Despite all the predictions that email marketing will decline, it is still a cost-effective and convenient way for businesses to reach their audience, build trust, provide value, convert leads into sales, increase ROI (Return on Investment) and connect with them.
Email marketing is still one of the most powerful and rewarding marketing strategies you can use, but it has been subject to changes. Businesses have had to adapt to changing customer needs, wants, interests, preferences and behaviors.
These evolutions have not been lost on email marketing. In today’s environment, the tactics that were acceptable before 2020 might not be suitable.
This post will help you to reevaluate your email marketing and identify any mistakes that could be limiting your efforts. It will also help you to address these issues to improve your future campaigns and crisis-proof your emails.
How COVID-19 has changed email marketing
Everything was affected by the pandemic, from consumer behavior and customer experience to brand loyalty and brand loyalty. Customers became more aware and supported the causes they believed in.
It was more than just about price, convenience, or quality. Trust, sustainability, social responsibility, ethical sourcing, and trust are all becoming increasingly important factors in consumer decision making. Therefore, your brand must be more intentional about what values it stands for.
Marketing messages that are tailored to customers are more important than ever. Email marketing does not just target demographic data such as age, gender, or location.
Customers expect messages that reflect their values and situations. The EY Future Consumer Index research, which involved 20 countries and 14500 people, found that consumers can be divided into five different categories today.
- 32% are concerned most about affordability. Product functionality is more important to them than brand name.
- 25% place their health first and foremost. They only purchase products that they trust and are safe.
- 16% are most concerned with the environment preservation and are willing to pay more for brands who share these values.
- 15% care about community, and doing good for others. Honesty and transparency are important to them when selecting brands to support.
- They invest 12% in experiences. They want to enjoy as many moments as they can, which makes them more inclined to try new brands or products.
Segmenting your audience on the basis of these personas is a great way to get results with email marketing. You can also use them to guide your campaigns. Customers have high expectations about what businesses should do for their customers due to the pandemic.
It is no longer possible to send an automated email when you publish new content, or add a pop-up saying “sign up for updates” to your website in order to gain subscribers. You must anticipate your audience’s needs, desires, and provide personalized experiences at each stage of their buyer journey.
10 Email Marketing Mistakes to Avoid Post-COVID
You must be open to letting go of old email methods that were rendered ineffective by this pandemic to attract, nurture and retain subscribers.
Let’s talk about some mistakes and practices you should avoid to stay ahead.
1. You have forgotten to send the welcome email
What is your next move?
It’s almost nothing for many email marketers. Many email marketers wait to send their regular emails to reach new subscribers. This is a big mistake as you miss out on the opportunity to engage and connect with newly acquired subscribers while they are still fresh in their minds.
If you don’t send a welcome email, or a series of emails to subscribers, you are taking a chance that they will still be interested in your brand and care when you reach out to them. They might not open the email or unsubscribe from your list because they won’t feel the excitement that drove them to sign up.
You can make it more likely for them to open your email right after they sign up to thank you and to keep in touch with you brand. Your welcome email should welcome the reader by explaining your brand, what they can expect, and providing value such as a free report or discount code.
Hush Puppies’ welcome email hit all the right spots. This welcome email introduces you to Hush Puppies and offers 20% off your next order.
There is no one way to send a welcoming email. You can make it professional and direct, or funny and lighthearted. It doesn’t matter what style you choose, it just needs to be memorable and reflect your brand voice.
2. Emails that are annoying and salesy
Customers are no longer interested in being bombarded with aggressive and pushy sales messages. If your emails are too aggressive, customers will unsubscribe.
There are many emails competing for your attention in your reader’s inbox. Many of them sound the same. It’s best to not use sales language or cliches to make your message stand out. Instead, speak as if you are having a friendly conversation.
So that they don’t get distracted by promotional offers, you should focus on providing valuable, practical content. Because it is relevant to them and because they trust you, they will be more inclined to accept your offer.
Personalize your emails to make them more relevant to the reader. Instead of telling your readers how great your product is, tell them how they can benefit from it. Your readers will appreciate the value your product brings to their lives. You will be rewarded with an increase in your open rate, engagement, and conversion rates.
3. Design trends that are no longer relevant
Email marketing campaigns often fail because of poor design. If the font size of the copy is too small, you can’t expect subscribers to engage with your email marketing campaigns.
To break down topics, stick with H2 or H3 tags. You should avoid using multiple fonts in your marketing campaigns. They will look juvenile and disconcerting. Choose a clean font that you like and use it throughout your campaign.
Although images can be used in email design to enhance engagement and stimulate visual stimulation, it is best to avoid using too many images in one email. Your click-through rates can be improved by adding interactive elements such as audio or video.
You can access tons of audio and visual datasets through platforms. Don’t hesitate to look them up.
It is also important to choose the right colors for your brand. This will help subscribers recognize your emails and motivate them to open them. This trick is demonstrated with Allrecipes.
Also, you should review each link in your email before going live. Otherwise, you might end up in a embarrassing situation.
4. Poor proofreading
Your audience expects professionalism from you in your emails. If you fail to deliver on this promise, it can be interpreted as disrespecting your audience and a belief that they don’t deserve the best. This can lead to them not engaging with your messages.
Be sure to check your emails for spelling errors, grammatical inconsistencies, or other errors before you click the send button. Although it may not seem like much, even a small error like “Shpo Now” in your CTA could prevent readers clicking through and converting.
Be sure your message is consistent with your brand and conveys the emotion you wish to instill in your audience. Ask multiple people to go through the email and comment on how easy they understood it. This will ensure the best results. You can also use collaboration tools to allow everyone to see new emails as you go. This will allow you to get better feedback.
Also, make sure to screen your copy for offensive words. You must address your audience with professional and respectful language, regardless of how friendly you are.
A professional-looking email signature can be added in a similar fashion. These email signature examples can be a great inspiration.
5. Avoid A/B testing
Brands make the most common mistakes with email marketing campaigns by not performing A/B testing or abandoning their efforts after completing a few tests. Effective email campaigns are not something that can be achieved overnight. However, even great results can be improved by a little testing and modification.
After you have tested your theories, don’t assume that you know the best way to reach your audience. To find the best performing subject line, visuals and Calls-To-Actions (CTAs), you should send each one to different segments of your email list.
You should only test one of these elements at a time to determine which factor is responsible for a campaign’s success. A/B testing can help you improve your open and click-through rate, as well as make you a better marketer through the ability to create persuasive subject lines and CTAs.
6. Bad subject lines and CTAs
Your audience is not mind readers and has so many other things to do with their time. If you didn’t tell your audience what they should do next after reading the email, they will likely close it and move onto the next thing.
If you include a call to action, it must be clear, concise, and convincing. Otherwise, they will not follow your lead. Your CTA should be easy to find for your readers.
Bold text, bright colors and large buttons will make your email stand out. Your words matter. Use action words that spark curiosity, emotion, or create urgency to get your audience to act.
Avoid using multiple CTAs within one email. This could leave your audience confused and make them take no action at all. To give your audience more chances to see and act on the CTA, you can repeat it multiple times in the email.
Your subject lines are just as important. If they’re not well written, subscribers won’t open your emails. This will result in a drop in conversion rates and lower ROI. Don’t be clever or overdramatic. Instead, focus on creating relevant and purposeful subject lines.
You need to strike a balance between being too open and being too sensational. Avoid using spammy words as subject lines in your persuasive efforts. This will damage your sender reputation, and could result in your emails being blocked from subscribers’ inboxes.
Last, ensure that your email content aligns with the subject line. Otherwise, readers may feel like they have been tricked and unsubscribe.
7. Mobile optimization is not a priority
Our mobile devices are like a second limb. It’s always at our fingertips or within reach so it makes sense it’s what we use most for online activities such as shopping, checking emails, and sharing updates on social networks.
Many email marketers neglect mobile and give their attention to desktop design. Consumers expect you to provide an optimal experience on all devices.
If they see your message on their phones and find it difficult to read or confusing, they will likely unsubscribe.
Use white space sparingly. Use short paragraphs to ensure mobile readers don’t get distracted by lengthy blocks of text. Also, avoid using visuals as they can slow down the speed of your message. Before you send your final copy, make sure it is tested on mobile devices.
8. Treating email subscribers like regular customers
If all you wanted from your subscribers was to learn more about your business, then they could have just read the “About Us” section on your website and continued reading. They sent their emails instead because they felt a fundamental connection with your brand and wanted to keep in touch.
They want to be the first ones to know about all your latest developments. They care about your business and will therefore be more likely to consume your content, share it, fill out surveys, give feedback, or even buy your products or services.
Your email list is essentially a direct link to your most loyal supporters. They deserve to be treated as VIPs. Your email community can be shown appreciation by offering them exclusive content, special offers, sneak peeks at products/services, first dibs on new products, and other ways to show them how much you value them.
You can also make your subscribers feel special by creating a brand ambassador program and rewarding them for being loyal to your company. These perks will make them more loyal to your brand and encourage them to take advantage of opportunities to support you.
9. Not focusing on sender reputation
Internet Service Providers (ISPs), which are based on your sender reputation, calculate it based on how many emails you send each day and what bounce rates and unsubscribe rates you have. Your sender reputation will be affected if your emails bounce often or viewers hit the unsubscribe button.
One of the most costly mistakes in email marketing is not paying attention to sender reputation. Your reputation will be less trustworthy if it isn’t fixed. This will increase the likelihood that your email ends up in subscribers spam folders.
You can always improve your score but you must monitor your reputation. There are many great tools and websites–e.g., Sender Score, TrustedSource, BarracudaCentral–that can tell you your score. You will receive your reputation score by simply submitting your URL, your monthly email volume and other important details.
10. Email analytics: Don’t miss it
After your campaigns go live, it’s not over. To see if your campaigns are driving the desired results, you need to monitor them and identify the messages that resonate with readers. Then, encourage them to take action.
You won’t know if your marketing strategy is working and where changes are needed. Analytics can be used to track open rates, click through rates, new subscribers, and unsubscribe rates.
To see if your campaigns have similar click-through rates and highest options, compare them. Then use the insights to help you plan future email marketing campaigns.
Look for email marketing software that offers comprehensive analytics when choosing your tool. This will save you time and money by not having to purchase a separate tool that can help measure the effectiveness of your campaigns.
Drive your email marketing success
Everyone makes mistakes in email marketing. Even the most experienced marketers. Knowing what to watch out for will help you avoid making the same mistakes again and ruining your email marketing efforts.
This knowledge will allow you to revamp your email strategy and increase opens, engagement, conversions, and decrease spam rates.
Scoop.it Blog: Navigating our New Normal: 10 Post-Crisis Email Marketing Mistakes To Avoid
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