How to avoid a ghoulish email marketing campaign

Frightful email marketing campaigns can damage your company’s reputation, lose sales, and cause people to unsubscribe. And the fewer people that see your email campaign, the less chance you have of converting them into a sale.

There are many factors that affect email marketing campaigns, let’s look at 8 email mistakes you should avoid:

1. A dodgy subject line

Your contacts will judge you based on this tiny sentence – get it wrong, and they’ll make the wrong assumption about you.

The key to a successful subject line relies on:

-   The length. Keep it short – too long and it will be cut off by certain email clients and devices.

-   The messages. Don’t lie – tell your contacts what they will see when they open your email.

-   Testing. In time you will learn what type of subject line turns your contacts on. Test the length, the messaging, and the use of personalisation in the subject line.

If possible, use a split test to test multiple subject lines at the same time. This ensures your subject line has the best fighting chance.

2. Email bombardment

By sending too many emails, too often, you are pushing your contacts away. Contacts are more likely to unsubscribe if you send them too much at once.

Carefully look at your email reports. See what time of day works well for your contacts, and which time of day you should avoid. The same applies for day of the week, type of message i.e. sales or informative, and style of email i.e. plain text or HTML. As you may have guessed by now, your email marketing success relies heavily on testing.

3. Forgetting your mobile users

Around 50% of your emails are now opened on mobile devices. The number of people opening emails on mobile devices is rising daily – you should not forget these contacts. If you do not create a template that is mobile optimised – your contacts will be annoyed by the big clunky email you’ve sent, the tiny writing, and the inability to push your call to action because their fingers are too fat for the tiny button.

Again, when selecting your email marketing company, find out if their reports allow you to see opens by email client (hint: Wired Marketing allows this).

4. No call to action

What’s the point in sending email campaigns without a call to action? You’re sending emails because you want the person to take action – so why not tell them what you want them to do? Don’t be afraid of being direct with your call to action.

5. Too much information

Imagine an email that contains the following information: ‘Click here for more information.’ ‘20% off!’ ‘Limited time offer.’ ‘Request a call back.’ ‘Download our brochure!’ There’s too much information, and you are confusing your contacts with mixed messages. Your email campaign should have one aim, as part of your overall marketing goals. Make sure your aim does not get lost in a muddle of information. It’s ok to have multiple offers running at once, but keep one to each email.

6. Not making your links obvious

Your call to action needs to be upfront and obvious – don’t bury it in your content, or at the bottom of your email. This same rule applies to your website address. Although your site may not be the main place for your contacts to land, some will still want to visit your site. Include a link to your site as part of your logo, to help users find more information if they require.

7. Included a no-reply from name/address

By listing your from name, or reply to address as ‘no reply’, you are signifying to your subscribers that they shouldn’t be contacting you – you’re scaring them away. Make your from name friendly and easily recognisable. And be sure to use a real email address as your reply to so that contacts feel they can contact you with any queries. You never know, this could even lead to a conversion.

8. You miss the window of opportunity

Think about the aim of your campaign, and consider how long it will take contacts to react and take action. If you’re promoting a specific event, don’t inform contacts weeks and weeks in advance – they’ll forget, they won’t take immediate action, or they’ll just get bored of your reminders. Again, this all comes down to testing, and understanding your contacts. Find out what time works best to ensure your campaigns are sent in a timely matter.

This autumn, take time to revaluate your reports before starting your festive campaigns. Find your best and your worst campaigns, and consider how they can be improved next time.

The only way to boost engagement, open and click through rates is by testing, and trying again.

Got a question? Feel free to comment below, or tweet us @Wired_Marketing.

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