What It Is: Given the statistic above, referral marketing deserves a place in every business’s email marketing arsenal. This can be done as a simple plain text message asking clients to refer you to others in their network, or as part of an incentivized program like AirBNB’s (pictured above), which encourages recipients to share the email or offer with their friends and family.
Wіth thе іnсrеаѕіng numbеr оf соmраnіеѕ іmрlеmеntіng thеіr own email marketing іnіtіаtіvеѕ, іt is іmроrtаnt tо apply іnduѕtrу best рrасtісеѕ and creativity tо ѕtаnd out, all while ѕtееrіng clear оf bеіng lаbеlеd with the аfоrе mеntіоnеd dirty wоrd. Sо hоw dо you do this? Sіmрlе. Dеlіvеr rеlеvаnt іnfоrmаtіоn that асtuаllу іntеrеѕtѕ уоur tаrgеt аudіеnсе.
Designing emails with MailChimp is easy at every level. For beginners with little-to-no design experience, MailChimp offers elegant and versatile templates that can be customized with a drag-and-drop editor, guaranteeing that you’ll find a preset layout or theme to fit your vision. If you’ve already designed the email you want to send or have an in-house developer, MailChimp also allows you to paste in custom code or import HTML and zip files. For those users who are somewhere in between, all of MailChimp’s templates can be personalized by adding bits of custom HTML into the existing themes — it even includes links to an article on HTML email basics with best practices for design and development.
The key here is just not to purposely deceive your recipients. If you are sending a campaign on behalf of ABC widgets, it’s a breach of the laws to put ‘Brad Pitt’ in the From name field to get people to open the campaign. However, arousing curiosity or getting creative with your subject line is perfectly ok, so long as you don’t purposely try to deceive recipients.
The content you create and share should engage people in ways that make them clients in the future. Start by asking, “Whose attention am I trying to keep and what would they be interested in seeing from me?” If it’s on brand for you, it’s also valuable to them. Do this, and people will love you for sharing your expertise with them and will ask for more (or, at least, stay subscribed long enough to get to know you and your business better until the the time is right for them to buy).
Well, charity: water took an alternate route. Once someone donates to a charity: water project, her money takes a long journey. Most charities don't tell you about that journey at all -- charity: water uses automated emails to show donors how their money is making an impact over time. With the project timeline and accompanying table, you don't even really need to read the email -- you know immediately where you are in the whole process so you can move onto other things in your inbox.
To ensure your email doesn’t get flagged as SPAM or junk by readers, consider implementing a permission-based approach. Permission marketing is essentially when a recipients have provided explicit consent that they want to receive your email communications – whether by sign-up or other opt-in mechanism. There are a number of things you can do to build an organic, opt-in marketing list. Read about these in my earlier blogs:
Email design matters in any successful email marketing campaign. If your emails look terrible, that reflects badly on you, and can make people stop reading. With more people than ever reading emails on mobile devices, it’s important to use a responsive email template so your email resizes automatically whether people are reading it on a phone, tablet, or desktop.
If you’re not responsible for transactional email at your company, meet with the employee or team who is so that you’re gaining the full benefit of this practice. It’s crucial that you don’t overwhelm your transactional message with promotional content. Promotional messaging should only be added if it provides values to your recipient and if doesn’t detract from your transactional details.
In our email marketing software review roundup, we test the top email marketing tools available based on how easy it is to create emails, build subscriber lists, set auto-responders, and pull in other communication-based tools, such as social media management and web analytics software. To that end, we selected Campaigner and MailChimp as the best pure-play email marketing services. If you need a more complex tool that can build comprehensive workflows designed to automate the email marketing process, then we recommend HubSpot and Pardot, which are better served as marketing automation tools.
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You can add more detail to your emails with GetResponse, as well. It can import images from Flickr, Facebook, and iStock, sell products in emails with PayPal buttons, and even reuse text from previous emails with its snippets feature. Then, you can schedule your emails in advance by dragging them to the correct date on a calendar. And if you're promoting your products online, GetResponse has you covered with tools to import contacts from Facebook forms and Twitter ads.