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Ask Haley: How do I get staffing buyers to read my emails?

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Q:  I need help.  My staffing company sends tons of emails, including an e-newsletter–but based on the reports we generate, almost nobody is reading them.  What kind of content do you recommend to engage staffing buyers and get them to actually read our emails?

A: First of all, I’m glad to hear you’re approaching content from the reader’s perspective.  Too often, staffing companies use email marketing as a way to push their sales messages–forgetting that every time they send an email, they are interrupting someone’s day.

If you want your email (or e-newsletter) to be read, make the interruption worthwhile.  Here are a few suggestions to attract and engage your readers:

Focus on content staffing buyers want.  The success of your email marketing is largely determined by the quality of content you deliver.  So think like a reader.  Start developing your list of content ideas by first trying to get into the typical staffing buyer’s head.  Consider what his day is like, the challenges he faces in his job, and the goals he is trying to achieve.  You may even want to survey a few trusted clients, to make sure your brainstorming is on target.

Need more ideas?  Here is a starter list of content suggestions you can use:

  • Timely statistics
  • How-to advice
  • Insights about your industry
  • Best practices
  • Case studies
  • Local market salary data
  • Employment law updates
  • Survey results (i.e., “What do others like me think?”)
  • Top candidate profiles

Offer more than just “work stuff.”  Unless you are placing robots, you’re selling to people.  People with interests, fears and real lives outside of work.  Your email marketing should help build relationships with these people.

So when you plan your content, think about things your readers will find interesting–even if they’re not necessarily related to staffing!  Try including humor, cartoons, current events, pop culture, local information and even puzzles or games.  But skip commentaries on politics and religion–that’s rarely good for B2B relationship building!

Entertain ’em.  Unquestionably, there’s a lot of “noise” competing for staffing buyers’ attention.  In order for your emails to truly break through the clutter, they must be entertaining.

Don’t worry, you don’t need to hire a singer or comedian to provide entertainment in your emails–but you do need to connect with your audience on an emotional level.  Here’s how:

  • Include pictures.  They can increase response by 20 – 50%.
  • Add video.  While the video can’t be in the email, you can include a picture and link.
  • Write shocking subject lines.  Be careful, however, not to offend or fool readers.
  • Include an irresistible offer.  Give readers a compelling reason to respond.
  • Write with a strong voice.  People are drawn to personality, so write with some style!
  • Incorporate a little fun in every email.  Include a joke, cartoon or puzzle.

Hope these suggestions help you increase the effectiveness of your staffing emails and staffing newsletters!  And if you need more help or advice on marketing for staffing, please give us a call.  Haley Marketing Group can develop and execute a comprehensive marketing strategy to help you sell more staffing.

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