4 min read
Have You Made these 7 Automated Email Mistakes?
Automated email marketing is an awesome way to communicate your products, sales, and events to your customers. Yet many email marketers assume that since an automated solution takes care of most of the email targeting and sending there's not a lot that they have to do.
If you find yourself in this type of email marketing maintenance mode (my campaigns are running OK so I'll just keep doing what I'm doing), it's time to get more engaged and creative. Automation is meant to make email marketing simpler and less time-consuming. Automation does not replace a keen human eye and analytical brain. Have you ever made any of the following mistakes with your automated email campaigns? Be honest...
1. Not testing, re-testing, targeting and re-targeting your emails.
Your automated campaigns may be running smoothly, but do you know if you are effectively reaching your subscribers? Always keep A/B split testing your email campaigns with different subject lines and different send times.
You should also focus on creating targeted groups of subscribers based on their individual interests and purchase history. Using your automated solution, you can input specifications to create segmented email groups. Targeted emails that are sent to a smaller group are much more effective than mass emails that are sent to everyone on your list. Targeted emails receive higher open and click-through rates. You can segment users based on their purchase history, open rates, personal selections, age, location or almost anything else. With targeted emails, you can appeal more directly to your subscribers' unique needs.
2. Not having a clear goal for each email campaign.
Each automated campaign should have a distinct purpose. You shouldn't send just to send. What do you want your customers to do... download a whitepaper? Sign up for text message coupons? Click through to your landing page? Purchase a new product? Whatever it is, your email needs to reflect that goal and call customers' attention to it with your calls to action.
Don't stuff too much into one email. Keep the focus on your one goal, and include prominent calls to action so your subscribers don't miss out.
3. Assuming that after you create and send the email there's nothing left to do.
This is a major mistake that is made by more email marketers than you would think. After you create and send an email campaign, and before you start planning your next one, you need to review the data that was collected from the most recent email campaign! You should be analyzing your email data after every campaign you send out. If you're not checking to see what send times work best, which subject lines are the most effective, what your open rate is, how many subscribers are clicking through and so on, how will you know how to improve your next email campaign?
Set aside the time to really analyze your email data after every campaign. Test different email subject lines and send times to see which ones bring you the most success. You might even be sending too frequently or too infrequently. Try sending once a month, twice a month or whatever and see what works best.
4. Not having a specific place for customers to go from the automated email.
The email is the beginning point of contact, not the be all and end all. You need to include links in your email that lead to a landing page or somewhere specific on your website. The landing page should be consistent with the email. The reason a subscriber clicked that link was to find that specific content. If a subscriber clicks a link thinking that they are being sent to a list of hairstyle tricks and tips and instead they are directed to your main website page which shows them pictures of wigs for sale, they will feel mislead and will probably not take the time to search around for what they are looking for.
Include important, relevant links and encourage customers to click them in order to continue the connection beyond the initial email message. Email marketing can be automated and link tracking can be automated, but you still have to check that the links in your email point to the correct pages and are relevant to the email's content. And make sure your links aren't broken!
5. Not regularly re-engaging your subscribers.
If someone signed up for your email campaigns two years ago that doesn't necessarily mean they are still active subscribers. You may be wasting time and money sending to people who are not interested or who have gotten new email addresses. Ask your subscribers to opt in again every year and to update their information as necessary.
Some subscribers will not respond and you can remove them from your email lists. The subscribers who opt into your automated campaigns again actually want to receive your emails. The subscribers who did not respond were the ones who never opened your emails anyway.
6. Forgetting to optimize your emails for mobile.
Just because your automated campaigns look great on your screen as you are designing them does not mean they will look good on your subscribers' mobile devices. Most of your subscribers will be viewing your emails on their phones, so it's pretty much essential to optimize your campaigns for mobile. Get everyone in the office to test each email newsletter on their mobile devices before you send it to your subscribers. Once it's good to go, your automated solution can handle the rest.
7. Make sure you have a legitimate email address that subscribers can reply to.
Most of your email subscribers will not contact you directly, but if you list your email address as firstname.lastname@example.org this ensures that no one will ever contact you. It also makes your business seem anonymous and does not help you build loyalty. You want to send from a recognizable email address so your subscribers learn to expect and trust your emails.
Select a sender name that is either your business name or the name of a well-known member of your organization. When subscribers see your email message in their inbox, they will know who it is from and what to expect. This helps you build a trusted reputation with your subscribers.
Now that we've gone over the common mistakes, try out an uncommonly great customer flow communication platform. Sign up for a free SimplyCast account to start reaching your customers more effectively today.