email marketing tips: the importance of strategy

Posted on April 23, 2011

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What is so good about being a strategist, is that you naturally create a plan for just about anything. And I agree, sometimes not having a plan is fun and adventurous, bringing you up-close to the reality of improvisation. But when it comes down to marketing, you need one or you´re lost.

The only thing worse than not having a plan, is having one and not following it through. Distraction from the main objective…it happens all the time: someone comes to you with a new idea, a new way of doing things, perhaps even a new strategy. Specially true for your email marketing campaign.

Costly mistakes result from not having a clearly laid out sequence, strategy or a disorganized focus. The “proper approach” to your email marketing campaign is also an integral part of your plan.  People, in my experience, try to sell or pitch in each mail follow-up. It gets old and predictable. We are 3D human beings, and no matter how virtual we are, relationships thrive in persona conversations, talking about recognitions, establishing credibility as a live entity, using samples or proof of what others have done – all of this before you ask for a sale. It´s almost like dating, you have to ease yourself into the relationship before asking the big questions. You need to compliment, add value, give something first.

Email timing is critical. Many companies overlook this because of the time it takes to mail out 4,000 emails. But obviously sometimes are better than others. If you are sending your email after 6:00pm EST, it´s guaranteed you´ll land your message on top of the email queue for the next day. Sometimes 1:00pm EST will also work, as people tend to check all their emails before going to lunch, putting you on the top of the queue for the afternoon.  Days of the week are crucial: don´t even think of sending your email out on a Friday before a holiday. It will disappear, taking weeks (or never) for someone to read it.

And most of all, be relevant. There is nothing worse than spam. Your customers will see your spammer name on the email and discard it immediately. Make sure you know the people you interact with, try to approach people who already have a relationship with you, make yourself concise, useful and to the point. Pressing your sale right away is always wrong so look for ways to first engage without being invasive or needy. And have fun. The moment you stop enjoying your work, everyone else will notice too.

Posted in: Communications