How To Insure Your Next Email Campaign Is A Disastrous Flop


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We can all agree that poor results are much easier to achieve the positive ones. It just takes less planning, less thought, less effort, less understanding and less follow through. Why strive for success when possible failure might be sitting right at your business’ doorstep?

Okay, everyone’s awake now.

Nobody wants to fail nor do they plan to go down in flames. Then why does it happen so often in business?

Take email marketing campaigns for instance—still the fastest, cheapest, easiest (and most successful) way to reach out to prospects and customers, yet there are far more horror stories on record than sterling successes.

Here’s a graph from eConsultancy in which 1,300 respondents shared they barriers to success:


Seems as through this graph identifies “Quality of email database” as the main culprit. Quality of the recipients seems to infer the names in the database are outdated, no longer exist, are not interested, never were interested, have not opted in for any email burages or do not recognize the sender. In other words, 10,000 names in a company’s database do not equate to 10,000 potential prospects or leads.

Not wanting to know the truth is the reason most companies have no desire to track their email campaign success or clean their database. They don’t want to know that the 10,000 names in the database really equate to a few hundred people who really want to hear from the company.

Businesses need to curb their desire for numbers and shoot for quality. Doesn’t it make more sense to talk with 100 people who know you and are interested in hearing what you have to say than 10,000 possible strangers that see your email volley as an intrusion?

Build a database of contacts, potentials, prospects and customers that show interest in your business, want to hear from you and have opted in to receive your emails—watch your success rate go throw the roof.

“Lack of Strategy” appears to be the second most mentioned reason email campaigns falter, flounder and flop. No planning huh? Who wants to discuss this indictment?

Money, time, talent and resources will go into the next marketing effort precious resources for any business. Why not take a few minutes, do a Google search for “email marketing strategy”( I found 191,000 pages) and do a little planning. Develop quantifiable goals. Clean the database. Determine which days are the best to send out the emails. Sharpen the Subject: line to make it interesting and compelling. Keep the email copy brief. Offer value. And track the results so things can be fine-tuned.

Use an email platform such as ContactContact, iContact or MailChimp. There you’ll find loads of professional looking templates, an abundance of advice and great analytic tools.

Let’s focus on the fourth reason for poor email campaign performance—Lack of Segmentation. In other words, the sender of the email campaign treats every recipient the same. We al know every shopper is not the same. Some potential customers are looking for value while others may be searching out price, features, customer support, shipping options just to name a few. A restaurant or food supplier could hardly land new business sending meat dish recipes to vegetarians or vegans. A wine shop wouldn’t fair much better sending out wine club invites to AA members.

Know the audience. Segment them into groups. Don’t treat every potential buyer the same. Take the email-marketing message and spin it several ways to attract as many potential buyers as possible.

If the are 5,000 legit names in the company database divide the names into several groups and send out several messages to see which one or ones work best.

One more email campaign impediment before we leave this subject. It’s not mentioned on the graph—let’s call it conversion rate.

There are several ways to improve an email campaign’s conversion rate. We’ve already come to the conclusion that cleaning the database improves the response to the campaign. How do we get more people to open the email in the first place? Add more intrigue to the Subject: line. Don’t sell. If people are opening the email but not taking the bait (okay, offer) perhaps the content (A.K.A. copy) is not interesting, too verbose, or not on target. Let’s say the email recipients are reading the copy but not taking the offer. Change things up. Offer some people a webcast while others might prefer a whitepaper. Change one thing at a time so what works best can be measured.

Republished with author's permission from original post.


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