How the world does business has shifted dramatically in the wake of the global pandemic and world affairs. Where we once shopped online for convenience, it’s now out of necessity. Businesses that are agile have shifted operations to purely remote workers, and are selling items online to meet the demands of those affected by the mandated stay-at-home orders and/or are self-quarantining.
While the world is in limbo waiting out the decline of the pandemic, the traditional means to purchase have changed to online, on-demand, and no-contact methods. As a result, the amount of email traffic has increased as a result of businesses adapting and restructuring to our new ways of the world.
As a marketer, you now have to consider what types of emails are being sent, to whom at what frequency. We know that most companies have, and still are, sending transactional emails to their stakeholders to apprise them of the status of their business. We saw this first wave when all businesses sent emails stating that they are either open or closing, paying attention to CDC regulations, etc. These emails will continue for the foreseeable future, and most have important information for stakeholders.
The second wave of email saturation came when companies adjusted their businesses to provide online services. With this comes increased marketing to notify current customers and acquire new market share. At the same time, transactional emails have increased as more items are purchased online, with electronic receipts, shipping details, and notifications now flowing into the email stream at a higher rate.
Finally, we have the innovation wave. Companies have adapted quickly to doing business during a global pandemic, with amazing work being produced in all industries – and the world is hearing about it through email. Why? Sending emails is affordable, efficient, and has a 38x return on spend (ROS). Yes, $38 back for every $1 spent! (Inc.)
So, how do you break through the noise and deploy effective email campaigns? Here are 5 tips to optimize email deliverability:
Implement the Right Email Service Platform / MarTech Stack
Having the right systems for your business is critical. If you are an enterprise-class organization emailing clients who have sophisticated firewalls a framework to ensure spoofers don’t get through, you are going to need a system that’s equally secure and is designed to work well with a framework compliant with GDPR. Small businesses now have a variety of quality systems to use as well, most with a reasonable investment, and incorporate some of the jazzy automation features of the bigger MarTech stacks.
Ensure your infrastructure is Secure and Healthy
Gone are the days where you can add your email address to an ESP and blast messaging to lists. With all of the data privacy laws and the perfecting of Marketing Automation and AI, businesses have to make sure they are following all of the rules of the web so that you look and play nice with the algorithms built to detect fraud. There is a specific framework that your connectivity, domain, website, email servers - and even your Google My Business pages need to adhere by - and this means knowing how to set it up and maintain a compliant and healthy infrastructure. Salesforce, one of the leading CRM companies in the world, provides a test that all can use to see if your framework is up to date, available here.
Understand Your Customer’s Journey
Delivering the right message, to the right customer at the right time is a science. To do this, you have to understand your customers - and if you can, how your customers are feeling. Pre-pandemic, marketers had a pretty good method to reach this assumption; buying trends vs. behavior vs. time of the year. Now, as most have more time at home to open emails, the buying trends have shifted, behaviors have changed and it seems that time is standing still. Being cognizant of where in life your customer is, and what phase of the customer journey they are in - this will allow for better communication, which leads to loyalty and eventually ROI. Knowing how to deliver compelling content at that moment is the key.
Curate Content that’s Easy to Digest
There is a finesse when composing an email. Since you may be lessening the frequency, the urge to add more to your email blast is compelling - but it can have the opposite effect of what you’re trying to achieve - conversions. With so many emails coming through, there’s a lot of competition vying for your customer’s attention. Delivering information in bite-size pieces with links to more information on your website or landing page can make all the difference, after all - you want those clicks on your site! Depending on what your message is, right now - less is more. Want a winning combo to test out? Here’s one that can help you break through the noise:
- Subject Line: 7 words or less (and add a killer emoji if you can!)
- Preview Text: 15 words - The goal is to support the Subject line and summarize your email in 2 lines
- Graphics: Make sure they are compressed and convey the message of your email
- Body Copy: 75 words - Use a font that’s easy to read, spaced well, and has enough contrast so that readers don’t strain their eyes
- A Clear Call to Action - One button with one click to what you are promoting
- Don’t forget your ADA links at the bottom! Unsubscribe, Privacy, and View in Browser are a must
Test, Test and Test Again
As email rules change, the code in the emails must change to comply - and pass through to the inbox of your customer. Since there are various email providers and devices to check - tools like Litmus and Email on Acid are used to run SPAM tests and provide renderings of how your email will look and perform. Once you have your email to a point where you are satisfied with delivery, look and function - test one more time!
If you are an advanced email marketer or just starting to focus on this discipline, this is the time to be in email marketing. In 2019 there were 293.6 billion emails sent and received each day (Statista 2020), in 2022 that number is set to top 347.3 billion (Statista, 2020). As the tech gets better, so do your results but having the tools to break through the noise will increase your ROI. To learn more about Primacy's email marketing services, click here.