Over the years, email marketing has become an increasingly effective tool for internet marketers. In fact, email is now the third most influential source of information for B2B audiences (only behind recommendations from colleagues, and information from industry-specific thought leaders).
In a recent survey by SharpSpring, “a total of 85% of marketing agencies say that email marketing performance is increasing, with half (50%) describing the increase as significant.”
So, here are 8 tips to increase the performance of your email campaigns, and raise your ROI.
#1 Cleanup Your Email List: Re-engage and Delete
One of the best ways to improve your open and click-through rates is to regularly clean-up your database, deleting contacts who have not opened your emails for a long period of time. This is important for brand perception and reputation, as well as the health and reputation of your company’s domain.
Repeatedly sending emails to people who are not engaging with the messages is harmful to your brand because it will eventually be perceived as annoying, spammy, and irrelevant at some point – even if they opted in.
Just think about it. Do you like seeing emails come into your Inbox for months and years, just because you don’t want to go through the hassle of unsubscribing? Wouldn’t you like those businesses to do you a favor and delete you from their database? And besides, do you really have anything positive to say about a company that has been sending you emails for years that you haven’t opened?
So as a business leader, after running re-engagement campaigns, delete contacts that are not engaging with you. Then, stay on a schedule of re-engaging stale contacts, and deleting those that are unresponsive.
#2 Set Goals and Measure Success
Blindly blasting out emails, without a plan with specific goals, eventually becomes a waste of resources at best, and possibly harmful.
Questions to answer when setting measurable goals of an email campaign can include:
- Why will recipients care about this email?
- Which segments of your email list are you sending the campaign?
- How should the email be constructed in appearance to be appealing to the targeted audience?
- What action do you want recipients to take?
- What open rate and click-through rate do you expect?
- How will you ultimately measure success?
- Are the calls-to-action strong enough, without being obnoxiously too strong?
#3 Engaging Subject Lines
Clickbait-style subject lines may seem like a good idea to inexperienced email marketers, but they often have components that flag the message as spam.
Interesting and engaging subject lines. These subject lines are:
- Interesting, and peak interest.
And these subject lines may:
- Instill urgency.
- Extend an offer, such as a “free” offer.
Nothing is more irritating than to receive an email about something for which you have no interest, even if you are a regular customer of the business sending the email.
Personalization, therefore, is increasingly important in an age when people are bombarded by hundreds of emails every day. This is especially true with younger demographics.
- Reference a contact’s name in the email, and perhaps in the subject line.
- Make the content relative to recipients through segmentation of the database.
- Reference recipients’ personal preferences in the email.
- Match personalized emails and landing pages.
#5 Send Emails from a Personalized and Branded Address
Sending email from an ESP’s (email service provider’s) email address is a hallmark of an unprofessional email campaign. Even worse, sending an email from an impersonal address shows disregard for the human being receiving the message.
The email address from which a campaign is sent should include a personal name and the company’s branded domain, such a email@example.com.
Poor examples of email addresses from which a campaign is sent include:
Besides sending email from a personalized branded email address, it’s important for recipients to have the ability to click “Reply” and send a message back to the company. Email campaigns sent from an address that does not accept messages are impersonal, distasteful, and disrespectful.
#6 Require Double Opt-In for Online Subscribers
Some of the best contacts in a business’s email database are those who have asked someone with the company to add them to their mailing list. Of course, these should be added to the database without opting in, because the recipient personally requested to be added.
People who subscribe online, though, are totally different. Due to issues relating to spammy bot subscribers, always require double opt-in. This is the process where someone signing up for a newsletter will receive an email, requesting them to click a link to verify their request.
#7 Perform A/B Testing to Determine Best Days and Times
There is a great deal of data as to the best times and days to launch email campaigns, which is a good starting point. Beyond that, businesses should use A/B testing to determine the optimal times to send their campaigns.
Businesses sending campaigns with contacts in multiple time zone can take advantage of ESPs that can send emails based on recipients’ time zone. This is particularly important for businesses with international contacts.
#8 Don’t Neglect Spam Testing
Business personnel who set up and format the messages for email campaigns often do not know all the rules regarding the things that flag an email as spam. So, it is always prudent to require spam testing, which takes just a few minutes.
Mistakes in formatting can be corrected, resulting in higher delivery rates.
Increase Your Engagement and ROI
Email marketing is not difficult for businesses with great content to share, and great products people need and enjoy. Combined with online advertising and social media marketing, email is another method of reaching out to people who have already shown interest in your brand.
As an internet marketing firm, we help clients improve the engagement and ROI of their email marketing campaigns. Please contact us for a free consultation, if you would like to explore opportunities to improve your campaigns.