Night aerial view of busy elevated highway intersectionLike posting on social media, many financial advisors worry about sending too many emails and turning off their contacts. Like social media, email marketing requires a delicate balance. You don’t want to send so infrequently that your contacts forget about you; but you also don’t want to bombard their inbox. While there’s no one hard and fast rule as to how often you should send emails, there are a few simple questions you can ask yourself to determine your ideal frequency rate.

The Importance of Sending Frequent Emails

There’s no doubt that email plays an important role in a financial advisor’s marketing strategy. Multiple studies show that email marketing results in a significant ROI. By sending your contacts messages on a regular basis, you stay top of mind, establish trust and credibility, show that you’re a leader in your industry, and encourage more referrals and connections. Keeping your audience engaged is key if you want them to start and continue working with you.

Determining Your Ideal Email Marketing Frequency

There are a few simple steps you can take right now to decide how many emails you should send each month. Start by asking yourself these questions:

1. What are my goals?

Why are you sending email campaigns? Is it to build loyalty and establish your branding? Or, do you want to increase subscribers and convert more leads? If your main goal is to stay in communication with your audience, you can likely send less frequent emails than if you’re trying to gain new business.

2. What type of content am I sending?

The type of content you send has a major effect on your audience’s response and how often they expect to see emails from you. As an advisor, you can get away with sending frequent emails if you’re providing educational information, such as finance tips, market commentaries, event invites, or links to your latest blog post. Depending on your subscribers, you may send this type of content once per week.

However, if you plan to send self-promotional emails, such as “refer a friend to me!” or “contact me for a consultation,” you’ll want to reduce the frequency. These types of emails should be sent no more than once a month. A good rule of thumb is to base your frequency on your ability to keep your contacts engaged with your content without feeling overwhelmed.

3. Who are my subscribers?

Take a look at your email lists. Did they sign up for your emails? Or did you add them manually? Are they current clients or prospects? You may consider segmenting your lists to separate your newsletter subscribers with your general contacts or cold leads. If someone signed up for your emails, they likely expect frequent contact from you. But if you manually added someone, they may not want to hear from you frequently.

4. What’s my average open, click-through, and unsubscribe rates?

Worried your subscribers are experiencing email fatigue? This is when it’s good to turn to your analytics. When you send frequent emails, do you see an uptick in unsubscribes or a decrease in open rates? What kind of email content encourages higher open and click-through rates? Use this data to guide your email scheduling and content. Ideally, you want to aim for a 20% open rate, a 5% click-through rate, and less than a 3% unsubscribe rate.

Evaluate, Test, and Reevaluate

Use these questions to guide your email marketing decisions. For many advisors, one or two emails per month will suffice. But depending on your market and goals, you may choose to email more or less frequently. Remember, these steps serve as guidelines. You can always adjust your schedule and change your email habits based on the results you see. Get in the habit of reviewing your email analytics once per month to see how people are responding. And don’t be afraid to reach out to your top clients or closest colleagues to take their temperature and ask for feedback.