By far, email marketing has the highest ROI than any other marketing channel. According to Demand Curve, email can drive six times more conversions than a Twitter post and is 40 times more effective than a Facebook post!
Email marketing is affordable and effective because it allows you to send the right message to the right person at the right time. With platforms like iContact, you can use automation, segmentation, and personalization to run effective email campaigns.
Lets chat about these items and a few more components that go into a successful email marketing campaign.
Automation, Segmentation, and Personalization
With automation, you can ensure that your subscribers receive your message when they are more likely to engage with what you send. You can use a simple automation nurture series to welcome new subscribers. The first email can be sent right away to welcome subscribers, a second to further inform them about your products and services, and a third that offers an incentive like a coupon code. This type of automation is set up to send emails on specific days, maybe day 1, 3, and 5 respectively.
Other options include following up with people that have or have not taken an action on an email. You can send an email and then three days later, send a follow up email only to those that did not open your first email. You can do the same with clicks, or if someone did open or click.
You can also set up an automation based on specific dates and events, like a webinar, birthday, or anniversary. Send emails before, on, or after the specified date to entice someone to register, renew, or use an incentive.
Not only can you send emails, but you can move contacts via lists and also update contact records with automations. Actions or triggers are also controlled by data you have, such as if they are on a list or segment, or obtain certain information that you want to filter in or out.
By segmenting your subscriber list, you can make sure that the right recipients receive the content that matters to them the most. Segments are a filtered view of your subscribers using the data you have or obtain.
By using segments, your campaigns can show a 50% higher click through rate. Marketers have found a 760% increase in email revenue from segmented campaigns, as per the Digital Marketing Association.
There are four basic segmentation pillars: geographic, demographic, psychographic, and behavioral.
Once you create your segments, you can create targeted email campaigns for each segment. This will help your content resonate better with your subscribers.
Make your emails feel like a one-on-one conversation by using personalization. Try merging the subscriber’s first name to make them feel special and stand out in their inbox. You can use personalization in subject lines as well as the body of an email.
You can collect information via sign-up forms and surveys. Try using more than the recipient’s first name. You can use location data, purchase data, and pretty much any other data you have.
Other Items to Improve Your Success
The first is getting people to open your emails. It doesn’t matter how well-written your email is or what cool images are used. If your subject line isn’t interesting enough to click, they will not open it.
Subject lines should be 6-10 words in length, otherwise you run the risk of it being cut off in the inbox view. Just think, the most important part of your subject line might be excluded!
To help “extend” your subject line, use the pre-header or also called preview text. This is what is shown in most inboxes next to or below the subject line, which is usually bold. The preview text is a great way to further entice your subscribers to open your emails.
Another way to get attention in a crowded inbox is to use emoji! As you see in the image above, emoji help you stand out when people scan their inbox.
Some quick tips on emoji. Make sure not to use too many and choose emoji that are related to your messaging.
If you send it, they will read it, correct? That might not be true. Subscribers will not be able to read your emails if it does not make it to their inboxes. Everytime you send an email, it is scrutinized by the recipient server and algorithms. Your inbox placement is dependent on something called IP and domain reputation.
The IP addresses are provided by your Email Service Provider, like iContact. Your domain reputation is based on, you guessed it, your website domain. More of the reputation is weighted toward your domain. For the most part, the IP addresses are well managed by your ESP. It is important to manage your domain reputation to keep it positive.
Think of your domain reputation as a credit score. Each time you send an email, providers like Gmail evaluate the actions your contacts take and ding or elevate your score based on those actions.
Here are some of the components that affect your reputation:
Actions that have a positive impact include opening emails, clicking their links, marking emails as important and marking emails as TINS (this is not spam). The more positive interactions people have with your emails, the higher your score. This means that providers will let more of your emails into the inboxes of new subscribers.
Although it’s impossible to completely eliminate negative reactions to your emails, you can greatly reduce the number of times they happen through personalization and usefulness. Some of the events that have a negative impact on your score include email bounces (invalid email addresses), being marked as spam, unsubscribes, and worse, subscribers ignoring your emails.
One of the biggest mistakes new email marketers make is thinking that buying contact lists will help scale their revenue. Actually, it will have the opposite effect on your deliverability “credit” score. The same goes for sending emails to unengaged contacts. Sending consistent emails to contacts who don’t want to hear from you will have negative effects on your score since they are likely to ignore your emails, or worse, mark it as spam or unsubscribe.
As you can see, there is more to running effective email marketing campaigns than simply sending an email to a list of subscribers.
Make sure to use automation, segmentation, and personalization to drive better results. Ensure that your emails are delivered to the inbox and stand out by using effective subject lines and keeping your domain reputation healthy.
If you are looking for an easy to use email marketing platform, check out iContact!
Hank is an author, speaker, podcast host and Sr. Manager of Client Solutions at iContact, a Ziff Davis company. With a passion for all things digital and social, combined with more than 20 years of experience in sales and marketing, he has been dubbed the Digital Marketing Infotainer because he makes marketing fun and successful.