Do's and don't's: what we've learned from 3 years of email marketing

Soon, we’ll be blowing out the candles on our third birthday cake. What better way to celebrate than by sharing our top email marketing tips, to help you connect with leads and create long-lasting customer loyalty? Let us give the gift of experience with this list of do’s and don’t’s for a quality campaign.

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1. Put the audience first

Design your mail to interest and engage the receiver, not the sender. A 2015 IBM study showed that around 80% of customers felt the brands they were dealing with didn’t know them, with around 25% feeling there was a lack of personalised or customised response to their needs. Email marketing is the perfect platform to put your audience’s wants above yours. Make them feel understood, and you’ll make good business in turn.

2. Build, maintain and review your subscriber list

Email subscribers are around three times more likely to share your content on social media, but only if they are still active. Make sure that your subscriber list is filled to the brim with interested and engaged customers and prospects by maintaining and reviewing your list regularly. Give specific attention to those top performing leads, and check in with inactive users.

3. Identify your top engagers, then focus your efforts on these leads

Once you have a list of subscribers, take the time to filter through them and identify your leads. By recognising and nurturing your leads using a targeted secondary email campaign, you can increase your sales potential by around 20%.

4. Strike when the iron is hot with new signups to your email newsletter

Email marketing campaigns are around 40 times better at generating new customers for your business than social media. Once you have generated fresh signups for your email newsletter, don’t let this engagement fade away: stay front of mind by providing your new audience with high-value content to reward their interest. Give, and you shall receive.

5. Be as targeted and relevant as your resources allow

Did you know that by personalising your emails, you could potentially increase open rates by around 26%? Appeal to your audience and create targeted, tailored campaigns that are designed to engage your potential customers. Write your emails knowing that your customers are people, not numbers.

6. If in doubt – test, test and test your email campaign again

There is no shame in getting things wrong the first time around. The famous inventor Thomas Edison went through over 10,000 models of the first light bulb before finding a solution that worked. That doesn’t mean that you need to test and tweak your email campaign over 10,000 times. It just shows that with hard work, a tailored process, and a good amount of insight into your customers’ values, your email campaign will surely turn on a few light bulbs along the way.

7. Test sending your campaigns on different days and times to see which is most effective

Depending on the type of service your business provides, your email audience will be active and responsive at different times of day and week. Try mixing it up a little to see when you get the best return on your campaign, then create a timetable based on your findings.

8. Never stop testing and learning

Listen to your analytics reports and adapt your email marketing campaigns to fit with new consumer trends. Between 2010 and 2015 alone, the number of people opening their emails on their mobile phones grew by 30%. Keep your email marketing strategy in line with the times by constantly learning new techniques, and listening to the wants and needs of your customers.

9. Make sure your email design is responsive for mobile

Fast forward to 2016 and around 50% of emails are now opened on mobile phones rather than on computers, so make sure that your emails can scale to fit mobile screens. Your text sizes and visual layout also need to work on smaller screens too.

10. Freshen up your content and design of your email campaigns in-line with your website

Whenever you give your website a new lick of paint, do the same to your email templates. By making these updates and changes all at once, your content will come across as professional, organised and trustworthy.

11. Ask your audience what they want from your email campaigns, then give them just that

It may sound pretty obvious, but the only way to find out what your audience wants is to ask them. Send out feedback surveys to gauge what your audience thinks about your content, then adapt your campaign to meet that feedback.

12. If you want your contacts to answer a survey, provide an incentive

Adding a cost-effective incentive to your email survey is a great way to increase your response rate, often by at least 10%. Make sure you tailor the incentive to suit your audience: if your customers gain a valuable experience from your survey, the chances are that they’ll return.

13. Maintain consistency in your email campaigns

Former British PM Benjamin Disraeli once said, “the secret of success is consistency of purpose.” We couldn’t agree more. Not only does this mean keeping your email content in line with your website, but it also means keeping the same high quality throughout your campaign, even if this means sending out mail less often. Consistency breeds trust, and trust fosters customer loyalty.

14. Treat your clients differently to your prospects

The best way to a loyal audience for your email marketing is to make them feel less like leads and more like guests. Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon once said that if you “build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful.” Make your email marketing a personal and engaging experience by focusing on their needs rather than yours. Help your customer feel valued and the chances are that they’ll not only reward you in return, but they’ll let others know how happy they are with your services. A few extra customers will never go astray.


For more information, read about how you can measure analytics through email marketing, or talk to Marc at Winbox.