How Effective Is Email Marketing in 2016?

Marketing emails are no longer just a way to promote your product or service. With the evolution of social media and mobile technology, marketers can use these platforms to engage with customers and potential customers through compelling messages.

However, simply having a website or selling products on social media does not mean that your email marketing is effective. In fact, there are several ways that your email marketing strategy can be ineffective despite your best intentions. Here are just a few reasons why.

Lack Of Personalization

The most effective email marketing strategies are those that are personalized. However, if you are sending out the same generic email to everyone on your mailing list, you are losing out on a big chunk of potential customers. Your email marketing is not personalized if you are sending out the same exact message to everyone on your list. Make sure that you are personalizing your emails by customizing them for each person on your list. This will help encourage clicks and opens as well as build credibility.

Too Much Cliches

Some marketers would argue that personalized emails with a lot of personality are the best way to go. However, when you start using the same exact phrases and talking points, your emails start sounding like each other. Before you know it, you are basically screaming at your audience to “buy this” or “read more about this”, all while ignoring the fact that they might not want to hear your pitch. In the end, you might as well have just posted a tweet about your product because the message is the same. Make sure that you are adding new content to your emails to keep them fresh and interesting. This will help make your email marketing more effective and increase your open rates.

Lack Of Credibility

Even if you are sending out personalized emails, there is no guarantee that your audience will trust you as a source of information if you have never successfully delivered a personalized message before. One of the biggest mistakes that you can make as a marketer is to assume that your audience will automatically trust you just because you say that you are someone they should listen to. Before you know it, you are breaking all of the trust that you had built with your previous personalized emails. Make sure that you are taking the time to build credibility with your audience by proving to them that you know what you are talking about. Create a brand voice and ensure that your language is consistent throughout your entire company. This will help establish your authority in your industry and give you a leg up on establishing credibility with your audience.

Too Much About Products Instead Of Relationships

If your goal is to attract as many customers as possible, your focus should be on selling products or offering deals, not on marketing or trying to convince people to buy your product. The most effective email marketers understand the importance of building a relationship with their audience. However, they know that in the meantime, they have to promote their product to attract customers. Just like any other channel, you will eventually need to promote your product to be able to retain customers. Once you get them to listen to you, make sure that you continue engaging with them through content that is relevant to what they are reading or listening to. Never, ever, ever, send customers a promotional email just to get them to buy your product. That is a surefire way to lose them as customers. Keep your promotional messages relevant to the interests of your audience or they will quickly tune you out.

The List Is Too Long

If you are sending emails to a large list, sometimes it can be hard to keep people interested. Generally, long uninterrupted “blocks” of text within your email, combined with lots of images, can help keep your audience interested. When you get to the point in your writing where you can start to sound like a broken record, people might get a bit disinterested. Writing short emails with a quick opening and closing to keep your audience interested can be a great way to go. Short and sweet is always the best way to go when it comes to marketing messages.

Too Much Sales Pitches

People get annoyed when they see too many sales pitches within the same email. If you are attempting to sell your product or service within the email, it might be best to break it up into several shorter emails. Sometimes, the subject line or the opening paragraph alone can be enough for people to decide whether or not they want to open the rest of the email. When sales emails are mixed in with content-marketing emails, it can be hard to determine what is important to read. Putting an opt-out at the end of your emails can also be a way to prevent people from getting over-exposed to marketing emails. If you send out a lot of emails and you notice a decline in open rates, consider adjusting your strategy and trying something new.

Email Is Not A Private Communication

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make is to treat email like it is a private correspondence. In general, try not to advertise within your emails. If you do want to promote your product or service within the email, do so subtly enough so that your audience does not feel the urge to boycott your product. For example, if you are trying to sell housewares and you email your list about a 50% off coupon for a home appliance, you might lose some customers who do not want to be associated with your company. Make sure that you have permission to send your email or else you will create more distrust than loyalty.

No Follow-Up

If you are attempting to grow your email list, make sure to follow up with your audience regularly. Sometimes people get frustrated and disappointed when they sign up for something and they do not see any follow-up emails from the person they are signed up with. Do not take it for granted that people want to hear from you; make sure to stay in touch through whatever means necessary. If you send out a lot of emails and do not personally follow up with each one, you will start to seem uncaring and inconsiderate. It is only fair to assume that people want to be treated with respect and that they deserve to be followed up with after signing up for your list. If you have a written plan for the follow-up, you can prove to people that you are actually thinking about them and that you are interested in keeping in touch with them. Regularly sending out content that is relevant to what they signed up for is a great way to keep in touch without overloading them with too much information. They signed up for your email list to receive content that is relevant to what they are interested in, so make sure that you are delivering on that promise!

Sent To The Wrong Audience

Doing email marketing can be a lot of work, but it can also be a lot of fun. However, you have to keep in mind that your audience is not necessarily going to be receptive to your calls to action in the same manner that you are used to receiving them. For example, if you are attempting to sell housewares and you email your list about an appliance deal, you might lose some customers who do not want to be bothered with sales emails about housewares. Try to think of ways that your product fits within the interest of your audience or else you will find that you are wasting your time in vain. If you are not sure what kind of audience you should be sending your emails to, ask yourself, “Is this person more likely to buy my product or is it more of a general interest piece?” The fact that you are even questioning the effectiveness of your email marketing is a good sign that you need to make some changes.

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