Email Marketing News Digest

It can be hard to say “Goodbye” to your list subscribers, but it’s not necessarily forever. Take some time to make their exit a smooth one and you may well see them again. Aside from optimizing the unsubscribe process, we have a great line-up of articles this week including a new survey that reveals customer preferences for marketing channels, and best practice tips for email engagement and design.

It’s OK for subscribers to say “Goodbye”

It’s normal to lose 30% of your email list each year due to attrition and that’s perfectly fine. Here are some ways to optimize the process and maybe even keep subscribers from leaving:

  • Make it easy to find the unsubscribe button
  • Make sure that your unsubscribe page is branded for a good last impression
  • Send them to a preference center – sometimes all it takes to keep subscribers from leaving is adjusting the email frequency or personalizing their email experience.
  • Get feedback so you can improve the email experience for those who are still on the list.

New mobile consumer attitude survey shows surprising results

A survey for Millward Brown Digital shows that 68% of respondents found a text or push message valuable. In addition 59% prefer SMS and push campaigns over other forms of mobile marketing including video advertising, banner, standard display ads and even email. More than 50% indicated that a SMS or push message would persuade them to make a purchase over other forms of mobile marketing.

Which Email Practices Seem to be Working for Brands?

Return Path’s recent study seeks to discover which email engagement tactics are working better for brands and a summary of the results can be found below.

ReturnPath-Email-Tactics-and-Engagement-Outcomes-Sept20131

65% of B2B Buyers Concur Emails Shape Their View of a Company’s Brand

A recent report revealed that 65% of B2B buyers agreed that emails shape their view of a company. Here are some recommendations on how you can build your company’s brand image through email.

  • Have your emails come from a specific person instead of a generic email address to increase open rates.
  • Drop HTML for Rich Text to increase engagement rates.
  • Speak to customers in a personal tone and have a company personality.
  • Keep the call-to-action high on the page and helpful.

Email Design Best Practices In 2013 (Infographic)

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Weekly Email Marketing News Digest

Take a leaf out of the book of healthy living and apply it to your email lists. Just like you need to detox your body every now and then, email lists need to have the dust shaken off them and audited for quality control. Thats right – quality. While quantity does matter, the quality of your email lists is more vital as it has a direct impact on your sender score and thus deliverability. This week’s digest highlights ways to keep those lists clean, and grow them too.

Email Campaigns Flopping? It’s Probably Your List

If your email campaigns are flopping there is a good chance that your list isn’t as hygienic as you might think it is. Here’s a checklist:

How was your list acquired?

  • Did you buy it?
  • How long ago did subscribers join your list?
  • What did you promise them?

Have you kept your list clean?

  • Are you removing bad email addresses?
  • Have you reengaged inactive subscribers?

All the above factors play a part in determining the success of your campaign, so pay heed and keep your list healthy!

5 Tactics to Ignite Your Email List Growth

Here are 5 ways to spark list growth:

  1. Make it easy to opt in on your website.
  2. Don’t stop at just one.
  3. Collect email opt-in in your stores.
  4. Make it mobile.
  5. Remember your social networks.

For more details on ensuring the quality of your list as you grow it, hop on over to read the full article by Mike Hotz from Responsys.

Boost Conversion and Deliverability with 3 Email Marketing Rules

Here are three evergreen email marketing tips from the book, Email Marketing Rules: How to wear a white hat, shoot straight, and win hearts by Chad White from ExactTarget.

  1. Focus on maximizing the value of a subscriber, not on maximizing the results of a campaign. Don’t sacrifice the quality of your list for the sake of a one-off campaign by misleading subscribers.
  2. Don’t attach too much meaning to your open rates. The end goal of conversion is more important, hence gauge the success of your subject lines by that standard.
  3. Accept that ESPs have relatively little control over the deliverability of your emails. Sender reputation is the most important factor in deliverability and that’s related to the quality of your list.

3 Obsolete Email Practices

Email guru Loren McDonald recommends replacing three obsolete email practices.

  1. Annual reactivation campaigns – You can tell within a few months of a subscriber is unengaged so put them on a multi-step activation track. This helps ensure high quality lists too.
  2. Frequency testing – Use behavioral triggers instead.
  3. Single emails – Send a series of emails instead.

[Infographic] Email Marketing List Maintenance

Here’s a really cool flowchart on maintaining your email list.

email_list_maintenance_infographic

Weekly Email Marketing News Digest

On this week’s edition of the email marketing news digest we’re looking at what the experts have to say on the do’s and don’ts of email segmentation. We present the views, so you can do your own testing to see what works best for your business! And for the email segmentation experts out there, we’ve kept it diversified with tips from mobile marketing and study results on the industry performance of email marketing.

7 simple and effective ways to use email segmentation

Targeting increases relevance, which in turn boosts customer engagement leading to increased email clicks and open rates. Targeting is achieved through segmentation and here are 7 ways to segment an email list:

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  • Gender
  • Geotargeting
  • Age
  • Automated triggers
  • Purchase data
  • Activity
  • Customer Preferences

Break These Email Segmentation Best Practices

While the previous article gives a good overview of basic email segmentation practices, Jordie van Rijn provides examples where it’s okay to make an exception, or to go one step further in ensuring your email is both relevant and targeted.

  • Early segmentation – Sometimes it’s best to put off collecting customer preferences to make email sign-up less painful. Instead, go for a customer preference center.
  • Age & behavior – Don’t make assumptions about age group. For example, just because you are targeting baby boomers doesn’t mean you don’t need an email that is optimized for mobile.
  • Gender segmentation – Remember that during the season of giving, people might purchase something on your site for the opposite gender as a gift.
  • Geographic location – Rethink the way you present content to a national audience if you segment by geography. Be creative!

Using Mobile Marketing Tactics to Add Email Subscribers

Couple of weeks back we featured an article on how you can improve email deliverability through SEO tactics. Now we’re letting mobile marketing teach us a few new tricks. Get users to opt in to receiving email through text by:

  • Asking them
  • Offering incentives
  • Opt-ins within mobile apps
  • Point-of-Sale
  • Customer review
  • Captive audiences
  • Short codes
  • QR codes

We’re all about multi-channel these days so we might as well apply that to our marketing tactics as well!

5 Ways to Personalize Emails and Enhance Open Rates

Our client Eloqua has gathered data revealing that personalized subject lines are key to open rates. Email subject lines that contain the name and one other personal detail perform the best.

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Here are 5 other tips to boost your open rates.

  • Segment your list separately by social data
  • Craft templates that enable you to trigger personalized emails
  • Exclamation points don’t necessarily drive opens
  • Test and track the effectiveness of calls to action (CTAs)
  • Align your email and social language for consistent communication

61% of marketers rate their email campaigns as poor or average: infographic

Think you’re good at email marketing? Here’s an infographic to give you some insight on how you compare in the industry (or in UK at least).

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Looking for a digital messaging software with built-in functionality to segment lists for behavioral marketing? Read more about Momentum.

Weekly Email Marketing News Digest

Devastating news for bloggers and journalists this week – Google is shutting down Google Reader. If you’re like me and your livelihood depends on perusing Google Reader’s news feed, you’re probably scrambling to find a replacement (aside from whining incessantly and sobbing uncontrollably on the floor). Here’s a useful read of alternative resources from LifeHacker, Google Reader Is Shutting Down; Here Are the Best Alternatives.

Moving on to email marketing news, we’ve collated a slew of articles with actionable tips for marketers to begin optimizing content and using tactics that could see an immediate improvement in ROI. Enjoy!

Case Study: 30 Percent Increase in Email List Growth

The above-the-fold camp may be taking a bit of a hit these days, but here’s an important thought: “Just because people can scroll doesn’t mean that they will”. Just by moving the email sign-up above the fold, a business saw a 30% increase in email list growth.

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Email CTA Below-The-Fold

 

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Email CTA Above-The-Fold

 

Why Nobody Is Talking About Your Email Content… and How to Change That

The problem is that it screams me, me and ME! Here are 7 reasons why email marketing campaigns fail:

1. They’re all about you.
2. They’re not helpful.
3. They’re not timely.
4. They’re not entertaining.
5. You don’t ask questions.
6. You don’t involve your readers.
7. You don’t tell your readers to share.

What will kill email?

Digital marketing guru, Christopher Penn argues that email will likely never die – unlike social networks with rapid birth-death cycles. IMAP, POP3 and SMTP are all open standard protocols so it’s easy for anyone to buy and set up a standards-compliant mail server. Not so for social media, where business models are based on exclusive ownership.

Most Emails Deployed in the Morning – But Best Results Seen in the Evening

I start off my mornings scrolling through a slew of marketing emails. If I see something interesting, I flag some for follow-up in the evening when I have some time to register, sign-up or purchase. Apparently, that’s possibly a behavior that is reflective of the average email consumer.

A study shows that a 40% majority of emails are sent between 8am to 11.59am, but the 16.1% unique open rate, 2.4% unique click rate and 0.13% transaction rate were the lowest among the tested time periods.

Between 8pm and 11.59pm, the 21.7% unique open rate, 4.2% unique click rate, 0.34% transaction rate, $0.48 revenue per email and $246 average order value were significantly higher than the other tested time periods. Days with the lowest email volumes such as Saturday and Sunday had the best response rate at a unique open rate of 17.8% and unique click rate of 2.9%.

Experian-Email-Marketing-Time-of-Day-Performance-in-Q4-2012-Mar2013

3 ways to apply image psychology to your next email

Here’s a different way to approach email design – through the lens of neuroscience.

1. Use images of people in email campaigns that evoke emotions you want subscribers to have.

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How it works: A part of the brain is wired to solely to process images of faces.

2. Use images of people creatively to support your call to action.

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How it works: Our brains are naturally programmed to pay attention to people.

3. Use provocative images that support people’s survival instinct.

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How it works: A part of the brain known as “the primitive brain” pays attention to food, danger or sex – things that ensure the survival of the species.