists to remove inactive contacts and invalid email addresses, now is the time to start.

We recommend sending a double opt-in email message to inactive contacts asking them to validate their interest in staying on your mailing list as one last effort. If they don’t opt in, it’s probably time to remove or suppress them. Suppressing email addresses within your marketing automation system keeps prospects dormant until they engage with your content again, at which point they are re-added to your main email marketing list.

As for removing invalid emails, services like AtData (formerly FreshAddress) can easily perform this task for you.

4. Use engaging and dynamic imagery

The imagery you select is often your first and best chance at engaging a prospect once they open an email. People’s eyes naturally gravitate toward bright, appealing images and stylized headers, so don’t be afraid to make your hero image pop. 

Why not try using aspirational imagery within your email or perhaps even include emojis in your subject lines to add an eye-catching visual element?

5. Write email copy that’s concise and focused

When it comes to email copy, less is more. If you include too much white space and black text in your email, there’s a good chance subscribers will send it to the trash.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to convey every thought or point in your email message; instead, focus on the highlights. If you have more to say, direct prospects to your website or a landing page with more detailed information.

6. Realize that email is just one tool in your higher ed marketing toolbox 

Email isn’t the only way to engage with prospects. Rather than relying solely on email campaigns to convey your messaging, it’s best to leverage an omnichannel approach to your marketing. 

By continuously connecting with prospects via other channels, you won’t feel the urge to cram as much content into emails. And the prospects who receive your emails will have a deeper familiarity with your school based on the interactions that have occurred on other platforms. We’ve had great success reaching prospective students via social media platforms.

Don’t Let Email Fatigue Derail Your Higher Ed Marketing Campaigns

Addressing email fatigue head-on helps institutions enhance the prospective student experience, improve brand perception and loyalty, and increase overall engagement. These factors collectively contribute to the effectiveness and success of email marketing campaigns and, ultimately, lead to higher enrollment numbers. 

Want to learn more about how to maximize your higher education marketing efforts? Connect with MindMax today!