We recently spoke with Susanna Papette from Hustler Marketing and gained some great insights into email marketing. She’s been with Hustler Marketing for over 3 years and is an absolute email marketing pro and is credited with creating an in-house learning library for all things email marketing.
Let’s jump straight in.
What defines email marketing as good?
“Good email marketing is done by tailoring your strategy and content based on the store that you’re working on or the niche that you’re working on. So the more tailored it is, the better the results.”
There’s no golden rule for email marketing. You can’t put a CTA in the “best” place, or use the same subject line and guarantee it will generate the same results across businesses and industries. What works for one store, may not work for another.
That’s why Susanna has a best practice approach rather than a one-size-fits-all guide. Keep reading to find out the 3 things you should focus on to elevate your email marketing and improve your chances for success.
Good segmentation = powerful personalization
Marketing personalization has become a non-negotiable with 80% of consumers being more likely to buy from a company that provides a tailored experience.
But how do you personalize at scale? The key is proper audience segmentation. Base your lists on meaningful data – the more data you have in your user profiles, the better the segmentation.
If you really know your audience, it’ll be easier to create your segments, and your personalized content will be more relevant and stand a better chance of conversions.
Here are some good data points to use:
- Website engagement
- Purchase history
- Average spend
- Email engagement
Check yourself with regular A/B Tests
“You’ll never know if you’re doing something right or if it’s going to work forever, so you’re going to have to A/B test and see. It’s a great way to test your segments and personalization as there’s always room for improvement, or your audience might change over time.”
As the marketing landscape adapts, your business grows and your audiences develop, you’ll need to ensure you’re optimizing your email strategy through testing. With A/B tests, you can decide what to focus on and what to discard.
A powerful test Susanna uses is based on different incentives. The test uses segmentation and personalized offers to test which audience list responds to different types of offers or discounts.
Other tests will look at elements such as tone adjustment, email length, and different types of subject lines, to timing, location, and frequency; the opportunity for testing is endless. Let’s look at a few short and long-term examples you can use.
You can set up quick, short-term tests such as:
- Subject line
- Button or CTA placement
- Text-heavy vs graphic-heavy
- Copy tone
- Color palette
And you can set up medium to long term tests:
- Country-based differences
- Send times
- Email domain tests
Focus on deliverability
“The last tip I would have is to not mess up your deliverability. If you’re just starting with email marketing, you might have people in your list already. But if your account doesn’t have a reputation yet; if nobody has ever engaged with your emails, clicked open, or even replied, your chances of landing in their primary inbox are reduced.”
To avoid going to spam, perform a small test. Select a mix of email domains (like Gmail, Hotmail, etc) to send your email to. This way you can check your results and ensure the deliverability is good. If you see that one domain is being marked as spam or even bouncing, you need to investigate the issue further. You can get this data from Google analytics, or, if you use an email sending tool, you should get a lot of insight from there.
“Gmail will usually be a big chunk of your list, so you should probably prioritize that. But generally, I would say just try to treat each inbox kind of on their own and see what works for each. For example, certain subject lines will land in the inbox and primary inbox for Gmail, but will land in spam right away in Hotmail or Outlook.”
Once you’ve ensured the deliverability is good, focus on creating content that is relevant to each segment and will improve your open rates (this can also help with deliverability).
Email marketing: next steps
Now that you know the top 3 tips for successful email marketing, let’s look at the steps you can take to achieve them quickly and easily.
- Get some help: There’s no shame in asking for help. If the above advice left you scratching your head, we suggest finding a small agency or freelancer to help guide you or even setting up structures and templates you can follow in the future.
- Make sure you know your audience: You can do this through testing. But your customers are people, just like you. To segment better, try putting yourself in their shoes and understand what pain points they face and what value looks like to them.
- Know what results to look out for: Define your goals and which metrics matter to you. A good open rate is 18- 20% but for some businesses, 30% is the real sweet spot. Identifying the email results that are valuable for your business will define the ones you should be tracking. For example, open rates might mean a lot less if your goal of sales isn’t being met.
Lastly, don’t give up! If your email marketing isn’t performing, rethink your strategy and re-apply these tips. And if you’re looking for more advice or an agency to work with, chat with Susanna at Hustler Marketing today.