Email Marketing Dos & Don’ts

Internet and email marketing is growing like wildfire, more and more companies (large and small) send periodic email campaigns to their customers (or potential customers). As we all know, the more you put information in someone’s face, the more likely they are to remember the information, brand, offers, etc. The key is to create a positive lasting impression, and not one that irritates the audience.

The problem is when we start to receive these messages in our inboxes far more often than necessary. If you have new information, a special or new service, I will want to know about it. I just do not need to know about it 4 times a week. Think about how often you receive catalogs in your snail-mail box. Who needs more than one catalog with the exact same content? Do you throw these catalogs away? Do you even read them?

Here, I am specifically talking about the incredible number of emails we receive from various retailers or service providers, sometimes on a daily basis. This may create more of a negative buzz than most people realize. I myself spent an entire day unsubscribing to various newsletters and updates because I was getting too much. As a result, I no longer receive these messages and the connection is lost. Here are a few things I like to follow when marketing myself to people:

 

1. Know when your target audience and when he/she will be reading emails

This is crucial. Timing is everything. Many times, people can receive as many as 100 emails every day. Often times, more. If you schedule your messages to be sent during lunchtime, for example, it is likely your message may get lost in the shuffle. When most people return from lunch and have 50 new messages. If your marketing email is in the middle of these 50 messages, it is more likely than not to be ignored, deleted or completely overlooked. Of course, you can never be 100% certain of the reader’s email habits. Personally, I check my email regularly throughout each day, but often times, I will ignore the marketing messages if/when I have work related emails to which I need to respond.

2. Schedule your marketing messages/emails in advance so you are consistent with your message(s)

When a plan is created and followed, the message(s) will be viewed as more professional and organized. Some will even anticipate your next message. For example, plan to send your email blast every Tuesday morning. In doing so, you can prepare your content in advance and organize it better for your audience. When your information is organized and well planned, it is likely to be better received. If you send your blasts sporatically, they seem to be inconsistent and sometimes desperate and you risk the chance that people will not take you seriously.

3. Create a template/theme for your newsletters and be consistent

This is very important. If you plan to send regular marketing emails, make sure you have a consistent look. Creating this consistent look will help to establish a lasting brand image with your reader. This consistency will help to make your business look more professional and credible. If every time you send an email, you use a different typeface, background color, graphics, etc, the emails start to look a little like spam. Your message will not look very well thought out and will likely be deleted.

4. Get to the point

If you are sending email blasts or newsletters, make sure you get to the point straight away. Let people know why you are contacting them. Remember: Less is more. Sending every email blast with several paragraphs of text will often times, ensure that people will not read the whole thing, unless you get to point early on.

5. Engage your audience

Call to action newsletters and email blasts will be far more successful than those that just talk at the reader. Ask questions and request feedback. Create a relationship with your reader. Doing this will help establish your brand, whatever that may be. When you appear to be “real” and willing to accept the interaction, your readers will look forward to your next message and be more interested in what you have to say.

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