There’s no denying that email marketing is about as high impact a method as you can get when it comes to connecting with consumers across the digital landscape. However, results aren’t just guaranteed to everyone that fires off a marketed message. In fact, as the experts over at TechnologyAdvice Research point out in their industry report regarding email marketing mistakes, more than 30 percent of the people polled cited irrelevant email marketing content as the primary reason for flagging a brand with the spam tag. If you’re not interested in falling behind with the rest of the lagging members of the email marketing community and ending up in the trash folder, spend a few minutes reading over these quick tips that can keep your operations on the right side of the inbox divide.
Thinking Harder about Content
One of the most common ways to appear irrelevant or dated in terms of email marketing, according to Jeri Dube of Marketing Sherpa, comes from offering up boring or bland content. As great as it would be for consumers to lower their standards and accept every overt sales pitch and promotional email that asks for their money and provides little else, that’s just not how email marketing works these days.
If you really want to connect with consumers, it’s time to focus on value first and let the sales part take care of itself after you build a solid relationship with these viewers. From linking back to your blog posts – or other relevant posts from around the web – to providing insider insight into the latest breaking news, emphasizing the quality of your messages and offering up engaging material should serve as the cornerstone of your email marketing approach, regardless of your chosen industry or marketplace.
Understanding the Role of Timing
Outside of how you develop your content, there’s also the issue regarding the relevancy of your timing. For instance, failing to account for differences in time zones or firing off messages at odd hours of the day both inhibit the ability of your message to reach the person on the other side of the screen in a timely manner. Thankfully, if you start asking for some basic info from your audience during the sign-up process – like their physical locations and preferred mailing times – there’s nothing stopping your brand from tidying up any lingering relevancy issues on this front.
Your Contact List Is Diverse
Dube wraps up his take on the discussion by pointing out that another main point of contention regarding relevancy is the misconception that every member of your audience wants the same thing. Sure, common points of interest and parallels in behavior are most likely present among these individuals; after all, they all did end up on your contact list. However, the fact of the matter is that these people are still unique, and thus have plenty of subtle differences and desires that create further differentiation as you dig into the relevant data.
By employing the concept of segmentation, your brand can gain insight into the particular desires and needs of each subset of your audience, creating even more opportunities to stay relevant with these various groups. It is obviously more work to enact this kind of strategy, but when compared to painting the portrait of your contact list with broad, sweeping strokes, it’s easy to see how pinpoint segmentation offers up a reward that’s well worth the effort.
Keep Your Layout out of the Stone Age
Finally, Dan Bond of Econsultancy explains that relevancy concerns also affect the visual templates associated with your marketed messages. Essentially, appearing dated with unresponsive or bland selections not only hinders the aesthetic appeal of your content, it can also put a damper on the pure functionality of the message – particularly depending on the formatting and target browser or mail app.
While going big with flashy graphics and embedded images seems like a strong response to this concern, you’re much better off spending some time testing out templates and themes that load quickly, keep the viewer focused on the call-to-action (CTA), and translate well to as many mobile platforms as possible. Thankfully, subscribing to the aforementioned segmentation approach can help smooth out the testing and development of these visuals, as well as any later attempts at template optimization. With this tool in hand, as well as the rest of what you’ve picked up from this post, you’ll be well on your way to making a living on the cutting edge of email marketing, all while the competition struggles to stay relevant and generate results at the tail end of the pack.