You Asked, We Answered: Your Complete Guide to Effective Email Marketing
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We understand that email marketing can be a bit overwhelming, especially with all the details and best practices to remember. But don’t worry, we’re here to help make things easier for you!
Imagine email marketing as a vast and beautiful garden waiting to be explored. Every question you have is like a unique flower, with each answer opening up new insights and possibilities for your business. Some answers might help you start a successful email campaign, while others might guide you in nurturing and pruning your existing email list.
As certified email marketing experts with years of experience, we’re always here to help you take your business to the next level. We know that just like a garden, email marketing requires knowledge and expertise to grow successfully. That’s why we’re happy to share our knowledge with you!
We’ve gathered the most commonly asked questions from our customers and put them all in one place. Whether you’re new to email marketing or a seasoned pro, this guide is a must-read!
So why not check it out and take the first step toward growing your business with email marketing?
- What is email marketing, and why is it important?
- How do I build an email list?
- How often should I send emails to my subscribers?
- How do I write effective subject lines for my emails?
- How do I increase my click-through rate?
- How do I best segment my email list?
- How can I clean my email list?
- What elements should I be A/B testing in my emails and why?
- What metrics should I track after sending out an email?
- How can I optimise my email campaigns for better results?
- How can I make sure my emails don’t end up in the spam folder?
- Should I outsource my email marketing?
What is email marketing, and why is it important?
Email marketing is the sending of promotional messages, newsletters, or other marketing content to a group of people via email.
The goal of email marketing is to connect with your audience, increase engagement, and, ultimately, increase sales or conversions.
Email marketing is important for several reasons:
Direct communication: Email allows you to communicate directly with your audience and send targeted messages to people who have already expressed interest in your brand or product.
Cost-effective: Email marketing is relatively inexpensive when compared to other marketing channels, making it accessible to businesses of all sizes.
High ROI: Email marketing can provide a high return on investment when done correctly, with some studies reporting an average ROI of $42 for every $1 spent.
Measurable: Email marketing campaigns are highly measurable, allowing you to track open rates, click rates, and conversion rates and use this information to improve future campaigns.
Builds brand loyalty: Consistently providing valuable and engaging content via email can help build trust and loyalty with your audience, leading to repeat business and referrals.
Overall, email marketing is an effective and valuable tool for businesses that want to build and maintain relationships with their target audience, drive engagement and conversions, and ultimately grow their business.
How do I build an email list?
There are many ways to build an email list, such as offering a free incentive or lead magnet in exchange for email sign-ups, promoting your sign-up link on social media or other marketing channels, and using pop-ups or other website widgets to collect email addresses.
Remember to make it easy for people to sign up, offering valuable content that resonates with your audience as this can also increase your subscriber base.
Also, keep in mind that simply having a ton of subscribers doesn’t guarantee a successful email campaign. The secret is to have the right people on your list; qualified leads who will open and click through your emails. Believe it or not, even a smaller list of subscribers can be super profitable if those people are actively engaging with your content.
How often should I send emails to my subscribers?
Honestly? There’s no right or wrong answer to this.
The frequency of email campaigns is determined by your company, its audience and various factors, such as the nature of your product or service.
To stay top-of-mind with subscribers, it’s generally recommended to send at least one email per month. The key is to provide value in each email while avoiding sending too many emails, which may leave subscribers feeling overwhelmed or irritated.
Ultimately, if your emails are the best emails someone would ever receive, and you’ve the capacity to create the content, you could send one every day!… So firstly, the frequency is going to be impacted by your own capacity to create good content.
Here are some other guidelines to consider:
Industry: The frequency of email campaigns varies by industry. Retail and e-commerce companies, for example, typically send 1-3 emails per week, whereas B2B and professional services companies may send 1-2 emails per month.Audience: Consider your target audience’s preferences and behaviour. Do they respond well to frequent emails, or do they prefer less frequent communication? You can test or poll your audience for feedback and adjust your email frequency accordingly.Content: The type of content you send can also have an impact on the frequency of your campaigns. If you have a lot of valuable content to share, you should send out more emails. Sending fewer emails may be more effective if you have less content or if your content is time-sensitive.Testing: Experiment with different frequencies to see which ones work best for your audience. A/B testing can be used to compare the performance of different email frequencies.
In general, it’s important to strike a balance between staying top-of-mind with your audience and avoiding over-communication, which can result in unsubscribes or spam complaints. Sending 1-2 emails per month is a good starting point, and you can adjust the frequency based on your audience’s response.
How do I write effective subject lines for my emails?
Read our blog to learn how you can use these elements in your subject lines to guarantee your emails get opened.
Your subject line is the first impression your email makes on your recipient. A good subject line can make the difference between your email being opened and read, or being sent straight to the trash folder.
Effective subject lines are short, catchy, and accurately reflect the email’s content.
The best email subject lines work because they are targeted, designed to appeal to a specific audience and trigger an emotional and psychological response.
It is critical to avoid using spammy language or misleading subject lines. Personalisation and urgency are also effective strategies for encouraging opens.
How do I increase my click-through rate?
Related blog: 8 unique strategies for improving your email game and increasing click-through rates.
The key thing here is to ensure that your content is appealing to your subscribers. Your subscribers will be more likely to click on your links and CTAs if your emails are informative, relevant, and persuasive.
Follow these other strategies below:
- Craft compelling subject lines that grab the reader’s attention and entice them to open the email.
- Personalise your emails by using the recipient’s name and segmenting your email list based on their interests and behaviours.
- Write concise and engaging email content that is easy to read and provides value to the reader.
- Use clear and prominent calls-to-action (CTAs) that encourage the reader to click through to your website or landing page.
- Optimise your emails for mobile devices to ensure they are easy to read and navigate on smartphones and tablets.
- Test and experiment with different email designs, copy, and CTAs to see what resonates best with your audience.
How do I best segment my email list?
Segmentation is essential when it comes to success with your marketing. Segmenting your email list involves dividing your subscribers into smaller groups based on shared characteristics or behaviours.
Here are some ways to best segment your email list:
- Demographics: Segment subscribers based on their age, gender, location, or other demographic information.
- Behaviour: Segment subscribers based on their engagement with your emails, such as opens, clicks, and purchases.
- Interests: Segment subscribers based on their interests or preferences, such as their past purchases or the topics they’ve shown interest in.
- Lifecycle stage: Segment subscribers based on where they are in the customer journey, such as new subscribers, repeat customers, or inactive subscribers.
- Personalisation: Use subscriber data to personalise your email content, such as using their first name or referencing their past purchases.
It’s important to keep your segments relevant and up-to-date. Being ‘relevant’ means sending the right information to the right person at the right time… and the more relevant you are the more success you’ll have.
so regularly review and update your segments based on changing subscriber behaviour or preferences.
How can I clean my email list?
Related blog: What to do with unsubscribed, non-subscribed and cleaned emails in Mailchimp Solved!
Cleaning your email list is an important task to ensure that your email marketing campaigns are effective and reach the right audience.
Here are some steps you can take to clean your email list:
- Remove inactive subscribers: If subscribers haven’t engaged with your emails in a while, it’s a good idea to remove them from your list. You can either send a re-engagement email to see if they’re still interested or remove them from your list.
- Remove invalid or bounced email addresses: If an email address is invalid or bounces back, it’s a good idea to remove it from your list. This can help improve your email deliverability.
- Remove duplicate email addresses: If a subscriber is on your list more than once, it’s a good idea to remove the duplicates. This can help you avoid sending duplicate emails and improve your engagement rates.
- Use email verification tools: There are tools available that can help you verify email addresses and remove any invalid or risky emails from your list.
- Regularly monitor your email list: Make it a habit to regularly monitor your email list and remove any subscribers who are no longer interested or engaging with your emails.
By following these steps, you can ensure that your email list is clean and up-to-date, which can lead to better engagement rates and a more successful email marketing campaign.
What elements should I be A/B testing in my emails and why?
A/B testing, also known as split testing, is a powerful method for optimising and improving the performance of your email marketing campaigns. Here are some elements you might want to test:
Subject lines: Because the subject line is the first thing your subscribers see, experimenting with different subject lines can have a big impact on your open rates. You can experiment with different lengths, tones, and keywords to see what works best for your audience.
Sender name: The sender name can also affect your open rates. Testing different sender names, such as using a personal name versus a brand name, can help you determine what your subscribers prefer.
Email content: Trying out different types of content, such as images, videos, or text-only emails, can help you figure out what your subscribers are most interested in. You can also experiment with different layouts, colours, and calls-to-action (CTAs) to see which ones generate the most clicks.
Send time: The time you send your emails can have a significant impact on open and click-through rates. You can test different send times to see what works best for your audience, such as early morning versus midday.
Segmentation: You can improve your email performance by segmenting your list based on demographics, behaviours, or preferences. Try to send more personalised and relevant emails by experimenting with different segmentations and targeting strategies.
When you’re A/B testing your emails, it’s really important to have a clear idea of what you’re trying to achieve, and to only test one thing at a time. By changing too many elements at once, it can be difficult to figure out what’s really making a difference. So take it one step at a time and see how each change affects your results.
What metrics should I track after sending out an email?
After sending out an email, some of the key metrics you should track include:
Open rate: the percentage of recipients who opened your email – Click-through rate: the percentage of recipients who clicked on a link within your emailConversion rate: the percentage of recipients who completed a desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a formBounce rate: the percentage of emails that were undeliverable and returned to the senderUnsubscribe rate: the percentage of recipients who opted out of receiving future emails from youSpam complaint rate: the percentage of recipients who marked your email as spam
One thing to remember is that open rates are currently hard to completely track – as things like Apple Privacy Protection (which opens an email before the recipient to check it’s contents) can skew the results. – learn more about open rates in this article.
You can gain insights into the effectiveness of your email campaigns, identify areas for improvement, and adjust your strategies to better meet the needs of your subscribers by tracking these metrics.
…but remember that your stats are for your own data and it’s hard to compare directly to other organisations as their database is as unique as yours is.
How can I optimise my email campaigns for better results?
Define your objectives: Determine your email campaign’s specific goals, such as increasing sales, improving engagement, or generating leads.Make your emails more personal: Make your emails more relevant and engaging for each subscriber by using personalisation techniques. This may include using their name, location, or other demographic information.Segment your list: Divide your email list into smaller groups based on factors such as interests, demographics, and behaviours. This enables you to send more targeted messages to each segment, increasing engagement and conversion rates.Improve your subject lines: Make sure your subject lines are clear, concise, and catchy. Use of spammy or misleading subject lines may jeopardise your deliverability.Make use of a responsive design: Make sure your emails are optimised for various devices and screen sizes. Make use of a responsive design that adapts to different devices, making it simple for subscribers to read and interact with your content.Concentrate on your call to action: Make your call-to-action (CTA) prominent and visible in your emails. Use action-oriented language that communicates clearly what subscribers can expect after clicking the CTA.
Test!: Test different elements of your email campaigns, such as subject lines, content, CTAs, and send times. Use the results to optimise your campaigns for better performance over time.
How can I make sure my emails don’t end up in the spam folder?
Related Blog: I think my emails are going to SPAM… What can I do about it?
No one likes their emails to go to the spam folder so avoid this by ensuring that the content, list, server reputation, formatting, and authentication are all set up correctly. Focus on making your emails engaging and ensure they are relevant and sent consistently.
- Use a reputable email service provider: This is important because reputable providers have a good track record for delivering emails to the inbox rather than spam folder.Build a good reputation with inbox providers by being a good emailer.
- Create a permission-based email list: Do not buy or send unsolicited emails. Instead, organically grow your email list by ALWAYS obtaining permission from your subscribers.
- Use a clear and recognisable sender name: Use a name that is recognisable and consistent with your brand to avoid being marked as spam.
- Avoid using spam trigger words: Avoid using words like “free,” “guaranteed,” “limited time,” or “click here” in your subject line or email body, as these can trigger spam filters.
- Engage your email list: If you want a better deliverability rate – send better emails. Send targeted emails to specific segments of your email list based on their interests or behaviour to avoid sending irrelevant emails.
- Include an unsubscribe link: Always include an easy-to-find unsubscribe link in every email to give recipients the option to opt-out if they no longer want to receive your emails.
- Test and monitor your emails: Test your emails to see if they are being delivered to the inbox or spam folder, and monitor your email metrics to make improvements to your email campaigns.
- Authenticate and Verify: make sure you authenticate and verify your sending domain with MailChimp. Find out how to do this by reading our blog post on deliverability.
By following these tips, you can reduce the likelihood of your emails being marked as spam and increase the chances of them being delivered to the inbox.
Should I outsource my email marketing?
Running a business is no easy feat, especially when it comes to marketing. Because with so many options available, it can be overwhelming to decide what’s best for your business.
In fact, the options and things to consider are mind-blowing.
The thing is, email marketing requires a specific skill set that not everyone may have. From creating compelling content to understanding audience segmentation and complying with regulations, it can be a lot to handle.
And let’s be real, with so many things on your to-do list, email marketing can sometimes fall to the bottom.
So, if you have the time, and the skills, to create a professional email and reach your customers regularly, then yes, do it internally.
However, if you’re struggling to create regular content and designs, then that’s a great reason to outsource your email marketing.
Outsourcing your email marketing can save you time and allow you to focus on other aspects of your business.
Here at Chimp Answers, we can help you out, by taking care of your account maintenance, creating and sending campaigns, and getting the results you need. If you’re interested in learning more, why not book a call with us to see if we can help?
Or, if you’re up for a DIY approach, check out our training options, free resources or our Facebook Group, MailChimp answers.
If you want someone to help you with your Mailchimp account, whether it's setting it up, reviving it or just keeping it ticking over, don't be shy.
Cheesy as it sounds, Liz is the biz when it comes to Marketing. She's worked in Marketing for around 20 years when she went to uni and studied Multimedia Technology…That's where her love affair for all things Marketing began. Since then she has worked for household names such as Wickes, The Rank Group, Nuffield Health, Snappy Snaps and Marriot. Not to mention a great variety of B2B and B2c businesses and agencies.
Here at Chimp Answers she deals with all things Marketing focusing on the Content and Copywriting side of things such as Blog posts, Emails and landing pages. Liz is Certified in Direct-Response Copywriting, Google Digital Marketing Fundamentals,Hubspot Inbound Marketing,Hubspot Social Media and of course, Mailchimp Foundations.
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