Email Marketing Best Practices for 2019 and beyond
If email marketing is not already part of your digital marketing strategy, now is the time to invest in this channel. Done right, emails have the power to help your customer acquisition as well as customer retention efforts. Despite the advantages that email marketing offers as part of an omnichannel marketing strategy, many companies fail to see results from email campaigns. Often, this comes down to sending out emails without considering best practices. Or, worse, bulk sending generic emails that offer no real value to audiences and no personalisation in place. Aside from an increased risk of such emails being flagged as spam, generic, impersonal, overly-promotional emails will often end up doing your brand a great deal of harm as far as reputation goes. To help you get more from your email strategies, we have put together a list of best practices for 2019 and beyond.
Email Marketing Best Practices to Improve Conversion
Struggling to see any improvement in your open rates? Battling to increase your click-through rates? Wondering why your email marketing efforts never seem to get anywhere? Here are some things that may help you get more from your email efforts.
Craft welcome emails to make an impression right from the start.
The humble welcome email is one of the most important messages you will send your audience. Despite their importance, many brands treat this email as an after-thought, using a generic template or, worse, the automatic message created by email software. One of the biggest advantages of using a marketing automation solution is the chance to create highly personalised emails right from the start. A personalised, carefully crafted welcome email helps you make the right impression right from the very first moment a new lead subscribes to your list. Including a lead magnet, special discount or exclusive offer will help make an even better impression.
Test email subject lines to improve open rates.
Split testing email subject lines is the best way to determine that your subject lines are hitting the right note. Subject lines can be a major factor in your overall conversion. If the subject line is not interesting, relevant or clear enough, the chance of your email being open will greatly decrease. Take time to create subject lines that lure readers in and make them want to know more. Split test to see which ones resonate better with your audience. Personalisation and emojis can both be effective – different industries have different trends, however. Taking the time to research subject lines specific to your niche is always a good idea.
Use lead magnets to grow your mailing lists.
Another way to draw your audience in is to create lead magnets. With the huge volume of emails that the average person receives daily, it has become harder than ever to build mailing lists. Lead magnets help to provide incentive. Done right, they can be a powerful tool that adds genuine value to your email marketing campaigns. To get the most from your lead magnets, make sure that they are focused on your audience and your industry. Case studies, free ebooks, podcasts, short courses, tip sheets, and other content upgrades can all be used as magnets.
Test and preview emails carefully.
One of the many reasons to invest in a comprehensive marketing automation solution is having access to a wide range of tools. This allows you to test and preview emails before sending. Testing is important from a quality perspective, helping to avoid errors that could reduce click-throughs and increase unsubscribe rates. Split testing can also be effective to measure the impact your messages have on specific audience segments. Mistakes such as incorrect email personalisation, missing images, broken links, strange code or weird elements that make emails impossible to read can be avoided by careful testing and previews.
Keep your focus on the metrics that matter.
To determine which metrics you should be focusing on, ask yourself what you want to achieve with your email campaigns. You may be wanting to increase open rates or drive more conversions. You may be driving awareness at a certain stage of the lead nurturing funnel or you may be planning a campaign that promotes specific products, such as a cross-selling campaign for an ecommerce store. Setting clear objectives and focusing on metrics that matter the most is essential.
Inspire your readers to take action.
At the same time, you also need to consider the action that you want your readers to take. You need to inspire action and gently push readers closer to where you want them to go next. This is done through calls to action, content that is designed to inspire and motivate, simple design that makes content easy to read, and elements such as countdown timers, testimonials, and infographics. Testing is essential for these elements, too. Make sure that your calls-to-action are visible and accessible even on smaller screens.
Make use of the thank you page.
Just as you crafted a careful welcome page, you also need to craft a thank you page that is strategic and optimised. To create this page, first think about your primary goal. Once a lead completes the subscription form, what do you want them to do? Will you send additional emails on a regular basis? Should they visit your blog or follow you on social media? Think about what you want users to do and then design and plan your thank you page around this goal. This is a good way to boost deliverability and improve your open rates.
Don’t forget to segment your audience.
Audience segmentation is important for the majority of campaigns. Although you may send a generic email blast to your full list once in a while, you will more likely be sending specific messages to specific segments. With the help of your marketing automation tool, you will be able to easily segment your lists, creating unique messages for each segment. This could include lead nurturing sequences for every stage of the lead funnel, personalised upsell or cross-sell messages, retargeting messages for old customers who have not interacted in recent times, and various other campaigns over the course of each year.
Grapevine Interactive offers a comprehensive marketing automation platform that allows you to get the most from your email efforts. Contact us to find out how this platform helps you take your email marketing to the next level.