4 Planning Tips for Email Marketing Success

When email marketing is done right, you can see the results in your bottom line. Effective email marketing builds loyalty and loyalty leads to increased leads and sales. The best way to ensure successful email marketing is to plan ahead, but there are many important decisions to make in the planning process. Here are four factors to consider when planning your next email marketing campaign.

1. What is your goal?

Don’t think about starting an email marketing campaign without having a goal in mind. You shouldn’t just send your audience a message without a purpose. Your goal could be to sell a specific product or service, to build relationships with list members or to introduce something new to your list. In any case, you’ll be looking to get your audience to take some sort of action. If you know the end result of your email marketing campaign (ie: signing up for a service, buying a product, etc) then you can begin to plan your campaign.

2. Who is your audience?

The right offer sent to the wrong group of people won’t get you very far. To be an effective email marketer, you need to know a lot about your market - that’s a given. Your email marketing list might be from the same market, but there may be several submarkets within that list. Segmenting can help you get more out of your list.

You can send messages just to people who are likely to take action. For example, you can segment your list and send your message just to those who have expressed interest in the past. When you create a new email marketing campaign you can send it directly to a specific submarket that will give you the best response.

3. What is your timeline?

A campaign is not just a single message. It’s a series of messages that are released over a period of time to move your audience toward your goal. In some cases, your timeline may be as little as a week and in others, you may have a month or more to build up interest and desire in your offer. Deciding on your timeline ahead of time can help you plan the content and delivery dates of your messages. If you are going to send just three messages in a week about your new product, the urgency and tone of your email messages will be a lot different than messages that are sent out over the course of three weeks to gently build interest in your new offering.

4. How does your campaign relate to your other messages?

If you’re sending out regular monthly newsletters or blog updates, you’ll need to consider how your new campaign will work into your existing delivery schedule. For example, if you send out an automated blog newsletter on Fridays, you won’t want to send out the first message in your sequence on that day. In addition, if you’ve recently sent a promotional offer, you won’t want to start a new promotional campaign right on its heels. Review the messages you’ve sent recently and consider how your new campaign will be perceived by your audience. Don’t pile too many promotional messages on them at once or you’ll lose their trust.

The next time you’re ready to start an email marketing campaign, ask yourself these four questions during the planning process. Considering these factors will help you see better results with your email marketing.

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