‘But we did everything right!’ Does that sound familiar? It’s the kind of thing people often say just after they’ve done something wrong. They go through a process, they analyze their performance and because they’ve ticked all the boxes they assume the failure was a fluke. The truth is, just completing every step is not the same as doing everything right.
There are so many factors involved in building a successful email marketing campaign; it’s easy to get one wrong. The trick is to look at each step individually and identify all of the ways it might fail.
Before you write a single word, your email marketing campaign may already have failed. There’s a word for poorly planned, or scattergun email campaigns, they’re called spam. An effective email campaign should be meticulously planned and consistent with other activity on your website and social media. If you’re blogging about recent business success and tweeting about great customer feedback, why is your email about the lead up to Christmas? Timing and consistency is vital for an effective email.
Of course, choosing a consistent, relevant and up to date topic is no guarantee of success. Your topic still has to be effective on it’s own. Email marketing campaigns are often used to boost a failing or ineffective product. The idea being that direct promotion will help people realize how great the product is. That might work; of course it’s just as likely to lead to unsubscribes too. Your email marketing campaigns should put your best foot forward; not squeeze sales out of your worst performers.
Bland Subject Lines
Once you actually get to the email itself, the potential failures start before your even say ‘Hi’. If your subject line is too long or just dull, it’s not going to get you traffic. People often live in fear of the spam filter, so they try to keep their subject lines as direct and honest as possible. The filters are important, but it shouldn’t discourage creativity. The best email marketers test and retest everything. Your subject line is your first chance to make an impression, don’t be afraid to experiment.
A great subject line is nothing without good copy. An email marketing subject line is a promise. It tells the reader they’re going to get something great from this email. Your copy needs to make good on that promise. Otherwise you’re just overselling and under delivering. That only leads to dissatisfied readers and unsubscribes.
Ineffective Landing Page
If you do get click-throughs, you need to make sure you’re able to convert them into leads. When you’re creating an email marketing campaign the natural thing to do is to focus on the email. Unfortunately that often means the landing page ends up as an afterthought. Your email copy should build on the subject line and the landing page should build on the email copy. If people reach a landing page that’s just a rehash of the email, why would they stay there?
Forgetting the Follow-up
Email marketing campaigns won’t sell anything on their own. All they do is open the door. Your sales team needs to drag people through it. That means follow-up. Depending on the product, the client and your own strategy, you’ll either call or contact leads directly soon after they become a lead. Open rates, click-throughs and leads are good measures or email marketing success. Without a boost in sales they’re worth nothing to your business.
Successful email marketing campaigns rely on each of these factors. Well planned, well written mails that point to strong landing pages with good follow up rarely fail. It’s simple really, you just do everything right.