Using email to generate B2B leads is effective. According to Hubspot, three-quarters of companies agree that email offers “excellent” to “good” ROI and 86% of professionals prefer to use email when communicating for business purposes. The problem many businesses face, however, is low open rates. On average, the open rate for email is 25% across all industries. If you want to increase your visibility to customers and potential customers, then follow these three tips.

Tip 1) Test your email for spam filters.

It’s not enough to send an email and hope that it reaches your customers or prospects. You may have cleaned your bounces, gotten rid of your removes but you still see that your open rate is low. Try sending a test message to different email servers such as Gmail, Yahoo, and Outlook.

Use an email that you create yourself for each email provider so you can see for yourself exactly where your message is likely to end up. It could be they are receiving your emails, but they are going into the spam or promotions folder. To fix this, try looking at your messaging and see if you are making any of these mistakes:

A) You have spammy keywords.

Phrases like “Free,” “Earn Per Week,” or “No Fees” in the title or body of your email can trigger spam filters on most email service providers. Try avoiding these if you can.

B) Your newsletter has too many pictures in it.

One is a good max to set for cold prospects. If you need to use more than one, try combining multiple pictures into one image. (Just make sure it’s not gigantic and it still has a good ratio of text to image). Remember, sending an image with text tends to be ok, but sending just an image with no text will likely get marked spam.

C) You have a title or phrase in all caps.

DON’T SHOUT AT PEOPLE! It will not only likely trigger a spam filter, it can come off as rude even if it’s just meant to be a title.

Tip 2) Segment your broad audience into specific audiences.

Sure, there are some companies that only sell to a specific person in a specific type of company. But for most businesses, there are multiple types of prospects/customers that can be reached out to and your messaging should reflect that. Nobody wants to open a generic email that doesn’t relate to them. If you can break down your audience into categories that label their position, company, industry etc. you can cater a message specifically to that audience. This also means you can still do a mass email for that audience and not have to do one for each individual person. For help with breaking down your sales funnel, check out our article on The Three Types of Leads and how to Treat Them.

Tip 3) Send your emails out from a real person, not from your company.

People like messages from other people not machines. If customers or prospects receive a message from John@mycompany.net it builds trust more than sales@ or info@. According to Hubspot, not only does a personal name increase open rates, but it increases click-through rates as well. Do some A-B testing to see which email works best for your company.

For more insight on the purpose of email marketing, check out our article What is the Purpose of Email Marketing.