9 Steps for effective email marketing

9 Steps for effective email marketing

1. Know your goals

Before you start, plan your email marketing strategy. Email marketing helps you to stay focused and motivated. Identify what the main aim of your email campaign is. If you haven’t the objective of your campaign you cannot proceed the next step.

This may include,

  • Welcoming new customers
  • Build a relationship with them
  • Increase your brand’s visibility
  • Build customer loyalty
  • Launch a new product
  • Promote a specific product
  • Generate conversions or sales
  • Increase website traffic

2. Select an email marketing service provider

Email marketing service provider helps you to create more successful email marketing campaigns. There are a huge range of email marketing tools out there. Important thing is to choose one that fits your aim and your budget. Look for free trials so you can review the product before buying it. Email marketing service provider will help you to schedule transactional emails, respond quickly to customers, create and deliver promotional emails.

Some of the most popular email marketing service providers are:

3. Segment your audience

You need to decide who you are going to contact. To make your email content relevant, you need to identify your target audience. Segment your email list for better targeting. You will be able to segment it based on your audience on the basis of their behaviours and their needs. Once your contact lists are in order, you can easily set up your campaigns to go out with optimal results.

This will help you to design an email that will engage them and encourage them to respond. If you are not segment your email contacts you will get low click and low response rate only.

Some common fields to segment your list by,

  • Location – location segmentation is a common strategy when a target audience has different preferences based on their location.
  • Demographics – Demographics explain who your buyer is. These data relevant to your product or service. This may include gender, age, education, employment, income level etc.
  • Psychographics – Psychographics explains why your customer buys and what your user prefers. This refers to ‘personality and emotions’ based on behaviour, including attitudes, lifestyle, hobbies and personality.

4. Design your email

A marketing email should be designed to turn the readers to take an action. Email design is a technical art. Attractive design can go a long way to driving conversions. You will need to create attractive design that get attention and encourage people to sign up.

Some important practices to consider when designing email template is,

  • Ideal email width should be 500 to 600 pixels
  • Your layout is backbone of your design. Vertical layout over horizontal is preferable.
  • Links will be in blue font.
  • Use short sentence and paragraphs
  • Text and images should used in right proportion
  • Minimize the use of images
  • Make it easy to unsubscribe. Don’t hide that button.
  • A little white space is a powerful visual tool. Use dividing line also.
  • Animation- Movement attracts attention.
  • In footer provide complete contact details.
  • Make it easy to share your email via social sharing links.

5. Create a great content

Great content is one of the important elements in email campaign. Your content gives your readers a reason to absorb what you have to say. Create email that benefits your readers and your business. You don’t need to write a brief story. A poll, survey, GIF and video will help you to keep readers more engaged.

Tips for effective email copy,

  • Don’t limit your email communications to sales push. Share content which is valuable to your subscribers
  • Encourages them to interact with your products or services
  • Take the time to thank your audience
  • Offer valuable coupons and discounts to your readers.
  • Make your call-to-action links and buttons clear and easy to find
  • Don’t use difficult words
  • Breakups your copy with subheads and bulleted lists. This will help subscribers to easily read it.
  • Make your content by using font colors, sizes, and bold tags. They attract you subscribers visually.
  • Make sure to use readable fonts.
  • Your company’s logo and images include in your newsletter
  • Personalize email copy performs better than general email copy (mention your customer’s name)
  • Keep your subject line related to your copy.
  • If you are making an offer, be sure to showcase the benefits rather than the features.
  • Making your content targeted to seasonal elements. That is the great way to make the email content more relevant.
  • Check your copy for grammar and spelling.
  • Avoid the use of Spam words like free, urgent, call now, opportunity, prizes etc.
  • Don’t clutter your promotional emails and landing pages with multiple messages for users.
  • Optimize your content for mobile friendly.

6. Create a great landing page

Landing pages are web pages that readers come at after clicking a link which is in email. Your campaign success is based on the number of people taking the next step you desire.

You may consider following things to create a great landing page,

  • Your page needs to be load quickly.
  • Have a great headline.
  • Create dedicated landing page rather than your website homepage.
  • Each landing page should have a single goal.
  • Make sure that the headline in landing page is similar in the email.
  • The email and the landing page should have a similar look which means same font, same color and design.
  • Keep the text simple
  • Don’t use too many images. The user may distract from the ultimate goal of the page.
  • Explain benefits and provide testimonial
  • Use white space on the page will focus your reader’s attention and draw them immediately into the action.
  • Create call to action button in different color
  • Be sure your landing page forms are short and simple such as signup forms.
  • Use vertical or horizontal line to separate your signup form from the rest of the page.

7. Plan your topics and send schedule

Send emails on scheduled basis that will bring trust among your readers and your relationship gets strong with them that will help you to increases chances of sales. If your customers live in different time zone, you need to send emails at the right time. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are the best weekdays to deliver your email campaigns.

Ways to schedule,

  • Schedule the sequence of your messages on the basis of daily, weekly,Monthly and annually.
  • Send emails at a specific date
  • Send emails at a specific time
  • Send emails based on a special occasions like anniversary date, birthday date etc.

8. Send out the emails

After you finalise your email design and content of the mail, now it is time to send out the emails to your list of contacts. Before you sending emails double check all the things such as how do your emails look when your customers receive them? Is the spelling and grammar correct? Is the sender correct? You need to check the links are work properly. You need to send test emails also.

9. Analyze the results

It doesn’t end when you send out your emails. It is necessary to track and analyze emails performance. If anyone has not tracking their email marketing campaigns performance then they will loss their opportunity for improvement.

Tracking your campaigns performance is a great way to look for areas that require improvement

Here are some of the most important metrics you should be looking at

  • Open Rate – The percentage of email recipient who opened your email. Open rate = email opened / emails delivered To improve your open rate you should clean and up to date your email database. Make sure all recipients have actually opted in to receiving your emails. Write like a friend that is the only way to improve your open rates.
  • Click Through Rate – the percentage of email recipient who clicked on a links that contain on a given email. Click through rate = total clicks / no of delivered emails To improve your clicks through rates follow up with your subscriber this could inspire them. Your email should be reflect your goal. Motivate your readers that encourage them to take action.
  • Bounce rate – The percentage of your total email sent that could not deliver to the recipient’s inbox. Bounces aren’t good for your email list Bounce rate = total no of bounced emails / no of delivered emails Send confirmation emails is one of the way to decrease bounce rate. There are two kinds of bounces to track Soft bounce – A soft bounce occurs when the email bounces after being accepted by the recipient’s server. This is a temporary problem such as problem with the recipient’s server Hard bounce – Hard bounce means permanent delivery failure. It happens when the email address fails and is not accepted by the recipient’s server. You should immediately remove hard bounce address from your email list.
  • Unsubscribe rate – the percentage of email recipients who clicked on the unsubscribe link which is in inside of your email. Unsubscribe rate = no of unsubscribes / no of delivered emails. Irregularly timed campaigns, a message that doesn’t display properly, weak content these are all the reason for increase unsubscribers.

Advantages of email marketing

  • Low cost – the cost of email marketing much lower than the any other forms of marketing
  • Email marketing is easily measurable – email marketing will allow you to track open rates, click through rates and bounce rates making it simple to spot how a campaign can be improved.
  • Email marketing is easily sharable – With the simple click of the forward button, subscribers can share offers and news with their friends.
  • Global – your email campaign can reach anyone in the world.
  • Segmentation – You can easily segment groups of customers and send them specific messages that target their personal needs and interests.
  • Call to action – people can click on links and follow your call to action immediately.
  • Email marketing build credibility – it build credibility through sharing a valuable content with your customers.
  • Time saving – Email Marketing reports generate immediate responses.
  • Scalable – Email marketing can be used to reach large audiences. It can be used to reach smaller targeted audience also.

Email marketing is a powerful channel to drive revenue to your business. Hopefully this guide will help you to improve your email marketing strategy.

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