The best time to send your emails?
So, you’ve got the best-looking email you’ve ever seen, bound to deliver results, you’ve segmented your data to within an inch of its life and you’ve written the best article possible which you know is relevant to your target audience. Now, when are you going to send your campaign?
I often get asked by clients when is the best time to send an email communication. My response is, there isn’t a best time to send an email! If you look at reports they tell you the best time to send is on a Tuesday or Thursday at 10 am or 2 pm.
But the problem is if you send at this day and time you are fighting for readability against other emails.
So, what can you do?
Again, this depends on your audience so yes you will need to experiment with a split test, as with everything. It’s also important to change it up from time to time. So, don’t just carry out one test and then find that your ultimate time to send is Tuesday at 10 am and from now until the end of time keep sending your marketing emails on Tuesday at 10 am. You then pose the risk of becoming predictable, and your contacts will become all too familiar with your unsubscribe button. Change it up from time to time. Use different days to send different campaigns and test against each pot of data to find the maximum time for engagement in your world.
Once, we sent an email on a Friday afternoon and we received a 60% engagement rate. Yes, 60%! That’s almost a 59% increase on our industry standard CTR.
As the saying goes, one size does not fit all. Although I could give you some recommendations on sending times and day based on our own testing and common knowledge, it’s better to look at the industry you are sending to and identify trends based on timelines. You may find different industries prefer different days or times to receive their emails. It’s about understanding your target audience and identifying the best time to send for maximum engagement. Take a look at your Google Analytics stats, when do people generally visit your site? This will give you a clear indication of both time and day for particular industries. The data is all there it’s now time to translate and implement it into your marketing and using the insights you have to your advantage.
Top Tip to action: Try sending out early week – i.e. early morning Monday or Tuesday, before your subscribers week gets booked up with meetings to attend, reports to finalise and deadlines to meet. After all, the early bird catches the worm.
Sending either early morning, between 8 am and 11 am, when people are typically at their desks, starting their day, mulling over their inbox with coffee in hand. Or, the after-lunch slog. People generally spend either lunchtime or an hour or so after their lunch on their emails catching up with what they’ve missed.
Remember that different industries will have different send days and times, the best thing to do is to test and identify the best day and time to send your communication. If you’re using the CommuniGator platform, you can set up batch settings and split your audience. For example, if your database has 7000 contacts you can send 1000 emails per day. Run this test multiple times to identify key findings and provide reliable data to process.
Compare your Click-Through-Rate to others in your industry. How do your results rank against your competition?
When we say split test, we really mean it. There is no truer way to identify what’s best for your audience than by asking them. Well almost asking them. Split test on different days of the week and different times of the day. You will soon find out the optimum time for sending based on your audience’s behaviour. Try not to take this as gospel though, it is important to mix it up occasionally and run a fair amount of tests over a long period of time to get the best results.
Remember, typically, you won’t just be targeting one industry so try and identify different patterns for different industries to make sure you can tailor your marketing to each individual lead.
Top Tip to action: Start by identifying your killer values within your target data to get to know your audience and then segment your campaigns based on relevance.
Think about the content you are sending. Is it relevant to a specific day? It might come with a timeline. For instance, if you are running a promotion that ends on Thursday, you’re probably going to want to send on Monday or Tuesday. Or an event you are hosting next Monday, you should send on the Monday and Friday prior to the event. Or perhaps the content is relevant to something happening in the industry at this particular time. Sending it either too soon or too late will lead your audience to disengage. It’s all in the timing.
Top Tip to action: Create urgency in your emails by adding deadlines or dates in the subject line or body of your email. Give your CTA a timeline to encourage readers to click immediately, or else!
Should I send my email out on a weekend?
Sending your email out on a weekend in a B2B world is considered out of touch. This is because people believe nobody checks their emails on a weekend. However, times are changing and sending out emails on a weekend is now not a bad thing to try.
The reason why we encourage sending on a weekend is that lots of people now receive emails on their mobile phones, enabling people to check their emails on a weekend. People have more time to engage with marketing emails on a weekend as there aren’t as many distractions and people tend to take their work life home.
For some industries and companies this technique might not work, but it is worthwhile trying.
When you send out your next campaign, and it’s not time critical, have a go at sending it out on a weekend. Just give it a try, I dare you.
In our email marketing guide, we explain how to create a highly effective B2B email marketing campaign. From start to finish.