Email Marketing Best Practices
There are a few email marketing best practices you will want to make sure you are adopting in order to get the best results and keep things moving well in your marketing channels.
Never Buy Lists
Building your email list is not necessarily something you will do quickly. It can actually be a slow process, especially when you’re just starting out. Buying an email list might seem like a tempting idea but you really don’t want to do it because:
People are more likely to flag your unsolicited emails as spam, damaging your email sender reputation and potentially ending you up on an email blocklist.
Most email marketing services will simply refuse to work with you because purchased lists can harm the deliverability of other users on shared IP addresses.
You may not realize it, but many email addresses on purchased lists are actually spam traps. A spam trap is an inactive email address whose entire purpose is to attract spammers.
Because the email address doesn’t actually belong to anyone, it is simply not impossible that it opted in to any email lists. When an ISP sees this address show up, they know that whoever contacted this address is a spammer. You really just bought yourself trouble when you bought that list.
Do yourself a favor and build real lists with real humans that want your information.
Use Double Opt-in
The term “opt-in” refers to the signup process. There are two different types of opt-in for email marketing:
Single opt-in is when the subscriber is added to the email list automatically once the signup form is submitted. Nothing is verified. The email address just gets added to the database. Companies that charge you more as your list grows love this option. We’ll talk more about why in just a moment.
Double opt-in is when you send a confirmation email with a link to each new subscriber that requests to be added to your list. The subscriber must click the link to complete the subscription process or they won’t be added to the list.
While double opt-in adds an extra step between the potential subscriber and your list, this is actually a very important part of the process. If every email that goes on your list is verified, your list is clean and your deliverability goes WAY up.
No misspelled email addresses.
No chance of someone being spammed by your followups.
No hard bounces.
And PROOF of subscriber consent which is a big part of GDPR.
For better email marketing, double opt-in is the way to go.
So, what about those companies that allow single opt-in. Think about this for a minute. They get to charge you more because your “list size” is larger, right? But they are throttling and even isolating email addresses that bounce or show deliverability issues. So, the “count” stays hight … and your monthly rate stays hight … but the company isn’t actually mailing your offer to those hard bounced email addresses. They’re just charging you to store the info. That’s a win for them and a lose for you.
Segment Your List As It Grows
As your email list grows, certain patterns of behavior will make it easy to segment your list.
List segmentation is the process of dividing your subscribers into smaller sub-lists with common traits. This could be based on preferences you ask about or how they interact (or don’t) with your messages. Email marketing automation is a great option to use for proper list segmentation.
You can segment your lists by demographic information like age and location as well as customer information, preferences, and purchase history.
To get a head start on segmentation, you can tag subscribers by asking about their preferences beyond just collecting name and email address.
Personalize Your Messages
Something as simple as using your subscriber’s name in the subject line give you a much better shot at having solid open rates. Sometimes, it really is the simple stuff.
Focus On Making Your Messages Deliverable
This is absolutely critically important for email marketers. If your message isn’t getting to the inbox, your results are going to be impacted.
When it all goes like we plan, your email makes it past the spam filters and arrives at its destination: the inbox. But if things go wrong, your email lands in the spam folder or, worse, your sender IP is blacklisted by the ISP.
TrafficWave works hard to maintain solid relationships with the major email providers. Our double opt-in policy makes sure only clean addresses are added to your lists. When an email address does bounce, it is cleaned out of the system. Unsubscribe requests are handled instantly with a single click from the user. Compliance is constantly monitored across several platforms. Most of the time, our overall deliverability ranking stays above 99% across the board. Even with all this technology, there are plenty of ways you can help your email newsletters reach the inbox.
Keep The Subject Line Clean. Avoid emojis and spammy wording. Don’t try to “fool” a spam filter with tricky periods and punctuation tactics.
Use Images Wisely. If your message is nothing more than images, your deliverability is going to suffer. Strike a balance between text copy and images that support your branding and message.
Keep Your Content Relevant. If your subscribers joined your list, it was because they were interested in the information offered. If you suddenly switch content and start sending content they didn’t request and isn’t relevant, your unsubscribe rate is going to climb and you will begin to get complaints.
Following these email marketing best practices will give you a much higher success rate. Follow them closely for best results.
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