Stefan Pollard identifies 8 different email audiences in his latest article:
- Identifiers use the "from" address and the subject line to whittle down their overcrowded inboxes as fast as possible, deleting everything they don't want to read.
- Skimmers moved past identification and actually opened your message, but they want to read as fast as possible, using headlines, subheads and calls-to-action to help them decide whether to act or discard the message.
- Readers will take time to read the two to three sentences of body copy between the headline and the call to action so they can "learn more" about the specific topic the email is discussing and help them over the click-through hurdle.
- HTML readers like images.
- Text readers don't like images.
- Mobile readers skim through their inbox using web-enabled cell phones. Their number is increasing, especially in the B2B environment.
- Desk readers are the ones for whom most marketers design their emails. They are the majority and the most likely audience to act on your message.
- Searchers start out as members of one of the other audiences. Somewhere along the line they saw something they liked in your message but couldn’t deal with it right away and saved your message for later.
Each of these audiences reads your message a different way, so you need to design your email in such a way that it appeals to as many of these audiences as possible, without creating a unique message for each one. Stefan offers lots of tips in his article: read it here.