There are 3 things we can assume about the people we send emails to: 1) they receive a lot of email, 2) they don’t have a lot of time to devote to sorting/reading/responding, and 3) they receive a lot of the same requests.

The minute Outlook opens, most people are swarmed with a pile of 25-50 emails, with the goal of QUICKLY eliminating the majority. The first consideration is going to be – “Which subject lines looks like mass produced junk?” Ok delete those.

Once the bad subject lines are sent to trash, the next thought is going to be “Which emails have the highest priority?” If at first glance an email appears to be flirting with the lines of a best-selling novel – most won’t think twice about tossing it to the trash alongside the bad subject line victims.

So with the assumptions that people don’t have time or energy to devote to long emails and elaborate requests – Which emails do get read? What makes up good email? How do you get a greater response?

I think we can take a lesson from our friends over at Twitter with the 140-Character Approach (roughly 20-30 words). This method allows you to quickly get information to your contacts in a digestible amount. It can be a challenge in itself to downsize your emails, but is a practice that will help spark more conversations as the world changes the way it prefers to receive content.

Let’s look how to apply the 140 Character Approach to your email marketing best practices:

Segment Your AudienceThere is no one-size-fits-all approach to email. The minute something does not relate to your audience, you will lose them. Breaking your contacts down into segments will help you to drill down and tailor the messaging directly to their needs, wants, and likes. Consider segmenting by the following to help stay relevant: Status (Former Customer, Prospect, and Customer), Potential Product/Service Interests, Title, Company Size, and Location.

Make Every Word CountWhen you are squeezing your message into a short blurb, each word is important. The easiest way to grab your reader’s attention and create impact is by using power words, which often create a feeling or awakens an emotion within the reader. Check out this list of 317 Power Words.

Have a ConversationIf you are taking time to segment and learn about your contacts through a system like Hatchbuck, you should have all of the tools you need to drill down into a great conversation. Great conversations consist of back and forth communication, so an open-ended question is a good idea to begin the line of communication. Here are 21 Open-Ended Sales Questions to Ask.

RedirectIf you have a lot of information you need to get out, don’t throw it all into an email to be disregarded. Consider it a great opportunity for you to use a call-to-action to drive your contacts to your website or landing page. Landing pages are great because you have the ability to place additional descriptions and images that may cloud your email conversation. If you are looking for a cheap landing page builder, try out Wix.

Marketing automation helps to put a human touch back to your sales process by giving you key information to spark meaningful conversations. Keep your process simple, clean, and targeted and turn more handshakes into raving customers!