This post originally appeared on startupnation.com/grow-your-business
Whether it’s a broken link, a spelling error, or worst of all, sending a message to the wrong audience, an email-gone-awry is never a good thing for a brand. With the growing success email marketing campaigns provide for small businesses, newsletters are an essential part of keeping and creating engaged customers.
A good marketing strategy has both structured outreach and organized data, and in this case, that means sending engaging emails while tracking and analyzing your responses. Needless to say, it’s a lot to manage, and a mistake can happen at any point.
So how can you avoid setbacks in such an important part of your outreach and business? Check out these seven common email marketing mistakes entrepreneurs encounter, and learn how to fix them!
Starting without a plan
This mistake is not as obvious, but is very important to avoid. Like most things, getting results starts with a solid plan, and this is especially true for email marketing campaigns.
Start by identifying all the events your business puts on throughout the year. This could include fundraisers, sales, product launches, event sponsorships, etc. Use these occasions as the major email marketing milestones of your plan.
The next step in planning should be filling in the rest of the emails with content you want to share with customers on a regular basis. This could include informative blog posts, industry news, and more.
Not knowing your audience
Having a good understanding of your target audience is essential.
If you don’t, you may end up sending the wrong information to the wrong person or group. This ultimately could end with your business losing credibility and engagement. The idea is to research your desired demographics and develop personas for each type of buyer.
Once you have the right identifiers established, you can start fixing your email campaigns by understanding small differences within your target audience and creating strategic groups and lists that allow for sending specific content rather than widespread blasts.
Using bad subject lines and confusing email content
Nothing will leave an email unopened like a bad subject line.
No one wants to spend their time trying to figure out what an email is telling them, so you can avoid this issue by keeping your message clear and on brand by A/B testing different subject lines to see which emails have a better open rate.
Tracking engagement is your best indicator of what your segmented lists respond to. Plus, you can use a variety of templates to keep your content feeling fresh and easy to understand at all times.
For instance, make sure to use captivating images with CTAs and links that drive people to the content you want to share. Also, break the copy up into digestible lines no more than one to two sentences in length.
Leaving out a call-to-action
A clear call-to-action (CTA) is what email marketing campaigns are all about.
They give your reader a specific action to take in response to your email. Are you linking to a landing page in order to collect member feedback? Or are you sharing an event link in the hopes of gathering signups? Without a CTA, you risk your email being quickly forgotten, so make sure to always include something for your reader to engage with (and be sure to track the results).
Ideally, this can come at the end of the email or strategically throughout to nurture a lead closer to a conversion. You can also encourage readers to fill out a form for some extra downloadable content or request that they contact your team to learn more about a product or service.
Not being personal
Without getting personal, email blasts can feel distant and uninteresting. And while putting a personal touch on your campaign requires a bit more work, it is worth the effort. Not only do personalized messages break the email ice, but they also deliver more relevant and useful information that is returned with meaningful engagement.
The best way to keep your emails tailor-made to your reader is by using an email automation tool, integrated with your CRM, like Salesforce, to personalize your messaging.
After a customer subscribes to your newsletter, you can immediately hit them with an automated campaign that addresses them by their first name and initiates the sales funnel. Based on their open rates on actions with your links and CTAs, you can continue to send them nurture emails that bring them closer to your desired end goal.
Overall, you want to target customer pain points that are specific to their needs and industry. If you can analyze data and leverage it in your favor with personalization, the world is your oyster.
There is no point in using all the great tools that track your email campaign’s progress if you do not plan to use them regularly. Following analytics is the only way to keep your momentum going forward and is the best way to improve your strategies. First and foremost, make sure to stay on top of tracking your data, use the information to make changes, and pay attention to what works and what doesn’t.
Over time, you will be able to understand your demographics better and focus on growing engagement rates that drive conversions, as opposed to simply getting people to open your campaigns.
Sending emails at the wrong time
This may seem insignificant; however, the timing makes a major difference.
In B2B messaging, recipients lead particularly busy lives. In order to reach them, timing is a big part of initial contact and follow up. This means knowing who is getting your email and what time zone they are in to ensure that they receive the message that’s applicable to their daily lifestyle.
Essentially, automation is the key to setting up reminders and creating email lists that include scheduling. With the right know-how, you can even set up emails to go out at the right times to the right people as long as you have the content uploaded beforehand.
More effort yields more success
A successful email campaign is much more than just good copy and colorful images.
With time and practice, you will be able to see through time what draws a better response rate. Using an email tracking application could help create ease and structure to help grow your response rates. There is much you can do to stand out from the clutter of competition that crowds your target audiences’ inboxes daily, and offer an outstanding experience for your prospect.
It requires careful planning and detailed management the entire way. The more effort you put into your campaign, the better your returns will be. While perfecting the specifics of your email marketing campaign, there will always be a few obstacles to overcome and learn from, but remembering these seven common B2B email mistakes will give you a great head start.
The post 7 Common Email Marketing Mistakes and How to Fix Them appeared first on StartupNation.