Whether you are unhappy with the results of your email marketing efforts, or you just want to kick it up a notch, try these tips to improve your email marketing results.
#1 Set a business (rather than an email marketing) goal
Email marketing tools give us some great feedback about who does what with our email campaigns that sometimes we can get caught up in open rates and bounce rates and forget about the business goals that led us to implement email marketing in the first place.
Do you want to increase referrals? Are you trying to bring customers back to your store? Are Wednesdays a slow day at the shop and you would like to change that? Do you have products and services that your customers don’t know you offer? Make sure you define the business goals for your email marketing campaigns.
#2 Nobody likes a dirty list
Internet service providers (ISPs) and email service providers (ESPs) hate dirty lists that contain old customer data and bad email addresses. Recipients hate them because the dirtier your list, the less likely they will recognize you, so even if you do make it to their inbox they may still consider you message spam.
Don’t keep sending email blasts to unsubscribes and addresses bounce messages. Consider purging customers without any opens or clicks in a 12-month period as these could affect your reputation score and therefor your deliverability rates.
#3 Pay attention to your “FROM” name
Many experts believe that email recipients use the “from” name tells to decide whether or not to delete an email and the “subject” line to decide whether or not to open it.
Use the “from” name that is the basis of your relationship with the customer. If they don’t recognize you, they will likely delete your message.
#4 Watch that subject line
As mentioned above, the subject line tells the recipient whether or not to open the email. Make your subject lines direct, relevant, timely and impactful.
Use action words – Let the recipient know the offer and provide a sense of urgency. For example – “$10 Coupon Inside – Last Chance to Save.”
It’s okay to use the work “free”. Contrary to popular belief, “free” does not automatically send your message to the junk folder. Sender reputation scores and better filtering techniques play a bigger part in filtering than a single work. So if you have something to give away for free, don’t be afraid to say so.
#5 Add marketing messages to your transactional emails
Inserting marketing messages into your transactional emails (confirmations, receipts, delivery updates, etc.) can be a great way to cross-sell, up-sell, and enhance the overall buying experience.
#6 Be more relevant by segmenting your list
We all know that customers want to know WIIFM (what’ in it for me?). You can decrease your unsubscribe rate and increase your response rate by using what you know about the people on your list to send them information that they care about.
Replace portions of your messages (article or offers) based on data from your database, or create unique messages for each of your different audiences. Don’t be afraid to ask the people on your list about their interests, either when they opt-in or sometime down the road via surveys.
Bill Brelsford Small Business Marketing Consultant