With more and more forms of digital communication available (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to name a few), it’s suprising that email marketing is still one of the most powerful customer retention tools available. Used correctly, it should still be part of your marketing arsenal.

Over the years I’ve sent marketing emails and newsletters to hundreds of thousands of people on behalf of different companies. Before you start, identfy your goals. Do you want to:

  • Welcome new subscribers
  • Promote a new offer or product
  • Nurture existing contacts
  • Re-engage old customers

Below are a few of my things to look out for if you want to make email marketing work for your business.

1# Use the correct software

With many options to choose from, such as Mail Chimp or Campaign Monitor, you should always use reputable emailing software for sending your communication. As well as making it easy to design professional looking emails, they will help manage your email lists, improve email deilvery and make it easier to target the right people.

2# Make sure the emails are relevant

Gather as much information about your subscribers as possible and use this to segment them into different catagories (email software can help you do this). When you have done this, you can send more emails that are more appealing to that audience. For example –

You run a gym or fitness class and want to target lapsed members with a discounted offer to encourage them to come back. Do you, A. Send an email to everyone on your email list and risk upsetting current members as they won’t get the offer, or do you, B. Only send the offer to lapsed subscribers who the offer is applicable to.

The answer is obvious, but you can only do this if you have segmented your email list into members and non-members. You can segment your contacts as much as you wish; age, interests, purchase history, gender, location.. In fact, by using any information that is useful to your business.

3# Use interesting headlines and content

This is an obvious one, but don’t send an email just for the sake of it. It will end up in the deleted items folder or even worse, marked as junk or spam. Don’t wait so long that people forget who you are, but at the same time just don’t send out anything. Spend sometime creating a plan or coming up with ideas in advance and create a diary, it will help you in the long run.

4# Make sure your emails are readable on all devices

One of the biggest mistakes people make in email design, is sitting there and creating them on a computer with a large screen and not testing how they look on mobile devices. With possible as much as 60% or more of people opening their emails on mobile or tablet, if they can’t read it easily it will just get deleted. Test them, before you send them. Everytime!

5# Make it easy for people to unsubscribe

I know, why would you do that? I hear you say. There is nothing more frustrating that wanting to opt out of receiving a particular email and you can’t see where to do so. If somebody can’t unsubscribe and once they get fed up of just hitting delete, they will most likely mark the email as spam or junk. If they do this it will harm your chances of future emails getting to peoples inbox.

If you need help with your email campaigns, designs or setting up software, please get in touch via the contact page.