Email marketing goes beyond making a quick sale with a limited-time offer. It needs to involve building a consistent, relevant and value adding conversation with your audience. In order to build this conversation and develop a good strategy, you need to be aware of and abide by the 5 email marketing best practices listed below throughout the rest of 2015.
1. Optimize for mobile, it’s the future
Everyone checks email, reads blogs and researches products on their mobile devices. From simple observation of the habits of adults around you and information from tools like Google Analytics, you see that close to 70% of your target audience now prefer to read their emails on mobile devices. From website design to newsletters, email templates and landing pages; everything needs to be responsive. To improve your email conversion rates, you need to optimize all emails for mobile; trust me, it is worth the investment!
2. Personalize and customize
Personalized email messages are more likely to convert than general messages that are sent to a mass audience. Identify the various groups and segments in your subscriber list and apply personalization tactics to deliver relevant marketing messages to each group. Your emails should focus on each recipient’s needs and interests. Below are some ideas for personalization:
- Use the email recipient’s name in the subject line. This will make your email stand out among so many in the inbox and increase your open rates. You can also use the reader’s name in the message.
- Send different messages to different list segments. Use purchase history, demographics and the content that your customer has viewed on your website to determine what to include in the email.
- Include links to targeted sections of your website. Try to avoid sending all customers to the general home page or a page with a long list of products. Instead, provide a link to a page containing products or offers that will catch your reader’s attention.
- Talk about the personal attributes of the recipient if possible. After completing your market segmentation, you may know what is important to them. Talk more about these interests than about your products.
Take a look at reallygoodemails.com for some examples of great emails.
3. Test and use analytics
Before you move too fast and implement the latest and greatest trend in your email marketing campaigns, create a test. Just because something works for someone else does not mean it will work for you!
You should constantly be examining and tweaking various elements including: design, layout, content, headlines, subject lines, landing pages, frequency of mailing, and time of day/day of week each email is sent. Set up tests and analyze the results to determine what works well for each of your audiences. Implement the changes to increase your email performance and continue testing.
4. Keep communication alive
Of course I would never encourage a business to spam their customers, but I do advise you to nurture your customers. This allows you to create additional touch points and keep communication alive. It is important to understand modern-day buyer behavior. This behavior includes self-educators who look at reviews and research blogs, social channels and websites to understand and compare all available options. Your simplest job should be to facilitate prospects in making the right decision.
5. Keep out of SPAM folders
One good rule of thumb all email marketers should follow is to not buy email lists. Instead, allow your recipients to opt-in to your messaging through a sign up on your website, social media, or another permission-based method. If recipients of your email didn’t ask for it, they will often flag it as SPAM. This affects your overall deliverability, which means your email never hits all the intended inboxes.
These are just a few best practices for email marketing. Do you have any other tips for email best practices? Share them with us now!