On the surface, email marketing seems simple. But behind the scenes, successful campaigns take special time and attention. They are the result of careful thinking and focus on the reader. To maximize your efforts – and give your audience what it needs – keep the following tips in mind.

Get personal. Prior to sending out any marketing message, learn as much as you can about the people on your email list. Consider providing users a form to complete when opting into your subscriber list, allowing them to select areas of interest or communicate certain preferences. By knowing more about your email audience’s demographics and needs, you can better craft your messaging, increasing its acceptance and effectiveness. You can also customize messages to individual groups to better connect with distinct segments.

Manage your address database. No matter how much time was invested in developing that perfect list of addresses, you are bound to have a few that are undeliverable. Constant maintenance of your subscriber list is essential for sustaining a usable and effective address database. Also, as well-written as your emails might be, there will likely be a few readers after each message that wish to unsubscribe. Prompt removal of these names will ensure you do not annoy them.

Make must-read content. The actual messaging in your marketing emails really depends on your industry, but certain types of messages are more effective than others. Do you have a special offer for current or new customers? Can you provide exclusive round-ups of links or industry news that your readers can’t get anywhere else? What about how-to videos? Regardless of your product or service, you’ll want to craft content that readers want and look forward to. Study your own email box for the newsletters you read regularly to get a sense for what grabs you and what might translate to your audience.

Create calls-to-Action. Email marketing messages should always include a call-to-action to drive engagement. By including a message such as “Click here for a special offer” you greatly increase further engagement from readers, as you encourage them to learn more and click through to your website. This tactic also boosts website traffic and drives sales.

Be consistent. Timing when you’ll send your emails can be tricky. Sometimes, a higher frequency results in a higher open rate and more people seeing your message. On the other hand, sending emails too often can annoy your user-base. The perfect middle ground between those two extremes really depends on your message and your readership. Study the trends in your email analytics to determine what method is best for your emails and adjust accordingly. When you settle on what works for your audience, be consistent so readers know what to expect.

Be mobile optimized. As smartphone and tablet use skyrockets, planning for mobile platforms becomes more and more essential. When creating an HTML email blast, understand how your design will render on the major devices and operating systems your readers use. Consider an email platform that offers responsive design, which adapts the layout and images automatically for all screen sizes. Responsive design must be a priority to ensure your message is reaching all of your readers.

Crunch the numbers. Finally, no marketing activity is complete until you evaluate your results. Look at your email marketing statistics regularly. Analyze the open rates and website traffic generated for each newsletter you distribute. Don’t forget to study your newsletters’ subject lines as well, to look for patterns in open rates. If your traffic tends to decrease for some messages more than others, determine the reason so you can correct your strategy as needed.

These tips only just scratch the surface. What’s most important is to remember that your company’s strategy will continue to evolve. Regularly recalibrating your overall email marketing strategy is one of the most important keys to success. 

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