You may think you have your email marketing strategy down to a tee. However, there are plenty of brands still falling at the first hurdle and making simple mistakes. When you send out an email, you have one chance to impress that recipient and as most other businesses are doing the same thing, competition is fierce.
Nowadays, people expect a more personal approach and brands are continuously adapting their marketing to show more personalisation. Therefore, generic, blanket campaigns no longer cut it. They get lost amidst a plethora of other irrelevant emails considered to be spam. This is the worst category you could possibly land in, so to avoid it, here’s 7 mistakes you’re making with email marketing and how to rectify them.
1. You make easy mistakes
First things first, don’t fall for common blunders. Your email is going to land in a sea, no, an ocean of other emails so you don’t want to just blend in more by making a mistake. You have one chance to make an impression and falling at the first hurdle can really damage your campaign.
Get yourself a set process in place from start to finish. Map out each part of your email procedure to ensure you can’t go wrong. Whether you think you have it nailed or not, this will help ensure no blunders slip through the net. Here’s a helpful rundown of common mistakes that you should really avoid.
2. You’re a bragger
When emailing a new client, do you see it as an opportunity to tell them (brag) about other businesses you work with? If so, you really need to stop. Yes, this can be a way to endorse your credibility as a business but does a busy IT manager really care? They want to know what you can do for them, not their arch competitor from across town.
Including testimonials now and then, that relate directly to the recipient can be beneficial. Just remember to do this tastefully and in a way that won’t distract from the actual message. Always keep in mind how or why your email will appeal to the recipient and make that the focus.
3. You don’t target
In 2018, targeting should be an absolute given. If you think you can blanket send emails in the hope that someone bites, you’re wasting your time. People no longer have time for impersonal emails. The customer journey has changed and if you want people to show interest in your product or service, it has to benefit them specifically.
When compiling an email list, be thorough and break it down into segments. For example, a national jewelry store may be sending out the same offer nationally but by tailoring the offer for each location, it will appear far more personal.
Think about the service or product you offer and break your audience down into segments. Each email you send should then be specific to each segment making for a much more personal message.
It’s always best to include something that makes people want to click through to your website to find out more information about your products or services, such as an infographic, in-depth guide or a useful tool.
4. You don’t use a clear call to action
Aside from building awareness, when you send out an email campaign, you want people to act, right? Failing to include a call to action is just about as useful as sending a blank email. It’s important to direct your audience and make it as easy as possible for them to take action.
Clothing brand Bonobos did a stellar job of incorporating a clever call to action which led to a clear increase in sales. They sent out a simple message ‘select your size and get 25% off all shorts.’ Recipients were then presented with every different size so all they had to do was click their size and save 25%.
5. You send image only based emails
Not all users have images set as default, only 33% in fact. Therefore, if your campaign is solely image based, a large proportion of your audience may not even see it. Including your key message as a text is, therefore, a safer option as you can be sure it will load. Using images is a great way to grab the recipient’s attention, just be sure to lower the resolution so the images load fast.
6. Your email subscription list is poor
A quality subscription list is key to a successful email campaign. It should be made up of your target customers and people that are going to take positive action when your email lands in their inbox. If you’re unsure about this, think about how you created that list in the first place. If it was through a free giveaway on Facebook, chances are, it could be a real mixed bag of people. Those subscribers might just have been interested in that ‘free meal for two’ you were giving away.
It’s therefore important that when you gain new subscribers, they have come through channels that show they have a genuine interest in your product or service. Hubspot is a master at this. They offer free marketing resources and guides in exchange for an email address and a few simple details. Those who input their information are already showing a genuine interest in their service and likely to respond well to future emails.
7. You don’t engage with customers
If you’re going to send out an email campaign, follow up and communication with customers is key. This is how you ‘seal the deal’ and nurture any leads that come in. Some businesses can be guilty of taking a ‘one-way’ approach by firing out emails and failing to respond to customer queries. This begs the question – why bother?
To ensure you don’t overlook or miss any customer inquiries, have a clear plan on place. This should include every stage of the process from the initial gathering of customer data to follow-ups a few weeks later. Here’s a handy resource that will help you plan and track your email marketing.
To sum up
Used well, email is one of the most powerful digital marketing channels. Having the ability to personalize communications and reach people in such a targeted way can have a significant impact on ROI. Just be sure to map out your process from start to finish as this will help you to get the most out of your email marketing.
Ryan is an SEO Specialist at the Bradford based Digital Agency, Harrison Mann. Being in the Digital Marketing field for 6 years now, he enjoys keeping up to date with the latest in all things digital and search.