email marketing best practices
Email Marketing

Top 10 Email Marketing Best Practices you should consider

Email was invented 45 years back and still this channel is very important for the Digital Marketers. Studies show that vast majority of Indian Marketers are planning to allocate a major part of their budget to Email in 2017. This seems logical because of the fact that Email has nearly three times as many user accounts on Facebook and Twitter combined, and is 40x more successful in acquiring new clients than both.

The following are some of the best practices to be followed for successful Email Marketing:

1. Build a Solid plan for Customer Acquisition
Begin by analyzing the various channels through which customers are already engaging with your brand. Determine how to take those interactions into long term engagement with cross channel campaigns, new tools and techniques.

2. Don’t let the abandoned carts go unnoticed
Abandoning a cart at checkout doesn’t mean that the customer cannot be convinced to buy the product. Because they added the product to the cart since they like it. We can increase the revenue from abandoned carts multifold with a more personalized approach. This can be achieved by using a 3 email trigger series approach. That is,

  • Send the first email immediately after the cart is abandoned
  • The second email between 12-24 hours
  • The third between 24-48 hours

Make sure to clearly display the items in the abandoned cart and additionally we can also add customized recommendations to increase ROI and Click through rate.

3. Scrub your data regularly
Market studies shows that data engagement decays at a rate of 2.1% per month. The optimum way to deal with this is to try to re-engage inactive users using special offers or a miss you mailer. We can also send a mail asking for their preference of the mail frequency to better fit their requirements.

If we don’t refresh the subscriber list regularly, the decay the active database keeps getting smaller. We can prevent this by running cross-channel campaigns to generate more leads.

4. Be Opportunistic
Birthdays, Public Holidays and special days are the best time to re-engage your customers by sending them special mailers and wishes. Try to create a feeling that you care about them.

5. Make your campaigns catchier using animated images
“An image is more powerful than a thousand words” is an old saying but very meaningful. Using an animated GIF image adds an element of delight to a campaign that isn’t typically possible with static email designs. In an A/B Testing, a GIF embedded email got 26% more email conversions.

6. Mail Personalization
Make your emails relevant to the customer by sending campaigns based on their preferences, and purchase behavior. This can be done using Analytics data collected using various tools. It also helps with consistent messaging and branding so that the customer gets a more customized experience which is very relevant to him/her.

7. Make your Emails Device-Friendly
Researches reveal that 47% emails are opened on a mobile device. Although this is a huge percentage, the rest 53% still access emails on their desktops, tablets, hand held gadgets and other devices. The best method to tackle this is to design emails that are responsive. Making Emails responsive means that they are optimized to be viewed on a smartphone, desktop, tablet, and even a smartwatch.

8. Perform A/B Testing
A good method to decrease unsubscribes is by doing A/B Testing. A/B testing (sometimes called split testing) is comparing two email campaigns to see which one performs better. We compare two campaigns in our case by sending the two variants (let’s call them A and B) to similar users at the same time. The one that gives a better engagement (more clicks and opens) wins! We test everything (the layout, offer, graphics, subject line etc.) to see which has the most impact. By doing this we can determine what our subscribers want to see, which further reduces the number of unsubscribes in our campaigns. A/B Testing should be done on a regular basis to find out which type of mails give better engagement for a particular set of users having the same behavior.

9. Segmentation the mailing list
Email marketing segmentation is a smart strategy to split large groups productively. You have to realize that your email list consists of different kinds of people, with different behavior, average spent & interests.

10. Re-engagement with Existing Customers
Studies show that more than 50% of marketers feel ongoing, personalized communication with existing customers results in moderate to significant revenue returns. Send out campaigns which are tailor made for your existing customers based on their browsing behavior, interest levels and purchase history.
Even though other channels of marketing are taking the digital space by storm, email’s ability to deliver targeted content continues to make it a sound investment of your brand’s marketing time and money to reach your customers.

Email is like an ocean. The more you learn the more you need to learn. It’s all about experience. You have to experience it hands-on to implement the right strategy and deliver great outputs. Email marketing best practices guides can only provide you a roadmap and the logic has to be smartly applied by the marketer. And this blog isn’t the end of best practices in email marketing. You may find more with other. Sometimes you’ll find out your own ways to beat the typical standards. If you find anything interesting, please drop a comment below and let’s discuss.

Also, here is an interesting blog on how to improve email deliverability, which will help you deliver emails in inbox.

Muhamed Sabir J is an Email Deliverability Expert, at iCubesPro. He holds a Master's in Computer Science & Engineering. He loves watching Football. ManU is his favorite team.