This Advice was Last Updated 11 months ago.
Digital marketing is the craze nowadays. Digital marketing offers a great source of passive income, and everyone seems to be working hard to bite a chunk out of this. However, not everyone succeeds in doing so, and many beginners only end up losing money.
There are many tactics of digital marketing, and all of them offer unique value propositions. You can’t expect to profit from your digital marketing business by using only one of these methods. Still, you need to combine multiple marketing tactics for making the most out of your business.
One of the most important yet most overlooked digital marketing tactics is email marketing. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll tell you all about email marketing. We’ll provide insights on the best email marketing software and how you can determine whether the software is good for you or not. What email marketing essentially is, who it is for, and how it can benefit you.
So, let’s dive deep into it, shall we?
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What is the Best Email Marketing Software?
If you’re looking for the most optimized email marketing software out there, then you should definitely go for MailChimp. I’m sure many people will disagree that MailChimp is the best email marketing software. Still, we claim that it’s the one for everyone, and we have enough reason behind that.
If you want to know why we prefer MailChimp, then we need to explain everything about it. Like every other email marketing platform, MailChimp has its drawbacks. Even then, it provides enough pros that outshine the weaknesses easily. In this section, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of MailChimp.
MailChimp is an all-in-one email marketing platform for all sorts of businesses. You’ll be able to use this tool even if you’re on a tight budget. They have designed their plans and subscriptions so that, from small businesses to large agencies, everyone can afford them.
Unlike many other marketing tools, MailChimp believes in keeping up with the growing sector. Digital marketing is growing faster than ever, and this rate is only expected to rise. MailChimp will provide you with all the up to date drivers and tools that you’ll need to decimate your competition. With MailChimp, you’ll be able to rise to the top and maintain your position there.
MailChimp was founded in 2001, with headquarter in Atlanta and some additional offices in Vancouver, Brooklyn, and Oakland. This company is still 100% founder-owned, who is Dan Kurzius and Ben Chestnut. Even though their initial plan was to create something for large organizations only, they gradually realized that the small business sector was completely untapped.
Back in the early 2000s’, email marketing software used to be overcomplicated. MailChimp was the first of its kind to create a user-friendly UI, which separated it from the rest. The founders believed that email marketing shouldn’t be focused on the nerds and professionals only, but everyone deserves to use them easily.
This is why they created a tool that allowed small businesses and agencies to create highly converting business funnels easily and without much expense. Suppose you want to get an email marketing funnel created by a professional even today. In that case, you’ll need to spend a lot of cash. Imagine what people had to go through in those days!
Due to their user-friendliness, MailChimp could create a dent in the industry, and they are holding their glory even today!
MailChimp offers some of the most flexible pricing plans in the industry, and there’s a free plan that really works! We’ll go into that later, so let’s talk about the basic features that you can expect from MailChimp now.
There are four things about MailChimp that makes it stand out from the rest of the lot. It allows you to automate your funnel, integrate third-party plugins to a great extent, a user-friendly interface and a wide range of templates. Now, you might see all of these in other tools as well. Then why are we claiming this to be the best email marketing software?
What makes MailChimp different is that the various elements of this tool work harmoniously. The features aren’t gimmicks, but they’re truly useful. When MailChimp claims to have a wide range of templates, you won’t be getting templates that are 90% similar, but you’ll be getting a wide range of completely unique templates.
Another amazing thing about MailChimp is its customer support feature. Customer support is very necessary for such marketing tools, as you may face a unique problem with no solution online. In such cases, only the professionals at customer support can help you out. However, it’s seen that most email marketing tools don’t offer customer support that’s well enough. This is why we highly suggest MailChimp.
As they have become one of the top choices in the email marketing sector, they are expanding to other industries. One of the best things that they’re offering now is a website creator. Plus, they’re also offering domain name searching and hosting as well.
These features make MailChimp even better. As they’re slowly becoming a one-stop tool for every digital marketer, they’ll surely expand further and offer more features shortly.
This is one of the reasons why we really like MailChimp. When a company is growing steadily, there’s a minimum chance that the company might stop working suddenly. We’ve had many friends who became used to a certain tool. If that tool stopped providing service any longer, they had to get accustomed to another one. There’s absolutely zero chance that you’ll have to face this with MailChimp.
Do you know why MailChimp made their gradual transition to being an all-in-one marketing tool? At the request of their customers! When their customers were asking them to add certain features, they did! This is another amazing thing about this company.
It’s rare to find a company that does just what customers ask it to, and MailChimp is definitely one of the rare ones. This is another valid reason why you should choose this over the others.
Features Offered by MailChimp:
Here you’ll find all the features offered by MailChimp.
Ease of Usage:
MailChimp offers an easy to use interface that anyone can navigate through smoothly. What’s great about MailChimp’s interface is that it provides many advanced features without cluttering up the interface. No matter what you need, you’ll find everything at your fingertips!
The only page that we found to be a bit confusing was the opt-in page customization tab. Opt-in pages are extremely crucial for building a highly converting email funnel. You may face a bit of a challenge to create these pages when you’re starting out. However, once you get used to it, you’ll be able to create highly converting opt-in pages in a matter of minutes!
One of the major features offered by MailChimp is newsletter creation. When we were using it for ourselves, we emphasized mostly this, as this is definitely the sector most people care about. This is what we have to share about the newsletter creation:
The newsletter editor is very fast and simple. You will get a simple drag-and-drop editor that’s very easy to understand and to use. You’ll get a wide range of templates to choose from, and there are hundreds of elements as well.
You just need to choose the right element for the right page, and you’ll be fine. It depends mostly on your creativity and how well you can use the different aspects for maximizing your conversion rate.
Your newsletters need to be attractive, or they won’t be able to hook in the customers. The editor provided by MailChimp will allow you to create just that, which is why we highly recommend doing that.
The newsletter creator also offers great customizability when it comes to determining the right logic. You’ll get all sorts of customizability for setting actions for if then, and else. This feature is very user-friendly as well. You won’t face any problem using it.
If you find yourself at a fix while setting these, you’ll be able to follow the cheat sheet provided by MailChimp. This cheat sheet is quite comprehensive and offers tips and tricks on all the things that you’ll need to do.
However, this depends largely on your creativity, so it depends on how well you can use these features to your own benefit at the end of the day.
You’ll be able to send classic newsletters, split them for A/B testing, set autoresponders, send RSS to a newsletter, and also recurring newsletters. Trust me, you won’t need any other type of email, and you won’t get any different kind of email marketing tool.
This is why we think that MailChimp offers one of them, if not the best, email marketing platform out there.
Automation features are extremely important as they can take a huge load of work off of your shoulders. If an email marketing program doesn’t allow you to automate your funnel, you shouldn’t even go for it.
When it comes to MailChimp, you won’t find any lacking in automation capabilities. You can set the funnel to send specific emails on different actions such as clicks and opens. There are more complicated and advanced options for automating your email funnel as well.
However, there is one thing that they can improve in this regard. You’ll get no workflow view in this feature, and we think this is very important. Unless you see a workflow view, you’ll need to imagine every action and command, which will make things harder for you.
If it had offered a workflow diagram, then it could’ve saved you a lot of effort. Even then, we think it’s an amazing feature, and if you know what you’re doing, you won’t face any problem here.
Flexibility in Designing:
One of the main things that can entice people to click on your newsletters regularly is how well you design them. Most email marketing platforms out there haven’t refreshed this tool of theirs, which is why you’ll mostly find outdated templates there.
On the other hand, MailChimp is quite progressive here. You’ll find a wide variety of templates built into MailChimp, and all of them look quite modern. You’ll get different varieties of templates for every type of sector. So, no matter which niche you work in, you’ll always be able to find something that suits you.
The classic templates offered by MailChimp aren’t easily customizable. However, it also provides a ton of drag and drops templates, and these templates can be customized very easily.
Segmentation is one of the most important and crucial features of any email marketing tool. Luckily, you’ll get an amazing segmentation tool from MailChimp. Segmentation will allow you to reach particular clients differently. It’s seen that a single type of newsletter won’t perform equally well across all regions or users of all devices. This is where list management tools come in.
These tools will allow you to send different newsletters to users of different ages, regions, or maybe even depending on the device they use for accessing their email. With that, you’ll be able to maximize your conversion rate from email marketing.
List management can boost your sales by a great percentage, which is why we highly recommend using this tool properly. However, you need to research a lot into this matter before you can create a proper segmentation.
Forms and Opt-in Page Creation:
One of the most crucial steps of any email marketing funnel is getting the email addresses of the traffic. Unless you get their email address, you won’t set up an email marketing funnel. Forms and opt-in pages will help you get their email addresses.
However, you won’t be able to get any email address unless you offer something amazing in return. And unless you can make it look premium. This is why creating opt-in pages alone isn’t important, but you need to create opt-in pages that attract people.
The opt-in page creator of MailChimp is one of the very best that we’ve seen out there. You can customize the pages easily with the drag and drop builder. Every email marketing tool offers a drag and drop builder. But what makes MailChimp stand out is that it provides all the necessary elements that you’ll ever need for customizing your opt-in pages to their best.
You can add different fields and background textures, and images for upholding your brand in a better way. You can also add pop-up registration forms. These are some of the best ways of getting the email address of your traffic. This allows them to enter their email addresses without having to redirect them to another page.
Now, this is one of the most important features. This can be labelled more as a capability than as a feature. All the email marketing tools thrive to reach most people out there, but not all of them succeed. The better an email marketing tool is, the higher percentage of its mails will end up in the inbox of people and not in the spam folder.
If your emails keep on ending up in the spam folder, then you’ll find that people are unsubscribing to your newsletters. When we were testing, we found that around 84% of the emails sent using MailChimp end up in the inbox of people, which is one of the highest percentages out there.
However, there’s one small problem with MailChimp. Many of the emails sent through MailChimp will end up in the promotional tab of people, and this tab is less frequently checked. However, the number of emails ending up in the promotional tab isn’t that high, so you can rest assured there.
You won’t know how well your email marketing funnel is performing unless the tool doesn’t provide you with any analysis. Again, unless you know whether your funnels are performing well or not, you won’t be able to change your funnel for boosting the conversion rate.
This is another sector where MailChimp really shines. You’ll get all the necessary reporting facilities that you’ll need to improve your email marketing funnel. You will also be able to integrate Google Analytics into this. This will allow you to take things even further, as Google offers you all the necessary reporting tools. And Google Analytics is one of the most accurate reporting tools out there.
Even though the MailChimp app comes in English only, you’ll find the help section in Spanish as well. To be honest, you don’t even need any other language than this, as it uses very basic and standard English. There’s no reason as to why you wouldn’t be able to use MailChimp properly.
Bounce management helps your email marketing funnel avoid sending your newsletters to recipients that aren’t active. If this tool comes across a hard bounce, it’ll immediately stop sending the newsletters to that specific recipient.
On the other hand, if it finds out a soft bounce, then it’ll resend at an interval of three days.
However, if the tool finds out that the soft bounces are hard, then it’ll stop sending messages to them as well. How will they determine that? If the soft bounces are repeated across multiple campaigns, only then will they consider it as a hard bounce, and they’ll stop sending emails to that recipient.
How this can help you is, sending newsletters to these recipients cost you money. Suppose you keep sending the letters to a recipient that doesn’t even use that address anymore. In that case, you’re wasting your money only. So, if you eliminate hard bounces, you’ll be able to save your money from being destroyed.
Storage and Data:
Often, you’ll be storing your data and information in the MailChimp app. While most other email marketing tools put a restriction on how much data you can keep on them, MailChimp doesn’t. There’s absolutely no restriction to how much information you can store on this.
However, there’s a small catch. You can’t store any data over 10MB in file size on its servers. This is definitely a great way for them to restrict storage usage, and we would’ve loved it if they increased this bar, as that will make MailChimp far more convenient.
Customer support is one of the most important things that we always look for in an email marketing tool. MailChimp offers you an extremely thorough knowledge base. You can get information on all the things that you’ll have to do with MailChimp, and this knowledge base will be your go-to.
However, if you’re facing an advanced problem with no fix online, you can contact their customer support. The customer support of MailChimp is quite amazing. This live chat option will allow you to get help from the customer support employees of MailChimp on demand. But we found this support system to be a bit slow, and we would appreciate it if it were a bit faster.
Trust me, no tool allows you to do everything that you need to do. You need to customize your website and your email marketing funnel to a great extent if you want it to perform better than your competition. There’s not a single tool from where you’ll get everything that you need.
This is why you need a tool that allows you to integrate other devices into it. Suppose you’re able to combine other tools with the specific tool you’re using. In that case, you’ll be able to customize your website and your marketing funnels to a greater extent.
MailChimp allows you to integrate from over 800 tools. You’ll be able to incorporate all sorts of devices ranging from eCommerce tools, social media platform integrations, website building tools, etc. With these integrations, you’ll be able to take your funnel building experience to a whole new level.
MailChimp offers one of the best pricing out there. No matter your requirement and budget, you can always manage to get something for you from MailChimp. There are four pricing plans to choose from.
There’s the free plan. You’ll get all the tools you need to build your business, other than some of the paid tools that only come with a premium plan. You can send your newsletters to up to 2,000 contacts, and you won’t have to pay a dime.
Then there’s the Essentials plan. This costs only $9.99 each month, and you’ll get access to some of the pro features, and you’ll be able to reach 50,000 people at once.
Then there’s the standard plan. The standard plan costs $14.99 only, and you’ll be able to send newsletters to 100,000 contacts.
Finally, there’s the premium plan. This is the most expensive plan offered by MailChimp, and it costs $299 a month. You’ll be able to reach more than 200,000 contacts with this plan, and you’ll get access to all the features offered by MailChimp.
One of the best features offered by this plan is that you can get support from the support team of MailChimp via phone calls. This is a great feature as you’ll be able to solve any problem with ease.
As you can see, MailChimp offers all the features that you’ll need for creating a successful email marketing campaign and more! This is becoming one of the best one-stop solutions for digital marketers, and it’s definitely a good time to hop onto it.
If you get used to this from early on, then you can get all of your digital marketing things done from here. This is why we highly recommend using MailChimp.
What is Email Marketing?
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways of marketing. Whether you have an eCommerce site or a brick and mortar store, or even if you’re a person who offers different services online, you can benefit from email marketing.
The most graceful thing about email marketing is that it can be integrated into your marketing system for an extremely low cost and minimum effort. Then again, it’s highly effective, as it allows you to send out newsletters to a highly targeted group.
Allow us to explain.
Email marketing is the process in which you send out newsletters of your business to people who have provided you with their email addresses. The purpose of these emails is to make sure that the people are always reminded about your business. There are other purposes as well.
For example, you can send out discounts, offers, coupons, etc., to your customers through these emails. This will help you grow your email marketing list, which will help you reach out to more people.
Now, this might remind you of PPC and SEO. SEO and PPC are extremely necessary for running any website. PPC allows you to reach out to a specific group specific to your preferences. SEO will enable you to reach out to anyone searching for related things on the internet, and that too for free.
These are definitely necessary for a business, and you won’t run your business without them. However, email marketing takes things up a notch.
With email marketing, you’ll reach out to a highly targeted group, and you’ll be able to retain the customers, which will increase the chances of gaining returning customers. How?
In the case of PPC and SEO, people are coming to your website. They’re looking around. They can either purchase something from you or not, but it won’t make any difference. Irrespective of their decision, they’re gone once you’ve sold something to them, and you can never reach back to them easily unless they reach you first.
Email marketing saves you from this problem. When someone is buying something from you, it’s completely normal to ask that person to drop his email ID. Once you get hold of someone’s email ID, you can reach out to that person if you want to.
If a person buys something from you, and if the experience was pleasant for that person, then the chances are quite high that he or she will purchase similar products again. Still, there’s no telling whether that person will buy from you or not.
What you can do here is that you can shift the tide in your favour. If you have the email address of that person, you can send different product offers and discount coupons. This might entice the person to buy something from you.
Even if the person doesn’t end up buying from you just now, there’s a great chance that the person will buy something from you later on. Just because there’s a brand image of your business in the mind of that person.
There is more to this than that. When you’re paying Google to show your business website advertisement through PPC, you need to select a certain region, age, and even the devices people are using. However, the problem with PPC is that it can get extremely costly, and it becomes very targeted.
If you narrow down the target, then you’ll miss out on a lot of potential customers. On the other hand, if you broaden your PPC spectrum, then you’ll end up with a massive loss.
Whereas email marketing boasts an amazing $38 earned on every $1 spent. 99% of consumers check their emails daily, which makes email marketing more viable. Then again, email marketing boasts an average ROI of 4400%, which is far beyond what any other marketing tactic offers. Then again, it’s seen that people who buy products through emails that they receive spend 138% more cash online. These are the reasons why email marketing is considered the most effective digital marketing medium.
This is how email marketing benefits your business. So, no matter which sector you’re running your business in, you should leverage email marketing. This will help you boost your sales by a great percentage, and it’ll also help you create recurring customers.
How Do You Choose the Best Email Marketing Software?
Email marketing doesn’t mean that you’ll be sending out newsletters to several random people. The primary characteristic of email marketing is that it should be highly targeted to maximize your ROI. Your ROI will be maximized when you’re gaining more than what you’re spending. The more you gain in comparison to what you spend, the higher your ROI will be.
This is why your email marketing campaign must be targeted accurately, and only the best email marketing software can help you do that.
There are dozens of email marketing tools that people use widely. Previously in the same article, we suggested MailChimp think it’s the best email marketing software out there. However, you’re free to have an opinion of your own, and in fact, we encourage that.
But there are certain features that you need to look for in email marketing software. If an email marketing software lacks that feature, then you’ll be better off not using that. This section will talk about the features that you need to look for in every email marketing software. This it’ll help you choose the perfect and most suitable email marketing software for yourself.
One of the most important features that most modern-day email marketing software offer is subscriber list segmentation. This is a feature that allows you to set different actions for different segments of your email list. How can this help you?
Let’s say that you have a business that sells both clothes and shoes. Now, there are two types of customers according to the product they buy from you. Now, let’s say that you make only one newsletter to promote specific shoes and clothes.
If you send that newsletter to all of the contacts in your email list, then the number of products you can view will become limited.
However, the same thing becomes much more feasible when you can send out two different newsletters to each group. The newsletter that you’ll create for the people who bought clothes will have more clothing items, and the one you’ll make for the other group will display more shoes.
This will help you increase the conversion rate, as the newsletters will be crafted with a touch of personalization. This will help you drive your ROI much higher. This is why we highly recommend going for an email marketing software that allows list segmentation.
Then again, you can also use list segmentation for dividing your subscriber list according to region. If you’re selling in areas with both warm and cold climates at the same time, then it’ll be unwise for you to sell the same apparel in both places. In this scenario, you can create two segments basing on their regions, and you can sell different garments that suit other people.
This is how you can use list segmentation to your benefit.
Opt-in Page Builder:
One of the most important phases of an email marketing funnel is getting the email addresses of the traffic. Now, ask yourself this. Would you give up your email address to anyone? When would you provide your email address?
It’s seen that most people feel like providing their email addresses to a well-known website. Or one that offers benefits looks pretty cool, or maybe a combination of all of these. To make your traffic provide you with their email addresses, you need to convince them that you’re offering value.
By value, that can be anything. If you promise that you’ll offer discount coupons or exclusive offers through your email newsletter, that’s something of value. If you promise them to deliver instructions on certain hard to find things, then it’s of importance. Then again, if you promise them exclusive products only for the newsletter recipients, then it’s of value.
There’s no limit to how much creative you can get with these. No matter what you do, you need to convince your website visitors that they must provide their email addresses. Otherwise, they’ll miss out on something very important.
For convincing them, you need to create an attractive opt-in form. The only way to complete a beautiful opt-in form is through email marketing software. This is why the email marketing software’s page builder must be good.
You’ll know whether a page builder is good or not if you check for these features. First of all, the page builder must come with a drag and drop builder. The drag and drop builders eliminate the necessity of coding. Through these, you’ll be able to create entire pages and even entire websites without needing any coding knowledge.
Then there’s the availability of elements. To make your opt-in pages truly immersive and convincing, you need to create something unique. As there’s a scarcity of templates and pre-made parts out there, most people end up making the same pages.
This is why the email marketing platform that can provide more elements is definitely better. This will help you create more diverse pages.
Plus, simplicity is one of the most important factors to consider. There are a lot of drag and drop fairly complex builders. This is why it’s important to find a simple one.
As we’ve said earlier, the elements provided by a single tool is always limited, which leads a lot of individuals to create websites that look fairly similar. Even though there’s nothing wrong with that, a unique website is always better for grabbing visitors’ attention.
This is where integrations come in. Integrations allow you to make your website more versatile by integrating other tools with the email marketing tool. But it also allows you to use additional features that the email marketing software doesn’t provide.
For example, suppose you aren’t satisfied with the page builder of the email marketing software. In that case, you can integrate some other page builder tool with it and create something more creative and unique. Then again, a lot of email marketing software allows you to integrate eCommerce apps, social media platforms, SEO tools, reporting tools, etc., into the email marketing software.
All of these apps will help you modify your email marketing funnel to the point that you’ll provide the highest ROI. This is why we highly recommend going for software that’ll allow you to integrate all the necessary apps.
Some apps allow you to integrate a lot of apps. It’s easy to get carried away with the sheer numbers only. But trust me, you’ll be better off with some other software that allows you to integrate with the 20 most useful apps and tools only.
Never go for email marketing software that doesn’t allow you to split test your emails. These platforms are made with 80’s tech. Split testing is one of the most crucial tactics that can help you find out which newsletter works better than the other.
Whenever you have multiple newsletters that are of the same type, you can try split testing them. This will allow you to determine which one is better than the other.
For example, let’s say that you created two different versions of a newsletter you’re going to send to your recipients. Now, you can’t decide which one’s better, as you have no clue. In this scenario, we are forced to choose one over another.
However, with the split testing feature, you’ll be able to determine which newsletter performs better. This feature allows you to split your email recipients into two groups, A and B. These groups will then receive different versions of your newsletter. You’ll see analytics that’ll help you determine which one’s performing better.
This is how you can settle for a better alternative with adequate data on your hands. This is why split testing is a feature that should be looked for.
Like every other digital marketing sector, you’ll need a lot of analytics if you wish to do well in email marketing as well. This is why we highly recommend going for an email marketing platform that provides you with all the necessary analytics.
With the help of these analytics, you’ll be able to modify your email marketing funnel so that it provides you with higher ROI. In fact, you’ll also be able to determine whether the modifications that you made earlier have a positive or a negative effect.
If you think that you don’t need customer support from email marketing software, then you’re wrong. Support is very crucial as anything can go wrong from time to time. Usually, the email marketing software comes with a knowledge base online where you can find the basic instructions.
While some software might not offer these, you better look for the ones that provide these. With these knowledge bases, you’ll be able to fix a lot of problems by yourself without having to wait for the support team to tend to you.
Then again, team support is mostly paid. With these knowledgebases, you’ll be able to get your problems solved for free, and that too instantly!
Even then, you should also look for customer support directly from the support team. There will be some instances where you won’t be able to fix the problems with the help of the knowledge base only. In such cases, you’ll need support from their support team.
This is why we highly recommend looking for tools that offer support directly. While most of them will provide support through live chat, others will support the phone or email.
You’ll be good to go with support over live chat only. However, if you’re about to run a huge company or a large business, then you better look for one that’s willing to offer support over the phone. Through this method, you’ll be able to get the most personalized form of support.
Did you know that there isn’t a 100% chance that your email will be delivered to the recipient? Yes, in some of the cases, the mail will reach the spam folder of the recipient. It depends largely on the email marketing service provider whether the mail will reach the spam folder or the recipient’s inbox.
Then again, even if it doesn’t reach the spam folder, there’s still a great chance that it’ll get the promotional tab. Most people don’t check this tab often, if they check it at all. This is why we highly recommend going for an email marketing service that offers higher deliverability.
In our opinion, you should never opt for an email marketing service that offers deliverability under 80%.
There are two types of bounces. An email can either hard bounce or a soft bounce. A hard bounce means that the email marketing software suggests that the recipient isn’t receiving any email. Then again, the soft bounce means that a recipient hasn’t received an email for some reason, but it’s uncertain whether that address is in use or not.
If a soft bounce keeps on repeating, then it’s considered a hard bounce. This feature is extremely necessary for your email marketing campaign. Why?
Well, imagine sending out emails to addresses that no longer respond to your emails in any way. There’s no chance of earning a dime from that specific address, but you’re still sending out emails there, which means that you’re wasting your money.
If you could determine that address isn’t responding, you could remove that from your email list and add a new one that works. You could make money from the new address that you’ve added recently.
This is how bounce detection can help you eliminate wastage and boost your ROI.
We’ve talked about bounce mail detection that allows you to eliminate emails that aren’t performing at all. What if we told you that there’s a feature that will enable you to check how well a lead performs?
Yes, there’s a feature that’s called lead scoring. Now, lead scoring assesses the leads, and it provides information on how well the lead is performing.
With this feature, you can eliminate the leads that aren’t performing well, leading to lower scores. This will create more spaces in your email list for adding other leads and check how they perform. With this method, you can modify your email marketing list to a great extent, and you can drive the most ROI from it.
Last but not least, an email marketing tool must allow you to automate the email marketing funnel. One of the key purposes of an email marketing funnel is to reduce your workload in most cases and eliminate it completely where possible.
This can only be done if the email marketing funnel can be automated. Many email marketing funnels allow you to automate the funnel, but some are more convenient than others.
One of the prime things that we ask you to look for is the feature that allows you to program your email funnel with the help of workflows. Workflows are like charts that will enable you to create a roadmap of instructions. With the use of these, you can assign different actions to your email marketing list.
For example, if you have sent an email with a yes/no question, then the leads can act in three different ways. They can answer yes, no, or they can choose not to answer at all.
With the automation features, you can assign the email marketing funnel to send follow up emails that relate to the action of the leads. This is a great way of personalizing the overall email experience for the tips. The more they feel that your business is personalized, the more they become interested in it.
The more interest they hold, the higher will you be able to boost your ROI. This is why we highly recommend looking for automation features.
We’ve talked about all the necessary features you need to look for in an email marketing funnel. However, there’s no saying that you should look for all of these features from a single software. In fact, most of the tools out there won’t provide a combination of all the mentioned features.
You need to look out for the tool that offers the most features that we’ve mentioned here. A device that balances between all the elements is always the best. Then again, you should double-check to verify whether the tool provides what it promises.
In this way, you can choose the best email marketing tool for yourself.
How Does Email Marketing Software Work?
By now, you already have a basic idea about how email marketing software works. This section will discuss how you can operate email marketing software properly in detail. Let’s get started!
Building a List:
You won’t be able to start sending out emails if you don’t have an email list in the very first place. So, the primary focus should be on building an email list for your business. There are many tactics that you need to use for making a solid email list. We’ll talk about them in this section.
When a person provides you with his email address, that person becomes your lead. Now, there’s no assurance that more information will get you a higher ROI. In fact, if you have better performing leads, only then can you have more ROI.
You can get yourself leads through the opt-in pages of your business. Now, this might seem a bit tricky at first, but we promise that it’ll be clear to you at the end of this discussion.
Opt-in pages are pages that come with forms. In these forms, the traffic visiting your website can fill in their email addresses. Now, you might question yourself why people will provide their email address.
This is where we’re going to introduce you to lead magnets. A lead magnet is a term used for describing something of value that can be provided to people who agree to subscribe to your newsletters by providing their email addresses.
What can you use as lead magnets? There are a lot of things that you can use as lead magnets. Here are some of the most widely used lead magnets:
- Special tips and tricks on a certain topic
- Discount coupon
- Free consultation
- Free webinar
- Case studies
- Free trials
Suppose you see a website that deals with your favourite topic offer a free webinar that you really need only for subscribing to their newsletter. Wouldn’t you do it right away? This is the mentality that you need to leverage for getting more leads to your email list.
No matter what you provide as the lead magnet, there are certain features that the lead magnet must have. These are:
- Lead magnets are only viable when the visitors can really use them. If you offer an eBook that comprises of 500-pages, chances are that 99% of the visitors will avoid reading it. So, you need to provide something valuable but easy to consume at the same time.
- The lead magnet must be relevant to the target audience. If you provide a lead magnet that deals with music on a sports page, the chances of your success get much lower.
- The lead magnet must provide something that creates an instant change. If the lead magnet takes too long to react, then chances are that the visitors will abandon it even before it can work.
Once you have the lead magnet set, you’re done with another step. Still, there are lots of other things that you need to deal with. The next thing that you need to deal with is the opt-in form.
Trust me, the traffic comes across lots of opt-in forms every day. Even if the lead magnet is good, sometimes they might not be willing to fill in these forms only because they’re tired, or maybe because the form is too bland.
There are certain tricks that you need to follow for creating opt-in forms that convert. We’ll talk about the most important things that you need to maintain in opt-in forms here.
- The headline can create a huge difference in opt-in forms. Make sure that you use enticing headlines for luring in the visitors. Unless it’s attractive enough to lure people in, it won’t matter if the content inside is good or not.
- People often find themselves confused about what they should do with an opt-in form. Trust me, an opt-in form that doesn’t reveal its purpose isn’t a good one. You can only get the email from the visitors only if you tell them what it is that you exactly need. You need to be descriptive enough to guide them through the process.
- When you’re creating an opt-in page, please put in some effort. You don’t want your opt-in form to look like it’s the early 2000s. Make it look modern, add vivid and pop colours, throw in a picture related to the topic your website works on. These are how you can make your opt-in page more attractive.
- Don’t overcomplicate things. The visitors won’t be willing to fill in the opt-in page anyway. The more complicated you make them be, the less inclined will they be. This is why we highly recommend you keep things simple.
- The subscribe button is one of the most important buttons on your opt-in page. Once the visitor clicks onto it, that person becomes your lead forever. This is why you should put a lot of effort into perfecting that button. You can make the subscribe button better by using pop colours that stand out. You can also link the reward to the subscribe button. Doing this will surely increase the click rate of that button.
Now, where should you place the opt-in page? There are different positions on your website where you can set the opt-in pages. You need to experiment with the classes a lot before you decide on a specific one. Here are the parts that you can choose from:
- Welcome gate.
- Splash page
- Site’s header
- Floating bar
- Blog archive page
- Within blog posts
- Timed lightbox pop-up
- About page
- The footer
- Dedicated sign-up page.
These are the places and positions where you can show your opt-in forms. Make sure that you experiment with at least a few of these positions before you settle in. Some of them will surely perform better than others.
The only thing to keep in mind here is that you shouldn’t take a short time experimenting with them. We recommend using a specific position for at least three to four months before moving onto another.
Once you know that you’ve found the right position for your opt-in pop-up, then you can set that as permanent.
Getting the Right Email Marketing Service:
When you’ve built your email list, it’s time to subscribe to an email marketing service. We’ve talked a lot about the best email marketing software and how you can choose the right one for you in the discussions above. Please refer to those if you need any further help.
Once you have the right email marketing service for yourself, you can start sending strategically crafted newsletters out to them. However, there are some things that you must maintain while creating the email list. These are:
You must never include an email that wasn’t provided to you. Until a person expresses that he wants to sign up for your newsletters, the emails that you send will end up in the trash anyway. Then again, you shouldn’t buy email lists either.
Some people think that buying email lists is a great shortcut, but it’s actually quite the opposite. The people who’ll be selling you email lists will sell you emails of random people or auto-generated emails addresses. In either case, you won’t be able to drive any sales from these email addresses. And you’ll only end up wasting your money on email addresses that don’t belong to real people.
This is why we highly discourage these acts.
There are some tactics that you must use for boosting ROI from your email marketing campaign. Now, we’ll discuss them in detail.
Segmentation is one of the most important steps of your email marketing journey. When you start out, don’t just send the same email newsletter to every person on your email list. This will do nothing but driving your business to its grave.
You need to identify different segments in your email list. You can divide them according to their interest, the region they’re from, their age, gender, and even their occupation.
Once you’ve divided the leads, you need to leverage this method for sending out appropriate newsletters to appropriate segments. For example, there’s no point in sending women’s clothes to men. Well, it will help you by generating some percentage of sales, but it’s not feasible. You’ll still end up spending more than you have to.
This is why we highly recommend using segmentation for sending out appropriate newsletters to the relevant customer base. This will help you eliminate any sort of wastage and will help you by boosting your ROI.
Ways of Improving Click Rates:
There’s no point in spending all this money on a campaign if the leads don’t open the emails they receive. This will only end you up in great loss. This is why you should try your best for improving your click rates. Here, we’ll discuss some modifications that you can make to your email marketing funnel in enhancing the click rates.
- One of the major mistakes that one can make with the email marketing funnel is keeping all the leads that one ever collected. Trust me, not every lead will perform in the same way. There will be people who’ll end up forgetting your business once they’ve bought a thing or two. This is how human beings are; we tend to forget. If you find that a lead isn’t performing well, you shouldn’t keep that lead on your email list anymore. There’s no point in keeping it as it won’t help you by generating any sales. Instead, you should be removing idle emails from your email list constantly. This will allow new leads to enter your inventory. Even if there’s no shortage of space in your list, you should remove a mail address if it’s not performing well. In this way, you can minimize the expenditure overall.
- The time at which you send the email has a great influence. Imagine getting an email on free spa day when you’re running for getting a commute back home. Wouldn’t you even have the time to open it up, right? Like this, you should research the routine of the people you’re sending out the email to. You don’t have to pry into their personal lives for doing this, but you can assume a favourable time in which they will be free enough to see your emails.
- Another thing that you can do here is to assess the data of your email marketing funnel. Try sending emails out at different times, and later on, check which time works the best for your leads. The time when most people open the emails is the time when you should send future newsletters.
- When it comes to email marketing, subject lines are the most important. What do you see in a new email? Just a single strand of words. If that single line is enough to convince or attract you, then you open the email. If it’s not, you simply don’t.
This is why the subject line must be attractive enough. You need to entice the curiosity of your leads. You can also try out using numbers and figures in the subject. Utilizing numbers can help you draw their attention.
Another great way is speaking in a friendly tone. In this mechanical world, everyone loves a bit of comfort. If you can provide that through your emails, then you’ll surely get a higher click-through rate.
- When you’re writing the email, don’t create it in a way that gives the reader the impression that it was written for everyone in general. You need to register in a personal manner. You need to write in a tone that’ll give the reader the impression that the letter was written for that specific person.
When you’re writing to a single person instead of writing to everyone, you’ll be able to appeal to that person on a more personal level. This will help you get closer to your customers. The closer you get to them, the stronger bonds that you’ll be able to create. This, in turn, will help you generate more recurring customers who trust your business, which will eventually drive up your sales.
- Optimize your emails and newsletters for mobile, and we couldn’t stress this enough! Most people avoid this stage as they don’t think that mobile is important enough. Trust me, that era is long gone. There was a time that people used computers for checking their emails more than they used their mobiles. Nowadays, most people access their emails through mobile phones. Unless your emails and newsletters are optimized for mobile, the leads won’t easily access them.
These are the steps that you need to follow for improving the click-through rate of your emails.
Setting Up an Autoresponder:
When you’re done setting these up, you need to set up the autoresponder properly. Most of the email marketing tools that you can get nowadays come with automation features. Using these features, you’ll be able to get all the work off of your shoulders.
To succeed, you need to program your autoresponder so that it has an answer ready for all probable decisions of the leads. This will allow you to sit back while the software itself takes care of everything that’s happening.
What Are the Benefits of Email Marketing Platforms?
Email marketing platforms offer tons of benefits. There are many major benefits that you’ll enjoy if you manage to set up such a tool properly. In this section, we’ll talk about the top 10 gifts that you’ll get from an email marketing tool.
- One of the main reasons why people opt for email marketing is due to its amazing ROI. According to DMA, email marketing offers you a $30 return on every $1 investment. You won’t find such an ROI on any other marketing platform.
- Email marketing takes only a fraction of the time compared to PPC and SEO. Unlike these marketing tactics, you won’t have to wait for months for someone to click on your website link.
- Email marketing allows you to reach a global base of customers. There’s no limit to how far you can reach, and there’s no competition to count here.
- Emails are quite easy to share. If one lead likes your propositions, that person can share your email with the click of a button. This makes this process overall easier.
- Email marketing is easy to track. You’ll be able to understand what you’re doing wrong, and you’ll realize that very fast. This will allow you to fix the things you were doing wrong and improve your ROI.
- Email marketing doesn’t require a huge load of investment to begin with. If you’re only starting out, then you can start for free too! This is definitely one of the biggest pros of email marketing. No matter what the scale of your business is, you can always find a plan suitable for yourself.
- Email marketing can be highly targeted. When it comes to PPC and SEO, you can target a broad group of people. Unlike them, email marketing allows you to laser target your audience, and you can send appropriate newsletters to appropriate groups. This will help you improve your overall ROI and minimize any extra expense.
These are the main benefits that you can reap from email marketing. Even though there are other benefits than these only, these should be enough to convince anyone to start an email marketing campaign today!
In fact, the very first reason mentioned in this list should be more than enough!
What Are Some Email Marketing Best Practices?
Here are some best practices for email marketing. These will help you improve your campaign as a whole.
- Always keep your email list clean. There’s no point in maintaining addresses that don’t work. The more spammy your email list is, the more you’ll end up wasting. This is why we highly recommend keeping the list as clean as possible. Try using lead scoring features. This feature will help you realize which leads are performing the worst. Always remove them from your list, and you’ll be able to optimize your ROI.
- Always test the content you’re sending out before you actually send them. Sometimes you may end up sending the wrong newsletter, or there can be some problem with the one you’re sending. This will be extremely detrimental for your business.
- Track the analytics. Know what drives click rates and open rates up. Know when the open-rate is the highest and when it’s the lowest. Plus, you should also see how each category of newsletters is performing. If a specific type is doing too bad, then either modify it or eliminate it. If an individual newsletter is performing well, then circulate it even more.
- Never purchase email lists. These lists will never help you make a single sale, trust me on that. Usually, these lists are crafted with addresses of random people or auto-generated email addresses. Even if you consider them legitimate addresses in use, your mails are likely to end up in spam. Even if it reaches their inbox, the chances of being interested in your products or services are extremely slim. The only thing that you’ll be left with is lost money.
- Including an email, a signature is found to be very beneficial. This increases the brand strength of your business, the credibility of your newsletters. In turn, this also drives the sales higher.
- Always put the logo of your business in the upper-right hand of the email. This can help you promote your brand. The more you can establish your business as a brand, the more recurring customers you will generate.
- Try keeping your email 500-650 pixels wide. In this way, it’ll be optimized for both computers and for mobile and tab. So, you’ll be able to reach out to more people if the mail is kept at this width.
- Use subject lines that are catchy but not too cheesy. People are smart enough to understand what clickbait is, and you don’t to be flagged under that category. So, always try to write the subject lines in a manner that they are interactive and enticing.
If you follow these practices, you’ll be able to create a successful email marketing campaign.
How Many Types of Email Marketing Are There?
There are three types of email marketing. These are:
Newsletters and marketing emails: These emails are sent to the leads for updating them on new products, prices, and discounts.
Behavioural emails: These emails are sent based on the actions of the recipient. For example, if someone buys a product from your business, he or she might get an email.
Transactional email: These emails are used to confirm payment received for certain orders or orders. They mostly contain receipts, invoices, shipping information, etc.
What’s the Best Time for Sending an Email?
This completely depends on the leads you’re focusing on. You need to monitor your target audience closely first. Try sending them multiple emails. Once you have sent them enough emails, assess the data from the analytics tool of your email marketing software.
Here, you’ll find information on the times that have the highest open rates. Target these times and send more emails during these hours, as these are better times for your business.
How Much Do You Need to Spend on Email Marketing?
How much you’ll need to spend on email marketing completely depends on the scale of your business. If you’re only starting out with a small email list, then you’ll be good enough with a free plan even. However, once you scale up, you’ll need to opt for paid subscription plans.
In general, you might have to spend an average of $50 to $300 per month on your email marketing campaign.
Can Email Marketing Improve Your SEO Ranking?
No, email marketing doesn’t have any effect on your SEO ranking or your SEO score. However, it can increase the traffic coming into your website. We all know that the volume of traffic is quite important for SEO.
So, it’s safe to say that email marketing affects SEO passively.
If you’ve read the entire article, then congratulations! Now you know everything that you need to know for starting out in email marketing. Now, you only need to start your own marketing campaign. If you already have a website or a business, we highly recommend starting this.
With the help of the tips that we’ve provided, you’ll be able to improve your ROI to a great level. So, get started today!