Iuliia Nesterenko

Technical Writer

Basic Principles of Effective Email Marketing for Beginners in 2019

Who hasn’t heard warnings guarding kids against playing with fire or knives? Such alerts are also applicable to marketers who often liken email marketing with spam.

Poorly designed email marketing campaigns can do your company a big disservice and seriously bruise the good reputation you might have been earning for years.

Why a Smart Email Campaign Isn’t Spam

If you dive into the origin of the word “SPAM,” you’ll find that it used to be the name of one ham brand in the late 80s. The company used a lot of highly annoying and intrusive campaigns to promote its product, and the word spam soon became a common noun with rather negative connotations. The company went to court numerous times, but couldn’t restore its good name.

The origin of spam

By the way, users don’t really like the companies that use spam in their campaigns. Nobody wants tons of unwanted emails in their inbox, right? Let’s see how to avoid getting a reputation of a spammer with your first email campaign.

Nobody likes spammers

A Beginners Guide to Email Marketing: 5 Basic Steps

The most common issues a marketing newbie faces are:

  • Invalid or inactive base that has been updated a long time ago, or even borrowed or bought;
  • Poor knowledge of the email creation principles;
  • No knowledge of analytics tools.

To avoid them, you need to understand the main components of an email marketing strategy:

  1. Goal. Who is the recipient of the message and why you want to reach them? Which action of the customer do you wish to provoke (a click, subscription, an open, etc.)?
  2. Аudience. Building a profile of the audience and audience segmentation to reach your goal.
  3. Email. Crafting the email using the best practices.
  4. Сampaign. Time and frequency of the campaign.
  5. Analysis. What can be optimized and improved?

Basic steps of email marketing

  1. Set your goal.

It’s important to set the exact goals for each email, as well as the criteria to assess their success or failure. Let’s see how it works through the example of the welcome email series.

Welcome emails aim to introduce the company's services

Welcome emails usually aim to introduce the company and its services to new subscribers, and collect as much contact information as possible.

Email goals:

  • Email 1 - Introduction;
  • Email 2 - Brand promotion;
  • Email 3 - Data collection.

How to analyze:

  • % of subscriptions;
  • Engagement: website visits, used promo codes, etc.
  1. Audience.

It’s the stage when actual communication with the customer begins. Your business growth will depend on how you can take advantage of the information you get from your subscribers. You don’t present your childfree friends with a baby cradle and don’t invite your vegetarian buddy for lunch at the steak house, don’t you? Such logical and adequate behavior should be applicable to your marketing decisions as well. And a couple of simple questions included in your welcome email will help you with that.

Include a couple of questions into a welcome email

In one short email, Garmin thanked for subscribing, introduced the types of content to expect in the coming campaigns, and asked about topical preferences to deliver the most relevant updates.

Just a quick reminder: a legal collection of a contact base consists of three basic elements:

  • Subscription form;
  • Double Opt-In setup;
  • Subscription confirmation by a recipient.

Make sure you properly manage the above three to get only true and relevant information on your subscribers.

  1. Crafting the email.

The main mistake of email marketing newbies is using the approaches applicable for social media marketing and website SEO copywriting. A website, context ads, SMM activities, and TV ads attract people who barely know you. Only some of them might become your customers in the future. Email marketing, in its turn, refers to the people who have expressed their interest in receiving emails from you. You have to understand the difference between these two approaches. In email marketing, you’ll need to implement all your knowledge of copywriting, layout design, marketing itself and so on. If you know your audience well, you’ll easily understand when it’s ok to joke or sauce a little, and when it’s inappropriate.

  1. Campaign planning.

To succeed, stick to the following advice:

  • Think over event-based triggers.

Companies mostly send two types of emails - promotional and informational. It’s important to choose an interesting email topic to keep your subscribers’ interest.

The most profitable emails can be added to an automated campaign for new subscribers.

  • Create a campaign monthly plan.

Schedule everything you are going to send. At the start, you’ll have the holidays and regular promotional campaigns in your calendar, and later you can add important company news.

Create a campaign monthly plan

For example, you can use Google Calendar for systematization. Google Calendar allows you to set up notifications, so you won’t miss any campaign.

  • Automate.

The set of basic triggers is quite big. You’ll need around 11 emails for a quick start. Later you can add more to create campaign series.

Create an automated campaign series

If your base has other customer data besides the email address, you can add more communication channels to enrich your interaction with customers. For example, you can collect phone numbers to use them for SMSViber and WhatsApp campaigns.

  1. Analysis.

Most email marketing services have Google Analytics integration and its own basic statistics on each email.

What monitor after the campaign has started?

  • Email metrics: opens, clicks, open/click rate. Also check the percentage of spam complaints, unsubscribes and the reasons to unsubscribe.

Email metrics

  • Click map. The click map shows which elements attract the reader’s eye the most, which links are most interesting, whether your email campaign has been launched correctly, and whether they convey the right message.

Click map

  • Statistics by domain. This metrics show the performance of your emails in various inbox providers and email apps. If you see that one of the domains shows fewer opens than others, your emails might be sent to spam and you should pay attention to this email agent. Also, don’t forget to analyze unsubscription reasons, the percentage of unsubscribes, the bounced emails number and so on. Most email marketing services give enough data to analyze your campaign performance. You only need to check out the data and make the right conclusions.

Statistics by domain

Keep up to these simple rules when you create your email campaigns. This might become the main element of your success.

Launch your first email campaign!

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Iuliia Nesterenko

Technical Writer

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