Monday, May 02, 2005

Top 8 Stupid Email Marketing Mistakes

This post goes out to all of you who are stuck creating and sending out email newsletters. At Replicon, I send out about 2-4 email newsletters per month, more or less depending on product updates, promos, and holidays.

Since all marketing efforts should be measured, I constantly measure the success rates of every email I send out, always making note of what's working and what's not.

In no particular order, here are my 8 Stupid Email Marketing Mistakes:

#1. No Compelling Offer. What's in it for the reader? What is the compelling offer that you are making to your prospects? Without a compelling offer, your email is destined to fail before you hit "send."

#2. Hiding Your Call-to Action. Not only do you require a compelling offer (or call-to-action), but this offer must be the first thing the reader notices when they open the email, not buried within some fancy prose. For HTML emails, this means including the call-to-action in the header. For text-based emails, place the call-to-action as the top-level content.

#3. Broken Links . Double-check all of your links! Make sure that they redirect properly.

#4. No Solid "Unsubscribe" Process. Do you want your ISP to be black-listed? 'Nuff said!

#5. Ignoring Junk Filters. Make a list of all the words that make an email filtered out and make sure you do not use these words in your email. For example, the most common mistake is using the word "free" and an exclamation mark in the subject line.

#6. Spelling and Grammar Errors. Make sure that the grammar and spelling is perfect! This means having it peer-reviewed twice. Not only will your subscribers notice errors, but if you send out your email internally, I guarantee that your fellow coworkers and your manager will notice!

#7. No Email Tracking. Make sure that you are able to measure the success of your email campaign. This means tracking the bounce rate, delivery rate, open rate, and click-through rate. You should also create distinct links for every link in your email campaign so that you can measure which links were the most popular. Once you measure your email campaign, you can tweak your email by testing different variables.

Please share your common email mistakes! Send me your comments.


Blogger Glenn said...

Great points, I would also add timing. Sending the emails during normal work hours improves your chance of success. Earlier in the week is better as your call-to-action becomes "something to get done this week." Sending late in the week you risk your email becoming "something that can wait until next week" (i.e. never)

3:24 PM  
Blogger 357martini said...

Just what we need .....more spam. It's a race to the crack-berry.....I gotta check my other e-mail account.....

5:44 PM  

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