If you aren’t using email for insurance marketing, you’re missing leads. Even if you are using it, it may not be as effective as it could be. Are you committing one of these 11 email sins? Check out the email marketing tips to see how you could improve.

Sin #11: Not Asking for Referrals

Never assume a happy client will tell his or her neighbors or friends about you. Even if someone intends to pass your name on, life often gets in the way and he or she forgets.

Virtue #11: Speaking Up

You can ask for referrals without being aggressive. Do you allow your clients to schedule appointments online? Ask about referrals in the confirmation email. If they sign up for a newsletter, include information about referring people.

The best time to ask for referrals is at the moment of joy or satisfaction. Tell your customers that you're grateful for their business and the best praise they can offer is a referral.

Sin #10: Sending Error-Filled Emails

Never send an email that has errors. Recipients often feel if you couldn’t take time to ensure your message was free of errors, you probably won’t take time to ensure the service you provide is error-free.

Virtue #10: Proofread More Than Once

Before sending your message, read it over. Then, read it aloud. After that, have someone else read it. Double-check that the signature, email address and any links are correct and direct to the right pages or person.

Sin #9: No Branding Consistency

Do your email messages look like your website and social media accounts? Inconsistent branding creates confusion. People want to be sure the messages they receive are from you.

Virtue #9: Making It Uniform

Use the same logo on your website, on social media and in your emails. Use the same colors, fonts and even tone of voice. If your website is professional in tone, but your email is casual, recipients won’t be sure which type of person they’re actually working with.

Sin #8: Never Personalizing Anything

While you can create basic email templates to help you remember which information to include, 86 percent of consumers say email personalization plays a role in how they respond to marketing emails, so avoid using form messages.

Virtue #8: Adding a Personal Touch

Never use a “noreply” email address. Be approachable and give recipients the option of responding to you, even if they aren’t inquiring about a sale. Be sure you always respond to emails as well.

Sin #7: Giant Insurance Marketing Lists

The phrase “less is more” applies when it comes to active, engaged clients. When you’re trying to make a single email appeal to 500 people, the message will be too broad.

Virtue #7: Focusing on the Right Recipients

Segment your emails based on last interaction and only message those who have interacted within a certain time frame, such as six months or one year.

Sin #6: No Call to Action

Good email marketing requires solid instruction. It’s not enough to tell recipients what you offer. You have to tell them how to get it for themselves.

Virtue #6: Providing Instructions

End the email with a short call to action that instructs readers to email, call or click a link for information. It’s even better if you provide all three. People like options. They should be clear and deliberate.

Sin #5: Not Keeping Track of Metrics

Not tracking your metrics is potentially wasting your time. Don’t type unless you know someone is reading. If you're sending to people who are tuned out or not seeing your messages, you're working hard for no return.

Virtue #5: Knowing Who Hears You

Use a service like MailChimp to keep track of which emails bounce, which are opened and which result in communication. Look at email open rates, click-through-rates, and general engagement. Which ever email system you use, there will be a way to get all of this information and more to keep your agency marketing messages front and center.

Sin #4: Emailing Too Little or Too Often

If you haven’t sent an email since starting your list, clients have forgotten you. If you’re sending them too often, they could be annoyed. Set a reasonable schedule and stick to it.

Virtue #4: Communicating Just Enough

People want to hear from you regularly, but not too regularly. Email once or twice per month. Frequency depends on your clients and your services, so you may need to tweak this occasionally to see what works best.

Sin #3: No Mobile Formatting

Roughly 60 percent of emails are checked on mobile devices. If your email won’t load correctly, your recipients may not be able to read it even if they want to.

Virtue #3: Email for Multiple Devices

A mobile device-friendly email has several key elements. Don’t use slow-loading images, don’t use a font smaller than 14pt and do use a single-column template.

Sin #2: Using Bad Subject Lines

An uninteresting or too-long subject line will make for uninterested recipients. The result is usually an email deleted without even being opened.

Virtue #2: Creating a Great Subject Line

Consider several things when creating your subject line. It should be concise, relevant to the topic of the email, interesting and offer the promise of something valuable in the email, whether that is actual monetary value or something such as information.

Sin #1: Irrelevant Content

Are you sending information about homeowner’s insurance to people who rent? If so, you’re sending irrelevant content. Continually sending emails that don’t pertain to a potential client’s circumstances mean you’re continually not getting any sales.

Virtue #1: Sending Relevant Emails

The easiest way to send relevant emails is to ask your recipients what they want and exclude them from any emails you send about other products or services. For example, drivers may want to know about new laws regarding insurance in your state. Some renters may even want to know about homeowner’s insurance if they’re considering buying, but let them opt in. Don’t just assume they’ll be purchasing a house soon.

Email marketing is about 50 percent knowledge and 50 percent trial and error. Don’t become discouraged if you don’t see the results you want right away. Building a solid client base and getting people to interact takes time. Be diligent and you’ll build stronger relationships with your clients and potential clients.