This is a guest post from our friends at Inbox Orange
Based on lessons learned, knowledge of the industry and customer challenges, we’ve identified 11 best practices to “bulk” up your email marketing program for a successful 2011. You’re subscribers will be happy if you do.
Our suggestion on how to get started is to evaluate where you are currently then map out a process with a time line to improve your email marketing strategy. If you need an extra hand, we’re always here to help.
1. Get permission!
Map out each customer touch point to identify opportunities for organic list growth in a comfortable environment (store front, call center, sales representative, website, social media, viral campaigns, etc.). Compose a value statement of “why” they should subscribe and communicate that statement through each touch point.
2. Say hello.
Welcome your new subscriber to thank them, set expectations and enhance their experience. Most email service providers have built- in automation to streamline this task. Read More.
3. Mind your voice.
The tone or “voice” of all communication should reflect your corporate culture and your brand. I highly recommend the book “Delivering Happiness” to explore corporate culture, establish core values and create customer loyalty. This book is excellent and easy-to-read. I couldn’t put it down!
Ask questions to get to know your subscriber to guide relevant communication. This includes frequency. Identify how often your subscriber would like to hear from you then honor that request. Read More.
Take the information obtained above and segment your audience to send relevant content. Learn more.
A marketing calendar and / or schedule not only makes your job easier but will keep fellow employees and vendors on task as well.
7. Set goals.
Set at least one goal for the campaign with a clear call-to-action. Prior to send, double check that you met that goal.
Design goes beyond pretty pictures and performance-driven design will improve results. Learn More.
Outlook, Yahoo and Gmail have made a few changes that challenge email marketers. Learn More.
Incorporate social media into your email campaigns. Learn More.
Test, test and retest. Send a test to different email clients to make sure your campaign is rendering properly and your message is getting across.
Conduct and A/B Split Test prior to hitting send to enhance engagement. ExactTarget is launching a new feature in a few weeks to simplify this important task.
10. Measure results.
Data leads to great insight that will only improve your email marketing program. Listen to your customer. If you add value to their lives, positive results will follow.
Work smarter.Use automation to enhance the customer experience. Automate to send relevant life cycle campaigns such as happy birthday, happy anniversary, customer service evaluations and reminders based off of purchase behavior. Tie automation into your CRM or POS and wow!