Lisbiz Strategies: It’s time to develop your 2017 email campaign

January 13, 2017

January 2/9, 2017: Volume 31, Number 15

By Lisbeth Calandrino

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 3.56.12 PMWith the new year in full swing, it’s time to develop your 2017 marketing plan. For savvy business people this should include carefully timed email messaging. Even if you don’t plan anything else, plan your email marketing campaign now.

Here are important tips for maximizing your email campaigns:

Write it down. Develop a strategy and review it weekly. Take some time and discuss the plan with your employees, ask for their input on past efforts. What did they find successful? What didn’t seem to work?

One size doesn’t fit all; make sure you segment your emails. According to a MarketingSherpa report, 32% of marketing professionals plan to segment their database this year. Not segmenting your database is tantamount to assuming everyone likes sushi, and if they don’t they should. Don’t try to convert your buyers. Pay attention to their needs.

Take note of and utilize special occasions. Are there events you want to highlight? Holidays that are meaningful to you, your customers and your business? Get on top of it so you don’t miss out. February is just around the corner and it’s filled with great possibilities and tie-in opportunities.

Commit to reading (and re-reading) your emails before they’re sent to your customers. How many of you give just a casual look over your emails? This year decide to take a good look at what you’re writing. Does it make sense? Would you want to read it? Does it include a call to action? If it’s boring to you, just imagine what the customer thinks.

Don’t make it difficult. Review each month separately. You can even use a paper wall calendar to plot out your plan.

Review your stats from 2016. What emails got the most responses from your customers? Can you determine why these worked? Can they be repurposed? What are your competitors doing? Is there anything you can replicate?

Incorporate significant projects. Is there a project you’ve been meaning to share? If you’re in the home improvement industry, have you wanted to write about how to choose the right flooring store, or the importance of good warrantees?

Clean up your email list. You’ve probably been meaning to do this but never seem to get around to it. How many of your customers are getting numerous emails? How many have told you to eliminate one of their addresses? Is the end effect really affecting the way your message is received? It could be.

Improve your skills. Is there an email webinar you’ve been meaning to attend? It’s time. Make sure you sign up.

Pay attention to your customers. Do you really know who your customers are? What are their shopping habits? Are you doing surveys to ask about their social media habits? Do you know where they hang out? Is your email marketing connecting with your social media hangouts? It’s time to connect the dots.

And finally, do one thing different with your emails this year. What have you seen that you would like to try? Did you send out a newsletter last year? Are you attending an industry conference you always forget to write about?

Email marketing is cost efficient, but even small improvements can make a huge difference in your customer response. Why not invest in a business tool that will definitely improve your customer acquisition and retention. Email marketing is something you can control.

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