Lots has been written about how to get your emails opened. A common bit of advice is to use a tempting subject line. But when you send an email can also make a difference in having it opened and getting a response, according to a survey reported by Lucia Moses, writing in ADWEEK.
Getting email read is an ongoing challenge for marketers, and it's a real challenge for those of us in PR who pitch stories to people in the media. Email has become the preferred method of contact among reporters and producers, overtaking phone calls and even personal contact. But therein lies our challenge, since an email pitch can get buried in the daily volume of emails, which has gone up by 5.4 percent from a year ago.
I get between 125 - 250 emails every weekday, and I've heard from media people I know who say their email volume can be easily two or three times that amount -- every day.
The survey reported by ADWEEK seems to show that sending an email at night -- after 8 p.m. -- gives you the best chance of having it opened and read within a day. Emails also fare better on weekends when the overall volume is lower. Possibly the worst time to send an email pitch is between 8 a.m. and noon, when 40 percent of all emails are sent.
There are exceptions, of course. If you know the reporter well and he or she normally does repond to your emails, then send it whenever it's best for you. I always try to be clear in my subject line what the message is about, which seems to help.
The internet, email and social media have made the idea of 9 - 5 work hours obsolete, and I'll often see emails from clients and media people sent in the early evening (between 6:30 and 9 p.m.) and on weekends.
Of course, regardless of when you send a pitch, it's got to be succinct and on target. That much hasn't changed, even since the days of telephone pitches and pitches made face-to-face over a lengthy lunch.