With all of the online marketing methods available - from blogging, to social media, landing pages, and more - email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to reach out to prospects.
Whether you're just getting started, or you're a grizzled veteran looking to improve your approach, email marketing is a great decision. An email blast can deliver your information quickly and generate the leads and sales you're looking for.
Email marketing software gives you the opportunity to evaluate who is opening your email allowing you to establish a solid baseline understanding of your subscribers' needs and buying patterns. This can then give you the information you need to better target email blasts.
Here are twenty tips and best practices to help you get the most bang from your next email blast campaign!
1. When it Comes to Your List, Think Quality Not Quantity
It's a common misconception that you need a list of "thousands" to effectively use email marketing. Not true! Email marketing is a smart strategy no matter what size your list.
Build a quality list of opt-ins, customers, and personal contacts that you have a strong working relationship with.
2. Stay Focused
An email blast should be short and concise. Avoid sending long emails that lose focus.
Chances are, your subscribers get dozens of emails everyday. Try to keep to your point and keep your message to a paragraph or two.
3. Stick To The Program
Like any marketing program, email takes time to develop. Develop a strategy, a schedule, and COMMIT!
Would you run a single television spot or radio ad and expect a 20% increase in sales? Email marketing is no different. Give it time to work.
4. Be Consistent
Whether you choose to send weekly, monthly, or quarterly emails develop a schedule, put dates on a calendar and stick to it!
But whatever you do... BE CONSISTENT – make a schedule and stick to it!
5. Remember the Tortoise and the Hare....
It's tempting to be aggressive with email, especially if your new to the technique. Remain respectful of your subscribers.
One of the fastest ways to lose subscribers is to inundate them with email, especially if you're not providing consistent value!
6. Keep Your Brand Front and Center
Make sure your email gets recognized! Use a consistent typeface, colors, logos and other brand identifiers.
Don't have branding elements? Hire a graphic designer and put together a brand package. It's money well spent!
7. Time Your Emails!
How often should you send blasts? Monitor data to see how many recipients open your email, and what days and times are best. Check the click through rate and how many unsubscribe.
Know which are loyal customers and which are potential prospects. Make changes and keep testing until you find the sweet spot!
8. Embed Hyperlinks
Hyperlinks make CTAs easy to execute. Plus your email blast software can keep track of how many readers click the link, and which offers are most productive.
A/B test CTAs with different wording, or try using the same link two or three times in a single email.
9. Write To Your Audience
Who is you typical reader? Is it the CEO of a mid-sized corporation seeking solutions, or a Mom and Dad looking for educational software for their toddler?
It might seem obvious, but write to your target! Emotions sell when it comes to any marketing. You need to connect on a personal level so always write to your audience.
10. Use Images
Pictures can tell a lot about your product or service, sometimes more than a paragraph of text.
Use images in your email blasts, but optimize them carefully. Long downloads can lose prospects!
11. Make Them An Offer They Can't Refuse...
People love getting value! Whether it's a two-for-one coupon, or access to valuable premium content, incentivize your emails to increase engagement!
12. Use Social Media Widgets!
Always give your email recipients additional ways of engaging! Ask them to follow you on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Use widgets so they can just click to follow you.
It's a great nurturing tactic. Even if they're not yet ready to buy, they'll choose a company they're engaging with when they are!
13. Only Blast Opt-Ins....
...and never buy lists! Sending unwanted email is the fastest way to end up blacklisted. To be extra safe, use a double opt-in system.
14. Clean Your List Regularly
Inactive users are more likely to report your email as spam. Always remove inactive users to reduce the chance that you'll be blacklisted.
15. Always Include ONE Call-To-Action
Like landing pages, keep it to a single CTA in your email blast. Prominently place it “above the fold” early in your email so readers won't have to scroll to find it.
16. Send A Test To Yourself, First!
This is a good practice to make sure there are no formatting, spelling or grammatical issues and it also gives you the opportunity to “see it through your customers eyes.”
17. Don't Overthink!
Get into your email program, compose your message, add images,(Send a test to yourself first) and SEND IT OUT!
Don't seek perfection with your formatting. This is about creating a touchpoint and getting your message out.
18. Make Your Emails Interactive
The point to an email blast is to engage, inspire action and solicit a response. Make your CTAs direct and to the point.
Keep your design clean and focused and remember every element should support your message!
19. Keep Your Contact Information Prominently Visible!
Don't make your reader search for how to get in touch! Make it clear and obvious. Use a professional signature that includes your direct phone number and personal email.
20. ALWAYS PROVIDE VALUE!!
Prospects found you because they were seeking information. Today consumers expect more from the companies they engage with, online and off.
Make sure you provide the value they're seeking and keep them engaged by offering something of value in every email blast!
The email blast is a cost-effective way to engage, convert and sell to your customers. These 20 tips and best practices will help you to develop an email marketing strategy that really works!