6 Reasons Your Email Marketing Could Be Better….and what to do about it

Email marketing is still one of the most popular and effective marketing methods, but the success of your campaigns depends on how well you execute. Forrester estimated that over 838 billion marketing messages are sent in one year. That’s a LOT of emails…and a lot of noise to cut through. However, successful email marketers see an average return of $44.25 for every dollar spent [Source]. Worth it!

If your emails aren’t inspiring your prospects and customers to engage with your business, here’s what you might be doing wrong.

6 Reasons Your Email Marketing Could Be Better….and what to do about it

1. Your email list is cluttered.
Poor list hygiene is at the top of our list because it’s both common and destructive. If your emails aren’t targeted, you might as well be emailing in a foreign language—you’re certainly not sending what your recipients want to see. A bad list turns destructive when people who no longer want to receive your emails mark you as spam. That’s why it’s vital to use email marketing best practices and always include an opt-out option. It’s much better to have a short but interested list than a long list of people who are regularly annoyed by your emails.

2. Your pipeline is clogged.
To keep the sales flowing freely, you need to nurture your old customers while also courting the new. If you’re not paying attention at every stage of the customer life cycle, you risk clogging up your pipeline with prospects and customers who’ve lost interest because your emails no longer speak to them. Instead of sending general emails to all customers, segment your lists and send highly targeted emails to small groups.

3. You’re sending the wrong message.
If you promised a newsletter and you’re delivering only advertisements, that’s a no-no…and a surprisingly common one. If you want to direct recipients to a specific landing page, try a teaser with a “read more” link.

4. Your subject line is weak.
If this were a romance novel, your subject line would be the come-hither look. It’s your invitation to open; your promise of juicy content within. Be flirtatious (not literally), but also straightforward and professional, and be sure your customer knows that email is coming from you.

5. Your design is not responsive.
People using PCs are far more likely to click links than people using mobile devices and tablets, but you can increase your mobile click-through rate by 15% by redesigning your emails to fit properly on any kind of device. Contemplating how your emails perform on mobile devices is critical, especially considering there are more mobile devices in use than there are people on the planet as of last year. (Really! It was predicted that by 2014, 7.7 billion mobile devices would be in use, serving a global population of 7.1 billion.)

6. Your call-to-action is lost.
The purpose of your email is to spur your clients to action, right? So why would you bury your call to action (CTA) in a mountain of text? Keep it short and put your CTA near the top of the email. Front and center. Not over on the side, buried in a text link, or linked to a gigantic graphic that might not show up. Make your message clear and isolate your CTA in the body of the message so it’s easy to see and click.

These email marketing tips should help you improve your email response rates, but before you send that first email, make sure you have a rock-solid content strategy to back it up. If you send enticing emails and don’t deliver the content you promised, you’ll just alienate your recipients…and they will never become your customers.


We’re Not In Kansas Anymore

kansas-smMore repeat customers? Yes, please. Better brand reach and recognition? Oh yeah! Through–the–roof marketing ROI? You bet your boots. Email marketing is incredibly effective, but you have to do it right and follow the rules.


You’ll learn:
  • Why email marketing works
  • The best tools of the trade
  • New trends in email marketing
  • 4 killer components to an irresistible email
  • How to avoid paying $1000s in fines
  • How 3 companies reached more customers with rockin’ email marketing

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Here’s a new year’s resolution for you … email automation

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Be Sure Your Next Message Gets Opened – Use “Triggers”

Be Sure Your Next Message Gets Opened – Use “Triggers” by Cultivate CommunicationsTriggers are a GREAT way to generate a customer response. “What’s a trigger?” you ask. A trigger is a specific reason to contact a prospect or customer in response to their having shared certain information with you. This could be something like:

  • A birthday message — A personalized card or an email with a special offer sent in honor of a customer’s birthday
  • A follow-up message — A reminder message sent a certain number of days after a quote has been delivered or a sale has been made

Triggers are nearly always based on a customer-initiated action — a customer provides you with his or her birthday, email address, or other demographic information, or a customer inquires about your product or service.

Because the customer is the one who started the interaction with your company, it’s far more likely that he or she will open, read, and then act on a trigger message than on an unsolicited email or direct mail piece.

Your triggered direct mail piece can easily be followed up with a responsive email to remind your prospects and customers about your offer or incentive. Now you’re using a cross-media approach to your marketing! The key to your trigger messages is to use personalization. You must demonstrate to your recipients that you know all about them and that you want to connect with them personally. At the same time, you want to be sure your personalized marketing doesn’t cross a line and end up creeping your customers out. You want them to feel LOVED, not WATCHED. Having good data for your trigger messages is critical. Besides email and street address information, your company should also work to collect:

  • Birthdates
  • Product or service preferences
  • Timeline on decision or cycle of service
  • Something fun or personal about the customer or prospect

If you develop a trigger strategy early on as part of your overall marketing plan, you can have your customer service reps seamlessly collect this data as part of the normal course of any inquiry or transaction. Think how responsive you can be with your trigger messages if you collect such data at — or even BEFORE — the point of sale. Gathering all this data is work, but the value to you and to your business is immense.

PS: What’s with the cat picture? Since 2011, cats have received almost four times the amount of viral views as dogs. This morning the business tech site Mashable.com article Grumpy Cat Lands Movie Role, Stays Unimpressed got 1.2K shares upon publishing. Why Do Cats Dominate the Internet? Check out this amusing short article.