Email marketing is still one of the most powerful marketing tools out there when it comes to spreading brand awareness and details of your latest product. If you’ve built up a useful list of contacts you want to be sure the message you send is actually read and acted upon by as many people as possible.
Here are The Last Hurdle’s pointers for email marketing success:
Contacts, Contacts, Contacts
It’s something that many businesses tend to neglect. If you have a large list of contacts then it helps to make sure that they are properly segmented so that you don’t end up sending someone the wrong message. Having your list organised means that you can better target your messages which are then more likely to be opened and read. If you send irrelevant messages to potential customers on a regular basis then they will likely as not ignore your next message when it arrives.
Be Clear Why You Are Sending That Email
Marketing email campaigns should be clear, concise and meaningful. The less focused a message is the less likely you are to get a response. So, make sure that you have your marketing plan clear in your mind, what you want to say, and, more importantly, what you want your recipient to do. Very clear call to actions are needed here.
Timing is important too. When will your customer receive that email? When they get home? While they are travelling to work? During the lunch hour? Sending your message at exactly the right time can greatly increase the chances of being successful. This will take some careful consideration depending on your target market, do some research into when others send there’s and think outside the box a bit, for instance if you are local Gastro pub with Saturday night tables to fill, try a Thursday evening for those who like to plan their weekends and 4pm on Saturday when people are just starting to think about what’s for tea!
Your Email Marketing Checklist – Who is it From?
The From part of your email is vitally important if you want your message to be read. This needs to be easily recognisable and connected to your brand and, above all, it needs to be consistent across all emails.
Your Email Marketing Checklist – Subject Line
What you say in the subject line is all important. It should be relevant, short and pack a punch. Try to avoid anything that might look as though you are spamming but make sure that it is eye catching. There are an awful lot of terms and words you will want to avoid, here is a fairly comprehensive spam list from Hubspot that you will undoubtedly want to cross reference.
Great Content for Great Click Through
The key to getting people to click through from your email is to keep things simple. You should try to keep your message focussed on one particular issue and keep the links to one place on your website. Get to the point quickly because people are generally busy and they probably won’t want to scan through vast swathes of text to find out what you want.
- Make sure you proof your content.
- Then proof it again.
- Check all your links work.
- Write your content as if you are speaking to one specific person, personalise your message and make sure it is pertinent to the list you are sending it to. Be yourself and your brand, interject your own humour, enthusiasm and personality – people buy from people!
- Make sure you have a visual representation rather than just an essay. People will skim read and an appropriate image maybe just what is needed to grab their attention.
Your Email Marketing Checklist – Email Basics
To reduce the chance of being seen as spam and making sure you have all the right elements included, check your email has all these things:
- A view in browser link so recipients can take a look at your message in their web browser.
- An unsubscribe link – it’s law in many places now (including the UK).
- Your registered company name and all relevant contact information
- Alt tags for any images included in your email.
- Your company logo.
- Social sharing buttons – don’t miss out on the chance your customers might like to share your content.
Other ways to avoid the Spam Bucket
The Last Hurdle are not and never have been fans of the ‘throw so much mud at the walls some of it is bound to stick’ school of thought. We believe it is far better to target and make your emails pertinent to your readers – less is definitely more. Businesses and many customers can get 100s of emails a day and many well intended missives can end up in the spam file unless you take care. To avoid being seen as spam here are some quick tips:
- Avoid terms like ‘A once in a lifetime opportunity” and be frugal with those exclamation marks!!!!!
- AVOID USING ALL CAPITALS TO GET YOUR POINT ACROSS.
- Don’t use substandard/badly designed html or bright coloured fonts. In other words, look professional.
- Don’t send to inactive or stale lists. Permissions usually go stale after about 6 months so in all likelihood you message will go straight to the spam box.
- Make sure your recipients have all opted in to receive your email, The Last Hurdle believe the double opt in method has the highest conversion rates and you will find your opens and click throughs higher – no-one wants to market to people who are not interested in your product, do we?
Your Email Marketing Checklist – Make Sure You Test
You may be pushed for time and think that your email is good to go but that is generally a mistake. HTML emails can often look different on different devices. Test recipients may well pick up on small errors. For peace of mind, send out some test emails to check that everything is okay. It is worthwhile testing how your email will look in Outlook, Gmail, AOL, Live, Android, iPhone etc.
And Finally, Have Metrics in Place
There is no point in sending out an email marketing campaign if you don’t have the right metrics in place. Who is opening your mail? What are the click through rates? How many are converting to sales? A/B split test your messages (ask us how). Measuring your campaign effectively means you can make those little tweaks and changes to increase click throughs and sales opportunities. We hope you gain some useful tips to compiling an effective email marketing campaign, we would love to read your own nuggets of wisdom – what works for you?
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