As a consumer checking my inbox, a marketing email has always provided the opportunity to keep up to date on the latest offers, news and sales - either in the comfort of my own home or on the move using my trusty mobile, but what goes on before that email reaches my inbox?
Stepping in to the office on my first day I was fully aware that I was about to hit a steep learning curve. All new jobs come with new responsibilities, the need to develop new skills and the pressure of finding your place within the company and its employees. Having attended an email marketing workshop and begun to accumulate a small amount of experience within the email marketing world, I knew I had a lot to learn.
The industry moves at a fast pace and the responsibility involved in sending out an email campaign to thousands of people is daunting - particularly when you want to achieve the best possible results and know how much the businesses concerned are depending on the revenue generated. Getting an email into an inbox with a tempting special offer is one thing - organising, designing and sending it to ensure maximum take-up quite another.
But all those years receiving emails have not gone to waste; a lot can be learnt from your own experiences. For one thing, we all know that an effective subject line is crucial - get it wrong and the email is ignored, get it right and you've got attention.
I'm a serial inbox cleaner; each evening I will scan, delete and then open the surviving few. Not only that, even if a message survives the initial cull the content needs to impress on first glance to avoid the second wave of deletion. If an email does capture my attention, however, it is probable that I will follow through on the 'call to action' and in many instances, spend my hard earned cash. So what do you need to bear in mind when sending a campaign?
This is an essential factor when it comes to effective email marketing, what's the use in sending to people who just aren't interested?
Capturing the right audience
Once you have the data how do you make the most of it? By segmenting your main list and targeting people with the news, offers or products they're specifically interested in you'll ensure that you keep them engaged.
Finding the right words
If someone just scans through your email will they still grasp the main message or call to action (CTA)? People don't want to read an essay so get to the point, keep copy short and make your CTAs clear.
Making sure your design is spot on
Your emails should always reflect your brand, easily connecting with the look of your website and capable of fitting your needs - it's no good having a newsletter style layout when you're focused on selling products.
Creating an engaging subject line
This should never be an after thought, you can create a great email but if no one opens it then what's the point?
There are many different aspects to email marketing and, three months in, I'm still learning more each day. Forget just click and send, invest the time and effort needed to get it right or, better still, get a professional to help.