In this ultimate guide for 2022, we consider all aspects of email marketing. We will cover the basics of email marketing, why it is still important today and why it works. We will also show you how using email marketing you can grow your business.
The Fundamentals Of Email Marketing Campaigns
The definition of email marketing is it is a digital marketing process of communicating with potential leads and customers by email. The common elements of email marketing include newsletters, announcements of events, product or service promotions.
One of the benefits of email marketing is that it has a high ROI ( return on investment) than other marketing channels such as social media.
It is also more effective than SEO and social media because you have direct contact with your audiences.
Let’s begin by considering how much a subscriber is worth to your business.
The average email subscriber is worth $48.87 (DMA).
The return on investment for email marketing far outstrips other online marketing.
How Come Email Marketing Still Works
Yes, it may have been around for a long period of time, but email marketing still holds true. There are several reasons why it is still an important digital marketing tool.
It Belongs To You
The thing is with email marketing is that you own the key to the door. You have control, it is yours. When someone signs up to your list it gives you direct access to the inbox of that person.
This is certainly not the case when it comes to social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – or all social media platforms for that matter.
A recent study by Rival IQ found that Facebook engagement had dropped below 1 %
If you contrast that with the open rates you get with email marketing – the average open rates for a newsletter are over 20% – 20 times that of Facebook (Mail Chimp )
Marketing Messages Are Better Received By Email.
You don’t visit social media to look at ads – in fact, they can be damn annoying. In fact, nearly half of Facebook users report that ads are annoying.
In contrast to that, is that most people do not mind getting marketing messages in their inboxes. In fact, it has become part of the email norm.
In fact, Hubspot found that 86% of consumers prefer email messages over any other.
Email Is A Great Converter
Ok, so email has a better reach and engagement than social media but does that lead to higher sales conversions?
Yes, it sure does.
The email has been found to convert up to 40 x more leads into buyers than any social media channel.
So we have proved that email is the way to go in terms of customer engagement and conversions into sales – so how do you get started with Email Marketing?
How To Build Your Email List
Before you can embark on any email campaign you need to build yourself a list. In this next section, I will take you through how to build a list using digital marketing strategies that are working in 2022.
Web Page Optimisation
One of the most visited pages on your website is your about page. People who visit your about page are both interested in who you are and what you are selling or trying to achieve.
This makes them, from a psychological perspective, primed to become a subscriber. So make sure that you have at least one email subscription form on that page.
Squeeze Page or Landing Page
If you are really serious about building your email list you will need a squeeze page or subscriber form.
Many of the top email marketing companies now provide easy to build templates to insert onto your web page – take Pabbly above
They need to be super targeted and attractive to attract new subscribers.
You don’t just have to stick with one, you can design different squeeze pages for different customer segments.
Creative, Compelling Lead Magnets
You might have heard about lead magnets before – they are often said to be the lifeblood of any email marketing campaign.
A lead magnet needs to be compelling and offer good value in order to get your subscriber to sign up.
The types of lead magnets you might consider are:
- Swipe Files
- Case Studies
The golden rule is that the more valuable your lead magnet is to the customer, the more new subscribers you will get.
Your Home Page
Sometimes overlooked as a place to display a signup page is your home page.
Most home pages carry a list of your recent blog post, and there is nothing wrong with that.
However, if you want people to sign up to your list you have to put something fully in their faces. Try to design your homepage so that it can be a way for website visitors to subscribe to your email list.
Quite a few sites now use the homepage as purely a vehicle for encouraging sign-ups to their email lists.
Yes I know pop-ups can be very annoying! However, not all pop-ups can be annoying – some can offer value as you are about to leave the page – exit pop-ups.
Exit pop-ups appear as the website user is about to leave the page. If they are offering something of value they can improve your email subscriber uptake.
Using content upgrades as part of your content marketing strategy is also a great way of increasing subscribers to your email list.
Basically a content upgrade is created specifically for a particular blog post or web page.
Brian Dean of Backlinko reported a 700% increase in conversions using content upgrades.
Here are some content upgrades you can easily offer.
All you need to do here is save your blog post as a PDF and offer it as a free download. This will prove valuable to your readers who may want to refer to specifics in your blog post.
Using a cheat sheet is another great content upgrade offer you can use.
It serves by putting together all the relevant information from your blog post into a handy document.
Video or Audio Recording
More and more people are using a voice recording of their blog posts as a content upgrade. Providing a recording of yourself talking through the blog post could make an appealing content upgrade.
Let’s move on to consider email templates. The email templates I will go through are proven to enhance email marketing campaigns.
Template 1. Newsletter
Newsletters can be a bundle of valuable information and valuable content – it provides 100% real value for your email subscribers.
Your newsletter can be a handful of tips or useful resources.
One of the keys to an effective newsletter is not to pitch anything.
Let us discover how you can design your own effective newsletter.
The Size Of Your Newsletter
The industry standard for a newsletter is 550 to 600 pixels and have a length of approx 800 pixels.
There are online editor programs such as Canva that have a nice collection of newsletter templates.
One of the best ways to start is to find examples of newsletters you like the style of then design a similar personal newsletter using tools such as Canva.
One of the things to watch out for though is that your brand matches the newsletter style. Also, consider your target audience in selecting styles and themes.
Putting Your Content Together
The next step is to put your content together for the newsletter. Don’t forget to incorporate images into your newsletter. You can also use shapes and layers to give your newsletter that professionally designed look and feel.
When adding text think about your font to use and size of text – once again keep your audience in mind.
Include Social Media Platform
Make sure there are links on your newsletter to popular social media networks.
Insert A Footer
At the bottom of your newsletter, you want to include links to your website and contact information and you can do this with s footer.
So that is our newsletter designed, what about getting someone to read it and to make sure it doesn’t fall into the spam filters or spam folder – let’s discuss the subject line.
In every good ultimate guide to email marketing, you will come across a section on the subject line. You want to create a subject line that makes someone curious about your email. One of the secrets of good email campaigns is the effectiveness of the subject line.
The email subject line can have a significant impact on open rates.
Start your newsletter off with a bold opening statement – something that really compels the engaged subscribers to open it.
Two effective strategies are to use either a short story or a preview of what they can expect to find.
Let’s look at 10 top tips for an effective subject line that will grab attention.
- Keep It Short – don’t ramble on. Keep the subject line in your email campaign under 40 characters or 5 to 7 words. Don’t forget a lot of people view emails on mobile devices so long subject lines will get lost.
- Avoid Spam Words – If your subject line is too salesy it will most likely be pulled up as spam. So if you want to avoid spam filters don’t use words like ‘Free’ or ‘Buy Now. Focus on the value of your marketing communications.
- Ask An Open Ended Question – Questions are a great way to focus the mind of the reader. It encourages them to open the email to find the answer.
4. Include a deadline in the subject lines – a deadline can introduce a sense of urgency in the subject lines. It can help. the reader prioritises your email above others.
5. Try a Teaser in Subject lines – Try to think of something that will hook your readers and spark their interest.
6. Give clear instruction in your subject lines – some of us respond better to a direct instruction – use it as a call to action.
7. Share something of value in your subject line – this is always a key of a successful email marketing campaign. Think about what your subscribers might need and develop something around that.
8. Make an announcement – sharing an announcement with your engaged subscribers is a great way to boost personalisation to your audience.
9. Include your business name or brand in the subject line – many people open emails based on the sender which breeds customer loyalty.
10. Use a joke in your subject line – if you can write a really funny subject line your will boost your open rates.
Now you have crafted the perfect email subject line it’s time to turn to the content of the email.
If you are not sure what to write – think about giving over 4 or 5 actionable tips that your email subscribers will get real value from if they put them into action.
Or once again use a story to tell a valuable lesson that people can learn from.
Do You Include A CTA ( Call To Action)?
Obviously one of the rules is not to pitch anything in your email newsletter – but there is no reason not to include a call to action within it.
You can use it to gather further information from your subscribers such as their opinion on a product or service – but include one then they will get used to seeing one in your emails.
In this email to your subscribers you are going to be pushing a marketing offer – you are actively trying to get them to purchase whatever it is you are selling.
The Elements are:
Straight to the point Subject Line – no need to be creative with this one. Just a straightforward message about your offer.
The Offer – describe your offer succinctly, outline what the offer is and why it is worth their attention
Product or offer details – Outline the details of your offer. The start and end dates, any key benefits or story around the product.
A strong Call To Action – Once again nothing fancy just a straightforward CTA
A PS Reminder – make sure you include a PS on the bottom. Most people skim emails and the PS can just catch the attention at the end of the email.
Template 3 – The Announcement Email
This type of template is for the big announcement. For things such as:
- New product launch
- Change of Address
- Live Event
- Limited Time Product event
So the process is:
- Subject Line – Introducing your offer. This is a big deal and you want to make sure that is put across well in the subject line. You will also only send one or two announcement type emails in a 12 month period.
- Compelling lead-in sentence – there is a couple of options on how you might write this. You might go straight in or conjure up some anticipation.
- Revealing the big announcement – here you need to quickly outline why it is important – see Buzz Sumo example below:
- A clear concise CTA – now that you have got the attention of the reader you want an easy way for them to take action. This might be a form to complete or link to your sign up page.
Template 4 – Blog Post Newsletter
Email is a great way to whet the appetite of your subscribers and cut your unsubscribe rate. When you produce new content, emailing your list is a great way to promote it and it usually attracts a good click-through rate.
Here the process is:
Subject Line Is Blog Post Title/Topic – Use the blog topic as much as you can, keep it simple.
The lead in – this depends on the blog post topic depending if it is newsworthy or personal, or just advertise the fact you have launched some brand new content.
Why read it – let them know probably through a short bullet point list of what they will gain from reading the blog post. Build some anticipation, don’t give the game away.
Link to the Post – finally provide a bold CTA link to the blog post.
Email Marketing Campaign Open Rates
This is a really important aspect of a successful email marketing strategy. You don’t want all your email marketing efforts to come to nothing because no one is opening your emails. Your click-through rates are a really important metric to measure.
Let us look at several strategies for you to input into your email marketing campaigns.
The simple rule here is that you want to send an email when someone is awake and not having their inboxes flooded with other emails.
So try to steer clear of sending first thing in the morning, which I know is a temptation as you might think they will look at your email first.
They might but at this time email inboxes are usually full of others.
So try and schedule your emails for either late morning or early afternoon.
Having said all that there is no “best time” to send an email. You will need to try sending at different times for your audience and see which times get the best open rates.
It can also be different for the types of business you may be in. Business to business emails might need a different send time than a personal email to subscribers.
The Welcome Email
When someone signs up to your list 8 out of 10 people expect to receive a welcome email. The welcome email is the first exposure of your company or brand to your new subscribers.
Welcome emails have an open rate of over 30% so it is your opportunity to get it right and not make them unsubscribe!
In this day and age, people are expecting a welcome email so make sure it is welcoming.
You need to nurture and reassure them that they will get value from being part of your list. Go over what they might expect from you next.
Then give them a CTA that might link to some valuable resources – don’t be too hard sell though.
80/20 Email Content Rule
Using this formula means that you must ensure that 80% of your emails give value and only 20% are used to pitch your service or product.
Try to send 10 emails of value to one email of pitching for product sales.
Gmail Preview Snippet
You have probably noticed that when you decide if you will open an email or not you pay attention to three things at the outset.
- The subject line
- The sender
- The preview of the message
Your message preview is mega important. It acts as a second subject line.
So make sure you optimise the first few lines of your email to be enticing and attractive to the reader.
Email Marketing Strategy – Email Deliverability
Along with open rates, email deliverability is probably the other important aspect of this guide to email marketing. Your email marketing strategy needs to focus on these two things.
Most email service providers see Email deliverability as a crucial statistic. For all email service providers and email marketing platforms this is a key metric.
Here is how to improve your future campaign open rates.
Here are three reasons to delete non-openers of your emails – which might be counterintuitive as surely they might open one day!
Increases Email Deliverability
Having lots of inactive subscribers actually harms your email deliverability. Low engagement rates will signal your emails to land in spam folders.
The impact on the quality of your subscriber list.
It Decreases Cost
The bigger your email list the more you will have to pay. Having large amounts of inactive subscribers will cost you money.
Engaged Subscribers Only Matter
In reality, the only ones that really matter to you are the engaged subscribers in your lists. The ones who are interested in sharing and engaging with your content.
How To Reduce Spam Content
The top email service provider such as Google Gmail, Yahoo and Microsoft Outlook are serious about reducing spam content.
If a lot of your content is being marked as spam it is a signal that people do not want to read your emails.
So how to ensure your spam complaints are kept to a minimum?
The first tip is to make it really easy for someone to unsubscribe to your email. Make sure the unsubscribe button is visible on all your emails.
If they have to spend time finding the unsubscribe button they will give up and mark it as spam.
Secondly, don’t overload your subscribers with squillions of emails.
There is nothing more frustrating than a barrel load of email.
Shorten Your Subject Line
Don’t overcook your subject lines. Some of the best open rates are created by short subject lines.
Having short subject lines also help with email deliverability. That is because some spam filters will look out for certain words as spam. They scrutinise the subject lines first.
So the more words you use in your subject line the likely hood it might contain a spam word.
Email Marketing Software
For the final part of our ultimate guide to email, we are going to look a the top email providers out there. Most email marketing services can provide most of the services you will require to run an effective email marketing campaign.
With a range of email marketing tools their email marketing software will also give you email marketing automation tools also.
There is no obvious stand out an email service provider that is right for everyone.
Your selection of an email marketing service will depend on your marketing goals and the size of your current list.
For that reason, we will just highlight the pros and cons of each service and let you decide on what is right for you.
Mailchimp is probably synonymous with being the first email marketing service when it comes. to think about emails.
The problem is other email marketing platforms have come on the market.
If you only want to send occasional email campaigns then Mailchimp might be a good option for you.
It has a great drag and drop email builder but fails when it comes to advanced email segmentation or marketing automation tools.
The platform is free for up to 2k subscribers (with limited features). The pro plan starts at $10/month.
Aweber is a good solid email marketing tool. As email marketing services go Aweber might fit the bill.
Aweber is super easy to use and has the ability to import and host mailing lists, give you access to a plethora of email templates, has marketing automation tools and list segmentation abilities.
Their automation is simplistic compared to others, but if you want a simple, reliable email marketing provider then Aweber might be for you.
Subscriber plans start at $19/month. There is also a 30-day free trial as long as your list has fewer than 25k subscribers.
Pabbly is an advanced email marketing solution, particularly if you are looking to send bulk marketing emails.
There is no hosting or complicated setup required and through STMP’s you can send bulk email delivery.
Pabbly comes with a host of templates and has inbuilt management and list cleansing feature.
You can sign up for free and compared to some other well-known email marketing companies is very competitively priced.
If you are into eCommerce Constant Contact is probably for you. It has an easy to navigate drag and drop feature and an eCommerce integration.
So if you run an eCommerce site then Constant Contact might be for you.
The price range to use the platform range from $20 – $45 depending on your subscriber numbers
Convertkit has probably been one of the fastest-growing email service providers in recent times. One of the unique things about Convertkit is that it has a strong focus on ‘Creatives’.
So if you are a blogger, coach, artist then Convertkit may be right for you.
Like most Email Service Providers, pricing is based on the number of subscribers. Pricing is free for up to 1k subscribers (with limited features). A full-fledged plan at 1k subs or less starts at $29. They also offer a 14-day free trial.
Sendin Blue seems to offer the whole package for email marketing purposes. There is an email design tool, contact management and the ability to A/B test.
They compete very well with the bigger players such as Aweber and Get Response.
They offer free accounts that allow you to send up to 9000 emails a month.
Mailigens email marketing software lets you send unlimited emails, the ability to schedule delivery, build contact lists and send different messages to different members.
Mailigen’s cheapest email marketing plan is $10.00 per month and with Mailigen.com you get an all-features-included 30-day free trial.
MailerLite is a web-based email marketing service that principally targets bloggers, freelancers, plus small to medium-sized businesses.
Mailierlite chooses to charge very reasonably. You can secure its premium features with unlimited email sends (unlimited emails for all paid plans) for as low as $10 a month.
We hope you have enjoyed our ultimate guide to email marketing in 2022.
Email marketing is still alive and kicking and is still a potent weapon in the online digital marketing toolbox.
Take your time to learn how to use email marketing and you will add a valuable asset to your business.