Email marketing can be one of the most polarizing forms of marketing communication. Sending a carefully-crafted email to the right person at the right time could be enough to convince the customer to take action and support your brand; if you’re not careful, however, you could also annoy the customer and make them think twice about doing business with your organization. So there is a bit of risk involved.
For this reason, it’s important that you brush up on best practices for email communication. Here are some email marketing best practices to consider implementing in your strategy:
Improve Your Subject Lines
One of the easiest ways to stumble out of the gate with email marketing is to botch the subject line. You want to be clear and concise if you are targeting your readers with a direct email marketing message. At the same time, it’s important to avoid sounding overly-promotional or you could come across as spam, which could get you sent to the junk folder. Most experts, it should be noted, tend to agree that 65 characters is the ideal length for a subject line while the average line is about 40.
Use Your Own Customer Lists
It may be tempting to go out and buy a list of email addresses to use for marketing purposes. Understand, though, that this could backfire. It’s an easy way to get blacklisted as you will be targeting a large portion of customers who didn’t sign up to receive messages. Instead, consider building your own lists organically using data that you collect. You will experience stronger results, and you will also protect your business’ reputation.
Focus On Value
One of the most fundamental email marketing best practices requires honing in on your core message. Customers hate it when you waste their time, so avoid doing this at all costs. Email messages need to contain value in some form or another, and it's best to convey it with as little fluff as possible. This could come in the form of a coupon or deal, announcement, or educational content. Make it a point this fall to eliminate marketing content that is bereft of value, and your readers will thank you for it.
Don’t Send Too Many Messages
Another way to alienate your readers is to send them too many messages. According to one email marketing best practices study, the majority of respondents — or 48.5 percent — said they flagged emails as spam because marketers emailed too often. Understand that there is no set formula for telling how many messages are too many. Your best bet is to take a look at your outbound messages, analyze the response rates and try to determine which ones are performing the best. Then, look for ways to trim the fat and send less.
Optimize For Mobile
Remember that many of your customers will be viewing your messages on mobile devices — not desktops. So make sure to consider what your emails look like on iOS and Android systems. You should always use a responsive template, and reduce image sizes so that they don’t give viewers a hard time.
Integrate Your Data
Businesses tend to collect a great deal of information about customers, but they often don’t maximize its usage. Instead of just building a database, make sure you integrate it with your CRM system so that you can populate your emails with personalized data that can help drive sales.