Email Strategy & Planning
When it comes to every email campaign, you should always start with an email strategy and a plan. This will involve planning for the goals you want to achieve. As we have mentioned in the previous article, email marketing is a solid tool to help you achieve multiple goals in the digital world. In order to be fruitful, you need a great email strategy and planning. It should be considered in line with your long term business, marketing, and digital strategy.
There will be several key performance indicators for each campaign. You will determine these. These KPIs will indicate how good you are operating.
So, before you start planning. List down your goals. Usually, advertising emails will have a prompt goal. These could either be one or all of the following:
- Sell a product
- Send downloadable content to customers
- Request further information
Now, there are also newsletters. These types of emails usually focus on longer-term goals. The goal usually is to create a long-term rapport with your customers. These KPIs are more important in newsletters.
KPIs for Newsletters
Usually, KPIs for newsletters can include
- Email open rates
- Clickthrough rate
- Return on Investment or ROI
- The growth of the database
- The number of social shares
- The number of forwarded emails
- The conversion rate is usually the activity on your website that is generated by email
- The delivery or bounce rate
Pro Tip: Study and know your audience really well. They will precept which communications you should measure.
Email Service Providers
Email service providers or ESP will help you manage your email design and sending. Most of the time, bigger organizations choose to purchase their own software and server. There are also instances where organizations partners with ESP. You can do this, too.
Some ESPs include Gmail, Outlook, Zoho, AOL, Yahoo! And more. You can also use email automation and marketing platforms such as MailChimp, aWeber, and more.
When you’re choosing an email service provider, here are some important questions that you should ask:
- Is it easy to use? Will you be able to administer it yourself?
- Can you upload a contact list?
- Can you export all the data?
- Do they offer a managed process or is it all self-service?
- Reports — how does it work?
- How is the data stored?
- Who processes and secures the data?
- What is their deliverability like?
Email Strategy & Planning for Mobile Phones
Nowadays, smartphones rule the world. Most people are doing everything on their smartphones. In fact, more people use smartphones than computers.
Now, in email marketing, that could be a challenge. So, your email strategy & planning should include how your emails will look like on a mobile screen. This includes each display variety from each mobile operating system.
You want to create an email that presents well across various clients and operating systems as you could. The good news is that most email automation platform automates this now through responsive design.
When you are working on an email for a smartphone, you need to remember these vital factors:
- Screens are a lot smaller
- Most phones are touchscreen so the inputs can vary. Hence, the content must be easy to skim through. It is a must for the Calls to Action to be clear and easy to read.
- Most readers just skim through the email, so make sure to make your content pop
Best Practices when Designing Emails for Smartphones
When you’re designing emails for smartphones, here are some of the best practices to follow. This will help ensure the optimal rendering on mobile devices.
- The majority of newsletters are structured to be 600pixels wide. This is so that they can be presented well in an email preview pane. This scales well on a typical mobile screen.
- Link your preheader to your email newsletters. This way, those who access your email on a smartphone device can get straight through to an HTML adaptation of your newsletter
- Use grids when designing your emails. You can lay out your content in a horizontal and vertical orientation. With this, operating systems and email clients can easily extent your newsletter down to fit a smartphone screen.
- Add alt texts in your images. Not everyone has the capacity to load images all the time on their smartphone. Alt texts can help convey your message without the photos.
- Most of the time, the smartphones that do not scale your message down will automatically publish the content on the left of your newsletter first. Make the most out of this by putting your most vital information there.
- Make the links to the buttons to be at least 44 pixels. This will make the email render better on mobile phones.
Keep in mind that most smartphones now have touch screens. So design your emails for touch. Your readers will tap on the links instead of clicking. So when the links are set excessively near one another, it tends to be hard for clients to tap on one connection without inadvertently tapping on the other.
Space the links out and make sure that there is at least 15px of space around them. This way, it will be simpler for touchscreen clients to finish on your Call to Action.
Monitor your KPIs regularly to track how well each email is doing. If you see a winning campaign or email, study its components and apply that to your other emails as well.
It’s also helpful to create split or A/B tests on your emails. This way, you can study numerous designs and strategies at the same time.
The Benefits of Email Strategy & Planning
With a sound email strategy, you can achieve the following:
- Build solid credibility with your target audience and potential customers
- Create targeted and personalized content for your readers
- Get more recognition for your brand
- Build stronger relationships with your customers and audience base
- Boost your sales
- Get more traffic to your website
- Establish authority in your niche or field
- Build excitement for your audience
Email marketing can be tough without a sound game plan in place. This is why strategizing and planning ahead of time can help you and your team get the best results and ROI.
© Image credits to Jakub Novacek