What can go wrong in email marketing and how to fix it 

You know how some marketers say emails are dead? Well, they aren’t. For most of the companies, they are the number one revenue stream. 

Let’s be short, since there are plenty of articles about email marketing and yet, so many companies keep failing at it.

What’s wrong

These are the most common reasons why your email ends up unopened (or, if opened, immediately closed and forgotten):

  • sending an email with “no-reply” addresses — gives a feeling that you don’t care about the feedback, the only thing you want is to push the message no matter what.
  • sending an email with free webmail addresses — no matter what size your company is, if you want to sell something to people, send emails from your corporate address — otherwise they won’t trust you.
  • Under-personalized email: your customers might receive irrelevant content or perceive you as a cold lifeless machine caring about their money only
  • Over-personalization can make them feel that you are invading their personal space, thus will try to keep you off or ignore at all. Plus, if they stated in the subscriber form their name as dgdfgdg (or whatever they like) the greeting “Hi, dgdfgdg” will look just ugly.
  • Your style of communication doesn’t match to your audience. If your recipients are the C-level management, sending something like “What’s up folks” might not play well.
  • You are not able to catch the people’s attention. You’ve got only 3 lines to make people click on your email (your name, subject and a short preview of the email body) and you don’t really realize how you can use it to your advantage.

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What you can do

Nevertheless, the situation is manageable. Here is how to improve your email marketing results:

  • Fix the “from” email address: no “no-reply” or gmail/yahoo/ etc. email addresses, keep the corporate identity.
  • Rethink the extent of your personalization. We don’t recommend placing your customer’s sensitive information that goes beyond their name unless it is really needed.
  • Identify your buyer persona. The best way is to take one particular person whom you consider your target audience and craft the email personally for him. This is a hugely underestimated step, but it makes the process of writing the perfect email faster.
  • It is said (and studied) that your subject line should be either less than 60 characters or more than 70. This 60-70 character range is considered as the dead zone, meaning that these subjects are less likely to be clicked. The most optimal case would be to keep it short as possible. Look at the examples:

Keep the subject line simple and short.

  • The same concerns the body of the email. Sweet & short might work better than any template or an “essay”.

 

  • You are given just a couple of seconds to convince your recipient to open the email. So every piece of text is important there. Unfortunately, very often companies forget about a tiny thing — the text preview line. And that’s what usually happens:

Choose the right preview text to attract subscribers.

  • Set your optimal frequency. Depending on your business, there is always a “golden” number of emails you should send to your subscribers. If you are in the entertainment business, probably several times a week, or even daily, is enough; for a more industry-related business, e.g. finance, management, education, the frequency can be lower. If you overdo — you will be considered annoying, disrupting, if you post too rarely — people might forget about your existence. 
  • Keep it simple but visually attractive. Again — the golden middle. If you think that one image (static or animated) can tell more than 100 words — use it. 
  • The last advice: test it. Test everything what we advised you today and what you read on other sources. Test any ideas that pop up in your mind. If you think that some idea is good, don’t take it as a remedy — question it & test it. 

Something will work, something won’t, but even failing many times will get you closer to the goal.


We will talk about email marketing, where it is heading, and how it will work in the future. Here is the latest conference agenda, it is very fast to download.