5 Ways To Hurt Your Email Marketing Strategy

Earlier this week, we discussed how to measure the success of your email marketing efforts, but it might be good to take it back a few steps to even setting up campaigns.  Whether you’re using a service like Campaign Monitor or MailChimp (two services we use quite often), something larger like Amazon SES, or even just sending out a small batch from your gmail, these five email marketing tips will help keep your email from ending up in the trash can, or worse, get unsubscribed.

5 Ways To Hurt Your Email Marketing Strategy

1. No Personalization

Personalized subject lines see open rates 20% higher than ones that don’t.  It may be more time consuming to set up, but considering you have one shot of making it to an open email before getting ignored or bounced, it’s worth getting the recipient’s attention this way.  Plus, the personal engagement offers a touch of personality behind what is likely an advertisement.

2. Not Responsive

It’s been years since mobile overtook desktop computing.  If your email doesn’t open cleanly on a phone or tablet, then it’s not ready to send, hard stop.  At this point, we should (and will) be talking about accessibility instead, and yet I still get emails that aren’t formatted for my phone, so this point still has to be here.

3. Not Segmenting Your Lists

Segmenting your email-marketing lists helps you get better open and click rates by narrowing your focus and sending messages to targeted groups within your lists.  Your recipients will find your campaigns more relevant—and relevant campaigns get better results.  MailChimp offers this great snippet of data:


4. Bad Design

First impressions are as important as ever and we’re constantly in competition with a user’s shrinking attention span against the increasing overwhelming stimulation technology provides.  You have approximately 8 seconds for a recipient to decide whether or not they’re going to read your content or not, let alone make a decision and click on something.  If your design is a jumbled mess of colors, typos, and overall lack of direction, you’re not going to pass.  Also, you really should be testing your layouts in different formats – different mobile devices, browsers, operating systems, email clients, etc – they all render emails differently without any standards between them.

Bonus! Check out 5 Awesome Email Design Trends To Try In 2022!

5. Unclear Calls to Action

Finally, and much to the point of the entire email altogether, is the call to action.  Sure, getting a click on your CTA is only half the battle.  Next is getting them into your landing page and getting a conversion out of them, which is a whole separate ballgame (and why we have jobs!).  Regardless, if your readers are clear about what you’re pitching, but unsure of what to do next or not given a clear way to make an action on their decision, you’ve blown your opportunity to convert them into a potential lead.

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