Email marketing is one of the most effective forms of marketing for startups, ecommerce businesses, midsize companies, and enterprises alike. No matter the size of the target audience, email marketing is an effective tool to communicate with current and prospective clients. An estimated 44 percent of recipients have converted into paying customers as a result of email marketing.
Still, many organizations that invest in email marketing stumble on common mistakes, even with a dedicated in-house team. When nurturing potential clients, it’s critical to nudge, not force them, to take action. If a company is too heavy handed with their marketing, they will more likely run their potential customers off instead of persuading them to become consumers. It’s important to learn ahead of time what to do and more importantly, what not to do. Five of the most common email marketing mistakes to avoid include:
One of the most common problems companies make in their email marketing campaigns is sending too many emails. Most customers don’t want to hear from a company 3 times a week, and there is rarely a good reason for this level of frequency. If each email is simply a reminder of more emails to come, or a computer generated email with no purpose other than meeting a weekly quota, customers will get turned off very quickly.
Another mistake is not sending emails with enough frequency. Perhaps they sent one email a week for three weeks, then didn’t send any more, even though the customer opted in to receive them. Not sending emails or sending them haphazardly suggests a company doesn’t care about its customers. If there’s one thing customers dislike more than too much attention, it’s feeling unwanted and unappreciated.
To find the best frequency for your business, let customers choose how often they would like to receive emails. When they sign up to be on your email list, offer them the option to be emailed two times a week, weekly, monthly, or at any other frequency. And once your subscribers have chosen a frequency, give them the opportunity to change it whenever and however they choose.
One of the reasons too-frequent-emails fail is because they rarely say anything of substance and do nothing to attract the customer. To send unwanted emails to a customer is already a poor decision, but to send unwanted emails with no relevance is even worse. And to send boring emails with no purpose is an almost foolproof way for a business to lose customers.
Make sure all emails to your subscribers have relevant content. If you are a clothing company, for example, include information on upcoming sales, promotions, or new style trends. Technology companies might want to send customers information about new technology hardware developments, sales on phones and tablets, or reviews on the newest apps.
The email itself is not the important part; the importance is in the relevance of the content. As long as customers find your content interesting and engaging, they will not be opposed to receiving your emails on a regular basis. If this is not the case, they may unsubscribe, and you will have lost a business opportunity to a preventable mistake. Hiring a professional email marketing company is a wise investment for a company struggling with writing relevant content.
Not getting permission to email
Unsolicited emails, like telemarketing calls, are usually not welcome. If these emails aren’t caught in the customer’s spam filter, they are unlikely to be opened or read, and will rarely lead to success. The best method, if a company wants emails to be effective, is to obtain permission from the recipient before adding them to an email list.
When a customer places an order on your website and enters their email address, ostensibly for security purposes, they do not expect to receive a weekly email update. When they do, it often feels like a breach of privacy or a dishonest marketing technique. Customers will not continue to do business with a company they feel misled them. Getting permission to send an email is simple and can save your company a great deal of trouble.
One common practice among online companies, or companies with online profiles, is to ask customers to subscribe for email updates after making a purchase or before leaving the company’s webpage. This is an efficient way to ask without appearing desperate or pushy. If the customer says yes, you have successfully opened a dialogue that could prove mutually beneficial. If they decline, don’t send them another email unless they ask for one.
Poor subject line
Did you ever wonder how many people have deleted an email simply because the subject line wasn’t interesting? Almost no one reads all the emails they receive, and most of the time they decide to read or not based on how interesting the email looks. If your business repeatedly sends out emails with formulaic, boring, or irrelevant subject lines, those emails are likely not being read.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, having an email subject line that looks too desperate or fake is also problematic. The subject line of your email should be original, creative, and curiosity-inducing. Put simply, the most effective subject lines are the ones that seem the most real and organic. People are more willing to open an email that looks like it was written by an actual person and not a computer program.
The best way to determine whether or not a subject line will be effective is to consider whether you would open it yourself. For an unbiased opinion, try bouncing the title off of a coworker or friend who is less familiar with the product you’re trying to sell. There is no guaranteed successful method of writing a good subject line, but there are certainly some practices that will be more effective than others. Hiring a professional email marketing service may be the best route for a company that is having repeated issues with writing good subject lines.
Personalizing an email is a good way to show customers you care about them. If you personalize email, instead of sending one that is generic and computer generated, it is more likely to inspire friendship and loyalty with email recipients. Studies show personalized emails are more often opened, yet many companies do not take the time or effort to personalize emails.
However, personalization can easily backfire in certain situations. If information about the customer is pulled from the internet, it may be incorrect. If a customer receives a personalized email addressed to someone else in a different geographic area, they are likely to be offended, and the effort is wasted.
When an email is too specific in its personalization, it might be somewhat unnerving to customers. Because so much of a person’s information is available on the internet, businesses need to respect the boundary between personalization and invasion of privacy. Make sure personalized emails are vetted to at least some extent before they are sent off.
These mistakes can be easily avoided by hiring a professional email marketing service. For more tips and advice about common email marketing mistakes, or to learn more about how an email marketing or inbound digital marketing service can help, contact OneIMS.