The online environment is changing at an increasingly rapid pace. Corporations are investing more and more in their marketing budget, agencies want to help their clients more and marketers are trying to come up with ideas to improve the performance of the brands that they’re in charge of.

However, there’s one thing that hasn’t changed. Since the beginning, E-mail Marketing has been one of the main tools of those taking their first steps in the Internet industry. Online users are more and more bombarded by all sorts of ads and now it’s harder to grab their interest and attention.

That’s why e-mail marketing is much more important than in the past, since when your subscriber receives an e-mail, the message can be delivered to him without being interrupted by pop-ups showing up out of nowhere. But opening the e-mail is just the first step. Reading the entire thing and accessing it is another step that needs to be thought over down to the smallest detail.

Top 10 Dos and Don’ts of Email Marketing 1

We’ve prepared 10 aspects that you need to take into account if you want to achieve a great performance through your E-mail Marketing strategy, so that your brand message can be transmitted, understood and received as such by your newsletter subscribers.  

1. Database

  • DO’S

The so-called database consists in the personal data of the people receiving e-mails. The information is sent based on their consent with regard to receiving communications from you. That’s why we recommend that this database be increased organically, legally, ethically and very carefully.

  • DON’TS

We can’t be sure whether the information is correct and belongs to real persons. On the other hand, Law 677 from 2011 states that “any personal data processing […] can be carried out only if the data subject has given their express and unequivocal consent with regard to such processing”. And the GDPR regulation dated 25 May 2018 clearly establishes the tactics that you must use to increase and keep the personal data of subscribers. Failure to observe the legislation may give rise to poor results and immense legal risks.

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 2. Subscription

  • DO’S

A well-thought-out subscription form helps you collect the necessary data from your subscribers, in order to use them later. That’s why it’s recommended to know as much as possible about people, their preferences and the actions that they’ve performed in the digital environment.

  • DON’TS

The absence of essential data from the newsletter subscription form, such as name and first name, sex, city or age … forces the E-mail Marketer to send the same information to all subscribers, even if it’s absolutely irrelevant to some, as it’s impossible to customize the content sent via e-mail.

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3. Confirmation e-mail

  • DO’S

The confirmation e-mail is the proof that the subscriber shall receive information from the company that he has subscribed to, starting with that moment. It’s recommended for it to contain a confirmation of the subscription through which expectations are created (type of information, communication frequency, etc.). That’s why this e-mail should be sent immediately after the user subscribes. There’s an old saying – Strike while the iron is hot – and it’s especially suited to this situation.

  • DON’TS

The absence of an instant confirmation e-mail can result in the subscriber losing interest, especially if he wants to buy a product or service from the website and he needs to register an account first. If he doesn’t receive the confirmation e-mail immediately, the chances of him returning to the brand that he subscribed to are significantly reduced.

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4. Analytics data

  • DO’S

When there are enough data based on the results obtained, it’s vital that they be analysed in order to identify opportunities for optimization. Knowing the ages of your subscribers, the best time to send the newsletter, what actions they’ve performed on the website or which topics of interest have been accessed most in the newsletter… is the great difference between mediocrity and a great performance. And we know for sure that you can’t optimize what you can’t measure.

  • DON’TS

Not analysing the behaviour of your newsletter subscribers is a hindrance to understanding the evolution of the E-mail Marketing Strategy in relation to the performance of the digital marketing mix as clearly as possible, and poses the risk of increasing the unsubscribe rate.

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5. Database segmentation

  • DO’S

When you have a considerable number of subscribers, it’s time to segment audiences based on various criteria. Depending on your needs, the database can be segmented in innumerable ways, a fact which helps you understand people’s behaviour. We recommend the creation of audiences based on: age, sex, location, subscriber type (client / non-client), newsletter interaction (whether or not they opened the newsletters).

  • DON’TS

Not segmenting the database is an example of not using all of the options available to you to the highest degree. Without segmentation, it will be very difficult to identify the individual reaction of women, men, age groups or the reaction to certain messages or colours.

6. Content customization

  • DO’S

Given that the database is segmented based on the chosen criteria, it’s recommended to send e-mails with a customized content. During the last years, global marketing studies have shown that subject and content customization can result in a 760% increase in performance.

  • DON’TS

A great step back in achieving your objectives is not customizing the content of the body of the e-mail. In this case, your interaction with the subscribers stays rigid, using common or wrong forms of address, and it’s impossible to create an authentic connection, especially since Romanian uses different forms of address based on sex.

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7. The right time to send newsletters

  • DO’S

Testing e-mails sent on a certain day and at a certain time is beneficial when you want to send the right information, at the right time. We live in a very dynamic and mobile world, even if all your subscribers are from Bucharest, for example, they travel around the world, and 2 p.m. in New York is not the same as 2 p.m. in Bucharest.

  • DON’TS

Not sending newsletters at times chosen based on the time zone is like writing a ”Happy birthday” note to someone and sending it one day before or after their birthday. We know that we don’t check our e-mails as often as our Social Media, but a newsletter sent when the attention of the subscriber is low gives rise to poor results.

8. Automation

  • DO’S

Automation is a process through which you build an e-mail route so that a person receives information after a certain period has passed since he subscribed or based on the actions that he performs, identified by measuring the results of the newsletters. If you build this route properly, you can obtain a high performance with a minimum amount of effort. Customer Journeys increase global marketing results sixfold.

  • DON’TS

Not building an automation process is a step back in taking your marketing processes to the next level and, in this case, the energy and creativity required in order to create recurring newsletters won’t result in a maximum impact in terms of indicators such as the open or click rates.

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9. Newsletter content

  • DO’S

Before sending an e-mail to your subscribers, make sure that all of its components look perfect and work perfectly. Unlike Social Media or Google campaigns, a newsletter can’t be corrected after it’s sent to the audiences containing mistakes. Test, test, test and repeat!

  • DON’TS

Not checking an e-mail before sending it may decrease your chances of obtaining the desired results and may even lead to an increase in the unsubscribe rate. This happens if one component of the digital journey undertaken by the subscriber does not work properly (e.g. the destination page that the subscriber is sent to after accessing the newsletter).

 10. Mobile, desktop, tablet

  • DO’S

Probably one of the most important aspects to consider before sending an e-mail is its scalability on all devices, especially mobile devices. This is due to the current context of users switching from desktops to mobile devices, that are expected to penetrate 78% of the Internet use in 2018, on a global level.

  • DON’TS

If you haven’t created a responsive newsletter, you won’t be able to achieve the best results using the e-mails that you send, because they won’t be easy to view. If a newsletter looks incredible on a desktop, but 80% of your subscribers access the e-mail from their mobile phone, it stops being relevant, doesn’t it!?

We are aware that the development of the E-mail Marketing process is a long-term project. However, like anything that’s sustainable, it provides an increased marketing, and therefore business, impact. If you want to discover the next level in terms of E-mail marketing, contact us and we are going to develop a strongly performing digital strategy adapted to your business.