Email is a marketing tool we’ve all come to know, whether we like it or not.
It has become the communication standard for, well, a lot of online purposes.
You’ve got all sorts of B2C and B2B email marketing uses and various ways to use email automation to grow your business, maximize your website’s usefulness, and turn visitors into long-term customers/clients.
For many, email automation is a digital marketing must-have.
There is so much to talk about when it comes to using email to make a business more profitable—so, I’ve narrowed it down to a few key practices that get overlooked far too often by business owners and digital marketers alike.
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Marketing Emails Optimized Well & Targeted Precisely
Whatever your mode of business is, using a professional email or company email will require a great level of attention.
No matter if it's B2C or B2B, you need to keep your target users in mind when either writing an email or setting up email automation. You’ll want to develop accurate marketing personas to understand your target user’s behavior and then design your email’s subject line, written content, and CTA (call-to-action) in a way that maximizes the desired action(s).
Optimizing your email, similar to optimizing your website, requires a great copy.
Write your email in a way that shows you understand your audience, recognize the problem they are experiencing, and know the best solution to fulfill their needs. This can be in the form of emailing out monthly/weekly newsletters, sharing blog content, welcoming in new members, offering exclusive deals, rewarding valued members, and so much more.
Depending on how many categories of prospective customers/clients you may be targeting, you could be looking at multiple email lists. Growing your email lists will require an effective email address acquisition strategy. You can’t be scraping online websites for email addresses, buying sketchy email lists, or just adding every email address you can get ahold of. Approaches like these aren’t only ineffective, but will potentially blacklist your email address by spam filters—this will wreck your email delivery rate, rendering it an inadequate marketing tool.
You need to develop your email list(s) with careful quality control while still being quantity-driven. Constantly work to grow your email list(s) over time.
Are you doing cold sales-styled emails to other business key decision makers? Well, make sure you pay close attention to the timing of your B2B emails.
Email Automation Set Up & Implemented Correctly
Often times, email automation is a core part of a business’s email marketing strategy.
A digital marketer cannot type up personalized emails to every individual prospect 24/7. Nor can they constantly keep track of your website visitors’ data and send out targeted emails accordingly.
This is what makes email automation both convenient and effective.
Email automation is used for a large variety of purposes—it can provide new subscriber welcoming emails, product/service offerings, online course sign-ups, blog/article reads, case studies, exclusive offers, program eligibility notifications, event announcements, appointment reminders, feedback/survey requests, birthday/holiday deals, and so on.
With email automation, you can nurture leads—this is important to understand because prospects may not always be ready to make a purchase, and may need time and resourceful reminders to reach that desired decision. For current customers/clients, email automation can be more geared towards instilling brand loyalty and/or spreading brand awareness.
It is also vital to think about another side of the equation: Your website.
Specifically, the placement and functionality of your website’s online form(s).
If you’re looking to grow your email list(s), you’ll want the sign-up/subscription form placed in the best spot on your landing page(s). This, along with other form and button placements, are an integral part of your website’s entire architecture.
Do you plan on sending gift certificates or “Thank You” responses via email? Maybe you have a “Contact Us” form with different text box values? Or use a Facebook sign-in plug-in for an easier subscription process? Perhaps, during an e-Commerce purchase, you provide a checkbox to allow future emails to be sent to that user?
Recording all of these information pieces and using them to create an efficient, non-spammy email automation service is not only suggested, it’s imperative!
When it comes to the actual email automation platform, you have different options. As a web development agency, we have found Mandrill to be a go-to solution until the paid MailChimp account requirement took place. Now, we’ll usually use SendGrid as an effective and affordable platform. There are other Mandrill alternatives to consider as well.
Avoid Emails from Being Marked as Spam
Even if you mean the best intentions, spam filters might prevent your emails from reaching the intended recipients.
With email automation working together with your website, getting marked as spam is a real danger to be aware of.
So whether you are sending out individual written emails, or are setting up some form of email automation, there are some important practices to follow.
Firstly, always gather qualified email addresses, as I had discussed when it comes to growing your email lists. The rate at which users hard bounce can negatively affect your email address’s reputation so make sure you gather email addresses of users who might actually carry interest towards your offerings!
Secondly, follow good, clean email copy practices. This means no “all caps” in the subject line, no excessive exclamation points, no irregular fonts/font sizes/colors, no keyword stuffing, no forms/videos embedded, no large attachments, and don’t overuse images/hyperlinks.
Also, avoid spam trigger words—especially in the subject line!
Spam trigger words include all the salesy words and phrases that you’d expect: Free, Offer, Guarantee, Save Money, Earn Cash, $$$, Insurance, Mortgage, Limited Time, Trial, Discount, Cheap, Easy Payment, etc.
There are plenty of other spam trigger words to be aware of as well.
Doing trials to ensure that your emails are sending through at a timely rate, without losing any data, and with the intended presentation is highly recommended. You don’t want to discover that you haven’t been receiving automated emails related to your website—or find yourself dealing with customers/users who aren’t receiving the emails that they’re expecting.
- Need help with email automation? Or integrating email marketing campaigns with your website?
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