Email marketing is one of the most effective forms of business generation. It generates around 29 billion in retail sales annually and has an estimated ROI of £32 on every £1 spent. What’s more 73% of marketers rate email as their best digital channel, making it a must for all businesses, from small mom-and-pop operations all the way up to large corporations.
With the ability to generate so much return, it is important to optimise your email marketing campaign and ensure you see the returns you deserve.To that end, we have put together this list of common mistakes made by marketers to help you to get the most out of your email marketing strategy.
1 - Thinking One Size Fits All
Emailing someone is a personal experience. Sending someone an email with a generic tone or ‘donotreply’ domain is a major red flag and shows them you haven’t taken the time to address their needs. Your message needs to be relevant. The needs of a CEO are different to the needs of a small business owner so make sure to tailor your email content to fit whatever your target market needs.
Segmenting your email address lists is an easy way to avoid this making this mistake. Research your potential clients and group them into similar needs, wants, or ambitions. Once you have done this, tailor an email for each segment and you will soon see higher click-through rates and greater engagement.
2 - Not Thinking About Mobile
With the advent of the smartphone, mobile became a must for business. From small business owners to huge companies on the stock exchange, business is done on the move, on a small screen.
In fact, studies have shown that 54% of emails are opened on a mobile device. If your email is not optimised for mobile they will appear clunky and not fit the screen. Instead of scrolling to see what you have to say, your potential customers could simply delete the email and move on.
Avoid tripping yourself up at the first hurdle and ensure your emails are responsive. Optimise all images optimised for mobile and keep the copy short and concise for easy reading.
3 - Website Weak Links
This one seems fairly simple but can be quite common as marketers can often get lost in the hyperlinks and forget to drive users to your website. Another issue is the illogical link, for example, a link that leads directly to a landing page that doesn’t relate to the email. This experience is confusing and users might feel you have given little thought to their experience.
To combat this, be strict on the number of links you add and ensure any links go through to a page or contact form that follows the same tone and drive of the email. This shows continuity and will earn you much-needed trust in the eyes of the user.
4 - Unprofessional Emails
The internet is awash with fraudsters and bots trying to get sales or leads by any means necessary. Users have become wary of emails from the likes of ‘billionaires’ offering free yachts and ‘princes’ needing a bank account for their wealth. Make sure your email marketing campaign doesn’t get lumped in with these and ensure your email looks and sounds professional.
The first thing you should do is have it written and edited by a skilled writer. At the very least you should have someone edit your email before you send it to make sure there are no spelling and grammar errors. There is no greater red flag than an email that has a misspelt CTA (call to action) like ‘Buy Nwo’. You should also ensure your tone is respectful and professional.
Take your time to make sure your subject line looks professional and is relevant. Avoid using all caps and don't employ spammy language. Keep your subject line short and to the point.
Next, you should avoid including attachments. Unless your reader has specifically signed up for an emailer with a PDF attachment or the like they are unlikely to trust your attachment. Put all the information you need into the body of the email and a link to more info on your site.
Finally, images may speak a thousand words but a boring stock image only screams ‘unprofessional’. If you don’t have a picture that fits your email rather leave it out altogether.
5 - Poor Campaign Planning
Email marketers often make this pitfall. It can also occur with even the best of intentions. Maybe you were waiting for more email subscribers before sending the email? Maybe you wanted to wait for the last day of the sale? Whatever the case your email lists can end up either not hearing from you for months or getting spammed with three separate emails in the same day.
Avoid this altogether and plan ahead. Have a calendar with dates of when and what emails need to go out. If you do this your customers will see consistency and trust your emails more. Setting campaign goals and objectives goes hand in hand with this practice gives you something to aim for. You can't hope to meet your targets if you don't have any so be sure to plan ahead.
6 - Going into a Campaign with The Wrong Mindset
This last mistake is one many marketing creators make. It is common human nature to feel the sting of a critique and have it affect your campaigns going forward. While adapting is certainly important don’t let previous negative feedback cloud your judgement.
One or two negative emails may just mean you need to tailor your emails and ensure you have the right segments. Better yet, use data from your previous campaign to make an informed decision and fine tune your next email. Take the good with the bad and develop an email marketing strategy that works for you.
Email marketing may seem old hat but its dividends still hold true. Ensure you have a stellar email marketing campaign by avoiding these common mistakes and you will soon find yourself beating your rivals.