Under today’s marketing umbrella, a majority of companies utilize some level of email promotion, but few seem to be doing it really well. For the most part, this is due to a lack of strategy and misguided expectations.
With so many competing digital marketing tools, it’s easy for email marketing to serve the simple purpose of your company’s monthly newsletter, without much thought behind effective communication.
Have you looked at the type of content you’re delivering?
Then you start to ask yourself, “I have this great software and a great database, but no one’s opening the email! Now what?”
There are many moving parts to consider in an email marketing strategy; however there are three fundamental areas to focus on, in order to achieve the open rate you’re looking for.
Are you sending the right message to the right person?
You must establish a buyer persona for each of your targets, including how they prefer to be communicated with. Although this process may sound time consuming and not nearly as efficient as just buying and blasting a list; this approach truly sets the stage for email marketing success. Quality and relevancy is often much more successful than quantity-based strategies.
You should be able to answer these questions:
• How well have you clearly identified the right prospects?
• Have you scored them appropriately?
• Are they aligned to appropriate buyer personas?
This analysis and segmentation could be the difference between an open rate of two and 20 percent. Depending on where a lead is in the sales funnel, they should receive varying types of content and frequencies of communication. This should be based on the lead score, which is a combination of persona factors and expressed behaviors. How many emails have they opened? How many times have they visited the website? Did they sign up for a webinar? These are all behaviors that should score you leads differently.
Laura Patterson, Marketing President of VisionEdge explains the process of lead scoring in these videos.
Have you adjusted the schedule?
If you’ve tackled the buyer personas and set up lead scoring, but your prospects still aren’t opening the emails, this may be a good indication that you’re sending out too many.
Try a little A/B testing. For a couple of months, scale back email blasts to twice a month, then scale back to once a month. Then bump it up to once a week. Analyze and review the data after each of the intervals to determine what your ideal schedule should look like.
So, you’ve established your targets – now your job is to deliver the right kind of information to them. First and foremost, stop using emails to sell…use them to teach. People want content and information that is of value to them. Content that is educational in nature and not just a product push.
Email marketing can be a powerful tool. It doesn’t have to just be something you check off a list. When done right, you’ll notice more than just a higher open rate. You’ll see higher lead acquisition and conversion rates as well.
This was a guest post by Justin Gray, CEO of LeadMD.