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The Top 7 Key Factors For An Efficient Email Campaign

By Curt Keller //

 

In order to provide a necessary and achievable boost to your digital print technology and consumables business you need to be able to implement a coherent email marketing campaign in an effective and professional way. However, the prevailing situation is that many email campaigns are a shot in the dark.

Far too many email marketing efforts are conducted in a “spray and pray” method which is just about the furthest possible approach from a successful email marketing strategy. By implementing these top seven key factors you can refine your email marketing activities and achieve the desired goal: selling more digital print technology and consumables products!

1. Obtain formal written permission

You must always seek permission prior to placing anyone on your subscriber list because without obtaining their full formal written permission you are violating various national laws in the Asia-Pacific region as well as boosting your spam reporting rates... not to mention that you will likely be kicked out by your email service provider because you are violating their anti-spam policies.

Therefore, when you collect a thick sheaf of business cards at the latest digital print technology trade show don’t you dare just enter all the emails into your list. That does not constitute permission! Instead, have a sign-up sheet at your booth with very clearly specified instructions to the participant that they are providing their email directly to be entered into your subscription list.

2. Adhere to their expectations

As a professional and ethical email marketer you should set expectations at opt-in. What those expectations can be translated into is that you are proactively telling your potential subscribers what you are going to send them and how frequently. No one loves an inbox which is stuffed to the brim with undesired emails, and if you are sending your missive to the subscriber twice a day while disregarding the fact they have requested a once a week receipt, you’re going to be looking at a lost subscriber.

Research has proven that subscribers get ticked off when they receive offers in their emails at the wrong time of day, so you should make sure that the email is being sent at the right time which they have requested in your Preferences Center. The last thing you want to do is to send an email at 3 a.m. so that their phone “pings” them awake!


3. Reconfirm with double opt-ins

You have to ensure that the subscriber is always confirmed with double opt-ins even though it is a relatively minor hurdle that the customer has to undergo in order to receive your emails. The double opt-ins serves to keep you as well as your email service provider from receiving spam complaints which are the kiss of death in the email marketing business.

When you have created a double opt-in sign-up process you will be minimizing those destructive spam complaints because you have taken all due steps to confirm that the customer actually wants to receive your emails.

4. Ease of unsubscription

You must ensure that it is extremely easy to unsubscribe from your email campaign. This may seem like an oxymoron since you have gone through so much work and effort to gain the subscriber and now you have to almost encourage them to leave? The answer is yes, because the alternative is worse than just losing a subscriber: A recipient who is tired of your emails and can’t find a way to unsubscribe is going to hit the spam button, relegating your email to the junk folder and sending a signal to the internet providers along the web that you are sending emails to people who don’t want them. That is going to tank your online reputation and make deliverability a much more difficult task to accomplish from then on.

5. Consistency with your leitmotif

Every single one of your emails must be well-matched with the overall color scheme, style, and general leitmotifs which identify your brand. You have to strive to have your email designer create email layouts which are perceived by the recipient as being immediately familiar through the implementation of the established colors, aesthetics, and of course your company logo on the emails.

Since colors are among the most vital elements of your brand’s identification with its customers, it is extremely important to always apply a consistent color scheme to gain that professional look. If you’re one of those people who believe that it’s just fine to walk out the door wearing brown pants, a blue jacket, and an orange tie, you might want to consult extensively with your email designer on color combinations that actually work together.

6. Font choice is critical

An integral part of any email’s appeal is integrated in the typestyle. There are some of your subscribers who couldn’t tell a serif from a sans serif, while there are others who could write doctoral theses on how the letters on Trajan’s Column in Rome were originally brushed onto the stone before being chiseled out and repainted, thus highly serifed capital letter fonts such as Trajan Pro live in our collective subconscious as we think of them as “ancient” and “important.” It is a basic lesson of Design 101 that fonts show the tone and style of your email messages therefore selection of just the right fonts is not just very important but can actually be critical to how your customer interprets your email. Try this experiment: Copy and paste the first few sentences of the U.S. Declaration of Independence from Wikipedia. Now apply a weighty serifed traditional font such as Palatino Linotype or Bookman Old Style. Take a good look and now change the font to Comic Sans.

If you can’t tell that it’s turned from a momentous historical document to a newspaper comic strip joke, then you’d better leave both the colors and the fonts to your email designer. Note that while you’re selecting the fonts consider that Arial, Tahoma, Verdana and Times New Roman are most recommended fonts as they are effectively universally displayable by just about every mobile device out in the wild.

7. The 2 aspects of testing

Testing involves both a pre-send and a send component. Before you even remotely consider sending out any email, you really have no choice whatsoever but to run the email through a series of emulators to confirm how well that layout is displaying on a variety of smartphone, tablet, laptop, and desktop screens as well as on the wide variety of popular email clients.

An incorrectly designed email will force the subscriber on a smaller mobile screen to endlessly scroll back and forth horizontally to read your overlong lines, or may even end up looking like a dog’s breakfast with elements overlapping each other and falling off the screen entirely. Since it is well-nigh impossible to craft a single fixed width email which satisfies the needs of the 4-inch screen viewer alongside the 30-inch screen viewer, Responsive Web Design should be applied to every email you send out.

This specific way of coding an email not only resizes the width of the email to fit the screen, but even resizes photos and other graphic elements to ensure an aesthetically pleasing result at any size. Once you have your email looking good it’s time to test variants of it literally endlessly.

There is never a point where an email marketer can confidently state that they have done too much A/B Split and Multivariate testing, as it’s never enough. Test everything in your emails, not just the subject line and call to action. Even the slightest image content or link position can affect your metrics!

If you implement all of these factors, you can call yourself a savvy email marketing master!

 

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