Connect with us

MARKETING

9 Email Marketing Best Practices for 2020

Published

on

9 Email Marketing Best Practices for 2020

Everybody might be talking about witty tweets, quick-tip videos, and memorable memes – but there’s one marketing tool that remains powerful after all these years: emails.

But an effective email marketing strategy in the 2000s may not work in 2019 anymore. Chances are, direct sales offers sent to inboxes will be marked as spam, and forever left unopened. In March 2019, spam messages accounted for 56% of global email traffic. The challenge, then, is to develop email campaigns that are as appealing and informative as other marketing tools which are more heavily consumed in this age of social media and apps.

Times have changed, and so have email marketing trends – and as such, you need to know what works and what doesn’t. Here’s a roundup of twelve effective email marketing tactics that you should be aware of heading into 2020.

1. Truly connect with your audience 

At one point in your online life, you may have received tons of offers to buy erectile dysfunction drugs or to join a matchmaking community for veterans. But your consumer profile probably didn’t fit these products, likely not even close.

In the modern age, you need to create email marketing campaigns that truly connect with each recipients’ interest. You can do this by dividing your email list into more targeted groups – the Annual Email Optimizer Report by Lyris found numerous benefits of email list segmentation including increased open rates, greater email relevance, and lower opt-out or unsubscribe rates.

You may segment the readers based on age, gender, location, etc. This will help ensure that you’re sending the right communication to the right people.

Check out this example of a geographically  segmented email by UBER for Chicago:

asg CknOp9xWEqXgC82a%2Fart mUymCqccFk1KjxW6%2F1573442812103 infograph

2. Customize your blasts

Email marketing tools – much like tweets and Instagram ads – should speak directly to a specific reader, and there’s no better way of doing this than by customizing the content of your emails.

After segmenting your email recipients, get to know them better. What appeals to them? What are they looking for when browsing for products and services? How do they define good customer service? What made them visit a website and subscribe?

By familiarizing yourself with your readers, it’ll be easier to customize your emails, follow-ups, and reminders.

For example, your Millennial recipients will likely be keen to receive informative yet concise messages with appealing images. A great way to do this is via infographics, which they can also easily share with their circle.

3. Grab your audience’s attention, and keep them interested

Today’s consumers are multi-taskers – they’re scrolling their news feeds while watching video, and checking for work-related emails in between. The competition for attention is greater than ever.

As such, you need to formulate creative ways to grab attention, and hold it until you’ve delivered your message. You can use witty headlines, visually-appealing images, and straightforward emails – strictly no click-bait.

You can also build a sense of urgency, tapping on today’s culture of “FOMO” (fear of missing out). Try using “You’re missing out on amazing rewards”, or “[URGENT] You’ve got ONE DAY to read this…”.

Humor also never fails. The Muse has used the subject, “We Like Being Used” while OpenTable had “Licking your phone never tasted so good” as the header of one of its email campaigns.

4. State a clear call-to-action

So, you’ve successfully earned the attention of your target audience, and they also read your message in its entirety. Now what?

Your emails should have a clear purpose, which you can achieve with an effective call-to-action.

Do you want your readers to visit your website or subscribe to your newsletter? Do you want them to Like your Facebook Page or make a purchase in your online store? Lead them to these goals with an effective CTA.

Researchers at Marketing Experiments recommend offering your visitors value at low or no cost, in exchange for a click. You should also avoid asking for too much too soon.

The researchers found that tweaking commonly-used CTAs can have amazing benefits. For example, by changing “Find your solution” to “Learn More”, the clickthrough rate on one email rose by 77%. Using “Subscribe & Save” instead of  “View Subscription Options” led to 181% clickthrough rate increase for another campaign.

5. Limit your email blasts

Do you know that an average office worker receives 121 emails per day? That’s a lot, and you don’t want your message to be sent to the spam folder because you’ve been a little too enthusiastic in contacting your subscribers.

People have signed up for your updates and newsletters because they”re interested in your brand, products or services, they want to stay connected. But this doesn’t give you permission to bombard them with emails.

Consider limiting your messages once a week.

6. Craft catchy subject lines or headlines

Email subject lines are deal-breakers – readers can easily ignore or delete your email with a boring or clickbaity headline.

MailChimp conducted an email marketing study, and they found that short, descriptive subject lines best entice readers.

You can include words that suggest urgency, ask a question or challenge a common notion. Use your segmented email list to craft direct and catchy headlines customized to your readers.

7. Make sure your emails are mobile-friendly

A recent study suggests that the number of mobile Internet users will hit five billion in 2025.

More people are browsing the web, scrolling through social media pages and checking their emails via their handheld devices. And as such, you need to ensure that your email promotions are mobile-optimized.

To create a mobile-friendly digital asset, consider the length of texts and visuals. Some image files may not display on smartphones, and others may slow downloading time.

8. Write professional emails

How would you perceive a business that sends out emails fraught with typos and grammar errors? Such mistakes will definitely reflect badly on the sender.

Always prepare your messages thoroughly – email promotion is no different from any other marketing campaign. Take the time to plan out and draft an outline, write a copy and proofread it several times, and use a voice that’s consistent with your brand.

9. Build an inclusive community 

People no longer surf the internet to just get quick information online. They meet others, join groups, and essentially create a world that is as real as their offline sphere.

Go the extra mile with your email marketing campaign by letting your readers into an inclusive community. You can share personal updates about your life that don’t necessarily relate to your usual promotions – perhaps a sneak peek into your work routine or a photo of your puppy or cat?

You shouldn’t overuse such elements, but a few additions along these lines can help to make your audience feel at home.

Hopefully these tips will give you something extra to consider in your 2020 planning.

Socialmediatoday.com

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address

MARKETING

Marketing Team Reorgs: Why So Many and How To Survive

Published

on

Marketing Team Reorgs: Why So Many and How To Survive

How long has it been since your marketing team got restructured? 

Wearing our magic mind-reading hat, we’d guess it was within the last two years. 

Impressed by the guess? Don’t be.  

Research from Marketing Week’s 2024 Career and Salary Survey finds that almost half of marketing teams restructured in the last 12 months. (And the other half probably did it the previous year.) 

Why do marketing teams restructure so often? Is this a new thing? Is it just something that comes with marketing? What does it all mean for now and the future? 

CMI chief strategy advisor Robert Rose offers his take in this video and the summary below. 

Marketing means frequent change 

Marketing Week’s 2024 Career and Salary Survey finds 46.5% of marketing teams restructured in the last year — a 5-percentage point increase over 2023 when 41.4% of teams changed their structure. 

But that’s markedly less than the 56.5% of marketing teams that restructured in 2022, which most likely reflected the impact of remote work, the fallout of the pandemic, and other digital marketing trends. 

Maybe the real story isn’t, “Holy smokes, 46% of businesses restructured their marketing last year.” The real story may be, “Holy smokes, only 46% of businesses restructured their marketing.” 

Put simply, marketing teams are now in the business of changing frequently. 

It raises two questions.  

First, why does marketing experience this change? You don’t see this happening in other parts of the business. Accounting teams rarely get restructured (usually only if something dramatic happens in the organization). The same goes for legal or operations. Does marketing change too frequently? Or do other functions in business not change enough? 

Second, you may ask, “Wait a minute, we haven’t reorganized our marketing teams in some time. Are we behind? Are we missing out? What are they organizing into? Or you may fall at the other end of the spectrum and ask, “Are we changing too fast? Do companies that don’t change so often do better? 

OK, that’s more than one question, but the second question boils down to this: Should you restructure your marketing organization? 

Reorganizing marketing 

Centralization emerged as the theme coming out of the pandemic. Gartner reports (registration required) a distinct move to a fully centralized model for marketing over the last few years: “(R)esponsibilities across the marketing organization have shifted. Marketing’s sole responsibilities for marketing operations, marketing strategy, and marketing-led innovation have increased.”  

According to a Gartner study, marketing assuming sole responsibility for marketing operations, marketing innovation, brand management, and digital rose by double-digit percentage points in 2022 compared to the previous year.  

What does all that mean for today in plainer language? 

Because teams are siloed, it’s increasingly tougher to create a collaborative environment. And marketing and content creation processes are complex (there are lots of people doing more small parts to creative, content, channel management, and measurement). So it’s a lot harder these days to get stuff done if you’re not working as one big, joined-up team. 

Honestly, it comes down to this question: How do you better communicate and coordinate your content? That’s innovation in modern marketing — an idea and content factory operating in a coordinated, consistent, and collaborative way. 

Let me give you an example. All 25 companies we worked with last year experienced restructuring fatigue. They were not eager creative, operations, analytics, media, and digital tech teams champing at the bit for more new roles, responsibilities, and operational changes. They were still trying to settle into the last restructuring.  

What worked was fine-tuning a mostly centralized model into a fully centralized operational model. It wasn’t a full restructuring, just a nudge to keep going. 

In most of those situations, the Gartner data rang true. Marketing has shifted to get a tighter and closer set of disparate teams working together to collaborate, produce, and measure more efficiently and effectively.  

As Gartner said in true Gartner-speak fashion: “Marginal losses of sole responsibility (in favor of shared and collaborative) were also reported across capabilities essential for digitally oriented growth, including digital media, digital commerce, and CX.” 

Companies gave up the idea of marketing owning one part of the customer experience, content type, or channel. Instead, they moved into more collaborative sharing of the customer experience, content type, or channel.  

Rethinking the marketing reorg 

This evolution can be productive. 

Almost 10 years ago, Carla Johnson and I wrote about this in our book Experiences: The 7th Era of Marketing. We talked about the idea of building to change: 

“Tomorrow’s marketing and communications teams succeed by learning to adapt — and by deploying systems of engagement that facilitate adaptation. By constantly building to change, the marketing department builds to succeed.” 

We surmised the marketing team of the future wouldn’t be asking what it was changing into but why it was changing. Marketing today is at the tipping point of that. 

The fact that half of all marketing teams restructure and change every two years might not be a reaction to shifting markets. It may just be how you should think of marketingas something fluid that you build and change into whatever it needs to be tomorrow, not something you must tear down and restructure every few years.  

The strength in that view comes not in knowing you need to change or what you will change into. The strength comes from the ability and capacity to do whatever marketing should. 

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT:  

Want more content marketing tips, insights, and examples? Subscribe to workday or weekly emails from CMI.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute 

Source link

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address
Continue Reading

MARKETING

Boost Your Traffic in Google Discover

Published

on

Boost Your Traffic in Google Discover

2. Understand topical authority: Keywords vs. entities

Google has been talking about topical authority for a long time, and in Discover, it is completely relevant. Traditional SEO includes the use of keywords to position your web pages for a specific search, but the content strategy in Discover should be based on entities, i.e., concepts, characters, places, topics… everything that a Knowledge Panel can have. It is necessary to know in which topics Google considers we have more authority and relevance in order to talk about them.

3. Avoid clickbait in titles

“Use page titles that capture the essence of the content, but in a non-clickbait fashion.” This is the opening sentence that describes how headlines should be in Google’s documentation. I always say that it is not about using clickbait but a bit of creativity from the journalist. Generating a good H1 is also part of the job of content creation.

Google also adds:

“Avoid tactics to artificially inflate engagement by using misleading or exaggerated details in preview content (title, snippets, or images) to increase appeal, or by withholding crucial information required to understand what the content is about.”

“Avoid tactics that manipulate appeal by catering to morbid curiosity, titillation, or outrage.

Provide content that’s timely for current interests, tells a story well, or provides unique insights.”

Do you think this information fits with what you see every day on Google Discover? I would reckon there were many sites that did not comply with this and received a lot of traffic from Discover.

With the last core updates in 2023, Google was extremely hard on news sites and some niches with content focused on Discover, directly affecting E-E-A-T. The impact was so severe that many publishers shared drastic drops in Search Console with expert Lily Ray, who wrote an article with data from more than 150 publishers.

4. Images are important

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. If you look at your Discover feed, you’ll see most of the images catch your attention. They are detailed shots of delicious food, close-ups of a person’s face showing emotions, or even images where the character in question does not appear, such as “the new manicure that will be a trend in 2024,” persuading you to click.

Google’s documentation recommends adding “high-quality images in your content, especially large images that are more likely to generate visits from Discover” and notes important technical requirements such as images needing to be “at least 1200 px wide and enabled by the max-image-preview:large setting.” You may also have found that media outlets create their own collages in order to have images that stand out from competitors.

Source link

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address
Continue Reading

MARKETING

Everything You Need to Know About Google Search Essentials (formerly Google Webmaster Guidelines)

Published

on

Everything You Need to Know About Google Search Essentials (formerly Google Webmaster Guidelines)

One of the most important parts of having a website is making sure your audience can find your site (and find what they’re looking for).

The good news is that Google Search Essentials, formerly called Google Webmaster Guidelines, simplifies the process of optimizing your site for search performance.

(more…)

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address
Continue Reading

Trending

Follow by Email
RSS