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Once you’ve built your email marketing list and got some subscribers who want to hear from you, it’s time to put together a marketing campaign so you can begin sending them some relevant content. But with over 300 billion emails sent every single day, how is your email marketing campaign going to stand out from any other?
Written by Lauren Shaw
How to create an email marketing campaign
Before you begin to create an email marketing campaign, you first need to consider what you hope to achieve. Sending out emails and hoping that people engage could result in frustrated customers who aren’t receiving quality, tailored content, and you may find that the subscriber list you worked so hard to build up starts to decrease.
A successful content marketing email will encourage the subscriber to take action and engage with your business or help you to increase your sales and leads. You could use email marketing to alert subscribers of a new product or service, welcome new subscribers, advertise a sale, promote a webinar or podcast that may be of interest to them, or just reach out to customers who haven’t purchased anything for some time. Perhaps you want to persuade your email subscribers to follow you on social media, for example. In this case, your email could showcase some of your social media posts as well as how users can get involved, maybe by sharing a photo of your product on their own page or mention your business using a unique hashtag.
Once you understand what you want to achieve, you can tailor your emails in such a way as to make your goals become a reality.
Now you have a goal in mind, it’s time to think about who you will send your email campaign to. You can, of course, send it to your whole subscriber list, but it’s often better to select a specific group of people and personalise the content to them. It’s been proven that this will provide better engagement and a higher chance of achieving your goal. You could send your email to people in a particular location, of a certain age, of a certain gender or even based on what they’ve previously bought. The latter can be particularly useful for sales on products a person has bought in the past, encouraging them to make a repeat purchase at a slightly reduced price.
The only thing left to do is create your email marketing campaign. There are many tools that can help you to do this, so don’t worry about having to create something from scratch or using programming languages and coding. Some CRMs, like FLG’s, allow you to easily create email templates within the CRM software itself. The benefit of this is that you can build a subscriber list, create your marketing email, send it and then track its success all in one place. Alternatively, if you have a template set up with a third party, you can import this to be used and sent quickly.
When creating a marketing email, it’s important to remember to include some call-to-actions (CTAs) that will encourage users to click through to your website to perform further actions, fill out an enquiry form, complete a survey or visit your social media pages.
The placement and design of such CTAs could have an impact on how many users engage with your email, which is why you may decide to employ A/B testing.
What is split testing in email marketing?
Successful email marketing usually involves a lot of trial and error to find out which kind of emails perform the best, the types that get the most clicks, the ones that result in the most enquiries or leads, etc. These things could depend on when they’re sent, who you send them to, the design of the email and even the subject line. This is where you can use split testing, otherwise known as A/B testing, to determine the types of emails that can bring in the best results.
You can use split testing in the following way. Firstly, use your usual email tool to build an email that you wish to send. But rather than sending it straight away, create a similar email that has very slight differences. Depending on what your marketing goal is, this could be the placement of a CTA or varying subject lines.
Once you have your two campaigns set up, send each one to a selected handful of people. They should both be sent to different people, but do be sure to send them at the same time so this doesn’t affect the performance results (unless, of course, you’re testing to see whether it’s best to send an email in the morning or afternoon).
You can use tracking tools to see which email has performed the best after a few days, and then send that one out to your full subscriber list.
How to measure email marketing success
Arguably, one of the most important parts of sending out marketing emails is tracking the campaign’s success. It’s vital that you understand how the campaign is performing, but how you measure the success of your email marketing campaign could depend on what your original goals were. Regardless of these goals, there are some metrics that it’s good to keep an eye on to spot areas for improvement too.
One of the ways to measure the success of your email marketing is the open rate and click rate. Not every person in your subscriber list will open your email. Some may bin automatically, and some emails might go into spam or potentially not even reach the recipient. To work out your open rate, take the number of total opens and divide it by the total number of emails delivered. An average open rate is around 15 to 25 per cent, so anything above this will be considered good.
You should also take click rate into account. This is the number of recipients who clicked on a link in your email, and the average is around 2.5 per cent. This can be calculated by taking the number of total clicks made and dividing it by the number of delivered emails. Some email marketing platforms will provide this information automatically, and you may be able to track your emails and create reports that give you more information.
Some emails are sent to encourage customers to make a purchase, and these conversions should be tracked too. Many customers click on a link but don’t necessarily make a purchase, and this is where click rate and conversion rates differ. To get the conversion rate as a percentage, you can take the number of successful conversions (this could be a purchased product, an enquiry, filling out a form, etc.) and divide it by the total number of emails delivered and finally multiply this by 100.
Keeping an eye on bounce rate is also important. Emails bounce when they can’t be delivered to the recipient’s inbox. In some cases, it may be because of a typo by the user when they first entered their email address, or it may be that the email account no longer exists. You may choose to remove bounced addresses from your subscriber list altogether, as they’re not useful.
There are of course many more ways in which you can track the success of your marketing campaign, but generally, opens, clicks and conversions are the main statistics that are most important to a business.
Written by Lauren Shaw, Marketing Manager at FLG.