Are You Making These Mistakes in Email Marketing?

Discover how to turn the ‘diamond in the rough’ into the ‘crowning jewel’ in your marketing strategy.

What You Will Learn

  • Why email marketing so often fails (and what you can do about it)
  • The mistakes that kill response (and how to fix them) 
  • How to win with email marketing (it’s easier than you think)

The End of Email Marketing?

People have been predicting the demise of email marketing for many years, and this is hardly surprising. After all, it’s certainly true that this strategy has become more challenging than ever before.

In the early days of email, in the 1990s, even the dumbest of email campaigns could get an open rate of 80 percent, and produce sales conversions of up to 10 percent. Email was a novelty, and getting one of these new-fangled messages was a surprise that deserved attention..

“Ooh...a Nigerian prince wants to send me 10 million dollars? That’s interesting. Let’s take a look…”

Of course, those days are long gone. Nowadays, we are all deluged with huge quantities of spam. Gmail alone sends over 10 million emails to spam every minute. We have become skeptical of every email we receive, looking for an excuse to delete it, rather than open it.

Email response rates have dwindled year by year, causing much doom and gloom amongst marketers. They complain about deliverability problems, miniscule open rates and dismal response numbers.

But wait. It doesn’t have to be like that. Done right, email marketing can still be devastatingly effective. You just have to be smarter about the way you run campaigns. Here are some of the most common mistakes, and ways to fix them.

Deliverability Problems

One of the biggest reasons for low open rates and poor response rates is simply that emails never even reach the recipients in box. They are flagged as unwanted emails and go straight into the spam folder.

Even if they make it to the inbox, they may still never be seen. Some 1.5 billion people now use Gmail, and by default all Gmail accounts have several tabs, including a Promotional tab. Having your messages go there is almost as bad as having them go straight to spam - they will probably never be read.

The tragedy here is that these poor deliverability issues can be avoided. You need to get good at understanding and managing:

  • Technical setup: domains should be set up correctly with SPF, DMARC and DKIM
  • Deliverability: ensure that you are sending to valid email address that won’t bounce
  • Email copywriting: copy must be written to avoid tripping spam flags

That’s just the tip of the iceberg, to be honest, but getting those things right will help you a lot. 

Low Open Rate 

Even if you can get your email into the recipients in-box, you may find that open rates are below 10 percent, or perhaps even below 1 percent. Clearly, you will never make any money unless you can get a decent percentage of people to open your messages.

Again, there are many issues that factor into this, but here are the main ones to focus on:

  • The from name: must be someone the recipient recognizes and/or trusts
  • The subject line: has a huge impact on open rates, and must be tested
  • The preview text: the first few words of the email are super-important, too

Failure to Engage

Don’t assume that just because someone opened your email, they will take the trouble to read it. Unless you keep them interested and engaged, they will delete your message and move on.

This is where good copywriting is critical. Most email marketing messages are a big fail here, and fail to maintain the reader’s interest. Investing in an experienced email copywriter will pay big dividends. 

You need copy that attracts attention, engages interest and keeps the reader scrolling down to read more. There are many different ways to do this, from telling stories to revealing surprising information.

Whichever approach you take, use all your powers of persuasion to keep people reading to the end. 

Low Response Rate

All of the above elements factor into the response rate. But assuming you managed to get people to read to the end of your email, what they see next is critical.

Every email must have a clear call to action. That may seem obvious, but a lot of marketing emails fail to tell the reader what to do next. Don’t expect people to work it out for themselves. You need to spell things out clearly and simply.

Whether it’s to click on a link or to hit reply, people need to know exactly what to do. If they are confused in any way, they will do nothing - and your response rate will be close to zero.

Dealing with List Hygiene

Maintaining and managing your email list effectively is also critically important. Ensure that people can unsubscribe if they want to, and remove emails that bounce. 

There are now many services that will help you verify email addresses before sending to them. The cost for doing this in bulk is low, and it will help protect your list and your email domain. Don’t hold back from spending a little money to do email marketing right. 

Following Up Appropriately

They say ‘the fortune is in the follow up,’ and that’s true - but only if it’s done correctly. 

If you follow up too infrequently, you will lose sales for sure. But if you follow up excessively, your messages will be reported as spam. And once several report your emails as being spammy, your deliverability problems will multiply.

There is no magic answer to how many follow ups are appropriate. This is something you will need to measure on a case-by-case basis. But it is better to err on the side of caution, and keep your domain reputation intact.

The Simple Solution

Email can be your killer sales app, but only if you take good care of all the issues discussed above. So you should certainly be leveraging email to add a whole new level of revenue to your business.

But one simple mistake may be enough to sabotage all your efforts. So take the risk. Work with a team that understands how to get your emails delivered, opened, read and clicked. Book a free strategy session with us today, and we’ll be happy to set you on the road to easy extra profits with email.

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Tags

email, email marketing


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