Financial advisers (FAs) have the unfortunate mix of busy schedules and crowded inboxes which means they have very little patience for emails that belabor their objective.

64% of Financial Advisers Skim an Email Before Deciding to Delete

-StoneShot Digital Marketing Survey 2017

The good news is, as you can tell from the statistic above, most of them at least have the good will to give an email a chance before tossing it in the garbage folder. In that brief window of time, you have to somehow grab their attention and get your point across in a way that is relevant and convenient enough to act on.

We asked FAs what they thought could make emails better and they responded with a few ideas that you can use to convert a skimmer to a reader.

#1 With a Bullet

One of the most crucial tools you can utilize in your campaigns is providing a brief, bulleted summary of your email right up front. This way financial advisers who open your email can see if it’s relevant to them before diving into to the actual meat of the email.

According to our DMS results, 96% of financial advisers agree that bullet point summaries at the top of the email make fund groups’ communications more effective. With a response rate like that, if you don’t already use this format, you better start now!

Get to the Point

89% of FAs prefer to have shorter content in their emails. Less content makes it easier for FAs to skim the email quickly and decide if they want to read more, take action, or delete it. Two to three sentences of relevant, informative text will more effectively catch a user’s attention than wordy paragraphs, so keep that in mind when you’re composing email content. The shorter the better.

The shorter the better.

Strong CTA

Part of having a clear, concise message in your emails is deciding exactly what you want them to do. You don’t want to have your reader on the hook and then lose them because they’re not sure what you want them to do.

80% of financial advisers think clearer CTAs are important which proves including a prominent, actionable CTA button in the middle of your email (to find out exactly where study some email anatomy) is one of the most important aspects of your email design.

Here are a few best practices to keep in mind when strategizing your CTA design:

• Keep it short and to the point
• Make sure it’s clear what you want the reader to do
• Use energetic, urgent words like “Now” or “Today”
• Keep it to a single CTA per email to avoid confusion
• Make it painfully obvious that your CTA is the focus of your email
• Try out different CTAs to test what works best
• Make it bulletproof

You can always get creative with your CTAs but make sure you keep the focus on the next step in the user’s journey.

 Save a Thousand Words

Moderation in all things email, especially when it comes to images. But, if you want to hook an email skimmer into reading more, a visually arresting and relevant image can be the perfect tool. In fact, 72% of FAs would like to see more graphics and images in their inboxes.

The key drawback of images in emails is that many people automatically block them from loading in their inboxes. But, for those that don’t have that feature enabled, a well-placed image could be all it takes to draw a reader in. Either way, you should always include alt-text with your images so your point will be delivered no matter what.

It’s important to remember not to rely on your image to make your email worth reading, just in case it doesn’t end up loading. Instead, use them as support to the main point of your email.

Moving Target

So many small details need to be right for even a portion of your target audience to meaningfully engage with your email. So, if you’re missing something big like a mobile responsive email design, your campaign will be dead on arrival.

In 2016, 91% of FAs want their emails to be at least mobile friendly. 

If your email isn’t mobile responsive, advisers checking their email on their phone won’t even give your campaign the time of day. This negative reaction could even damage your reputation for future campaigns.

Never underestimate the amount of people opening your email on their phone or tablet.


For more tips on optimizing your email marketing strategy, check out these helpful articles: