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Digital Marketing

7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

With several digital marketing tools at your disposal, you might be wondering why email marketing is so important. Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach and engage your audience.

In fact, the importance of email marketing is so immense that I always recommend most businesses and individuals put it in the plan for their online marketing efforts. 

What is email marketing?

According to Optinmonster, email marketing is a highly effective digital marketing strategy of sending emails to prospects and customers. Effective marketing emails convert prospects into customers and turn one-time buyers into loyal, raving fans.

According to Radicati Group, more than half of the world’s population uses email as of 2019. And this number is expected to increase up to more than 4.3 billion by 2023. Data from Pew Research also shows that 92% of adults in the United States use email, and 61% of these email users are checking and sending emails on an average day.

So what does this tell you?

This means that there’s a great opportunity for businesses of all sizes to reach their target market, no matter what their audience looks like.

With email marketing integrated, businesses can improve their reach and visibility, allowing them to engage and convert more leads on a consistent basis.

Why is email marketing so important?

Many digital marketers and business owners have reported that email marketing converts better. Again, according to Optinmonster, people who buy products marketed through email spend 138% more than those who do not receive email offers.

In fact, email marketing has an ROI (returns on investment) of 4400%. That’s huge! And if you are wondering if social media converts even better, think again: the average order value of an email is at least three times higher than that of social media.

In addition to this, email marketing is cost effective. Just look at the chart below from Lyfemarketing:

This means that with email marketing integrated into your business processes, you are on the right path to making a whole lot of sales and save a lot of money on marketing.

There’s no end to the benefits of email marketing for business especially if you also consider the fact that you can reach more mobile users or customers, personalize messaging for each recipient, automate the entire email marketing processes and even measure your email marketing efforts through the analytics provided by your email services providers such as Constant Contact, GetResponse, Moosend, Mailchimp and many others.

Having mentioned all this, let’s quickly look at the 7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign Click To Tweet

As cost and marketing effective as email marketing is, if you do not follow the right steps, you may end up not creating successful email marketing campaigns for your business.

7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

Step 1: Define your goals

If there’s anything that has so much freedom to go in and out of our heads, it’s IDEAS. They keep coming, whether regularly or occasionally. But the thing about ideas is that not all are useful.

In fact, 70% or more of our ideas may end up not useful. However, that is not to say that many of them aren’t also.

The point I am trying to make here is that when you have an idea about a business or product, the first thing you should do is slow down and think it through. That way, you will be able to tell what you want to achieve with that idea. And so, you set your goals.

So let’s take, for instance, if your idea is to start a blog for your DIY idea, it simply means that it’s part of your goals to find your right kind of audience through different channels and funnel them through your email marketing process. By the way, in the future, you may have plans to monetise both your blog and email marketing.

To achieve your dream of someday becoming an authority by coaching and monetizing your skills, you have to make sure that you get your games right from the start.

This means that understanding your goals or what you intend to achieve, will help in guiding the content of your email marketing and everything about you.

Step 2: Choose an email marketing platform that aligns with your goals

What do you want in email marketing? Based on your kind of business, your plan can either be on sending few or more emails. If your plan is to send more emails and also automate some of your email processes, then I can confidently recommend the below email marketing services to you. This is because their platforms are robust and will most likely take care of all your needs.

Constant Contact

Constant Contact offers highly effective email marketing with a bevvy of mobile-responsive templates suited for various needs and industries. It tracks KPIs in real-time, simplifies list-building and contact management, and provides campaign ideas by industry. Constant Contact offers a 60-day free trial; paid subscriptions start at $20/month with annual discounts.

GetResponse

GetResponse offers email marketing, custom landing pages, and webinar marketing with solutions tailored to different industries. It integrates with popular e-commerce platforms and its marketing automation scales for growing companies. Its basic email marketing package starts at $15/month, billed monthly, with discounts available for annual/bi-annual plans.

Moosend

Moosend is the ultimate email marketing software and marketing automation platform that will not break your bank. It is a powerful email marketing platform with world-class features, state-of-the-art automation, and an award-winning user interface. From fledgeling startups to Fortune 500 companies, thousands of businesses around the globe use Moosend to engage their email subscribers and grow their businesses.

With Moosend you can easily manage multiple email campaigns and mailing lists, as well as design and send striking, responsive newsletters created on the built-in campaign editor. You also get free access to dozens of newsletter templates designed to minimize the time you spend on creating your email communication.

Moosend’s intelligent marketing automation and website tracking, you can exceed performance goals by doing less. Increase conversion rates with Cart Abandonment reminders, boost average order value with Upsell/Cross-sell sequences, establish brand loyalty as your competitive advantage with custom Loyalty sequences, and much more.

Convertkit

ConvertKit is a full-featured email service provider (ESP) created by Nathan Barry. Thanks to its ease of use, automation and other features, it’s one of the fastest-growing email marketing companies around. It also offers customizable sign-up forms and landing pages to help bring in more email subscribers.

Mailchimp

MailChimp is one of the oldest email marketing solutions around. It allows you to send automated, targeted emails, track performance metrics, design templates with a drag-and-drop interface, and incorporate social media ad campaigns. It also integrates with major e-commerce platforms. MailChimp has a free version, while paid subscriptions start at $10/month.

Please note that there are several email marketing services that you can try out. However, I chose these ones because I have used them and they all work fantastically well.

Step 3: Build and segment your mailing lists

There are two things here: list building and list segmentation. They are two different concepts in email marketing but they usually rely on each other.

Usually, you cannot segment your mailing list without having to build your mailing list. In other words, this means that there’s got to be a mailist list before you can segment.

You can build your mailing lists in so many ways e.g. through ecommerce platform, email account scrapping, existing email list and you can decide to build your mailist list from scratch.

7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign Click To Tweet

Note that when you’re trying to collate emails from here and there without building your mailing list from scratch, you have to be very careful. This is because most the email addresses may no longer be in use, hence high bounce rate when you send to them. And in a case where the recipients have not consented that you send them emails, it may also land you in trouble.

Hence, it’s usually advisable that you build your own mailing list from scratch.

Building your mailing lists

Although a little bit tasking, building and growing your mailing list from scratch is still the best. This is because your list will probably be more current, with more relevant prospects, than if you scoured addresses from an old database.

Some surefire ways to attract new members to join your mailing lists

  1. Make it so easy for your readers to subscribe. Pus a call-to-action button in the right and most conspicuous places on your website or landing page to increase subscriptions.
  2. Include a subscription link in your email signature. 
  3. Continuously write highly resourceful, valuable and compelling content. This will undoubtedly attract a lot of people to join your mailing lists
  4. Let your readers know that you won’t SPAM them with your content. A lot of people are irritant of spam. Hence, if you promise them in your subscription form that you won’t spam them, they are most likely to join your mailing list.
  5. Offer something irresistible as a giveaway or freebie. Almost everybody loves free stuff. So if you can strategically give something valuable away in exchange for their email addresses, it’s a smart move. This trick works most of the time.

Segmenting your mailing lists

Segmenting your email list lets you send highly-targeted emails to people based on their interests or demographic criteria. If it’s relevant to them, they’re more likely to open it; if they open it, there’s a chance they could convert.

When segmenting your mailing lists, there are several things you may want to consider depending on your kind of business. Some of the things you may want to consider in order to segment your lists effectively include:

  1. Geography: determining the physical location of your audience can immensely help your email marketing efforts. For instance, knowing the various time zones, countries or even cities of your recipients can help you make an informed decision on when is best to send out emails to them for maximum results (e.g. open rates, click-through rates and even conversion rates).
  2. Demographics: This may include age, gender, language, background, job title and any other of your targeted audience. Adequate knowledge of this also will help your email marketing efforts.
  3. Email Engagement: Customers who opt to receive emails no more than, say, twice a month can have abbreviated bi-weekly newsletters sent to their inboxes with the top topics of that period.
  4. Past Purchases and Amount Spent: This can inform an email’s dynamic content or the nature of promotions personalized to recipients’ interests (especially in an e-commerce environment)
  5. Sales Funnel Position: Is a prospect abandoning a purchase? You can send such prospect a targeted email to give a discount of some sort. In short, you can send emails customized to any stage of the buyer’s journey to push them farther down the funnel.

Step 4: Create an email campaign

Creating an email campaign should be fun, however, there are three key things to note when doing this. These include your email header, body and footer.

These three constituents are parammount in any email campaigns, hence, it’s important for you to know how to use them.

Header

Your header is the first thing to work on. It’s where you put the information people see when they receive the email in their inbox. While the header contains the least amount of content, it may be the most important.

Recipients may decide whether or not to open your email based on your header. So it has to be worth it.

A header has three parts:

Sender name. A sender name is the name of the sender of an email (use your name preferrably),

The subject line is usually short, personal and action-oriented (e.g. {recipient’s name}, this is something special for you).

Preheader usually appears under the subject line in the inbox preview. This is supposed to do the trick of getting your readers to open your email.


Body of the email

To get your recipients to read what you have to say even after opening your email is the next major task. What this means is that your email body has to be captivating enough to get them to carry out some activities on your email such as opening an embedded link, replying your email or taking other available actions in the body of your email.

To achieve this feat, you have to make sure that your email is readable, include relevant call to action, include some light visuals and most importantly, ensure you write to your recipients’ interests.

Footer of your email

The footer is where you sign off with ways for your reader to engage you in other channels. Here are three things you should definitely include in your footer:

  1. contact information: let your readers know they are dealing with a business with an address and not someone that can just cart away their money or personal details.
  2. social media links: share links of your business social media handles with your readers. This will increase more engagement and trust.
  3. unsubscribe link: allow readers to unsubscribe from your mailing lists just in case they are no longer interested in getting your feeds.

Step 5: Use Autoresponders

An autoresponder is a program that automates the sending of emails. The emails can be triggered by specific actions or timed for regular release. Autoresponders are used in email marketing to nurture leads, build trust, provide confirmation that data was received, and otherwise convey useful information about products, services, or promotions.

An example of an autoresponder is when you get a welcome email after joining a subcriber’s list or after making a product purchase on an e-commerce website.

Setting up autoresponders will save you a lot of time and effort. Imagine that while you are in bed or do other things, your emails are going out to your subscribers or someone that has just made a purchase on your e-commerce site… How cool is that?

That’s where an autoresponder comes in. And that is why I made those earlier suggestions for you for email marketing services like Constant Contact, Moosend, GetResponse etc.

Benefits of autoresponder emails

Autoresponders are used on quite a number of occasions. Some of the benefits of autoresponders include:

  1. To welcome subscribers who just joined a mailing list through sign up forms
  2. To show proof of payment on a transaction carried out on an ecommerce website such as checking out a product or renewing your webhosting plan.
  3. To activate an account. It usually contains a link to activate an account.
  4. To promote urgency in a product sale. It can include a countdown timer with a call to action to prompt subscribers to take action.
  5. Also used to increase sales from cart abandonement on an ecommerce store. This can include discount or mouth-watering offers that the prospect cannot resist.

There are several other benefits of autoresponders. The most important thing is that for you to identify the one you know your business, product or service needs and simply implement.

Step 6: Enable Data Tracking

Now that you are ready to send out your email campaign, wouldn’t it be nice if you are able to measure the outcome of your sent email?

The good thing is that most of these email marketing services will allow you track your send emails.

Some of the things you will be able to track include:

  1. Unique open rate: This tracks the number of distinct recipients who’ve opened your email.
  2. Bounce rate: The bounce rate measures the rate at which your emails are rejected by email servers. There are two types of bounces — hard and soft. A hard bounce usually occurs as the result of non-existent or invalid email addresses. A soft bounce can indicate recipient’s inbox is over quota or the email message is too large.
  3. Complaint rate: A high complaint rate is a sign your recipients don’t see value in your emails or that they didn’t give their consent for you to email them. Many email marketing service providers may remove your account from their system when you reach a certain percentage of complaint rate.
  4. Recipients list: A recipient list allows you to see the identity of recipients of your sent email campaigns. This means you are able to see their email addresses, names, links they clicked and other useful metrics.
  5. No of times clicked: This allows you to see the number of times a link has been clicked. This helps you to know the links that are working in your email marketing campaigns.

Step 7: Send your email

How does it feel to know that you have finally created your email campaign? It’s a lovely feeling to know that a lot of people will hear from you or share in your wealth of knowledge.

Sending your first email campaign may not turn out well in terms of open rates, clicks and all that, but one thing is certain: you will learn from your mistakes and be better at it.

My candid advice going forward is that you segment your lists, study campaign performance, make alterations, test your emails against one another, and every day you’ll get a little closer to your goals.

7 Actionable Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign Click To Tweet

Top Email Marketing FAQs


Should I buy an email list?

My answer is no. This is because people you intend to send emails to never gave their consent in the first place. They never subscribed to your list. The possibility that they will bounce or even unsubscribe and report you immediately they open your email is very high.

The goal of your marketing efforts should be to find the right prospects and customers. If you buy a list, you are taking that decision away from your prospects.  Suddenly, they receive this message from you (or their spam folder, most likely), but have no idea what it’s about, who you are and how you got their information.


What type of content works best?

Keep your message focused and provide a path for your reader to follow – an introduction, body/message, and call-to-action. Your message should answer the questions or problems that your customers face.

Make sure you are writing for your readers and their interests. Keep the email message clean, don’t overwhelm your readers with too much background noise – white space is a good thing. Just keep things simple!


How can I grow my mailing list?

Growing your mailing list is not something that happens overnight. It’s gradual and so, you should be patient and tactical. To get a lot of subscribers over time, the simple rule is to create very useful content and also locate your audience. One of the easiest and fastest ways to build your list is through lead magnet (giving something tangible to collect readers’ email addresses).


What is the best time and day to send emails?

The answer to this question is unknown, however, you can determine the best time and day if you closely observe metrics from your previously sent email campaigns. This way, you will be able to monitor the behaviour of your recipients and know when best to send them emails.

Bottom line, try different days and times and analyze the results.


What metrics should I track in my email marketing campaigns?

Want to know if what you are doing is working? All you need to do is track the outcome of your email campaigns. What to track? Track the following: unique open rate, click-through rate and unsubscribes. This way, you will know what is working and what is not.


What is A/B split testing?

A/B testing is a great technique for uncovering the best email marketing tactics and timing for your specific audience. You can test everything in your email from template to subject line to headline.

Here is a list of some ideas to get started:

Subject line
The layout of the message (one-column or two)
Personalization strategy
Call-to-action
Headline
Images
Time/Day of week


What are the best practices for email subject headlines?

What works for you may not work for me especially as we are going to have varying audiences or readers. Hence, it’s important that you continuously test subject headlines.

But you want to make sure that you write for your audience by using the language they are familiar with, personalize your messaging to appeal to each recipient, keep your message short knowing that most of your users will be coming from mobile devices and finally, use clear action words so you don’t confuse your readers.

Summary

In summary, as discussed, 7 actionable steps to creating a successful email marketing campaign include:

  • Defining your goals
  • Choosing an email marketing platform that aligns with your goals
  • Building and segmenting your mailing lists
  • Creating your email campaign
  • Using Autoresponders
  • Enabling Data Tracking
  • Sending your email

Conclusion

There you have the 7 actionable steps to creating a successful email marketing campaign. I would love to know if you have ever sent out any email marketing campaign; what your challenges were and how you were able to overcome them.

And if you are yet to send out any, you can use the links above to try out any of the suggested email marketing service providers. I will like to know what your experience is going forward and will love to help where necessary.

Please leave a comment in the section below. I read and reply to all comments. And also, remember to share this post on your favourite social media channel.

Author

Gogitals

At Gogitals, we are specialist in Website Design, Digital Marketing and Lead Generation. We build profitable digital platforms for brands.

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