We often talk about all the good things you can do with email marketing in this blog, however we don’t often mention all the things that can go wrong with email marketing. There is a balance between getting email very right and very wrong, and a balance between focusing on the technical details vs. the creative and fun.
So we have made up our very own list of ‘email sins’ based on the biblical deadly sins.
Writing your own eDM content even though you know you’re not a writer, just because you want to retain control. If it’s not your thing, hire a copywriter… or if you don’t have the budget, find someone in the office that is a good writer.
There are too many companies that only send emails all about themselves and about their products or services and just try to sell, sell, sell. Instead, make sure your messages deliver value to recipients. For example, if you’re a sporting goods manufacturer, don’t just send emails that sell your equipment. Instead, try to teach people new techniques when it comes to working out.
Don’t fill your email with boring content and not make any effort. Not all your subscribers are as excited as you are to read about your products, services and news. So put some effort in. Tell a compelling story, and hold their interest with humour, controversy and interesting facts.
The positive benefits of personalisation will quickly turn negative if your message begins with Dear [blank]. No subscriber thinks you personally sat down and wrote them a message, but your recipients should be able to expect that you at least get their non-personal personalisation correct.
Don’t try to copy someone else’s style just because you like it… create your own email personality. Develop a tone and look and feel that is unique to your company. Each company has their own style, and a humorous tone that works for an agency may not work for an insurance company.
Some email marketers think they can use the low cost of sending emails as a chance to send to every email address in the universe. Others buy lists and try and re-subscribe those recipients who have unsubscribed. Sure sending to 5 million people might widen your net, however you will get lots of recipients who may unsubscribe anyway, and mark you as ‘spam’ which will damage your reputation and open rates. It is much wiser to send relevant emails to segmented databases to people who actually want to hear from you.
Putting EVERYTHING possible in your email and making it as long as your arm just gives your recipients email indigestion. And you risk losing their attention part way through your looonnnng email. Instead, consider putting snippets of information in your email and putting extra content on landing pages, or even link back to stories on your website. Alternatively you could send shorter emails at more regular intervals.
If you want more, you can read Hub Spot’s take on deadly email sins here