Executing an email marketing strategy as a small business can make a huge impact on your overall business and revenue growth. Having automated email campaigns, newsletters, and blog articles sent out to your database on a regular basis will keep you top of mind for your current, past and potential customers. However, getting started and being consistent with your email marketing strategy takes some dedication. While you work on growing and segmenting your database, you’ll want to make sure you are implementing these email best practices in order to get the most out of your strategy
1. Email People Who Want to Hear From You
The first rule of email marketing for business is to get permission to email market your list! Many small businesses make the mistake of renting or buying an email list, only to end up with thousands of spam reports and unsubscribes – time and money well wasted! Your database should consist of contacts that have “opted in’. This could simply mean that they are or were a customer of yours, and you have permission to contact them. Contacts could also be generated by online forms on your website, where you have explicitly stated that you will be contacting them once they submit their information.
In order to avoid your email marketing client “blocking” you from sending emails due to spam reports, be sure to include a very easy to find and simple unsubscribe button on all of your emails. This will ensure that everyone that receives an email has the option to opt out of future contact without marking you as a spammer. Take those unsubscribes seriously! Make sure that if it’s not automated through your email tool, you take all contacts that have requested so out of your list!
It’s common decency and definitely a good look for your brand if you are considerate to your database and give them the opportunity to opt out or receive less emails over time. For example, if you are sending weekly newsletters or blog updates, have a button at the bottom allowing people to change their subscription preferences to receive monthly or quarterly emails instead. You can also send an email to contacts that have not “engaged” (opened or clicked) with your emails in a few months asking them if they would like to continue receiving information and what information would be valuable to them.
2. Make Sure Your Email is Mobile Friendly
With nearly 68 percent of emails opened on a mobile device, it’s critical that your email marketing is mobile friendly! Make sure that anything you send out can be read clearly and clicked on from Android and iPhone screen sizes. Using a responsive template to send all emails will help with this!
3. Avoid Spammy Subject Lines
Stay away from spammy subject lines with a ton of !!!!! or all capitalized letters. Include personalization when possible such as first name or job title. Experiment with your subject lines and test to see what works best with your audience. Keep your subject line simple and to the point, teasing the information that is included within the email content.
4. Segment Your Lists
Avoid sending blast emails to every single contact in your database all at once. Segment your database into lists, based on specific criteria that will help you provide them valuable content. For example, you can separate your database simply by current clients, past clients, and leads. You can take it a step further and segment your leads into different stages of the buying funnel, so that they receive content that helps move them along through consideration to decision making. By segmenting your database you can provide content that is specific for those lists and therefore increase engagement with your emails and the likelihood of opens, clicks, and responses!
5. Double Check Links & Images
A mistake that many businesses make when they first start out with email marketing is rushing to get their first campaign out the door. While you don’t want to sit on your content for too long, you want to make sure that your email looks and works properly for its recipients. To avoid any mistakes, send a test email to yourself and a few colleagues and have them take a look. Be sure to look at the email on desktop and mobile and click through all the links. Even images that are included in the email should be linked to somewhere just in case they are clicked!