Posts Tagged ‘marketing’

How to improve the open rate of an email newsletter

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

The open rate, the click rate and the conversion rate are three indicators that measure the efficiency of an email marketing campaign. These are there indicators that you have to observe constantly and find ways to optimize them in order to manage to raise these values.
Opening is the first step – the first action a user has to do to get in contact with the information from you. Below we detailed some recommendations to improve this indicator. But you have to be aware of the fact that the open rate is not an independent factor, so to have a high open rate you need to have a high deliverability rate, your emails have to get to your subscribers inbox to be opened.

1. The subject line and the “From” line

The subject line is one of the most important elements when it comes to determine a user to open or not an email. The subject is the most visible and the first opportunity you have to offer a reason why your email should be opened. The subject has to be a message that offers your subscribers an idea about what he will discover opening the email, something to tell them if the information is relevant for them or not. A good subject line is specific, not too long and attractive.
You have to pay attention to the “From” line also. Subscribers are not likely to open your emails if they don’t know who’s the sender.

2. Targeting and relevance

The interest of the readers in the information you send depends on how you segmented your list. The segmentation starts right when you collect the adresses. It’s recommended to set correctly the expectations of the people when they subscribe to have a list interested in what you want to communicate. The better you segment, according to the information you have about your subscribers, the more chances you have of offering relevant content, so of getting their attention and a higher open rate.

3. Frequency

If you send too often people will be irritated, and if you send too rarely they will lose their interests. What is the right amount? That depends on your product and on your list. To not disturb the best is to give your subscribers the possibility of choosing the right frequency for them, either when they subscribe, or later by other means.

4. Build a relationship

One of the most important factors that will bring you openings is trust. Deliver what you promised, don’t deceive your subscriber’s expectations, don’t promise unreal offers. Don’t abuse that permission they gave you when they subscribed.

Common email marketing mistakes to avoid

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Before sending out an email newsletter make sure you fulfill at least the basic rules of email marketing. In a hurry you can send an email without testing it and it will not appear as you intended in the inbox of your subscribers. You can send irrelevant content to your list or maybe you can send your emails without asking permission first. This way you will only manage to get to the Junk folder faster or make them hit the unsubscribe button.

Below we made a list of the most common email marketing mistakes which you have to be aware of to avoid them.

1. Sending with no permission
Before sending a newsletter you have to have the permission of every single person in your list. This means people have to previously requested to receive information from you. Not spamming is the first rule of email marketing and one the most important ones.

2. Unclear “From” name and subject line
For the subscribers to open your emails they have to know clearly what they are receiving and from whom. The “From” name and the subject line are the only two elements that you have to make them open your messages. If these two elements are not clear and relevant you will not succeed in attracting them. Also, a clear “From” is important to avoid a high spam rate. Is wrong to assume that, even if you have a permission based list, people remember you and your business.

3. Sending without testing
Testing is very important. Don’t skip this step, even if you are in a hurry. You have to check especially spelling errors, display errors and if all links are functional. The best is to send out emails to different accounts that use different email clients. The display could be different, depending on the email client your subscriber is using.

4. Disturbing and inconstant frequency
There is no recommended frequency in email marketing. It can differ from product to product depending on the quantity of relevant information you can offer to your subscribers. Sending to rarely will make them forget about you and sending too often will make your communication disturbing. The best solution is to let them pick their right frequency.

5. Irrelevant content
Sending emails that have nothing to do to what you promised to people when they subscribed and that is not corresponding to their interests will only raise the unsubscribe rate. An efficient targeting is necessary to get good results.

6. No unsubscribe link
In every email you send you have to include an unsubscribe link, and it has to be working. Not including it does not mean that you will lose fewer subscribers, because people that want to unsubscribe will have to use spam button to report you. This way you take the risk of compromising your future email marketing campaigns.

How to write good subject lines

Sunday, April 3rd, 2011

The subject line is a key element for the email newsletter. The “From” tab and the subject line are the first contact of a subscriber with your email, it will have a big influence on his further actions: to open it or not.

First impression is very important in this case. 50 characters stand between you and your subscriber – this is the length of a subject line, it’s all you have to make him attracted to your information, make him curious and get him to open your message. The few characters of a subject line have a big impact on your whole campaign.

Writing good subject lines

1. Be specific

The subject line must describe the content of the email very clearly. An email with a vague subject line does not give to many reasons why to open it.

2. Be original

In order to get the attention and curiosity from your subscriber you have to be original, stand out from the crowd. Don’t use similar subjects with the ones used before just because they worked, repeating them will make the subscriber reject them. You can use successful elements of previous campaigns, but adapt them.

3. Avoid Anti-spam filters

When you are writing the subject line of an email newsletter you have take into account how spam filters work. The subject is an indicator with great influence on them. For example, it’s good to avoid writing some words in capital letters or using the capital words at the beginning of every word. It’s the same for the words “for free” or “promotion”, exclamation points and percentages.

4. Don’t mislead

The subject of an email is setting the expectations of the ones who get it, it will make them open it or not. That’s why you shouldn’t lie about what’s really the content of the email. Don’t give the idea that they will find something else. You will lose their trust and get reported as spam.

5. Test

No matter what kind of subject you use for your emails, testing is the best method to see if they work. You can test on a certain list to see the results you get. Also, how good or not are some subject lines you can establish by evaluating carefully previous campaigns.

It is no known recipe to write a good subject line, what worked for some campaigns may not work for another. You have to find always a way to bring something different, to make your email stand out and get the attention that deserves.

How to segment efficiently

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Putting subscribers into categories is essential to have an efficient email marketing campaign. This way you make sure that the right information gets to the right people. The importance of segmentation is often underestimated and the lack of segmentation or a wrong segmentation can ruin your campaign.

In email marketing we hear often about one-to-one communication, about putting the accent on the client’s needs to make him feel unique and treated according to his interests and preferences. This is actually the ultimate purpose of segmentation: making every subscriber to feel unique. Because talking to every single client is not possible, you need to find the most relevant message.

Examples of lists to classify your subscribers

The segmentation can be made using several criteria according to the information you know about your clients: demographic data, the time he’s been a subscriber, preferences, status (buyer/prospect), value of the products he bought, frequency of purchase, products purchased. Gathering all these data is a long-term activity, the more you know the better.

Below are some categories to keep into account when you segment:
Inactive clients – for this category you can make a special offer to make them return.
Previous purchasing – this will tell you in what products are they interested in to make better offers.
Interested in certain subjects/products – different subjects concern different targets. You can segment according to this factor using their previously expressed preferences or you can ask them.
New clients – for this category you need to have a loyalty program. For example, you can send a “thank you” note to the ones that bought for the first time.
Prospects – using the data you know about them you can create offers that will convince them to buy.

The Design can make the difference

Friday, February 18th, 2011

A newssletter is a very important marketing tool and one the essential requests for it’s success is to be interesting for the target. Estethics is one of elements that can make the difference between a succesfull and an unsuccesfull email marketing campaign.

Email’s design is important and this is not only about the looks. The design can influence other indicators like deliverability.

Below you have some of the factors you should consider when composing your next email message:

Fonts

Design guides recommend using large size to underline certain message, but this you need to know that this can make your text very difficult to read.

And there is more, the size of the font is an indicator used by the anti-spam filters and can be interpreted as a piece of text that is unnecessarily underlined. A size bigger than 15 is not recommended.

Colors

The main objective you need to have in mind when you choose the colors is that you want to raise the awareness of your company or product by underlining the elements of identity.

Another objective is the message you want to send to your subscribers by using certain colors.

Positioning the elements of the email

This factor can influence the action and answering rates of your campaign. For example, it’s better to place the call to action message (to fill in a form) on the left side, rather than on right side.

Capital letters

It is recommended to avoid excessive use of capital letters for two reasons: one related to the reading difficulty, and another because anti-spam filters don’t “like” a lot of capitals.

Approaching the design in email marketing can be compared to the same matter in web design. Email should look accordingly to your purposes about it and what you want to make your subscribers do.

If you want to know some additional information from them, you build your email around this purpose. Both message and design must direct the recipient to the action you want them to take.

When should you send?

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

This is one of the most frequent questions email asked by email marketers.

It is known that the time when you send the messages has an influence on the open rates. Send at a time when your subscribers are more likely to check their email and your messages have a better chance to be opened.

If you send too soon your message might end up in a long list of other messages waiting to be read. We all get a bit overwhelmed when we have too many messages in the inbox so we go in “filter” mode and only open the ones we think are important. This makes it easy for your subscribers to miss your messages 🙂

Send too late and you have missed the opportunity to have your message opened the same day. Tomorrow it might not be so interesting, plus it will again end up in a list of other unopened messages where it has less chances to be opened.

When are subscribers more likely to open?

Some try to guess the best time to send. Some assume that it’s best to send in the morning, others say it’s best at noon, and for others it’s best in the evening.

The truth is that different people check their email at different times. Now some lists might have a majority that would open in the morning and others in the evening and if you can figure that out then it’s great.

But what if you wouldn’t have to guess?

If your subscribers confirm their subscription, open messages, click on the links we track the time when they do that and we use this information to determine when it’s the best time to send for each subscriber.

How to do it with WomSend?

When you create a new campaign you have an option to optimize the time each message is sent. Click the “optimize send time” checkbox and select to optimize over 24 hours or over 7 days.

If you chose to optimize over 24 hours the system will try to find the best hour to send for each subscriber.

If you optimize over 7 days the system will try to find the best day of week and hour within that day for each subscriber.

Why two optimization models?

Some messages are more time sensitive then others. Sometimes you want your subscribers to take action within the following 1-2 days. For these kind of messages you have to use the 24 hours optimization.

Messages that are not time sensitive can use a 7 day optimization model.

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