You’ve decided to dip your toe into the waters of email marketing and create your own newsletter. Congratulations!
But before you get going, there are some common mistakes you need to make sure you’re not making. Here are a look at 5 – and how to avoid each one:
Mistake #1: Not Getting Permission.
You might think you’re sending relevant and useful content. But if the recipient hasn’t given you permission by opting-in to your newsletter, then what you’re really sending is SPAM.
In fact, sending emails to addresses you don’t have permission from can hurt your reputation and damage your response rates. Worse, many recipients will likely flag your email as SPAM and you’ll eventually get into trouble with Internet service providers and possibly even get your email address blacklisted.
What to do: Create a sign-up form on your website where clients and prospects can opt-in to receive your emails.
Mistake #2: Sending Dead-End Emails.
You’ve spent hours crafting content for your email newsletter. You send it out, expecting a decent open and click-thru rate. Then you wait…and nothing.
If this sounds familiar, it could be because you’re sending dead-end emails. In other words, you’re sending emails that offer the recipient no ability to share, like, or respond to.
What to do: Your newsletter should deliver relevant content…but it should also drive readers somewhere, like to your website or blog. Or it should provide a call to action for a product or service offering.
Mistake #3: Sending Emails Too Frequently…or Not Frequently Enough.
Unfortunately, there’s no rule of thumb as to how often you should send out your email newsletter. Send it too often and you risk offending your recipients; send it too infrequently, on the other hand, and you risk dropping off their radar.
What to do: The simple answer is to test. Hubspot offers an easy 5-step test to help you determine optimal email frequency. If you’re still not sure about frequency, then ask yourself this question – “Am I sending out content because I have something relevant to share, or simply to send out content?”
Mistake #4: Not Designing Your Emails for Mobile Devices.
We’ve discussed in past posts how mobile devices, like smart phones, are becoming ubiquitous. And in fact, according to Litmus, an email testing and marketing analytics company, 38% of all email opens happened on mobile devices as of September 2012.
What to do: Make sure you or your designer are following best practices that ensure your email will display properly on smaller screens.
Mistake #5: Not Putting Important Information Front and Center.
By default, most preview panes show only the top three or four inches of an email newsletter. And if the meat of your content is hidden underneath that, your message may wind up in the trash.
What to do: When you’re planning out each newsletter, think about what information your recipients would most want to read. Then put key takeaways at the top of your newsletter to entice them to keep reading.
What about you? What email marketing mistakes have you seen in emails you’ve received? Leave your comments below.