For all the email marketing tips available on the internet, did you notice that tips from experienced marketers aren’t that commonly available?
We don’t come across too much content where marketers share email marketing lessons they have themselves learned. Wouldn’t it be great if we could get all those lessons in one place? Wouldn’t it be great to know exactly what all to include in our email pre-send checklist? That’d surely help us get better results in our next email marketing campaign.
So we decided to speak to some expert marketers and learn more. Based on their inputs, we’ve compiled some of the most valuable tips for email marketing in this roundup post.
Here’s three top reasons why these tips will hugely benefit your next email campaign:
- Hands-on and practical: These lessons are based on what the marketers discovered while they ran various campaigns. On-ground reality, no fluff.
- Varied: These tips come from a wide variety of industries. Pipework systems, lapel-pin manufacturers, high-tech eye-care, real-estate, PR and marketing agencies, payment processors, pet care, hire tech, … Such a wide variety makes these tips useful for every single business organization, no matter what industry you are in.
- Solution-focused: Each of these email marketing lessons come with specific solutions. Marketers tell you what you can do to overcome the challenge and get things right.
Here are the 14 email marketing tips from experts. Make sure you use them to the fullest!
1. Pursue quality leads
“Place quality of leads above the number of leads” – Saran Jameson.
“Make it a habit to maintain a quality email list. That will improve both your email marketing campaign and the marketing funnel.” stresses Sarah Jameson, Marketing Director, Green Building Elements.
“A lot of marketers typically think the number of leads matters. However it’s the quality leads that will truly impact your email marketing outcomes. Clean up our list every month and use double opt-in. This will increase the chances of your emails staying out of spam lists for most subscribers. ” suggests Sarah.
2. Work on preheader text
“Treat preheader text as the gateway to your subject” – Michael Koh
“One of the most important lessons I have learned in my experience is the relevance of the preheader text. We tend to bring amazing content on the subject line. We think it’s catchy and ready for a call-to-action mode and there’s nothing wrong with that.” Michael Koh, Senior IT Director at Propnex says, as he begins to reveal one of their favorite email marketing tips.
“However, preheader text also requires attention as it acts as a gateway to your subject. Normally, marketers, at some point, ignore this space. But if used effectively, this can be one of the best ways to increase your engagement rate. Keep in mind that preheader text is never secondary but just as important as your subject line!” Michael adds.
3. Let subscribers decide email frequency
“Show you value their time and let them select preferences.” – Ben Rollins
“Customers may want to hear from you about a sale or a new product, but don’t want an email from you every day. Let them know you want to stay in touch, but you also value their time and preferences. You can achieve this by giving them the chance to customize email frequency and/or type.” says Ben Rollins, Co-Founder of Axon Optics.
“I think the most important thing I’ve learned is to not make your customers hate you. Give people an option to receive your emails less often instead of unsubscribing.” Ben recommends.
4. Improve email personalization
“Create more focused, effective email subject lines” – Chris Gadek.
“Personalizing our email subject lines became the key to increasing our open rates. We ensured that subject lines addressed the specific advertising challenges businesses experience in just a few words.” AdQuick Vice President Growth, Chris Gadek shares their experience.
“We began researching the LinkedIn profiles of different organizational stakeholders to determine their pain points. With this information, we then created more focused and effective email subject lines. Like, we mentioned how out-of-home advertising provides a unique yet familiar way of reaching a massive number of consumers at one time. This got potential leads thinking differently about our offering. Importantly, this made our emails more than just another piece of junk mail. And by targeting specific days of the week, our email open rates went from 15 to 25% within one month.” recounts Chris.
5. Avoid some email types
“Role-based or disposable emails provide no value to your business.” – Stacey Kane
“Weeding out role-based and disposable emails from your email list can double your email open rates. Ensure that your emails get into your intended person’s inbox and not anywhere else.” says Stacey Kane, Business Development Lead, EasyMerchant.
“Landing in the spam folder is almost 100% guaranteed to leave your message unopened and unread. Sending messages to role-based and disposable emails also provides no real value to your business. ” continues Stacey.
“Some recipients use disposable emails to sign up for whatever you offer. Obviously they either do not trust your business enough or are not serious about wanting to receive further information about your business.” says Stacey, disclosing one of their most important email marketing lessons learned.
“Maintaining a hygienic email list by detecting and suppressing disposable and role-based emails can double our open rates. Most importantly, it will improve conversions.”
6. Build relationships
“Focus on building a great relationship.” – Wolfe Bowart
“The most important thing to remember about email marketing is that your list is full of people who have chosen to hear from you.” stresses Wolfe Bowart, CEO, Vivipins.
“Every time you send an email, you have the opportunity to build and strengthen the relationship. That’s why it’s important to focus on creating quality content that your subscribers will appreciate and find helpful. If you can do that, you’ll be well on your way to building a successful email marketing campaign.” Wolfe summarizes one of the their favourite tips for email marketing.
7. Be consistent and long-term
“Create continuity and consistency” – Tommy Chang
“Avoid the yard-sale approach. Stick to a handful of core themes throughout your sequencing plan. Pay attention to what has worked well in the past. Tweak as you go, if necessary.” Tommy Chang, VP and Head of Marketing, HomeLister , reveals one of their favourite email marketing lessons.
“Look at the entire year so you can create continuity and consistency for your business. When each piece of your email marketing works together towards achieving your desired objectives, your brand voice is stronger. It’s more memorable so your efforts are effective rather than scattered.” Tommy recommends.
8. Local language connects
“Use language that clients can relate with.” – Chirayu Akotiya
Chirayu Akotiya, Global Head of Marketing at Leena.ai shares their lessons from sending emails globally. “We started personalizing our promotional email subject lines as per the customers, geographies, and markets we were catering to.”
“For example, when sending promotional emails to the Middle East, we use local languages. We incorporate Arabic, Latin, and Persian into our email subject lines. That helps us connect with the people there. Since implementing this strategy, we have seen excellent results with these campaigns, as our customers are able to relate and connect with the content.” notes Chirayu.
9. Vary the timings
“Always run A/B tests for optimization opportunities.” – Devin Stagg
“We sent thousands of emails as part of our abandoned cart flows for the Pupford store. A few months into setting up that flow we decided to A/B test the timing (ie 1 hour vs 2 hours after cart abandonment). We saw a significant boost, about a 5% order rate increase, after running the A/B test.” Devin Stagg of Pupford shares their email marketing lessons.
“I wish we had run that test from the moment we set up the flow. We could have capitalized on a potential of 5% more orders in that few-month period. So now when we set up email flows, we A/B test from the start. Any email or flow running should have an A/B test of some sort. It might provide you with the most valuable opportunity for optimization!”
10. Talk about their benefits
“Remind recipients about things that matter the most to them. ” – Guna Kakulapati
Guna Kakulapati, co-founder and CEO of CureSkin wants marketers to focus on whatever would benefit the subscriber. “Send email reminders to customers about the specific items they left behind. Or reminders of any current sales they can take advantage of. That’s the best way to get them to reconsider the products that mattered most to them.”
“This practice sees a lot of success, as oftentimes customers need more than one exposure to a product before its purchase. Focus on creating a retargeting strategy. Follow up emails can get you customers.” Guna concludes with one of their proven email marketing lessons.
11. Maintain mailbox health
“You need to work on maintain your mailbox hygiene” – Cris Carillo
“Firing off emails from a new email address seemed easy enough. However, after our first campaign of single digit open rates with a slew of bounces, we learned a key lesson. It’s crucial to warm up an email address, for success in email marketing.” warns Cris Carillo, Co-Founder and Marketing Manager of Allied Payments. “One of the most important email lessons we learned was how essential the health of a mailbox is.”
Cris lays out the schedule, “Spend a month or 2 using an email service to familiarize your email address with the most common mail apps. This will significantly help improve delivery rates. It will also prevent emails being flagged as spam. The last thing you want after your email campaign is your domain being listed in a spammer database!”
12. Listen in order to serve better
“Be obsessed with listening to customers.” – Genaro Palma
“The key lesson I have learned is to pay attention to my unsubscribe rate. I learned this the hard way. Initially, I was sending too many emails to everyone on my list. Lots of customers dropped out of my list.” confesses Genaro Palma, SEO manager at PRLab.
Today, things are different. “My approach is now an obsession with listening to my customers. I use customised subject lines and am always specific to the audience. I break down my email list based on what I know about them and send different emails to the different audiences. By continually testing, I have built an understanding of what works and what doesn’t.” explains Genaro.
13. The ‘From’ matters
“Make people recognize that an email is from you for better open rates.” – Christian Velitchkov
“I believe the Subject Line and the “From” name are the two most important aspects of a successful email. And correcting subject lines was easier.” confides Christian Velitchkov, Co-Founder Twiz.
“The effect of the “From” name was not considered until much later.” reveals Christian. “You need to make people recognize that you’ve sent that email. That way, they’re more likely to open it.”
14. Think ahead to prevent loss
“Have an email strategy from day one.” – Zaid Ammari
“Don’t let your extensive list of email subscribers sit stagnant. We had a large influx of email subscribers to a free class we hosted – with no email content strategy or schedule setup.” Zaid Ammari, founder PPCMasterMinds recalls.
“By the time we had prepared and scheduled the content, it was already two months after the class had ended. Once the emails started going out, we had many unsubscribes. Users had forgotten who we were, and we lost 90% of our subscribers and any opportunity to upsell or get them back for another class. We learned having a pre-planned email content plan and strategy is a must for any digital strategy.” Zaid recounts their lost opportunity of a great ROI.
Over to you
Using emails to promote a business or raise funds for a charity is both an art and a science. And as more and more organizations rely on using digital forms of communications, the space becomes increasingly sophisticated. The great idea of today might become a widely accepted practice tomorrow. Which is what makes email a constantly evolving discipline.
The pro tips above may seem varied in what they suggest. Understand them, speak to them in the language they understand, talk about their benefits, be trustable, build relationships… Every suggestion has the same common denominator: Focus on your subscribers.
So what will you begin with?