I recently unsubscribed from an email list of a financial services company that I used to do business with a long time ago. I still do have an account with them, but I don’t use their services anymore. And when I unsubscribed from the list, I was presented with a survey to help them understand why I wanted to unsubscribe. Surprisingly, all the “options” they presented were applicable to me, which inspired this blog. Try staying away from these email marketing vices and you will not only build a better mailing list, but you will also delight your customers.
1. Ignoring the CAN-SPAM act
Don’t add people to your email marketing list that did not voluntarily opt in. It’s not just annoying for them, it is also against the law to do so. If you’re just starting up, it may be OK to share the good news. But give people a chance to opt-in and then continue the conversation. Tell them what you intend to do and provide them with an option to unsubscribe if it doesn’t interest them. The CAN-SPAM act provides individuals a right to refuse.
As a corollary, don’t send an email without an unsubscribe link. Have you ever wanted to unsubscribe but couldn’t? Don’t force customers to angrily email you and tell you they’re not interested. Or even worse, don’t force them to tell others that you are a spammer or a scam. Give prospects the option to opt-out of your mailing list.
2. Not Segmenting your List
Create segmented lists so your customers receive messages that interest them the most. Think about what’s really compelling to the various demographics within your customer list. One way to segment your list is by defining your Buyer Personas.
Segmentation also helps with making the call-to-actions you use in the email more relevant to your buyer persona. For example, you don’t want to send a CEO to a landing page that’s meant for marketing managers.
3. Not Sending Relevant Content
The fact is that in most organizations 20% of customers drive 80% of the revenue. When you build targeted lists using proper segmentation, you are going after those who will generate the bulk of revenue for you. Don’t displease those important few by changing content around to appeal to the masses. If someone has subscribed to a wrong list, remove the dead weight by letting them unsubscribe from that list. Providing an unsubscribe link not only helps to be compliant with CAN-SPAM act, but it also helps you keep your emails relevant to your target audience.
4. Not Personalizing the Email (Or Not Personalizing Enough)
Remember that email that came from that company that addressed you as “Dear Customer”? Exactly! No-one remembers an email from a company that doesn’t know you. Or worse, they will remember that the company spams them with unwanted emails!
When an email comes from a person instead, it humanizes the company. Also, addressing the customer by name and citing some actual interactions with the customer adds relevancy to the content and makes them feel special. Personalization helps build relationships and better relationships lead to better customer satisfaction.
5. Not Sending Emails At the Right Time
50% of qualified leads are not ready to purchase immediately. Once they enter into the buying cycle, they need to be nurtured by providing them with relevant information that they crave at the right time. Improve your lead to customer conversion rates by aligning the frequency of your emails with the length of your sales cycle. Not just that, you also need to add relevant call-to-actions to keep them engaged and help them naturally progress through the sales cycle.
Avoid these email marketing mistakes and you will not only delight your customers, but you will also get better ROI from your email marketing campaigns.