Audit your email marketing

Source: Pixabay/Kristopher

Source: Pixabay/Kristopher

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It’s easy enough to tell if your email marketing strategy isn’t working—if you attract few signups; subscribers who don’t engage; or readers who never convert, it’s time to rethink.

But how can you analyse performance and determine where to make improvements? Here’s a point-by-point breakdown that you can use to improve your newsletters.

1. Accessibility

If people don’t know about your newsletter or can’t work out how to sign-up, then they won’t. Do you promote your newsletter on your site with features like a home page sign-up box, a pop-up or a lightbox? If you don’t, you should. You could also close on-site content pieces with a call to action directing readers to subscribe.

A significant benefit of your email list over your social following is that while social media companies own your relationships there, your email list is a direct, permanent line to your customers. Subscribers trump followers every time.

2. Confirmation

When the user signs up, do they receive a 'thank you' or verification email? A splash page like this is not only a nice personal touch which sets expectations for the ongoing comms, it also gives you the opportunity to provide additional helpful material such as a link to your top downloadable content or a video.

3. Quality of content

This is the single most important factor. Quite simply, does your audience value your content and does it work toward your business objectives? And is your content actionable? Define whether you are working to foster awareness or specific actions from your subscribers.

Also, consider whether you are catering to customers at multiple stages of the marketing funnel. Is the newsletter really only for customers who have already made a purchase? If that’s not the intention, think about segmenting your list or diversifying the content that you offer.

4. Effective calls-to-action

With each piece of content you create, you should have a specific business outcome in mind. You need to make it clear what actions you want your subscribers to take, and those actions should be relevant both to your customers and the content they are presented with. If you want your subscribers to take action, this point is crucial.

5. Clarity of design

Apple didn’t invent the mp3 player or the smartphone, but by perfecting functionality, they supplanted their competition so thoroughly they might as well have done. If your subscribers can’t read your newsletter, or can’t navigate it, then it’s as good as useless.

Equally, if you aren’t deploying your company branding and clearly directing your user with call-to-action sections, then it can’t be doing what you want it to do. Lastly, take the time to ensure it works on common devices and browsers - otherwise you (and your customers) may be missing out.

6. Tone

This is a tough one. What tone is right for your readers and for the content that they want to engage with? It’s important to deliver a consistent tone throughout your messaging as well as to consider the consistency of the visual identity that you present.

Whether linking to a blog or using fluorescent colours in your layout, you need to think long and hard about what you’re saying about your brand.

7. Spelling and grammar

Nothing undermines your credibility faster than poor spelling and grammar. Why should your readers trust you if you don’t pay attention to the details? Consider using a tool like Grammarly to fine tune the quality of your writing.

8. Images, video and audio

Illustrations attract the eye and complement titles, encouraging users to engage more deeply with content. Similarly, in our experience, newsletters with videos increase open rates, no matter what industry you’re in.

Put together, these points offer a comprehensive structure by which you can analyse your email marketing - and should offer numerous points that you can improve on.

Know you need to work harder at your email marketing but lack the time and resources? See how Winbox has helped our other clients. Oh, and sign up to our newsletter, you won’t regret it.