At enCOMPASS, we have been steadfast in our advocacy for email marketing: We consistently see the proof that it offers immense value to marketers and small business owners, and represents a cost-effective way to connect with customers, drive website traffic, and increase sales.
The crucial caveat here is that, for email marketing to be effective, it needs to be done correctly. That is, it requires the right content, the right formatting, the right targeting, and strategic timing.
To ensure you have every item in place for your email marketing campaign, consider the following email marketing checklist.
Core Elements for Successful Email Marketing
- Alignment of audience and message. The first step in any email marketing campaign is to clearly define who you’re trying to reach. In a streamlined and effective campaign, you’ll likely have several segmented audiences, and each audience may require slightly different content. (For example, if you’re using email to sell HR software solutions, you may have a list of HR directors at large enterprises, and a separate list for small business owners who handle HR themselves; the content direction for each list may be a little different, speaking to separate values and pain points.)
- Personalized greeting. It may seem like a small thing, but personalized greetings can go a long way toward boosting email open rates. If you don’t have an email marketing platform that allows for easy greeting personalization, we’d highly recommend an upgrade before you send out your next batch of marketing emails.
- The right contacts. Always take a minute to double-check the names on the list you’re using, and make sure you’re sending your latest email to the correct audience. It can be embarrassing, to say nothing of ineffective, to send a “we haven’t seen you in a while” email to someone who was just in your store yesterday.
- Correct grammar and punctuation. Everyone makes a typo from time to time, and a minor grammatical error is no cause for alarm. With that said, it’s imperative to double- and triple-check your email content; copy that’s riddled with errors comes across as unprofessional and may cause your audience to lose trust in your company. Ideally, you’ll have multiple sets of eyes to proofread your email marketing copy.
- Clear value proposition. You never want to email just to email. Always ensure you’re offering a clearly identifiable value to your audience. That might mean news about a new product or sale; a special offer code; or a concrete set of tips and guidelines. As you review your marketing emails, always make sure you can very clearly identify the value you’re delivering (and that it’s the right value for the audience in question).
- Trackable links. Trackable links are one of the best tools available to measure the effectiveness of an email marketing campaign. Before you hit send, verify that each link actually leads to the intended landing page. Also make sure that the tracking on those links works the way it’s supposed to.
- Clear calls to action. Make sure you have direct calls to action in your emails. It’s worth experimenting with different configurations: Text versus buttons, multiple CTAs within an email, different verbiage, etc. But always make sure you’re providing clear “next steps” for the reader of the email, along with the link they need to click on.
- Clarity and readability. Before you send a marketing email, we recommend taking just a minute to read the text of the email out loud. Read it to yourself, or better yet, to someone else in your office. Make sure the copy actually flows, makes sense, and doesn’t sound awkward or cumbersome. Again, this may seem like a small thing, but it can actually make a big difference for how your audience perceives the email content.
- A compelling subject line. The email subject line is a small section of text, but it has big implications for whether people actually open the message. Always be sure you take time for a concise and compelling subject line that promises real value, giving your audience members reason to read further.
- The right timing. When’s the best time to send your marketing emails? It can vary depending on your audience. At enCOMPASS, we have software that can actually help you determine when people have historically opened their email, and automate sending accordingly so as to boost open rates. Reach out to us to learn more about this, but for now, just note that timing is an important aspect of effective email marketing.
Get Email Marketing Right
With these core elements in place, you can ensure you’re on the path to a strategic and effective email marketing campaign. And if you have any further questions, we’re here to talk. At enCOMPASS, we are big believers in the ongoing relevance of email marketing. Just reach out to us any time you’d like to chat about doing email marketing right.
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