5 min read  | HubSpot

5 Ways to Improve Your Email Marketing Strategy Today

Your email marketing strategy checklist from an industry expert who’s seen it all.

If you know Aamplify, you’ll undoubtedly have met Jo Tovee, our ever-personable Director of Customer. Fun fact: Jo also happens to have a cool 12 years of email marketing experience on her impressive CV. So we took it upon ourselves to pick her brain on your behalf. 

In Jo’s own words, she could “go on for days,” so consider these five best practices a small taste — an amuse-bouche, if you will — of her deep knowledge in the email marketing space. Get in touch to continue this conversation and make Jo’s day.

Tip #1: Be smarter with data

Solid data = effective personalisation = well-performing email marketing campaigns
Not all data is valuable, and the data you need might not be the data you have.

Ask yourself:

  • How well do you know your audience? Gather insights and look for gaps.
  • What data do you have? Is it recent and relevant?
  • What is your big-picture top-down strategy? For example, do you want to increase customers, lifetime value, repeat purchase or retention?

Now, assess these findings, and determine:

  • What data do you need to report on the effectiveness of your top-down strategy?
  • How can you get this data?
  • How can you use this data? (Get creative)

By combining explicit data (provided by the user, such as demographics) with inferred data (such as website behaviours), you can implement effective personalisation and become highly targeted.

Tip #2: Set your objective and stick to it

Every decision comes back to the objective — stay focused on what your email marketing campaign is looking to achieve.

Ask yourself:

  • What is the purpose of the email?
  • What is the one/most valuable thing you want the reader to do?
  • How can this email be designed to support this goal?

Now, think about your customer:

  • Is this email valuable/engaging/relevant to them?
  • Is it obvious they will know what to do with it? (Think CTAs like registering for an event, reading a blog or booking that call)

Use case example:
A social listening platform provider offers a paid boot camp course, heavily discounted for existing users. Their monthly newsletter has an overwhelming number of content blocks covering every avenue of the business, but their primary goal is getting people to register for upcoming events. 

Registration tripled after a quick lift, shift, and reprioritisation of the content to lead with the boot camp course. The email still contained all of the same content as before, but prioritising greatly impacted the results.

Tip #3: Content is king, but time is the enemy

You have about 3 seconds to capture your audience’s attention, so get to the point:

  • Keep the juicy content bits above the fold to serve as a hook
  • Make your email easy to consume, consider content, design and copy
  • Stay focused on that objective you set (see tip #2)

Think of email content like a movie trailer; your job is convincing people that they want to see the entire thing. Then, you’ll send them (and track them) to that point of conversion.

For example, a B2B packaging brand opts to use a ‘Netflix’ style layout to highlight best-selling products, which sends the customer directly to the corresponding product page when clicked. The layout resonates because people instinctively know what to do with it, and the direct link to purchase shortens the process. Fewer steps = increased rate of purchase.

Tip #4: Automation is your friend

Email marketing should support each stage of the customer journey, and automation can help create a consistent experience. Work smarter, not harder; this doesn’t have to be overly complicated and will save you time for more important things.

Baseline automation checklist:

  • Lead nurture
  • Welcome
  • Onboard
  • Post-purchase
  • Retention
  • Lapsed

Now that you’re all set up, remember to regularly:

  • Analyse performance
  • Test and critique timing, content and stages
  • Optimise

Use case example: A global B2B online retailer gathers massive subscribers through e-commerce and social activity but has unsubscribes through the roof. Why? 90% of emails are promotional with no post-purchase experience. 

By implementing simple automations across the board (see checklist above), they can maintain engagement, improve the customer experience and build community. These automations resulted in fewer unsubscribes as customers stopped seeing these emails as promotional and became part of the ‘community’. 

Bonus: This retailer can now analyse engagement from these automations and target the appropriate customers ahead of promotions to increase the repurchase rate. In this example, these are customers who haven’t purchased recently, were interested in a specific range or are likely to make repeat purchases based on inferred behavioural data.

Tip #5: Don’t be spammy

Email is one of the most affordable and effective channels you can use in your marketing strategy; use it to engage and improve your customer’s experience, not repel and damage it. 

Best practices:

  • Keep a clean CRM (find the complete how-to here and a deep clean here)
  • Use your data for smarter targeting (see tip #1)
  • Be mindful of frequency and cadence (more isn’t always better)
  • Leverage automation to improve the customer experience

On the topic, Jo says, “I was working in London when GDPR came into effect. In my opinion, it was the best thing to happen in the industry for a long time. It forced brands to think about what they were sending, to stop ‘ticking the box’ in email marketing, and to stop looking at the size of their email list as a marker of success. I watched businesses dump their entire email list (10K+) and make extreme calls to kill email marketing as a channel entirely — both foolish ideas. 

“Regardless of which email marketing platform you’re on, there are so many ways to look at the data you have, become smarter in who you target, avoid email fatigue, unsubscribes or worse — ISP complaints.”

Final thoughts

Email marketing isn’t going anywhere (just ask the stats), but the bar is higher than ever. If done well, it can be an invaluable piece of the customer journey and an express route to “Unsubscribe” if not.

Wow your customers, build community and set yourself up for automated success. Let us show you the email marketing ropes; get in touch today.