Email marketing campaign may be a familiar topic to you because of its widespread use & a higher percentage of the total digital marketing channels available. You may already hear this topic on different meetings, discussion & in sales meetings. The simple answer is; It’s an efficient way to engage with your valued customer easily & cost-effectively. But before diving deep let’s find out what email is?
An email also known as electronic mail is a means of communication digitally. You don’t need to use paper or slow paced post system to send the message physically. You can only click send button & the message will be sent instantly from one electronic device to another. That’s why email marketing is cost effective & easy to run. Now the next step, what is email marketing?
What we are going to discuss in this article:
It is impossible to find a company who hasn’t started the email marketing. But how you will start the campaign, what you need to know before starting a campaign. I have tried to make a complete guide about email marketing. If you follow everything & also let your creative mind work on the base, then you will get the success.
Email marketing is a special form of direct marketing tools that use electronic mail system to communicate with the existing & potential audience through commercial or fundraising messages. It’s easy & effective way to stay connected with your customers. But email marketing needs a lot of background works to make it a successful email marketing campaign.
How it works?
Email marketing campaign finds email addresses of potential & interested customers. Then they start sending the email consisting products, discounts, offers, etc. to convince the customers to buy the product or service. It’s straightforward but also hard if every step is not appropriately taken before starting an email marketing campaign.
But what are the steps need to be taken? How will start the email marketing campaign? What will be the content? Don’t lose in these questions. You will learn everything you need to learn about email marketing in this guide. Before going forward, let’s learn about some successful email marketing campaign.
Benefits of email marketing campaign:
Hundreds of thousands of companies are now using email marketing as their main channel of the marketing process. If you are familiar with the process, then you will understand why it’s popular amongst companies in a variety of industries. But why they interested about email marketing? What are the benefits? If you are not using this form of marketing then should you? I would say you should. It’s considered as the best marketing channel that delivers the highest ROI(Return on Investment). Here are the benefits of email marketing,
One of the important benefits of email marketing is, it is cheap considering the other mainstream marketing channels. You don’t need to waste money by printing or give fees for using different exposure platform. You don’t need to pay cash for advertisement at electronic or print media. Yes, you need to pay for different tools, but that cost is very minimal considering other costly channels. Also, you can engage with thousands of subscribers by paying a minimum price.
Target interested peoples of your brand or business:
Another major benefit is you can engage with peoples those have already shown interest in your brand or nature of your business. You don’t need to pay huge money to find interested people from a large portion of uninterested viewers. Thus the chance of getting a good result is high and less costly.
In marketing sector, anyone will be happy if you give him the guarantees that he is spending money to those who are interested in their brand. Here is the beauty of email marketing. It gives the guarantee as well as give you the opportunity to send emails to those who have already meet certain criteria & subscribed to your email marketing. You can send an email by selecting a certain area, certain interest & even certain time. The old “spray & pray” type of marketing policy has been removed by the email marketing.
COT (Call to Action):
Call to action is another breakthrough for email marketing. You can let your subscriber take specific action from your email. If you want to generate sales, keep a “buy now” button, and if he/she is interested, you will get a sales lead. Amazing isn’t it?
Easy to create & run:
Considering other mainstream marketing channel, you don’t need to have a large number of experts to email marketing campaign. Even an owner of a company can run the process sitting on a laptop at his office. At once several marketing campaigns can be run. You don’t need to have several experts to track them. You can track them all from a single tool.
Easy to track:
With the evolution of email marketing tools, it’s effortless to track a campaign and determine the success or failure. You just need to learn some specific terms & actions to track your email marketing campaign.
Global or local:
No matter you are running your campaign globally or locally. You can start & end an email marketing campaign by a single click. You don’t to think about the hustle.
Its simplicity makes it easier to run & stop the campaign anytime. Other mainstream marketing channels need weeks sometimes months of planning to start marketing, but you can do it instantly at email marketing.
For email marketing campaign, you can always personalize your emails. You can send a personal email at their occasions. You can also send different type of emails to different type of subscribers. If someone subscribed for your products, then you can send an email containing product description & offers. On the other hand, if someone has subscribed to your blog then you can send the contents from your blog.
No character limit:
You don’t need to be careful while creating an email campaign because there is no character limit for an email. Though it is not recommended to send large content, there is no limit to your creativity.
Variety & versatility:
Versatile nature of email platform lets you send email targeting all available platforms of communication. A user can read your email from his mobile, tab or even from his PC or laptop.
24/7 sure delivery:
Email let you interact with your subscribers 24/7 and also guarantees the delivery. If the email address is correct, then you will be able to send email to anyone no matter who he is or where he is!
Considering the low-cost email marketing provides the highest ROI from other traditional mainstream marketing channels. Direct engagement with interested & potential subscriber guarantees higher ROI to business. You can even run the campaign for free because some tools provide a trail time to test them.
Some successful examples of effective email marketing:
Nowadays we are very busy with our personal & professional life. Due to our business, most of the email marketing campaign sent to us deleted without any attention, or just we press the unsubscribe button to avoid further email. But among those unfortunate emails, some of them attract our attention by their technique & we open them to read the content. They even make us interested in the content as well as topic & we feel attracted. Email marketing is thriving on this ground.
So always remember that sending email & start an email marketing campaign is an easy part but the hard part is to make it attractive & also effective. A successful email needs to be cleverly planned & written.
Here are some of the successful email marketing campaigns.
Charity: water gained a stunning amount of $800,000 through email marketing campaign. They used video, picture, rich contents & of course eye-catching headlines to reach the amount. Your email should have that appeal to gain that much donation through email marketing campaign.
Another champion of email marketing campaign is BuzzFeed, earned a lot of attraction through stunning visual, concise & amazing headlines. Their main objective was to attract more traffic to their website & they achieved the target. Their emails are attractive with a very a catchy headline & carefully crafted visual. BuzzFeed also informs their subscriber how much emails they are going to get & when. You can also subscribe on their different email marketing campaign depending on your choice.
Uber’s email marketing campaign is famous for its simplicity and to the point. Selling products or getting more traffic is not Uber’s intention. They want to create brand awareness & attract subscriber to use their brand. Their headlines are always catchy, and there is a clear CTA for the subscriber. Visual & content is also neat & clean.
All these campaigns have earned a lot of attraction & became successful through effective email marketing. Whenever someone talks about successful email marketing campaign, people talk about these companies.
Email Marketing tools:
Effective email marketing tools are must start an email marketing campaign. Don’t think about the cost because most of the tools available on the internet have a free trial version & some of them are free to a certain number of recipients or campaigns.
Constant Contact is considered as one of the largest & fastest growing tools to take care of your email marketing campaign. It’s easy to use & beginner friendly tool that helps you to manage the email list, contacts, templates & much more. You can easily track & get the report, share at social media, image library & 1GB space to keep your files. The negative side is you cannot run A/B test which prevents you from testing your emails effectiveness. The email creation tool is also bit complex considering other available services in the market.
It has a 60-day free trial version without any credit card information. After that, the price starts from $20/month.
Considering the free plan & great tools, MailChimp is very popular among users. The main plus point is it integrates with WordPress, Magento, Shopify & other platforms very easily. That’s why bloggers & small e-commerce business company prefers MailChimp. It has a variety of tools like email creator, merge tags, autoresponders, segmenting contacts & simple analytics. You can also set delivery time based on user’s timezone & setup location-based segmentation. Now comes the great news. MailChimp offers forever free plan which allows a user to send 12,000 emails for up to 2.000 subscribers. The paid plan starts from $10/month.
MailChimp doesn’t support autoresponders & audience segmentation, two important option for email marketing campaign.
Aweber offers a wide range of tools & services for small & medium sized businesses. It’s very user-friendly & easy to use if you are a beginner. It connects easily with different platforms. You will get ready to use email templates, subscriber management, autoresponders & email tracking. Detail insights are available in this tool. It has 30 days free trial period.
Cons of Aweber is it’s a bit costly.
Another hugely popular email marketing tool is GetResponse because of it’s easy to use interface. A great platform for beginners. You can create automated campaign, drag & drop, segment contact & send email to specific group/segments. You can easily create effective email marketing campaign & earn the profit. The extra added spices are responsive form, landing page, A/B test, tracking & autoresponders. It also easily integrates with third-party lead generator software like SalesForce, Google Docs, ZenDesk, etc. It has 30 days free trial version. Pricing starts from $15/month.
Lack of event management tool & extra costs are the cons of GetResponse.
The most amazing part of ActiveCampaign is that it combines email marketing, automation with CRM & sales. You will find almost all necessary tools here for your email marketing campaign. Email templates editor & mobile friendly signup form are available in it. You can segment subscribers based on actions, location, behavior & social data. It easily integrates with different platforms. SMS message option is an extra added feature of this tool. There is no free trial version of this tool, but you can request a demo version from the author for a test run. The paid plan starts from $9/month.
It doesn’t have built-in survey tool & needs an additional charge to use 3rd party survey tool integrated with it.
Almost all these tools have a free trial version to get used to it & paid version has enhanced benefits to utilize the tools more effectively. You can try them & find the best & suitable one for your email marketing campaign. After choosing the tool, you need to work on the other important parts of an email marketing campaign. Let’s get started.
Think about the target first:
“You got the email.”
We all are familiar with this message showing on your computer or mobile but have you ever think how much planning & dedication is needed to start an email campaign? You may have decided to start email marketing campaign reading the above lines. Wait; we have just started the basic. Before starting an email marketing campaign, you need to think about many things. Setting your target is very very crucial before clicking the send icon!
There are several types of the email campaign can be started, but you need to focus on your target. Ask yourself “what action you want your subscriber to take after having your email?” Answer of this question will help you to fix your goal. Popular marketing campaigns are focused on,
Drive more traffic to your website.
Inform about projects & actions of your company.
Inform about events & fairs.
Discounts & special offer.
Launching new product.
Based on the email marketing campaign, possible CTA(Call-to-action) of the receiver will be changed. Suppose you have a website that needs more traffic than your email marketing will be aimed to drive more traffic to your site through attractive contents. If you want to generate sales than your email will inform subscriber about your products & offers. Several donations based aid organizations use email marketing campaign to inform new projects & actions to their subscribers/receiver. They also use attractive contents to get the attention & donation.
The idea is simple; you need to fix a goal or target before starting an email marketing campaign. Sending an email or launching an email campaign without setting a goal will surely bring failure. Your goal will be heavily influenced by your company or business.
Find & create an email list
After deciding the target, the next important part is finding or organize an email list for email marketing campaign. It’s essential to find related & interested subscriber’s email address to start the campaign. Otherwise, the database will degrade drastically in a short time & email marketing campaign will not bring any success. Let’s focus on the tricks,
Sign up form your website or blog:
It’s necessary to add a signup button to your website or blog to get interested subscribers’ email address. Signup is the most successful strategy on this track. You can also add “signup form” to your website or at social sites to generate sources faster. Usually, when someone subscribes for the email marketing campaign, they used to stay subscribed & read the email regularly. You can customize the subscribe form to make it attractive. Setting up a subscribe form is easy, just use Campaign Monitor sign up form, CreateForm or a WordPress to get started. Google form is also an efficient way. Trust me it’s effective.
Pop up to get subscriber:
You can also use pop up at your website to get a subscriber. It’s another way to get interested subscriber for your email marketing campaign. Different websites use this tip to get email address & you can also add extra offer or incentive to get the pop up more effective.
Facebook & twitter lead ad:
There is an advertising option on Facebook & Twitter to get the email address. This type of ad encourages potential subscribers to sign up for email marketing campaign. You can also customize the form & add extra options. If you run the ad campaign properly, then the ad will only show to potential & interested customers & you will get an impressive number of email address.
The process works when someone clicks on your ad, a form gather information from his facebook or twitter account including email address. If he then presses submit button, you will get the valuable email address. Please remember that you need to run the ad differently on Facebook & Twitter.
Local business directory:
Gather email address from a local business directory is another good way to get the email address for email marketing campaign. You can also gather directory from different prestigious clubs & organizations. They always publish a hard copy of their member’s contact details. Yes, it’s time-consuming to type the email to soft copy, but these email addresses are always authentic.
Referral campaign is another good way to get tons of email address. You can just start a referral campaign and offer extra service or products or discounts to your customers & you will get the email address. The best part is your loyal customers will provide the data. This way you can add email address easily. Tracking the referral campaign is bit hard job, but you can use Referralcandy to track the whole campaign easily.
Host an offline event:
Hosting an offline event is the last way to get an email address. You can organize the event & at the entry keep a laptop or tab to let the participant submit their information. This way you can get the email address of all the participants of your event. You can also encourage them to provide a referral to get extra discount on the event.
All these tips shown above will cost you because getting authentic & official email addresses is not an easy & cost-free way. You need to invest some to get email addresses for your email marketing campaign. You can also think about adding a share button to your email campaign to let the receiver share your email campaigns with others.
Type of campaigns:
Several types of email campaigns are available & possible, but you need to choose your own & convenient one. Choosing the type is vital before starting up the email marketing campaign. Some campaigns are shown below,
It should be the first email sent to the subscriber after a successful subscription to your campaign. When someone subscribes to your email marketing campaign or just bought something from you, then you need to send them a confirmation email. It informs the subscriber that their action has been successfully accepted by the system.
Informational email is most common as well as an interesting way to get attached with your subscriber. It’s a type of email send to your subscriber to get the thing started. It will create the base so remember to make it interesting & create a strong impression on the subscriber. If it fails to create the impression, then your future emails will fail to get the position on the reader’s heart. Most of the time these emails inform the subscriber about the company or business. It’s the foundation between you & the subscriber so be very careful. You can make templates and whenever you get new subscribers, these emails will be sent to them as an introduction. Keep it related to your brand image & brand promise.
The product update is very common nowadays & everyone gets this type of emails regularly. Inform your subscriber about your product or service & let them know that they have done a tremendous job by subscribing to your email marketing campaign. Let them know about your products.
Newsletters are sent to inform subscriber about different information & announcements. Normally these type of email contains general information & creates a brand image to the subscribers. If you maintain a blog, then newsletter is ideal for you. Send your contents to create a brand image & brand awareness among your subscribers. Don’t forget to add catchy headline & graphics/image to make it more appealing.
You can send email to invite your subscribers or a group of subscribers to attend an event. Invitation emails usually get more attention from the subscribers. For example, if you are hosting an event or fair then don’t hesitate to send an invitation to your subscribers.
Email that contains offer & discount will be called as marketing offer email. The advantage of this email is that you can send this type of email to anyone. You don’t need to create a special group from your subscriber’s list. You can also attract new subscriber to give them special offer through this type of email.
Wishing emails are sent to wish a customer on a special occasion. These occasions can be related to the individual customer or general purpose. Wishing emails are an effective way to attach with your subscriber emotionally. You can wish them at your birthday, marriage day, wish on special occasion & wish at their spouse’s special occasions.
Lead nurturing email:
Depending on the action of your subscriber, you can start sending email to them. You can always find a group of subscribers who never participate in your email campaigns. You can treat them as “not interested subscriber” & send some special emails to make them interested in your brand or business. Your special nurturing can make them the most valuable subscriber of your email marketing campaign.
Create your first campaign:
So you have gathered email addresses & have decided the campaign type, now it’s time to get things started. But before started sending the emails, there are several essential things need to take care. You have to remember that an email is your representative to your subscriber. I have described some important to do list needed to start your first email campaign.
To the point:
Your email should be to the point. Exaggeration never creates anything good. Keep it short & to the point. People nowadays are very busy & usually don’t read full email. Short but to the point email always get proper attention. Research shows that an average adult keeps the attention for only “8 seconds”.You can use infographic instead of large content. But if your contents are rich enough then don’t hesitate to send the whole. Good content always gets attention no matter how big they are.
Create brand value:
Stop sending sales email again & again. Regular sales email will be going to create a bad impression on the reader’s’ mind. Sometimes you need to send email to create brand value among your subscriber.
Use paragraph, bullets & points to make the email easy to read & understand. Large paragraph often creates monotony for a reader & he/she lost the interest of reading the email whole.
If you already don’t know what CTA is, CTA means Call-to-Action. Your email should have a specific & clear CTA. Suppose you are sending a mail for sales purpose then there should be a clear buy button on the email to let the reader take action. If it’s an email to get the donation, there should be a clear & visible button named “Donate Now!”
Relevant to the audience:
Every email should be relevant. Don’t make your subscriber disturbed. If your email list is decreasing day by day, then it is possible that your emails are not relevant. If someone subscriber for your blog, don’t send continuous sales email to him. Take extra caution while selecting the database before sending the email. A non-native of a country doesn’t want to get an email for independence day of your country right. Keep these small things in mind before starting an email marketing campaign.
Make it personal:
There is a possibility that you got names of every subscriber. Then always send email using the name of the subscriber. Instead of using “60% off”, use “60% off for Andrew” to make it more appealing for Andrew. Your reader will be much more attentive getting a personal email.
Control your tone:
Always focus on what you are sending, focus on how you are sending. Suppose you have sent a discount email to a customer, but there is no CTA or a specific time for the discount, it will give a bad signal to your subscriber. It’s always important how you are interacting with your readers.
The importance of content cannot be said in small space. Content is the most vital part of an email marketing campaign. A headline, graphics as well as description everything falls into the criteria of content. Your content must be interesting & to the point. If you want to learn more about content click here.
Different platform friendly:
People use different devices to read the email nowadays. So always make your content & email different platform friendly. Send graphic which is friendly to all the platforms. Don’t use heavy graphics to make the mail hard to load in mobile & tab. Responsive emails are always successful.
Think & read before sending:
Always read the draft carefully before sending it. Think, have you focused on what you have wanted to say? Think & revise twice. You want to send a defective or incomplete email to your subscriber right? You can use a checklist to check everything before sending.
Measure your success:
So you have already sent your first email marketing campaign, now it’s time to find how successful it is. You have got an idea about how much people clicked and opened your email. You can get the data from two places. First is the tools you have used for your campaign. Second is the Website analytics tool such as the Google Analytics. This report is very very crucial to determine the success of the running campaign as well steps need to be taken for the future campaigns as well.
The delivery rate shows how good your subscription list is. If you are getting a lot of bounce from the list, then find the invalid email address from the subscription list. If bounce rate increases, your email will be treated as spam by the system. So keep doing the cleaning process from your subscription list regularly. If you find a sudden drop in your email opening rate, then you need to act quickly before getting marked as spam.
Click Through rate:
Click through rate also known as the CTR determines the performance of every email you have sent as email marketing campaign. It’s the first answer you will get after asking the question about the success of your campaign.
It also used to determine the success the A/B test. A/B test is making two mail & send them one after another. Both emails should be different from each other. If “A mail” gets more CTR then follow the “A mail” sending process properly. This test is designed to determine new ways of getting more click & more attention. CTR is critical as you can find the total click as well as all unique clicks from this result. It will show how good you are doing or where you need to improve.
Conversion rate determines the success rate of your email marketing campaign. If you want to boost sales, then you can check how much sales have been generated after sending the email. In a nutshell, you can check how much clicks have been turned into successfully converted into sales.
The growth of your list:
Since you have already started your campaign, keep an eye on your subscription list. If it’s growing, then you are getting a new subscription. It’s a good sign. If it’ decreasing then act quickly and change the strategy.
The unsubscribing rate is also an important factor in your campaign. If your list is decreasing day by day, then I am afraid to say that your emails are failing to get attraction from the receiver. You need to change your tactics now. Do it before it’s too late.
Sharing & forwarding rate:
Email sharing & forwarding rate is the vital parameter you need to focus. If your emails are interesting, then your subscriber will share & forward them to their known contacts. It is recommended to keep a subscribe button on the mail, then your list is going to increase soon. If it happens, the opposite then works on it. That’s how you will get new subscribers without any investment. You can encourage your subscribers to forward & share your email. Keep action button on your email to let your subscriber easily.
There is another thing you need to know. Its ROI meaning Return of Investment. As you have already invested money & time on email marketing campaign, it’s time to track the return. Check how much sales leads has generated and calculated the ROI. It’s the main scale you want to gain.
Unengaged subscriber rate:
As you want to track your email marketing campaign, you also need to keep a close eye on the unengaged subscriber rate. You need to remove them ASAP. Sending the email to people who are not engaged or interested with your emails (called “graymail”) can seriously affect the deliverability of your email overall. Clients can get tripped off this rate your email will be sent to the junk folder. Means your email will be sent, but it will not be seen thus your hard work will go in vain.
Killer email marketing campaign mistakes you should avoid:
As you read & understand everything, there are some common mistakes you should avoid. These killer mistakes will let your email marketing campaign down even if you have done everything right! They are,
Sending from firstname.lastname@example.org:
Never send your email from donotreply address. It creates a negative impact on your marketing result. If you find low open rate then don’t be surprised. People love to interact & send the reply. Send email from where a subscriber can send the reply. If possible then add phone number & social sites so that a reader can interact with you easily.
Sending image only emails:
A study shows that about 33% subscriber has image turned on by default. That means there is a possibility that 33% of your subscriber will see the empty box when they will receive your email. It will ruin your marketing goal & click rate will reduce drastically.
No links to your website:
Keeping a link to your website at your emails let your readers click & visit your website. If you don’t do it, then you are making a mistake. Always provide a clickable link to your website so that a possible customer can visit your website easily.
If you are sending the same email to every subscriber of your list, then you are making a terrible mistake. Every subscriber has different motives & they want a different response from you. So send an email by creating segments. It is not recommended to send same products to every subscriber.
Ignore the mobile platform:
Nowadays mobile has become the major part of your communication. So responsive emails are more effective(it was always) now. Try to make your email responsive for different platforms to get the maximum result.
Without any confusion, email marketing campaign is the most effective & less costly way to engage with your customer. You can generate sales, get attention, make subscribers interested about your blog or share new idea using an email marketing campaign. It’s easy but a bit tricky and needs constant attention at different rates. As a nutshell, in this digital era, every company is focusing on email marketing to boost their sales. Follow the tricks mentioned above to get an impressive result at email marketing campaign.