Email marketing is easy, right? You decide on a message, create the email using one of many email programs, send a test for review and, when it looks good, hit send! Right?
A few days ago I got an email from a company announcing their name change. I didn’t recognize the company, and I didn’t recognize the sender. I scanned the email subject line, introduction, body content and signature line, and I still had no idea what the company did. Wow, this company missed a big opportunity. I just spent 1-2 minutes looking at their email. If they had explained what they actually do and had given me a compelling call to action, I might have clicked through to their website.
One of the things that happens in all marketing and especially in email marketing, is that often the marketer is too close to the message and creative. They don’t view it with the eyes of a recipient, who has to make a quick decision – read or delete? They are so focused on the one message for the email they are working on, they can lose site of the big picture. So, before you hit “SEND” on your next promotional email, put yourself in the shoes of the recipients – the readers of your email – and ask the following questions:
1. Can our readers easily tell who we are?
Your brand should be prominently displayed at the top of the email. People will see your logo and/or company name, which over time should lead to better brand recognition. If you are a professional service provider, you should consider having both your name, title (what you do) and your headshot photo at the top of the email.
You can even provide a brief statement such as, “You are receiving this email because you opted in to Branded Company’s email marketing list / you attended Branded Company’s webinar / you are a customer of Branded Company.” It is so important to help the recipient understand how they got on the list. If you don’t do this, they may opt out of your list and mark the email as spam.
2. Can our readers tell what we do?
Include some kind of positioning statement for your business just in case the recipient doesn’t remember what you do. They may remember your name and brand, but they could have forgotten what you do. It’s always good to remind them. (For example, “Branded Company is a provider of blue widgets for K-12 educators.”) Take it one step further, and make your product name hyperlink to a product page on your website. Visuals will also help, so a picture of your product or of your production area with the product are a plus.
3. Do we have a compelling call-to-action that makes readers act?
No marketing piece is complete without a call-to-action. And, your call-to-action has to work! So ask more questions once you write your call-to-action. Is yours clear? Is it compelling? Are you offering something of value? Some examples of calls to action include providing a link to read more or view the original article after a teaser or abstract in the email, an offer to download a free PDF or eBook, an invitation to join a free webinar, an invitation to subscribe to the email list or another group, etc.
You may answer the above questions yourself (a self-test). Better yet, why don’t you send a test email to a trusted advisor, a loyal customer, or even a family member? Get feedback from someone outside of your company and your marketing department before hitting SEND. You’ll be happy with the results!
Need help getting results from your B2B email marketing campaigns? Contact New Incite today. We’ve worked with hundreds of companies to plan, execute and measure the results of successful marketing.