Email campaigns are a popular way to reach your customers directly, quickly and in a cost effective manner. When they are done well they can yield great results and increase both sales and brand awareness. However all too often we see businesses blanket mailing their customers without giving any thought to which customer segments they want to reach, what they are offering those customers and what they want their campaign to achieve.
Getting your email marketing campaign wrong can have a significant negative impact on your business. Recipients may get turned off by persistent unwanted emails or might feel that the content of the campaigns is not relevant or interesting to them. The danger of this is not only that it leads to reduced customer loyalty and a negative impression of your brand, but also that customers might remove themselves from receiving your marketing altogether. This could mean that you have lost out on what was potentially a very good lead. It could also mean that your brand becomes perceived as ‘spammy’ and offering little value.
When we took a look at some highly effective email marketing campaigns we could see that there were 5 key factors which really had an impact on their success. So, we’ve put together a list of the 5 ways that you can make sure that your email marketing campaign really hits the target:
Keeping your subscriber lists up to date and relevant has always been important for marketers but now it takes on an even bigger focus as new legal regulations which came in to effect on 25th May 2018. The new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) affect how businesses gain customer consent for marketing and how they use this data. Non-compliance with these regulations can have harsh penalties both financially and for the reputation of your business. We’ve written more about these guidelines in this blog to help you understand how they will affect you.
From a marketing point of view it is also very important to keep your subscriber list up to date and to make sure that these customers actively want to receive information about your products and services. People who have actively requested to receive your marketing are naturally going to be keener and more receptive to your email campaigns. You’ll want to be able to target your campaigns effectively so you should consider creating different mailing lists for the different segments of your target audience. You’ll also need to review subscriber lists regularly to ensure that new and potential customers are included in your marketing lists and that any customers which your marketing may no longer be relevant to are removed.
Once you know which target group you are going to be sending your email campaign out to you’ll need to decide how you are going to talk to them. In the online world people often find themselves getting hundreds of emails a day so how can you make sure that your email marketing campaign stands out from the crowd? One way to do this to think about your ‘brand voice’. How do you want your brand to be perceived and how do your customers like to be spoken to? A fashion chain for a younger demographic might want to keep things quite casual and chatty for example, but a law firm would want to retain a more formal and professional image. The email subject heading is vital to your campaign’s success so you should consider what you can say that is likely to encourage your customers to click into your campaign rather than click the delete button. Will they respond to something humorous, a title related to current events or to the promise of an offer and discount? It’s worth doing some customer research to really understand how your customers want to be spoken to and which voice will be most likely to gain their buy-in to your campaign.
A truly successful campaign will always give something back to the customer. Email marketing is often not just about direct sales but also about building trust in your brand, increasing long term loyalty and showing off the depth of your expertise within your industry. When you create your campaign you should always think about what it will include that adds value to your customer’s life. It could be something as simple as offering a special discount code with every newsletter, it might be a link to a ‘how to’ tutorial video made by one of your team or it could be that they are getting the first look at one of your new products. It’s really important that an email campaign isn’t just about selling to your target audience but offers them something of value too.
It’s all too easy for customers to press that delete button so you need an eye-catching email template that has maximum impact and encourages them to keep reading rather than close your email down. We recommend getting a bespoke template created specifically for your email campaigns. This means that you can ensure that your email fits fully with your brand. A branded template also means that customers can instantly recognise who the email has come from. A high impact template looks professional and provides the perfect setting for your campaign. When you design it you need to think about the balance of images and text. Images often have a bigger impact on the eye so we suggest keeping text minimal and providing links through to longer articles which are held on your website or blog.
Reviewing the success of your campaign is the final vital factor in the success of your email marketing strategy. This is when you learn both where you went right and where you went wrong and, most importantly, how you can make it better next time. Obviously the number of sales made is a key indicator of your success but you can also look at other data to ascertain how well your campaign has worked. An increase in visits to your website, particularly from click-throughs via links in your email show that people want to find out more about what you do. You might also see an upturn in social media followers or likes during the campaign which can show if it has helped to increase your online profile. You can also look at the unsubscribe rate for each campaign to see if your message was on target. You’ll always get some unsubscribers but a lower than normal rate means that people continue to be interested in finding out what your brand has to say.
Email marketing campaigns can provide your business with a successful and cost effective way to reach out to your customers. However it’s really important to get things right as a poorly received email campaign can do more harm than good. Think about your database and who you are contacting, create a unique brand voice and a stunning template which will encourage customers to keep reading. You should also think about how each campaign can help your customers and the different ways that you can add value to them. Email marketing is always an organic process and you will find that you learn new things from every campaign and that you can refine your strategy each time. If you would like to find out how the Wagada team can help you with your email marketing then get in touch and we’ll be happy to have a chat.