If you have 37 million subscribers and you’re using email to broadcast the 2-hour sale that starts right now, you probably don’t want to make it easy for your subscribers to bombard you with product and pricing questions. But chances are your list is smaller and you are using your emails to drive engagement as much as revenue. If that’s the case, making it easy for your subscribers to fire off a quick response goes a long way towards making your brand seem approachable and attentive to what your audience wants (very similar to a good social media strategy, in fact). Here are a few ways to help open your emails up into the beginning of a dialogue:

1. Use a specific reply email address. Obviously, you don’t want to use “do-not-reply@notlistening.com”. The standard “info@…” is acceptable but something that shows you’re actually paying particular attention to this channel is more inviting. Try instead “newsletter@…” or “replies@…” or “emailfeedback@…” to show your audience you’re not just phoning it in.

2. Explicitly invite responses. Your email copy works, so use it to drive engagement with a closing or PS that lets your readers know that they do not need to suppress their responses. Try something like, “If you have feedback or questions, go ahead and reply directly to this email or drop us a note at “newsletter@…”.

3. Publish or recognize email feedback. Showing your audience that other subscribers are writing back and getting a response helps underscore the two-way value of the email channel. Simply mentioning that someone wrote in breaks the seal, like “Last week we received some replies to our newsletter asking for more info on our Widgetizer 9000. We’ve since updated the product page to let you know that it weighs 900g, runs on 3 AA batteries or solar power, and is available in both blueberry and mochacinno flavors.” Your audience does not respond because they do not think anyone listens to the email channel. Examples like this assure them that you are.

Each week on “Emailioration Monday”  we spotlight a single tactic you can implement this week in order to improve your email marketing. Share tips of your own on Twitter at #Emailioration, and see the full collection of Emailioration tips here.