20 Tips for developing a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

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E-mail marketing is a cost effective marketing tool that aims on building long term relationships with your customers. With clear objectives and messages, e-mail marketing can effectively support your marketing efforts on and off line with a relatively low budget. As the objectives can vary depending on the industry and the audience, we decided to focus on the contact list development which is probably the most important part of any serious e-mail marketing strategy. In this article we will share with you 20 tips on how to increase and maintain your subscribers and on how to develop a solid e-mail marketing campaign.

1. Identify your target audience’s needs

Find out what could provide value to your target audience and brainstorm on the content.

2. Build a landing page for the subscription form

A dedicated landing page should include all the features that are needed in order to make user understand the reasons why to opt in to your newsletter. You can read more on how to develop effective landing pages on the article “Build effective landing pages to Increase conversion rates”.

3. Use A/B testing

Use A/B testing to check which subscription box works better. Experiment with styles, colors, fonts and call to actions and let your target audience indicate you the sign-up box that they prefer.

4. Subscription Form Visibility

Add the subscription form above the fold. This practice increases the possibility of subscribing since it makes the call to action and the subscription form more visible to the user.

5. Easy Subscription process

Make the subscription process easy. By keeping the numbers of required fields as low as possible and by eliminating the obstacles you increase the probabilities of subscribing.

6. Social Media integration

Integrate the subscription form with your social media campaigns.  You can provide either a subscription form within your Facebook fan page or drive traffic from your social media efforts to the landing page of the subscription form. Both practices work but their results vary depending on your target audience.

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7. Publish your Newsletters

Upload your previous newsletters on your blog and share them through social media. This practice enables you to show what you are offering to your subscribers. On the other hand, you generate new content and links supporting your SEO efforts.

8. Keep stable frequency

Remember that e-mail marketing is a tool that empowers your efforts for long term relationships with your clients. Consequently you need to stay in touch and keep the frequency stable.

9. Inform users about the frequency

Make clear to the users that you will not send e-mails every day and inform them about the frequency. It may seem obvious to you, but this is a sign that you are not a spammer.

10. Have a clear Privacy Policy

Privacy is a hot topic for millions of people. Thus you should make users feel safe, state clearly your privacy policy, let them know why you collect their information and how you plan to use it.

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11. Mind the Timing

Ask for a subscription at the right time. When a user is satisfied with the experience you offered within your website there are more chances to collect their information.

12. Newsletter Templates

You need to focus on the template of your newsletter. Make sure that not only it is attractive and well designed but also that it is simple and easy to understand even before images load.

13. Add Sharing buttons in Newsletters

Make sure you add sharing buttons within your newsletters. This will give to the users the opportunity to share easily the posts that they find interesting.

14. Add call to action in your Blog

Add a call to action on the footer of each blog post and encourage users to subscribe to your newsletter. The user that took the time to read your article is more likely to subscribe to your newsletter in order to get “more like this”.

15. Segmentation and topics of interest

Provide users the option to select specific topics in order to ensure the relevance of the content that they receive. Use multiple newsletter lists or groups of interest to create more effective e-mail campaigns.

16. Focus on the Quality of the Content

Make sure that you provide relevant content to your subscribers. Also note that you can add more value by providing access to exclusive content. Remember that e-mail marketing success is not to increase the number of subscribers but to maintain and keep a fruitful relationship with them.

17. Offer E-books or Guides

Offer downloadable e-books and guides in exchange for their email addresses. People love a free piece of information, especially when your website is known to offer great content.

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18. Run Contests

Contests can help you gather email addresses, attract more visitors and generate buzz around your website. Check out our previous article “Social Media Case Study” to find out how you can run successful contests by using social media.

19. Get user’s Feedback

When a user unsubscribes from your email list, make sure to get his feedback. This will help you understand what went wrong, whether you should improve the frequency, the relevancy of the content or something else. Also make sure that you run surveys and ask your subscribers what you can do to improve your service. This will give you new ideas on how to maintain and increase your subscribers.

20. Give Incentives

Provide bonus or incentives if someone forwards the e-mail or accepts to participate in a survey of yours. Make sure you reward the people that help you and rest assured that they will return the favor.

As we always stress in these blog posts, you should never forget to be honest with your users. By being patient & creative, by thinking out of the box and by following the above tips you will certainly be able to develop a solid email marketing campaign, increase your sales and improve the relationship with your users/customers.

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  • Ana @ Traffic Generation Care

    I am sure I’ll go against the grain here, but to tell you the truth, there’s nothing new here.

    It’s easy to say what do; it’s the HOW that’s usually the problem.

    Ana Hoffman

  • bbriniotis

    @Ana: Hello Ana, Thanks for the feedback. I think that this article gathers the most important tips that one should follow in order to improve his/her email marketing campaign. If you are an experienced Marketer and you specialize on Email Marketing you probably already know most of the techniques. I think that this article contains some great reminders and than more or less it gives some info on how to get things going.

    Having read some of your own articles, I believe one could say exactly the same thing for your blog. Most of the concepts are known. Still this does not mean that your content is bad, on the contrary they are probably useful for a lot of people.

    Regards
    Vasilis

  • Blue Sky Factory Email Marketing

    Great tips! It’s hard to cover all aspects of a successful email marketing campaign in just 20 tips. One thing to mention – and you allude to this – is to never buy lists. Always grow your email marketing list organically. Many think that a bought list will drive results, but it can harm your business – not just your email program!

    Amy Garland
    Marketing Manager, Blue Sky Factory

  • Amber

    Speaking from a customer stand point, be careful sending out too many messages. Even if it is relevant to me, If I get too much info I feel like I’m being spammed.

  • Flexsin SEO Marketing

    Thank for sharing the valuable information…. I have also subscribed the rss of the blog to get updated. Kindly Share more information on the same!!

  • Georgia Christian

    Thanks for sharing these points – it’s great to have a summary of some of the most important aspects that can help ensure a successful campaign. We have recently started running competitions and it’s proving to be very successful in terms of new newsletter sign ups.

    Georgia Christian – Mail Blaze

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  • smo package

    Excellent post. E-mail marketing is a cost effective marketing tool that aims on building long term relationships with your customers.

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  • Digital Strategy @VuzaneStudio

    Thank you for the tips. Another effective aspect to focus on is provocative subjects. Many newsletters do not even get opened due to dull subject lines that just do not entice the user to open it at all.

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