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tips for email marketing


Not all email marketing campaigns are friendly and personalised. In addition, the length and topic of your subject line, and the use of some words, can mean your email ends up in the spam folder.

Here are some email marketing tips to get your emails read and kept out of spam.

Make it easy for people to subscribe.
Have a link to the signup form on your home page, Facebook page and wherever else your customers might be. And have a dedicated form for subscribers to sign up. If you can, collect additional information, not just their email address - try and get their name, birthday (then you can send them a birthday "present") and location.

Tell subscribers what to expect on the sign up form.
Whether you plan to send daily deals, or weekly tips or monthly updates, it’s important to tell your readers what and how often to expect it. Outline the benefits of the newsletter too - what's in it for the customer.

Send a welcome email to remind people why they’re on your list.
You could send new subscribers a special offer or exclusive content, as your way of thanking them.

Personalise with your recipients first name in the greeting.
This makes the recipient feel it's really meant for them and not some huge campaign.

Make your subject line attention grabbing.
The subject line should include a clue to the email's subject. Send it from an actual person not a company.

Include design elements reflecting the style of your business.
Any communication or marketing should reflect the brand of your business. The colours and style should be consistent and recognisable from email campaign to email campaign.

Make sure your first sentence briefly includes the offer or topic.
This makes it easy for recipients to see what the email is about and whether they want to read it now or save it until later.

Segment your clients accoding to interests, location and if possible purchases.
This means the emails are totally relevant to the recipient and will therefore lead to great generation of business.

Design the email so it works for mobile users.
Mobiles have a much narrower screen than a desktop so just check your email is not getting too wide.

Have an obvious call-to-action above the "fold".
The fold is the area above the bottom of the screen before you have to scroll to see the rest of the email, or web page.

Include a related image to grab attention.
Make sure it's one not critical to the contents as many email clients (eg Outlook, Gmail and Yahoo!) block images by default unless the recipient allows them to show.

About those images.
You need to include a descriptive alternative to the images for those readers who don't allow images to show.

An image campaign.
Avoid sending one big image as a campaign and always have a plain text version for every email.

Make your emails scannable.
Your subscribers are busy and probably get a lot of emails, so break up your content. Include subheadings and images to make it easier to scan. If you’re sending an article, it's a good idea to use a “read more” link so people can get to the rest when it’s convenient for them.

Email your subscribers more often.
People are a lot less likely to unsubscribe than you think. Dan Zarella, an analyst who gathers data about online behaviour, reports that the unsubscribe rate is likely to go down if you send more email than you’re currently sending. Basically, we're all nervous about harassing our customers, so we don't keep in touch enough, giving them time to forget who we are! Just a note here that it does depend on the business.

Make email marketing part of your other marketing activities.
This particularly relates to social media. Suggestions include “share to social” in all emails to increase their reach, using Facebook forms to get new subscribers and including “follow us” links at the top of emails to boost social media take up.

Ask for and use feedback.
You can have two types - passive, where you look at which links people click on, and/or active where people ask you a question, suggest an idea or make a comment. Use this to improve your campaigns.

Place a secondary call-to-action at the bottom of the email.
This gives people a chance to act without having to scroll back up to the top of the email.

Include a link to your privacy policy.
In some cases you may not have one, but anyone with an email newsletter sign up form should do so. Check ours out for ideas.

Make sure there is an unsubscribe link.
Legally, in New Zealand, we must give readers who don’t want to get your emails the option to unsubscribe.

Give subscribers control
Make sure your email programme enables your cutsomer to edit their details and preferences.

Test your campaign.
Different email clients and mobile devices display emails differently. Use a testing programme to make sure your emails are going to look good everywhere.

Best times to send emails.
Many studies have been done on the best times to send email, from days of the week down to time of day. There's a general concensus that the best time to get your emails open are early morning and after lunch, Monday to Thursday. Friday the opening rates go down a little. It does vary from industry to industry. To find out more about this give us a call.

Even without all that data, the very worst time to send a re-marketing email, if you are considering it, is right after your customer makes a purchase! And a generic "thank you" email isn't necessary either - just confirmation of the order and delivery details.

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