Dismiss Notice
Hey Guest, make sure to follow us on Twitter! Say hi and we'll be sure to follow back!

Wizemail provides email marketing software solutions and e-shot HTML templates to a wide variety of clients - SMEs, Corporate and Digital Advertising Agencies alike – all with one common requirement, a dynamic, professional, digital marketing team on hand when required.

At least weekly, one of the Wizemail team will post a tip, trick or general email marketing advice here.

Subscribe now to keep informed.

Background color
Background image
Border Color
Font Type
Font Size
  • Do you really want to chance social media? Nov 2, 2017

    When used in support of email marketing a well-planned social media initiative can give a good return on investment. You will have seen the limitation though; it must be well planned. Let’s look at the process a little critically.

    Ask yourself:

    1/ Can we afford it?

    Whilst it might look all but free on the surface, there are a number of on-costs that can build up over time. You need to ensure that funds will be available for some time to come.

    2/ Is there anything with a greater ROI to invest in?

    Just because you can afford the time and resources to run various social media accounts is no reason to do so. There might be many other initiatives that would make a better investment. Updating and monitoring social media takes a member of staff away for a certain period of time.

    3/ Have we the resources to cope with the unpredictable demand?

    Response is key in social media. Twitter users expect their questions to be answered promptly and Facebook algorithms mark up accounts that are responded to quickly. Want to be classed as a top responder? Then you need to answer 90% of queries within five minutes.

    4/ Which one or ones?

    Some advise sticking to just one social media platform. This is sensible advice but it doesn’t go for every company. Just as there is a range of preferences for those on your email marketing list, some might favour Snapchat over LinkedIn. Most people tend to stick to just one or two favourites but your subscribers will probably have a range.

    5/ How often does an account need updating?

    It’s the old answer of course, but it depends. One aspect that must be considered is that every successful account generates questions from customers and those considering buying. If they find there is no immediate response they might go elsewhere. Some of these might be on your email marketing list. If they feel they are being ignored they may choose the unsubscribe button.

    6/ What do I want from social media?

    As always you must have a target. Numbers alone, e.g. 3,000 follows in a specific time, do not indicate whether you have a good ROI.

    7/ Can I meet my target any other way?

    You will, naturally, be using social media for a specific purpose. If there is another route to the target you have set yourself then compare the two methods to see which costs less and perhaps is easier and more predictable in outcome. If it requires less investment then you might find it a more attractive initiative.

    8/ Might it all change?

    This is not a case of saving the best to last. Out of all the possible problems this is the one that could cost you. Facebook, for instance, is experimenting with a change to the way news feeds are presented. This might have a significant effect on costs and negate all your careful planning.

    In short, make sure you have covered all eventualities if considering putting a toe into social media. There are as many pitfalls as benefits.

  • Content Marketing Oct 23, 2017

    You might think that email marketing is difficult enough without wandering into the realms of another form of marketing. However, if you have a website, you are there already. Content marketing is nothing more than managing what’s in your website and what you publish elsewhere, such as social media.

    The norm is that content is published haphazardly, with no overall plan. You read that a blog is an excellent way of obtaining subscribers to your email marketing list as it will generate familiarity and trust. You then start a Facebook page because, obviously, that will help as well. When you heard of a forum that those you target frequent, you started to put material out there to get noticed.

    All this is good of course, but three lots of content, all piecemeal, means you are wasting your efforts. What you need is a plan to integrate your content with email marketing.

    Before starting on yet another plan you might want to know why you should. A few moment’s study of your content will show that much it duplicated, not targeted, is contradictory and wasted. The purpose of a plan is to change all that.

    How to plan?

    1/ You need to decide who your targets are. For those with established email marketing lists, you are away, but everyone else needs to decide on an audience.

    2/ Once you know your target you need to work out what they want. Why should they come to your blog? What’s in it for them is the question that will go through their minds so must go through yours.

    3/ Come up with a reason why they should come to your content rather than that of your competitors. You don’t have to be unique. Similar material that is more entertaining, contains easily identifiable facts, and is grammatically superior will win out.

    4/ What media outlets you exploit is critical. There’s a temptation to go for all right away but this route has problems. There’s a considerable time/cost element involved. Further, merely republishing the same content on other formats will put off readers.

    5/ You need to control the content. You can, of course, pay someone else to do it for you. However, the best content managers are expensive. They know their worth and will have the data to prove it. Cheaper ones are cheaper for a reason. If you decide to do it yourself then put aside enough time to do it properly.

    6/ It is difficult to assess the success of your content management plan over a short period, so it requires a certain degree of faith. Ensure your plan is as good as you can make it from the start.

    If you’ve been in email marketing for any time you will know just how competitive it is. You must use every marketing ploy available to you, and use them effectively, because that’s what your successful competitors are doing. Waste is an anathema to a successful business and haphazardly producing content which is not exploited fully is prodigiously wasteful.

    Matthew Ager likes this.
  • Data protection: what goes wrong Oct 16, 2017

    You might think that any charges brought by the ICO against a large companies would be rather too esoteric for an email marketing company. After all, it must be a technical infringement. However, it would seem that they, like us, make basic errors.

    A study of the ICO’s actions shows that even institutions such as large police forces can be inexcusably slack. What is quite shocking is that the fault tends to lay in the basics. Historically, these are the ones that bite the hardest when you ignore them.

    Any study of the case files of the ICO will show that errors are often made by staff who have no understanding of the data protection legislation. You can’t blame them and, quite clearly, the fault lies with the company.

    The cases show what we should be doing to secure data from our email marketing lists.

    1/ Everyone in your company who has access to personal data, even if they have no function which includes sharing it, should undergo data protection training.

    You might think that it should be obvious what those with email marketing data on their screens should not do. However, it seems it often is not. Have a basic level of training that all staff have to experience, regardless of how much access they have to data.

    As staff responsibilities increase, so should the information they receive.

    2/ Ensure everyone has refresher training. The legislation changes with unceasing regularity and merely making it available to staff is not enough. Further, reinforcement is essential to keep it fresh in their minds.

    Check so see that the training is effective and up to date. If a member of staff makes an error, find out why. If it is a failure of knowledge or processes, then you must take steps to ensure all staff are aware.

    4/ Have a plan B

    If it goes wrong you must be able to manage the error and limit damage.

    5/ Record everything you do with regards training of staff. If someone does make an error and the ICO takes an interest, they will assess your training systems. If they are lax, this could increase the penalty.

  • Old style sales in email marketing Oct 11, 2017

    Let me start with a personal anecdote which, on the face of it, has nothing to do with email marketing. If you stay with me, all will become clear.

    I went to buy a new car. All my previous ones have been second hand, in the early days very much so, but with modern payment methods I realised I could afford one. I know little about personal loans and such so PCP was a little bit worrying.

    The sales chap was very welcoming although I got the impression he’d classified me into his personal email marketing list under a number of headings by the time I sat at his desk. He was all smiles and offers of coffee; the consummate sales person.

    I had the documents in front of me, and I even had the pen in my hand but, just like someone who got to the landing page and then didn’t click through, I decided against buying it. My wife said that he knew I was not going through with the deal before I did.

    I admire person to person sales staff. Their skills are honed over many deals and if they don’t perform they lose income so I wondered where things had gone wrong for him.

    I’d asked for repayments to be under £280pcm so, as it is with such things, I was not surprised to find that they topped £290, although only just. A rear facing camera seemed an essential, although I still don’t know why. I’d set my mental limit at £300 so I almost felt as if I had money in my pocket. I’m as illogical as most people.

    It was when the chap mentioned the total cost of the car. Sub £300pcm sounds affordable, although only just. Over £28,000 is a phenomenal amount to someone who had only bought second hand cars before. It had been mentioned before but this time we were discussing payment of the deposit. Now it was real money.

    If someone abandons their cart or fails to move on from the landing page, it has to be considered an opportunity lost. You need to work out why they gave up so close to completion.

    For some it might just be circumstances over which you have no control. Perhaps a visitor had arrived at the person’s house or they received bad news, but for most there is something that spooked them in the process.

    See if you can classify those who abandon the process as a specific type. Put them into their own email marketing list and look for common ground. What these might be will, of course, depends on your customers and the product. In my case it was the change of emphasis at the last moment, for others it could be something else that breaks the concentration. The answer is not to hide the matter but to have consistency all the way through the process.

    Surprises are for birthdays so ensure that, if they do click on the link to further information, the landing page is the same as the one that excited their interest.

  • Finding out what you want to know Oct 4, 2017

    There you are, wondering if you should increase your range of products. There’s a certain investment in money, time and credibility in your favoured option and you will want to know whether you will end up with egg on your face.

    Nothing can take the risk out of email marketingbut the software available to us can reduce it significantly. One way of reducing the risk is to discover if there is any interest in the line from your regular customers.

    If you have an eNewsletter (from now on newsletter) then you can use it to provide a pointer as to whether anyone will be interested in a particular product, perhaps a new location for holidays. The method is straightforward and easy to put into practice.

    You are wondering if Bali would be a destination those on your email marketing list will appreciate. You produce a short article on, perhaps, your visit to Bali the previous year, and publish it in your newsletter. You will mention the various hotels, touristy places and the recent bombings.

    You want to know which particular style of holiday would be the one to concentrate on. One way of testing this on your subscribers is to have brief articles on each of the towns with a click through to a landing page for a more in-depth review. You will have images of various places of interest with the caption: ‘Click on the picture to be shown more examples of this beautiful location’.

    In a short time you will have data showing how many clicked and on what. Certain demographics will show you how to split your email marketing lists. I say short time but you should remember that many people keep newsletters for a comfortable read at a later date so give it a little time before starting to take conclusions from the information.

    It can be comparative as well. You can have articles and images on two hotels in different parts of the island. If subscribers concentrate of the terror problems and ignore the beauty, then you might have your answer.

    Do not short change your readers. It is important that the newsletter’s main purpose is maintained.

  • Developing landing pages Sep 28, 2017

    If you peruse the landing pages of one of the online sales internet giants you will discover that, regardless of the product, they suffer from a certain sameness. You might think that, as they are very successful, following their example is a good idea.

    You would be right of course, but only for those starting out in email marketing, as pointed out in a recent article. Bland is good. A customer who clicks through should be hurried along to purchase. And if it is good enough for Amazon, then something similar has to be right for us.

    However, you have an advantage over the big companies, especially once you get the returns from your email marketing software. You’ll have data which, if used correctly, will point you in slightly different directions. Those companies having thousands accessing their pages every week have to be general.

    We, on the other hand, can hone our pages to suit those on a segregated email marketing list. This time it is personal. That edge must be exploited and the only way to do this is to test and test again. What you try is down to you based on your knowledge of your subscribers.

    I’ve been running through a number of landing pages in research for this article; my apologies for messing with their data. The overall impression is that most are all but identical, differing only with regards to the header and logo. But a few differ from this norm.

    These variations stand out and if you work out the company’s customer base, the reasons behind the changes are apparent. The landing page for an offer for a restricted stock of computer hardware had a fairly prominent number in a large box in the space where one might expect an image. It was a countdown. When I went on it first of all, for the purposes of research, it was up in the high hundreds. I went back to it over the weekend as I fancied one, and found that it had dropped to the 90s.

    Earlier this year I wanted to book online tickets to an outdoor event. There was a significant reduction in the ‘on-the-day’ price. Nearer the day online sales stopped and you could only pay on the door, and at the higher price. The landing page again consisted on a countdown to the date and time of online sales ceasing. One assumes that they wanted to encourage sales before a reliable weather forecast was available so they varied the landing page to cope.

    One company selling items targeted at youngsters had a large picture of a girl leaping for joy, presumably because of her recent purchase. The only text was: ‘Go on, you know you want to’. It was bright, it was funky, it was targeted according to the data on their email marketing software.

    In the battle against the internet giants the rest of us have to use every advantage we can. If you target your landing pages at the subscribers to segregated email marketing lists then you are a little step ahead. Bland is an excellent foundation, but it has to be built on.

  • Nurturing your leads Sep 26, 2017

    You’ve got your lead. Someone has, for instance, logged onto your gated section where you keep articles that will be of interest to those you are targeting. Whilst this is good news, there’s some distance to go to get them to subscribe to your email marketing list. That’s where lead nurturing comes in.

    There are a number of ways that you might have gained that lead. A webinar, a giveaway ebook, a contact in a trade fair or any number of other routes, each of which require different methods of nurture. The good news is that in essence there are some basics that are common to all.

    1/ Personalise all contact

    You have had limited contact with the lead so you might think personalisation is all but impossible. However, you already know certain details. If they downloaded an ebook on tropical fish husbandry you have more than a clue as to their interests. You will have ensured that your staff at the trade fair have included some details of what they discussed or what the person was interested in.

    On top of that, it is likely that your lead has a lot in common with those who came via the same route. The metrics specific to that group will probably be the same for this lead.

    When you send a follow up email you have some idea of how to direct it and the type of language they prefer. You can’t directly sell at this time, so a marketing email is out of the question, but you can start a discussion. If, at the trade fair, your contact was concerned about security of personal details, then emphasise your up to date, class of the field, security systems.

    2/ Extend your offers

    Don’t give anything away for no reason. If they downloaded an ebook, or opted for some other gift, encourage them to sign up for your enewsletter where they will be offered other benefits and kept up to date with the latest developments.

    If a member of staff was in conversation with them, perhaps on the phone or during a servicing visit, then find out what they discussed and whether they raised any particular aspect of your company or products.

    3/ Don’t rush

    The last thing a lead wants to be confronted with is a pushy email, running the line between a legal and illegal sales pitch. Nurturing was used in the headline to show that work is required to get them where you want. Keep the email tight and simple. Just the one subject is a good starter.

    4/ Build a relationship

    Ask them to connect with you on social media. You will know whether to suggest LinkedIn, Twitter or other location where you have a presence. Be friendly. Include a link to your blog or other resources you have on your website.

    5/ Calls to action

    You will want them to subscribe to your email marketing lists so ensure there are CTAs. Don’t overwhelm them, but just enough is probably just a little too little.

    6/ Act now

    The traditional exhortation on CTAs is true. As soon as you have a lead, do something to connects with them.

    Marcus R. Barrett likes this.
  • The basics of landing page design Sep 25, 2017

    It is no exaggeration to say that a good, and we’ll come to what it meant by good, landing page design is the keystone of email marketing. So what do I mean by landing page?

    For the purposes of this article, a landing page is a special page on your website where people who click onto a link in a marketing email, advert or other place are taken. It has the sole purpose of converting the visitor to a completion. In forcing buyers onto the one landing page, potential customers will be faced with a page dedicated to encouraging completion.

    The free email marketing templates will contain the basics of a landing page but how it is populated is entirely down to you. You job is to pick the specific content for it.

    1/ Keep it simple

    Distractions distract. Anything not performing some function with regards completion must be deleted. It is common to remove the navigation menu. It makes for a more straightforward design and layout. It might upset a few who want to navigate from that page, but most will know how to click ‘back’ and there’s the advantage that they will return to the page that encouraged them to click through.

    2/ A clear message

    If you want subscribers to a webinar then say this early on, preferably in the headline, so that visitors know why they are there.

    3/ Barely enough text

    The visitor has already shown interest in your product so don’t just repeat the details on the marketing email or whatever route they came. You’ve already told them all they need to know.

    4/ An image they can ignore

    Saving your best image for the landing page is a bad idea. The picture should merely reinforce whatever response you are after. Make it slightly different but don’t surprise by including another feature.

    5/ Startling is bad

    Your design is the background to the message to complete. Make it a stripped down version of the page they came via.

    6/ Free email marketing templates are good

    Use the landing pages supplied. They will have been designed by experts. Don’t be surprised if the template is bland. Bland is also good.

    7/ Study the landing pages of other companies

    A successful competitor will have good landing pages. You will find an example of simple design and clear message. See how little text they need and what makes an image good without being distracting.

    8/ Don’t copy the design of others

    Firstly, there’s copyright. Secondly, they will be honed for the people on their email marketing lists. Yours will be different, perhaps subtly, but that’s what we are about.

    9/ Obvious calls to action

    Ensure customers have a click through to completion early on in the page. Make them bright, cheerful but not overwhelming. Remember that the landing page is there to convince not overwhelm.

    10/ Test and test again

    You will have a landing page for every product so lots of opportunities to measure those little differences that mean so much. The first essential is to discover if 1-9 above are applicable to you. The only certainty is 10.

  • Start designing your first landing page Sep 21, 2017

    The good news is that there is only one function of a landing page. It is there to ensure a customer completes. This makes it the easiest page to design and, more importantly, a doddle to test.

    If you have access to free email marketing templates then the only sensible option is to choose from these. After all, they will have been created by those who are experts in their field. However they need input as they will not be specific to your customers.

    At the start you should only make minor adjustments to the template. Your job is to ensure that in populating it you do not distract from its sole purpose. Think like a customer, perhaps one a little hesitant at spending money.

    The first thing they need is reassurance. Don’t surprise by a radical design. It should be a simplified copy of the page they clicked through from. Many suggest eliminating the menu whilst others suggest to just have a click through to the page they came from. You’ll have to find out what’s best for you, but remember that getting stuck on a page is irritating.

    Make the headline bright and clear. Reinforce your prime message: ‘The revolutionary X-14’ or whatever. Don’t bring in a new feature. The text should be limited, regardless of the size of the text box. Again, it is there merely to encourage. You should have already worked out that the image should not be attention grabbing, merely background.

    Call to action boxes should be close to the top of the page and perhaps a couple more later. These should be bright and clear.

    The best place for endorsements is in the selling page, but extracts can be convincing. Just a phrase or short sentence is best as single words are not specific. For those still hesitating, more information of the product can be included but avoid click throughs to another page. We want them on this one as long as possible.

    Finally, and I hope you expected this, test and test again. Test every aspect and accept the results. Continue to test as there’s no such thing as eternal.

  • Starting out in lead generation Sep 20, 2017

    As lead generation has multiple definitions, let’s start by explaining what it means for this article: gaining email addresses in order to encourage the owners to subscribe to your email marketing lists. The more leads, the more subscribers.

    There are a number of common ways to gain a leads. A cheap and effective method is to have gated content on your site, ie material that is available only to those who have supplied their email address. A similar one would be via subscription to an enewsletter. Many companies use webinars, or conferences, and there can be few who have not considered a trade fair or show.

    The first two methods, gated information and enewsletters, have many aspects in common, the most important being the need for material that potential customers will find useful and/or interesting enough for them to be willing to trust you with their email address. With gated content the frequency of contact is left to the customer whereas with enewsletters, you define the rate of publication. If you have an offer, you can push it to them. A further advantage is that once they have signed up to one list, the move to an email marketing list is less of a leap of trust.

    Whatever way your potential customer’s email address arrives, you need to take further steps to ensure they become customers. The way to do this is to get them to click through to a landing page, one designed to encourage them to subscribe.

    Have landing pages specific to the source of click though. Those who have come via an enewsletter will be aware of your company so there is no need to explain your products, although reviews always help. Someone who signed up at a trade fair might well need further information on what you do, manufacture or sell.

    It is essential, as always, to play fair regardless of how urgently you need customers. Building trust is as important as building email marketing lists. Be clear as to what they are signing for at each stage of the process.

    Well cover the more sophisticated methods of encouraging leads into customers later.

  • 6 essentials when using video Sep 12, 2017

    We’ve mentioned that video is a great medium for lead generation although it can be a little daunting. As covered in a previous article, email marketing skills transfer seamlessly to video so the only thing stopping you is you. These are the few essentials.

    1/ The kit

    It need not be expensive. Some form of video camera is obviously a must but most iPhones are adequate and if you have a compact camera then you’ve got one up on most YouTube videos. A tripod, very cheap, is essential, together with basic, and therefore cheap if not free, video editing software.

    Other requirements would include decent lighting if you are filming indoors, although this can be bought cheaply. Surprisingly for most people, the one expense can be decent sound recording. You need either a camera with a mic input or a digital recorder.

    2/ A script

    It’s a daunting word but means nothing more than planning what footage you need for your targeting. Having a cat with an odd expression will get you views, but something that will attract the precise audience is much more valuable. Remember, the subject does not have to relate to anything you sell. It just needs to attract those who might subscribe to your email marketing list.

    3/ Time

    Filming does not take long if the planning is precise. If you want to make a two minute video, and that’s ample to start with, you will need about 20 minutes of footage. Editing takes longer although ten minutes planning will save two hours editing.

    4/ Value

    The video needs to provide something of value to your audience, even if it is only humour. Think of it as an ebook in film form.

    5/ Research

    That’s a horrible word, but here it means looking at videos that come up on a YouTube relevant keyword search. All you need to be is better, and believe me, it is not that difficult.

    6/ Commitment

    Don’t start then stop. Deliver decent quality video at regular intervals with content that interests potential subscribers to your email marketing list. If you manage that you’ll be better than most of your competitors.

  • Transferring email marketing skills to video Sep 12, 2017

    If you are seeking leads, and who in email marketing is not, then why aren’t you using video? You must know a great deal about targeting and so you will be able to use video for lead generation. Post a short and attention grabbing YouTube video on a subject that those on your email marketing list will find interesting and everyone who views it is a potential subscriber.

    It is cheap as well. You do not have to employ someone with a expensive skillset. The organisers of an event I attended had a professional, and therefore expensive, video production team recording the day. Some of the attendees brought their own video cameras. There were more views for a few of the amateur videos than for the professional one. Sleekness does not necessarily mean more hits.

    Move away for the moment from the idea of a moving advert for your company’s products. What you want is something that will gain the attention. It doesn’t have to be scatty cats. For instance, if you sell power tools for domestic use then how to build a garden shed might well attract those you are targeting.

    There doesn’t need to be any connection between the subject of the video and your products. All that is required is that your potential subscribers find it worth watching.

    As in email marketing design, a YouTube video will contain calls to action. Further, placement of CtAs will be more or less in the same; one near the front and repeat frequently. Targeting is very similar as well. You can use the data from your email marketing lists to work out just what will interest potential subscribers.

    You are not after a viral video, although it would be nice. Depending on your product. a thousand hits might be enough to repay your investment. Not only that but it remains active forever.

    Spend an hour or so searching on YouTube using keywords that would interest those on your email marketing lists. Remember that the search engine is second only to Google. Every view would be a potential subscriber. You will probably think, ‘I could do that’ and you would be right.

    Hilary Deng likes this.
  • How to protect your email lists from GDPR Sep 4, 2017

    The GDPR gives individuals the right, free of charge, to access their personal data by electronic means and to rectify or delete it. They also should be able to verify how their data is processed. There is a limitation imposed that individuals may only do so at reasonable intervals. You may be concerned for the data derived from your email marketing lists.

    Those who have made predictions feel that such demands will be infrequent, at least after the initial stages, but whether you are inundated or ignored, your systems will probably need to be updated or new ones developed. It will not be onerous if approached sensibly.

    We will need to protect our email marketing lists and giving subscribers the right to delete their data on a whim will be risky. There are two main ways to limit such concerns.

    One reason individuals might want to see their data is the all to frequent news reports of security breaches in major companies exposing personal data. If an individual is unaware of what details you hold and why one might sympathise with their concerns.

    The time to explain to your subscribers what you will do with their data and, vitally, what you won’t, is when they sign up to your lists. Perhaps a link to this information in the landing page where they request access could be useful.

    You will want a plan B if a significant number of subscribers delete their data. One concern is that those who ask for access might be of a certain demographic and if a substantial number of these are removed from your database, it could add bias.

    The simplest way around this is to anonymise your data as much as possible. Once you have the information, if it is not personal no individual can ask to have it erased.

    Remember that the regulators can demand access. Ensure that you have records of what you told your subscribers on sign up including how you will process their data. And, of course, ensure that you stick to your promises.

    This won’t go away. The time to prepare to allow access to individuals is now.

  • Email marketing for mobile devices Aug 21, 2017

    I reviewed a couple of articles I’d written two or so years ago on the subject of how mobile devices are changing email marketing and I was surprised to find words I hardly use nowadays, such as Blackberry. Obviously, many people still prefer them but they are becoming niche. It shows how quickly technology develops as well as highlighting the fact that it is essential to check your procedures regularly.

    One positive aspect of all this is that we are no longer in the midst of a mobile revolution. We are onto the next stage as there has been, thankfully, some stabilisation in the various operating systems and there are fewer pitfalls.

    We all realise that preparing a marketing email for reading on mobile devices, something as small as a smartphone, is an essential, and has been for some time, but as phones and their operating systems change we have to modify ours. Here are a few pointers to help you in your next review.

    1. Subject Line

    Everything on the email should be as short as possible. Rather obviously, people read mobiles on the move and clever word play, subtle meanings and obscurity are treats of the past.

    The Subject Line needs to be no more than 30 characters to ensure it is not cut off. In many marketing emails I receive, four words seem to be the norm. It is irritating to find the Subject Line curtailed to the extent that it makes no sense.

    2. Preheader

    The preheader is that bit of the marketing email which is displayed via the inbox before the email is opened. It is vital to make this brief line compelling. Some suggest it is the main promoter for opening an email. You should use your email marketing lists to hone each one for a specific segmented section.

    Make it follow on from the Subject Line. If it states: ‘Your Last Chance to Win’, then underneath specify the prize. If you’re paying for a holiday in the Seychelles, milk it.

    3. From name

    The From name is displayed prominently and the recipient will see it first. Reassure them that it comes from a trusted source, and the offer is likely to be tempting.

    4. Text

    Keep copy to a minimum and in an easily read typeface.

    5. Images

    Any picture must be clear and easily understood so have the object large and on a plain or transparent background.

    6. Thumbs

    Make buttons large enough to ensure those with large fingers find it easy to click on. Some suggest 47 x 47px as a minimum with sufficient space around it.

    7. Landing page

    Ensure the dedicated landing page is mobile friendly as well. People are increasingly buying via mobile devices and squinting is not a prelude to a purchase.

    8. Check

    Read your email on mobiles with various operating systems, and on phones of varying age. When a new operating system update arrives, ensure your marketing emails and landing pages are displayed correctly.

    There has been some stabilisation of phone operating systems but there is still regular updates. Keep up to date on latest developments.

  • A company new to email marketing – 2nd step Aug 21, 2017

    You’ve got over the initial problems. Some were expected, others were almost unique, but you are now starting to trade. The number of unique visitors to your website increases steadily, having doubled over the last month. A veritable success story.

    Or so it seems until you realise that sales are low and your email marketing list is not increasing at anything like the rate you need to make a profit. You wonder what you are doing wrong.

    The answer is probably very little. Visitors will help with search engine optimisation (SEO) but that alone is not enough. You need leads, and you’d prefer them quickly. One option is to consider gated content.

    Gated here means content that is not available to the casual browser. In return for their personal information customers gain access to premium content; a lead in the jargon. However, putting material behind a wall has a number of negatives. Firstly, you will not get so many links and they are one of the major factors in Google rankings.

    The content needs to be something that is a reward for all the customers’ efforts and one way or another such copy costs. Further, you will limit the number of people who get to read your content and that will probably result in fewer customers returning.

    On the positive side you will get information on potential customers. Yours sales person/team will have information that will give them an opening. On top of that there are assumptions you can make on that person. If they willingly gave their personal information for a download of an ebook on a specific subject, you already know something of their interests.

    Email marketing is a series of balances. If you want more leads, and hopefully subscribers to your email marketing list, then gated content has distinct advantages over free access. If you want more visitors to your website then any restriction will result in fewer of them.

    Whichever option you pick, it will be a compromise, or to put it another way, ask which will cost you less for each result. Test the response to one gated item and go from there.