Email marketing might just be one of the most underrated marketing strategies. In truth, it can be difficult to make your emails a success with your contacts but all good things take time and effort and email marketing is no different. The biggest positive to email marketing is direct reach, your contacts have signed up to your mailing list because they want to hear from you. Unfortunately, keeping your contacts engaged is one of the biggest hurdles markets face with email marketing and that’s why having a solid marketing strategy in place is a good idea. Your strategy doesn’t need to be too complex to begin with as you’ll change and adapt your strategy overtime according to what yields better results and what isn’t working so well and that is why making your email marketing a success takes time. So how do you build an effective email marketing strategy? Let’s dive in to find out.
Choose the Right Tool
Email marketing tools aren’t a one size fits all solution. Every tool has its strengths and equally, weaknesses. Finding the right tool can take time so it’s a good idea to get stuck into some research before you pick a provider. A great place to start your research is with a comparison site like Piesync, where you can find the right email marketing tool for your business based on what’s currently popular on the market and the key features of the compared apps. This takes the preliminary work out of the job for you and makes the decision making much easier.
Define Your Goals
Going into your email marketing without defined outcomes is the first mistake many make. Ideally before you’ve really begun to build your contact list, you’ll have set out what you want to achieve with email marketing. Questions you need to ask are:
Who do I want to reach?
Why do I want to reach them?
What are the outcomes I want to achieve (clicks, views, conversions etc.)?
What is the bottom line? Do you want to use email marketing to raise awareness of your brand or to increase your profits?
Build An Organic List
Buying email addresses isn’t just rude, it’s fraud. With GDPR regulations in place, you must ensure that your contacts have all opted to be on your mailing list. Some of the best ways to build your contact list is by offering something in return, most businesses offer a freebie like an eBook or a percentage off the customer’s first order via their website or on their social media channels. Since this is the first big hurdle of your strategy, it’s taking some time to think about how you want to encourage people to sign up, one of the easiest ways to get inspired is to browse the internet and see how other businesses are asking for sign ups.
Segment your contacts
The next step is to segment your contacts. Once you’ve got a steady flow of contacts coming in, it’s very useful to segment (categorise) your contacts. You can do this by location, age range, where they heard about your business and many other defining factors. This is beneficial when it comes to creating emails that are targeted to a specific type of audience.
Plan your content
Planning your content in advance is not only a good habit to get into, but will help you create better email campaigns. Instead of leaving it to the last minute and knocking up a campaign, taking your time will help discover how best to deliver your message and give you plenty of time to implement it.
Get the design right
If you’re guilty of simply throwing together a template email and copy and pasting your text, then it’s time to ditch that strategy. Your email campaigns are an extension of your branding so it’s key to ensure the email is in keeping with your brand. Images are great in email campaigns but low quality or even images that are too large can ruin the design or make the email load too slowly. Text is important – of course, but try to be as concise as possible and limit your text, contacts aren’t interested in paragraphs of text – short and snappy is key. Finally, remember the importance of your subject line. This is the hook. If the subject line doesn’t grab the attention of your contacts then chances are, they’re not opening that email.
BEFORE PRESSING SEND
A/B & Anti-Spam Testing
A/B testing allows you to test different versions of your email campaigns to see which version will receive the most success. Similarly, certain email marketing apps will do anti-spam scan which will check your email for any content that may result in your emails going to trash. Using emojis or caps lock in your subject line is one of the fastest ways to get your emails sent to the spam bin.
One of the most useful features of most email marketing apps is a scheduling tool which allows you to create your campaigns, set your audiences and then choose when you want those emails to go out. So you can create a bunch of emails in one go and schedule them in advance, saving you time later on.
Clean up your contacts
Unused and unresponsive email address, there’s no point hanging onto them. In fact these contacts will drag your analytics down, so it’s a good idea to clear out your address book every now and then to make sure you’re only reaching people who are engaged with your emails.
Make is easy for people to unsubscribe
GDPR regulations include the “right to be forgotten” which means that contacts should be able to unsubscribe from your mailing list and be deleted without hassle. Making this an easy task for your contacts isn’t just a good practice but can prevent you being marked as spam or even blacklisted.