So, you have started your business, have trawled the web for a load of email addresses for your target audience (or maybe bought/'found' a list), have typed out the message and put all of the email addresses in the 'to' field of your email client...
This is the best way to kill your reputation, lose credibility and possibly get banned by your email provider as a spammer!
I have been sending out emails for my businesses for almost 20 years, across a lot of platforms, with varying results. I have received zero response on campaigns, been labelled a spammer, had services cancelled and more, but, thankfully, that was a long time ago and I am now over responsible and cautious.
Here are a few pointers to consider when starting your email marketing journey.
Breaking The LawSend an email to someone who did not ask for it and you are a spammer.
I used to think that if it was a business email to a business person it was OK - I was wrong. If you send an email to a business address with a name, it can be considered spam. If you send it to a catchall address (info@, contact@ etc) it is not considered spam (by the Information Commissioners Office/ICO in the UK).
Get Their PermissionIf someone signs up to receive your email, they have an interest in what you do - you are halfway to building a relationship and doing business (assuming they are not signing up after a purchase). Focus some of your efforts in building your list - this is another subject I will cover soon.
Analyse your ResultsSo, you have sent out your emails and did not get a response. Why? Well there are a hundred possible reasons, but, without knowing facts (who opened, who clicked what, where they are from etc) you are just working in the dark and possible wasting time and money. Using a good marketing platform will give you access to a wide range of statistics and may even allow you to react automatically depend on what they do or do not do.
Manage Your ListsBuild lists organically, clean often and keep analysing, ensuring that you reach users with what they want
Use A Credible Mail PlatformDo not use own business or personal email (you should not use personal or generic email addresses for business anyway!). If you are seen as a spammer, you might get your account closed and that will have a different set of ramifications and stress attached to it.
Use a credible provider who offer a good analytics, are regionally local (many providers are based in the US which, for some, could have data security issues) and are recommended. Remember, YBC has a great benefit provider with E-goi, who offers Premium Members the ability to build lists of 10,000 subscribers and send them unlimited emails. Even Free Members can get a 5,000 subscriber account for free - see here.
Be CreativeDo not just send boring word only emails. Whilst non HTML/graphical email may increase the chance of getting through spam filters, it will reduce the engagement to your audience. Again, a good platform like E-goi will analyse the email and tell you how 'deliverable' it is.
Target, Target, TargetTied in with analytics, you will get a better response if you write to people about what they are interested in (or have shown an interest in)
I am not an email marketing guru, but I have sent millions of emails over the past few years, so have experience across all of these areas. Email marketing is easy, which means it is very easy to get it wrong! Follow a few simple steps and you will increase your return on investments.