Email marketing campaigns seek to establish long-term engagement with customers. They target specific people, often through some kind of previous opt-in feature, and build relationships that grow and last. Email strategy, however, should not be taken for granted. Just because someone indicated interest in you and your products, doesn’t mean they want to be bombarded with uninteresting or unnecessary messages.
Here are five tips to guide your email campaign planning strategy that maintains and grows your customer base.
1. Define Your Email Campaign Planning Goals
Your emails should always serve a valuable purpose, both for your business and your customer. Refine your goals before you write your emails. Know what action you want the customer to take after reading. Some ideas to focus on include:
- Are you trying to convert a sale?
- Are you raising brand awareness?
- Are you offering a new service?
Once you decide your desired result, build your content around achieving it. With a specific goal in mind, you will write clearer, sharper content that engages your customer and accomplishes your objective.
2. Test and Confirm
Analytics programs help track how users interact with your online content. When selecting an email strategy goal, consider actions that can be tracked and measured with usable metrics.
Programs that verify email addresses can be particularly helpful here. Without knowing recipient response, you won’t know if your campaign is working. And if you don’t reach the recipient, you can never elicit a response.
Consider what you want to know about user response to your emails:
- Are your email addresses valid?
- Are the emails being opened?
- Are recipients clicking particular links?
- Are they signing up for a service?
Deciding on metrics will also influence your content. Calls to action should flow effortlessly within your content and, depending on your metrics, your content should encourage the reader to take specific actions.
3. Be Upfront and Obvious
When you send an email, readers see two key elements before they decide whether or not to open it: the subject line and the first few lines of the body of text. Use these attributes effectively to catch attention and motivate the recipient to open the email. With the volume of information people process every day, stand out by having pinpointed targeting techniques in place and being on point. Take steps to ensure:
- Your subject lines always reflect the content
- Critical information is front-loaded in the first line or two
- Keywords target the specific customer you are looking for
4. Design for Your Customer
A marketing email is more than a simple message: it’s a sales method and business opportunity. Consider your recipient’s needs when designing the content and layout. Remember that over half of emails are now read on mobile devices, so keep screen size in mind when designing. Email readers want fast, easy-to-understand messages that won’t take up their time. Bear in mind the following:
- Be brief and to the point
- Don’t clutter the message with distracting design elements
- Present your content in a logical manner
- Use clear headers to guide your readers
5. Offer Quality Through Immediacy
Email campaigns have a limited opportunity to engage a recipient. The moment a reader gets bored, confused, or annoyed, they will check out and move on. To avoid losing interest, refine your content by writing minimum content with maximum value.
Two additional points to keep in mind regarding content are first keeping to the point of the email: Concision is an indicator of quality, and being able to get to the point efficiently not only means readers are more likely to maintain interest, but also that the content resonates more effectively. Second, remember to test your content with colleagues for feedback. Doing so will avoid any silly mistakes while making sure what you send out is as accurate as possible.
Review, Revise, and Repeat
An email campaign planning approach builds ongoing relationships with your contact list. Always analyze the success of each campaign. Make note of successes and failures, and make adjustments to improve the next round of marketing. Above all, get your message out clearly, quickly, and deliver value.