Email marketing is such a critical component of the marketing mix for a lot of businesses, yet, I continually receive poorly executed emails from great brands. Here are 10 tips that will help you execute a successful campaign. The list doesn’t stop here; there are a bunch of email marketing best practices that will help you break through the clutter of the inbox and engage at a much higher percentage and I’ll cover those in subsequent posts.

  1. Segment your lists in order to deliver relevant content and calls to action; please don’t spray and pray
  2. In terms of content, you need to think about the targets’ “care abouts” – losses loom large and you’ll find that negative hooks often outperform positive hooks. Utilize and test the hooks in your subject line.
  3. Social proof has always lifted the performance of the email that I send – make sure to include customer quotes if available.
  4. Make sure to design your email for the preview pane. Too often people place a large image at the top of the email which doesn’t automatically download in the client and then you’re left with a small red x and a large white void in the preview pane.
  5. Make sure that you design the email to drive the exact behavior that you want from your target audiences. Don’t include any extraneous elements or paths to click on in the email other than the behavior you want to drive.
  6. Include multiple calls to action in the email. I’ve found that my webinar invites perform optimally with 3 different register links merchandised in the email.
  7. Timing can alter the performance of your email by double digits; evaluate the competing media that is vying for the attention of your target audience and schedule accordingly. I also find that sending emails first thing in the morning to a business audience is optimal for maximizing open rates.
  8. Make sure that your marketing automation platform and CRM are integrated and that opt-outs are accurately represented in both systems. Also, make sure that you’ve got the fields defined in your systems that you’d like to populate from this campaign.
  9. What’s next? One and done campaigns are typically not highly effective in creating a dialogue with your targets. Think about putting together a nurture campaign that communicates over time and addresses the key items that will motivate your audience to engage, view you as a trusted adviser/thought leader and place you in their consideration set.
  10. Keep the important stuff above the fold. Don’t make your audience scroll to take action.

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