How many emails do you get per day and how many are important, and business related? Do you read all of them? Statistics show that individuals receive an average of 88 emails per day. But not all these emails get read. Data from March 2019 shows that 56% of emails were designated as spam. This means that only half of the 219 billion emails sent around the world daily are considered legitimate by their recipients.
These numbers might be somewhat discouraging if you are about to launch an email marketing campaign. Knowing that people tend to distrust emails from companies they have not dealt with before, you may wonder if your emails stand a chance of being read. If you have consulted companies that are successful at providing email marketing services, they will tell you that even against these odds, “YES”, you can run a successful email marketing campaign.
5 Rules for building a successful email marketing campaign
It is a fact that people dislike spam (unsolicited emails). They also dislike emails that address a subject they are not interested in. It is also a fact that people like information. Anything that will improve their life, address a problem, inform them and educate them, is important. So, what you want is to engage email marketing strategies that won’t land you in the spam folder
For your email marketing campaign to succeed, you need to achieve your target open rate. If your email piques the recipients’ curiosity because it serves a purpose to them, they are likely to open it and read it.
By the end of this article, we hope you will have a better idea of how to generate inbound leads through email marketing
Build your email list
A successful email marketing campaign begins with a good email list. There are several ways to build your list, one of which is list buying. List buying can work, but only if you are careful to buy lists that will yield high returns. That is, an email list with high quality leads. But list buying can also result in higher unsubscribe rates because your emails will be unsolicited. More so, you may violate rules of consent and incur penalties from your service provider.
A better lead generation strategy is to build your email list. The downside of this option is that list building takes time. The upside is that you will get high quality leads from the get-go as people who sign up want what you have. This means that your emails will have a better chance of being opened and read.
Below are some tips for building your email list:
- Use sign up forms on your website, events, social media platforms and at your stores.
- Make the sign-up form concise. Name and email address are the most important details. If you need more information, you can always get it in later stages of conversion.
- Do not let the sign-up process interfere with user experience. For instance, your pop ups should not block content.
- Use lead magnets. People need an incentive to give you their email address. For instance, a coupon, whitepaper, eBook, webinar, etcetera
- To build your list beyond your current recipients, make your emails easy to share and forward.
Create a strong message
Recipients will open your email because they want to read the message it contains. Below are a few tips for creating an email that recipients will want to read:
- The text and image content should be attractive and inviting to read. Use proper spacing to make it easy to get the gist of the message while skimming through.
- Use language that is easy to understand. If you must use technical jargon, limit it to a few words or phrases. There will be time enough to dive into jargon when doing demos or holding a webinar.
- The problem you are trying to solve should be clear. Your audience has a problem and you have a solution. Your email should tell them what that solution is.
- Personalize. Your email recipients should feel as though they are conversing with a friend.
- Lead them to more information with a call-to-action.
Time your emails
Research shows that 69% of people unsubscribe from a business when they receive too many emails. as such, sending too many emails is one sure way to increase your email unsubscribe rate or worse, get blocked. Emails are meant to get you noticed and build engagement, not make your recipients feel like you are suffocating them.
There is no hard-and-fast rule for the best drip email frequency and different companies recommend different schedules. MailChimp for instance suggest sending an email at least once a month, to keep them engaged. You can start with once a month and adjust based on:
- Your goals
- Industry benchmarks. The caveat here is to use benchmarks to guide your strategy, as opposed to copy-pasting. Don’t send three emails a week if you one a month is enough.
- Your industry, seasonality and nature of your business.
- Email type. For instance, you only send welcome emails once. If you are building up momentum for an upcoming event, you could send more emails in the days leading up to the event.
The only way to be sure of the schedule that works for you is to use your analytics to see which frequency is most successful. A good rule of thumb is not to send emails unless you have something important to tell your recipients.
Automate your campaign
A lot of things will start happening once you launch your email marketing campaign.
People will open your emails. Some will read, some will not
Those who read will respond to your call-to-action, while others will not respond
You will get visits to your website and social media platforms, where another set of actions will take place…and so on and so forth.
Trying to track all these responses manually is next to impossible. Even with a huge work force, a lot of things can be overlooked when you try to run your digital campaigns manually. You need marketing automation software to handle tasks such as:
- Plan your schedule
- Segment your lists and send your emails based on the lists
- Send lead-nurturing emails
- Split test your campaigns
- Track metrics and create reports
Optimize for mobile
35% of professionals read their emails on mobile. (Source: Convince & Convert)
75% of Americans access email on their smartphones. (Source: Blue Corona)
Such statistics are why it is so important to optimize your emails for mobile as most people now prefer to access their emails while on the go.
Below are tips on how to make your emails mobile friendly:
- Use a template to convert your email to fit a mobile screen
- Keep your subject line in under 40 characters
- Use bigger font
- Use small graphics to limit image load time
- If you have multiple links or calls-to-action, avoid stacking them as this makes it harder to tap each one individually
- Keep all important information above the fold
Just as with other marketing efforts, running successful email marketing campaigns is a process that will take time. There is no magic bullet for increasing your open rate, click through rate and response rate. In addition to the five email marketing techniques discussed above, you need proper planning, continuous analysis and constant improvement to start seeing better results.
As you launch your campaign, set realistic goals. It is always better to seek incremental improvement on your past performance as opposed to using pinning your campaign performance on arbitrary figures or benchmarks. Break down your last campaign to identify areas that could use some improvement. For instance, if you didn’t optimize for mobile, implement better optimization on your new campaign. If you didn’t segment or clean up your list before launching your past email campaign, do it differently this time. Sanitize your list, segment it and then create your message to suit the target segments. Above all, always give value.