This month, we all heard the unfortunate news that the man, widely regarded as the creator of email, passed away. Ray Tomlinson died, aged 74 and is credited with putting the now iconic "@" sign in the addresses of the revolutionary system. What an amazing legacy he leaves behind. How many people can claim that they truly changed the world? But what I’m sure he wouldn’t be able to believe is the significance that email marketing now plays in business. Many years after that very first test email he sent.
Email has spread like wildfire into our everyday lives and in doing so has become an integral part of business marketing strategies. Below are some tips to produce a top email marketing campaign.
Set SMART goals for your email marketing campaigns
First, you won’t know if a campaign has been successful unless you define an objective before the campaign begins. The best way to achieve your goals is to set SMART goals for your campaign so you can keep track of your goals and ensure that you meet those goals. For example, you can only judge your campaign as a success if you have a certain amount of clicks on your call to action included in the email. It is advised to use a small number of different metrics to measure success; common ones include the unsubscribe rate, the deliverability rate and the open rate.
Buyer Persona’s – Make sure your emails speak to your target market
You wouldn’t send a sports car email marketing campaign to a family that just had a child right? No you would send them an email marketing campaign all about family cars. This may sound ridiculously oblivious but you would be surprised how many marketing campaigns fail because of poor targeting. It’s simple, different audiences require different approaches. Follow this philosophy by practicing segmentation. Moreover, check the effectiveness of your marketing by using metrics to test your approaches among various groups. While you can segment by categories such as age, life stage and so on, you can also segment by categories such as people interested only in your newsletter, or folks interested in product updates but not daily email tips.
To find out more about buyer personas have a read of this article, written by Leanne Mordue director at the JDR Group: Why Defining Your Buyer Persona Is Fundamental To Your Inbound Marketing Campaign
Less can be more
We all get lots of emails to our work and personal inboxes each day. We can all say that we get lots and lots of email campaigns from certain companies that we instantly junk or unsubscribe from. Avoid running email marketing campaigns just to get some leads for the sales team, or because you haven’t run one this month. This will lead to high unsubscribe rates and, even worse, turning a potential lead into someone who finds your brand annoying. Use your buyer personas to find a particular customer pain point that needs solving, and use your email marketing to communicate exactly and precisely how you’ll do it, especially if you’ve identified that your buyer persona is short on time.
Focus on creating a top notch contact list
With email marketing still playing an important role in a marketing campaign, what can be hard to believe is that many businesses don’t have enough of a list to target. Or at the other end of the scale a large list with many outdated contacts that will give the campaign a massive bounce rate.
In both cases, you have a couple of options to build and cleanse your database of email subscribers to achieve your SMART goals. For example, offer a free product, demo or trial when people sign up. Remember to include calls to action where applicable, and always give the option to unsubscribe.
Make you campaigns clear and precise to get the best response
An email marketing campaign is not the time to become a wordsmith. It has been proven, especially in today’s market where people receive numerous emails each day, that creating a direct subject line which tells the reader exactly what to expect in the body of the email, has a better conversion rate. By having a direct email subject line, it may result in fewer people opening the email, but the people that do open the email will be a lot more interested in the content and will invest time to read the email. They will also be more likely to click on a call to action. Use your email to explain how your business can solve a pain point identified in your buyer personas, and set out a compelling call to action for additional investigation. Conversions are the key to successful email campaigns. Remember, conversations matter more than the volume of people who open the email.
Since the first email was sent by Ray Tomlinson, email marketing has changed massively over time. By setting goals, targeting your buyer personas, having clear and precise messages and subject lines you can be assured that you email marketing will get the best results.