In today’s overly saturated marketplace, it can take multiple touch points before a customer buys your product. Rather than the old sales funnel model, a customer’s purchase path today resembles more of a continuous cycle of information-gathering, feedback and post-purchase evaluation.
From the initial trigger to the information-gathering stage, and even with the post-purchase evaluation, email marketing plays a pivotal role. A Gigaom Research study claims that email is the most effective channel for awareness, acquisition, conversion and customer retention. Consumer attitudes have shown improvement, with only 42% of online adults in the U.S. deleting email advertising without reading it, which is down from 59% in 2010. More consumers report that email offers are a great way to find out about new products or promotions, up 7% since 2010. Younger consumers, especially, report a higher inclination to make purchases through promotional emails.
So, what does all this mean? Don’t screw it up! Here are some best practices:
Dos of Email Marketing:
- Make Your Email Marketing Campaign Mobile-Friendly
- Make Your Subject Line Irresistible (more on that below)
- Use a Sidebar with Icons and Links
- Personalize the Email and Tailor Your Email to Different Segments
- Give Your Email a Distinctive Look
- Focus Important Content on Top of the First Page
- Include Multiple Ways for Customers to Contact You, i.e., Facebook, Twitter, Toll-Free Number, Link to Website
Don’ts of Email Marketing:
- Send Emails Too Frequently
- Think Email Works in a Silo
- Email Irrelevant Content
- Focus Only on ROI
- Hide the Unsubscribe Link
- Send Marketing Emails Without Testing Them First
- Use a Single Image, or it looks like this:
Subject Line Best Practices:
- Should Act as a Teaser for Your Message
- Get to the Point: Put Your Most Relevant Words in the First 3-4 Words of the Subject Line
- NEVER Use Caps Lock
- Don’t Get Spammy, i.e., Act Now, Fast Cash, Dear Friend, Discount
- Test: Use New Subject Lines with Each Broadcast to Determine the Best Response
- Keep the Subject Line to 45 Characters or Less
Last, but certainly not least, make sure you’re familiar with the CAN-SPAM Act compliance guidelines for businesses.
Happy Emailing, Friends!