Recently, the effectiveness of email marketing has been widely questioned. Social media and instant messengers are becoming more convenient, accessible, and effective ways of communicating with customers. However, email marketing still has its place. What is more, email campaigns and strategies can be effective if, firstly, you manage to make them engaging for your subscribers, and secondly, avoid the most common mistakes and failures. Let’s talk about them in this article.
Top 8 Common Email Marketing Mistakes
Let’s take a look at the typical mistakes that can occur when working on an email newsletter. Each of them has great destroying potential for your email marketing campaigns, so use them as a checklist of things to avoid.
Working with an Outdated Database
As you can imagine, the database is the primary weapon in email marketing. Your email marketing RIO will largely depend on the quality of this base. Some business owners start building a database from open sources or even buying email lists from third parties. The disadvantage of such methods is the database quality, the target audience mismatch, and not even relevant contacts.
It is better to collect the email list only from your site, as soon as you have your first subscriber. Yes, it can be time-consuming, but you will get a lot of qualified leads to work within the final result. What is more, there are additional email lists collection strategies that will help you with this task.
- – Come up with an attractive lead magnet in the form of a pop-up window. It can be easily set up on your website with the help of OptinMonster. To make your lead magnet form effective, you should come up with a value that should be offered for free. For example, you may offer your new subscribers a discount, free shipping, or invite them to participate in the contest in exchange for their email addresses.
- – One more way is to publish a press release to spark interest in the company. In a press release, you can notify the audience that an additional discount will be available for subscribing to the newsletter. It is possible to submit your press release for free here.
- – If the database already exists, but you have not worked with it for more than three months, you need to improve before you start sending letters.
- – Make sure to use email checkers to weed out irrelevant and dead emails. After this check, your email list may become significantly shorter, but there will only be emails of real subscribers who are potentially interested in your products or services.
No “Reanimating” or “Introductory” Letter
Modern users do not like and will not read “sudden” emails from companies they once subscribed to. If you start a conversation without a proper introduction, you will receive many complaints and unsubscriptions from your newsletter. Modern email marketing obliges you to be polite, so begin your communication by kindly and briefly reminding your subscribers of the following:
- – Who you are;
- – Where and how did they follow you;
- – What are the benefits of your newsletter;
- – Why your prospects shouldn’t unsubscribe.
If you are planning to hold promotions and come up with various offers, be sure to inform your users about it in the letter. You need to motivate your followers to stay in touch with you.
Lack of Unsubscribe Link and Violation of the Rules of Mail Service Providers
One of the main requirements that mail providers put forward is the letter’s content. Specifically, we are talking about placing an unsubscribe link in each letter. Such a link is a real need since you can reduce the number of complaints regarding your mailing list with it. If there is no such link, then the subscriber will have no choice but to click on the button that your letter is spam.
As you know, there are some reasonable spam complaint limits. Exceeding the limits on the number of complaints does not lead to anything good. Also, before you start launching your email newsletter, make sure to discover the provider’s rules.
Here are Google’s recommendations regarding email newsletters. What is more, your emails shouldn’t look spammy – avoid capitalizing your messages, presenting extra urgency, free offers, and obvious scamming. We would also recommend studying this 188 spam words list. Be careful with adding the words on the list to your emails since many seem to be completely legal (like online marketing or marketing solution); however, Google considers them to be potentially spammy.
Leap in Activity
When you have completed all the previous points, then it would seem it’s time to notify all your subscribers. But there is also a pitfall here that can bring trouble. For instance, an email provider like Gmail does not respond well to spike inactivity.
The point is that if you were not active with your email marketing and immediately start sending letters, then your actions will resemble spam. It will look as if the user downloaded a database somewhere and launched a mass mailing.
For your actions not to look fraudulent, you need to proceed with the mailing smoothly. For example, you can start with 300-500 emails per day in two runs. And then you can start building up the so-called activity. Increase your mailing volume gradually, and don’t forget about new subscribers.
Many people forget about the need to test the mailing list. Before you start the mailing list, launch a test campaign by sending your email to one-third of your subscribers. Following this recommendation, you will make sure that your email successfully passes all spam filters. Also, test your letters for all the nuances (the adaptability of the layout, personalization tags, display of the preheader, etc.).
What is more, for your email marketing campaign to have the greatest ROI, do pre-testing every time you create a new email for your subscribers — the little things matter.
For example, you can test three different email subject lines or three different calls-to-action by sending various emails to three groups of subscribers. Next, evaluate the effectiveness of each group of emails by analyzing the open rate, bounce rate, jumpings to the website, and conversions.
Lack of Mailing Personalization
When we have sorted out the technical issues, it’s time to talk about mistakes regarding the content of the letter. It is essential to understand that mailing is a way to retain customers. The more your newsletter resembles a lively dialogue, the more chances you will gain subscribers’ loyalty. Even transactional emails can be made alive – “notifications of order status changes” (if registered and did not show activity) and others can be made more personalized by going to the dialogue with the subscriber. Photoretouchingservices.net, a photo processing company, has begun sending emails on behalf of a living person which can also be replied to. This made it possible to reduce the bounce rate by 37%, as Samuel Adamson, retoucher, and co-founder of this service shared his experience.
That is why email marketing is a rather complex channel of attraction and retention. You need to follow all the technical rules, and also create engaging and converting email chains. To do this, you need to collect data about your customers based on their behavior on the site, analyze patterns, and anticipate their needs personalizing their experience as profoundly as possible. The only way to do it is to use specialized tools for data collection, analysis, and personalization. For example, you may send one more letter if your potential customer views a particular category of goods on your website or if there is an abandoned shopping cart.
Excess Mailing Frequency
The modern world is an active distributor of cortisol (stress hormone), and getting any unnecessary notification on the phone is very annoying. The frequent mailing will lead to a high unsubscription rate. 3-5 meaningful emails per week are optimal, each of which should be perfectly timed to a particular user’s behavior, as we’ve stated above.
Also, the frequency will depend on the specifics of the company’s products and services. You can limit yourself to one letter and one reminder per week. By the way, reminder letters have a high level of opening, which creates a feeling of being respected and valued.
Selling Diverse Products/Services in One Letter
When people receive the first positive results from the mailing, they begin to want more and try to sell several products and services in one letter. It is normal practice if the products you offer in a letter belong to one category (the one that is of interest to the user, of course). However, your customers will not appreciate such aggressive approaches if you start offering them everything you have in one letter.
The more options to choose from, the more difficult it is to make a final decision. This is a scientific fact. Even if the alternatives are roughly similar to each other, for example, you sell running and fitness shoes in one letter; then, the buyer will think and end up not buying anything at all. But if you offer several running shoe models, the consumer will choose the model that suits them best.
E-mailing marketing does not tolerate haste, but requires careful study of the process. If you simply attack your subscribers with content, it won’t work. Remember, email marketing is a communication strategy, not a one-off or ongoing attack.
Put yourself in the recipients’ shoes, and then you will develop a unique and ideal email strategy. Use the tips from this article to avoid mistakes and get your email marketing right. This is not as difficult as it may seem, especially when you immediately develop your campaigns with the right approach.