Categories
Email marketing

Don’t Take A Punt On Email Marketing Without Knowing How To Measure Success

You’ve decided to take a punt on email marketing. Great idea, if executed correctly you will get an awesome return on your marketing spend. But what exactly is the objective of your campaign? Are you simply using it as a branding exercise and just need the promotional mailer opened? Are you looking for email opens to turn into clicks back to your website? Or are you looking for mailer clicks that turn into leads? Before you sign off a cent of marketing budget here are the 3 email metrics I think are critical to the success measurement of any email campaign:

  • How many emails have been delivered?

Sends mean nothing when it comes to email marketing, email deliveries are what really count. Let’s assume that I have a marketing database of 100,000 people and have email addresses for all of them. In my sales pitch I promise to take your marketing message and send it to these 100,000 people. In your mind, you’ve assumed that your marketing message is going to be sent to all 100,000 people and therefore seen by all 100,000 people, right?

I mean, if you send a bulk email message, it goes to everyone, right?

Nope, that is unfortunately not the case.

Truth is, maybe only 40% of 100,000 emails sent might actually get delivered.

If the list is “dirty” and by that I mean it contains invalid email addresses, your message is not going to reach those records.

Clean email data is key, so before you sign off on any email marketing campaign, ask for email delivery stats.

If the email delivery stats are in the 90% range, you’ve got a data partner you should book a campaign with.

If the email delivery stats are anything below that, you need to ask serious questions about the data & most importantly, the management of that data.

Rule of thumb, don’t pick an email data partner who can’t show you 90% & higher email delivery stats. You are wasting your time and money booking a campaign with them.

  • How many emails have been opened?

Now that you know your marketing message is being delivered to valid email addresses and you’ve taken care of the delivery rate question, the next thing you need to ask is “How many people have opened the email? Your email open rate is simply the number of emails opened/the number of emails delivered. If you sent out 10 emails and 1 person opened the mailer, your open rate is 10% (easy enough).

Email open rates can be influenced by a number of different factors including:

  • The email subject line (90% of the battle)
  • The type of email
  • Who the email has been sent from (Example promotions@zando.co.za)

Why are open rates important to measure?

Because you can have a 99% email delivery rate, but if nobody opens up the email, the delivery rate metrics count for nothing, right?

If you plan to use an external data provider to send your email marketing message, find out what open rates you can expect upfront, and perhaps look at doing a deal based on open rates, rather than delivered emails.

  • How many clicks did the mailer get?

Very few clients will simply pay for a ‘branded campaign’ – “Just send our offer via email, we only need exposure”. The more likely scenario is “Can we measure how many people clicked on our mailer links?” And that is a fair question. Clients want potential customers to move to action and the beautiful thing about email marketing (and digital marketing overall) is that everything is measurable.

Being able to track how many people clicked on the links in your email campaign is critical in determining how successful the campaign was. The more clicks you achieve, the more successful your campaign is likely to be. You want clicks and you ultimately want those clicks to do something post click. Perhaps it’s signing up to a newsletter, buying something online or requesting a call-back for an insurance offering.

Ask any potential data partner worth their salt, what type of CTR rates they get  which is a simple measurement of the amount of clicks divided by the amount of delivered emails. The higher the CTR rates the better the overall campaign has performed.

Ok, so in closing, should you throw some budget into email marketing campaigns? Absolutely, but only once you know what the objective of the campaign is and how you are going to measure it.

Ask about:

  • Email delivery rates
  • Email open rates
  • CTR rates

Then make your decision based on that. If you need any information on our email metrics, drop me a line.

Until next time.

Brendan

Categories
Email marketing

What Does A High School Crush Have To Do With Your Email List?

‘List hygiene’ is one of those fancy shmancy digital marketing words that I loathe. Someone once asked me “Like do you implement effective list hygiene strategies, bra?” Speak English man! Why is it important to remove inaccurate or disengaged records from your email marketing list? Now that is a real question. If you have a list, that you email into regularly, then this is actually a question you need answered. Here are 3 simple things you should do to keep your email marketing list squeaky clean, and why thinking about a high school crush prompted me to write this post.

  1. Remove emails that bounce

In layman’s terms an “email bounce” is an email that is returned to the sender because it cannot be delivered. The one server says to the other server, this guy ain’t here (hard bounce) or this guy ain’t here right now (soft bounce). The latter could mean that the mailbox is full, or the recipient’s email server is down/offline or even that the email is just too big to be delivered.

So why do you need to remove email addresses that bounce back, like a tennis ball off a practice wall?

The obvious reason is that the recipient isn’t receiving the message so you are wasting money sending them a mail in the first place. You wouldn’t drop off a flyer into a post box at an vacant house, would you?

The less obvious reason is because that “bouncy email” gets flagged by ISPs and that ultimately hurts your overall email deliverability rate. If too much email bounces then ISPs figure it has to be SPAM, because who would send large volumes of mail to people who don’t exist – Only SPAMMERS. And anything that looks like SPAM is treated with disdain and punished severely.

Hard bounces should be removed from your email list immediately and soft bounces should be given a few chances and then ultimately removed. If you are sending mail, you are probably using a software programme to deliver your email messages and most of them nowadays have this bounce removal functionality built into the offering.

2. Unsubscribe people who don’t want to receive your email

If you send people email that they don’t want, they are going to get the moer in! It’s a no brainer. Allowing someone to unsubscribe from your email marketing communication is not only the right thing to do, but a legal requirement. And it stands to reason that it makes no sense having someone on your email marketing list who doesn’t actually want to receive your communication.

Plus complaints lead to more bad marks against your name, which again leads to your server reps being damaged.

Make sure you have a visible ‘unsubscribe’ link in your email communication and if someone clicks to unsubscribe, make sure that they are actually removed. Otherwise peeps get double the moer in.

3. Remove people that don’t engage with your email communication

I’m reminded of a chick I had a crush on in high school. I was mad about this bird…But no matter how many advances I made, I just wasn’t getting any love back (not even a bloody second glance). At some stage I had to give up the good fight, cut my losses, pick my crushed ego up off the floor and move on. She just wasn’t into me. Same could be said for people on your email data base, who don’t open or click on your correspondence. If they aren’t engaged in what you have to say or sell, then it’s time to purge your email list and perhaps move the “cold records” into a new list, with a new strategy, to awaken them from their slumber.

It’s the old 80/2o rule – 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. If you look closely enough, you will probably find that most of your engaged database are actually the same people over and over again. Separate them from the rest of the people, who aren’t responding to your communication and work out why the others have fallen asleep.

So, just to recap:

  1. Remove dodgy email records from your base
  2. Allow people to opt out (you don’t need the moaning and groaning)
  3. Find your engaged database and remove the dead wood.

What you will be left with is this – clean email, sent to people who want to get it and actually engage with it.

Drop me a line if you need anything.

Until next time.

Brendan