Stop Making These Email Marketing Mistakes

Email marketing isn't performing as well as you'd like? Try these tips to up your email game.

Industrial brands agree: There’s a lot that an effective email marketing campaign can accomplish. Nearly 90% of B2B marketers use email marketing to generate new leads and more than a quarter say email marketing has the largest impact on their revenue.

When done right, email marketing can help take your business to the next level. But figuring out how to reach that level of optimization isn’t always the easiest process. There are a number of common email marketing mistakes that many industrial brands make — and which significantly diminish the impact of their email marketing efforts.

Here are the seven biggest email marketing mistakes that industrial brands succumb to — and which  they need to stop making if they are going to take their programs to the next level.

1. Not Segmenting Your Email List

It’s all about personalization, so if you’re not making use of relevant contact information in your email database (e.g., name, job title, past behaviors), you’re making one of the most common email marketing mistakes. You don’t want to send out generic emails that are meaningless to almost all of your list. That’s highly ineffective and a big waste of your time and efforts. Instead, segment your email list into different categories based on demographic or behavioral data.

When you do this, you’ll be better able to write more relevant marketing messages to each segment.

2. Not Writing for Your Readers

Take a look at what your emails are focused on. Many businesses persistently make one of the most common email marketing mistakes, which is focusing on themselves, their businesses, and their goals, rather than the readers and what their needs are.

Readers want to know how they can be helped and how their problems can be solved. So, if you’re not already incorporating this approach in your email messages, you may want to consider starting. If you need a little help putting together customer-focused email messages, there are a number of online resources you can turn to for help in avoiding email marketing mistakes that can be turnoffs for your readers.

3. Not Creating Automated Emails Based on Subscriber Habits

Email automation is incredibly effective. When you’re able to engage with your customers at the exact moment when they’re most receptive, you can have the biggest impact possible — and have the highest chance of converting them from potential to paying customers.

There are all sorts of automated email campaigns that can be created, whether for new subscribers, new customers, or customers you haven’t heard from in a while. You set the requirements and, once they are met, an email message goes out. This makes the messages you’re sending much more personalized, because they are triggered directly by your subscribers’ behavior.

Another benefit of automation is that you’ll save time, giving you the bandwidth to develop new relationships with customers and recover relationships that may have become stagnant.

4. Not Writing Engaging Email Subject Lines

You may think that a great email message is enough to get users engaged, but that’s simply not the case. The truth is, there’s as much weight placed on the subject line of an email as there is on the entire email message itself. If you think about it, you reader won’t actually see what’s in your message unless they open it — and they won’t open it if the subject line doesn’t compel them to.

Neglecting your subject lines could mean you’re missing out on opens, meaning no eyes are even seeing your messages or having the chance to interact with your email content.

5. Not Making Things Mobile Ready

An increasingly higher number of users are reading emails and accessing the web via their mobile phones. If you’re not mobile ready, you’re making one of the cardinal email marketing mistakes and absolutely missing out on a large portion of your readership.

People are reading things on the go, so they want messages to be quick, easy to view, and straight to the point. Formatting your messages for mobile means making them clean and easy to view, and quick to load. Remembering the short attention span that people have nowadays, if they’re not able to view your message within a few seconds, you’ve probably lost them.

And, remember: Always test your messages on different devices before sending them out to your mailing list.

6. Not Using A/B Testing

There’s a lot of information that can be gathered with a simple A/B test of your emails. Whether it’s using different subject lines, different calls to action, or different content altogether, you can learn a great deal about what your readers find most engaging.

Using this information, you can adjust and improve your messaging to develop even more impactful emails.

7. Not Cleaning Your Subscriber List

Some may think that the larger the list, the better. But it’s not just about the number of subscribers you’ve got; it’s about the potential of each subscriber. If your list is full of people who are inactive and uninterested, you’re sending out messages in vain to people who are unlikely to respond or even read what you’re sending.

Having interested and engaged readers is what you should be focused on. Cleaning up your list periodically can help you purge inactive subscribers and pare down your list to those who actually want to receive messages from you.

Correcting Your Email Marketing Mistakes

The email marketing mistakes noted above are common pitfalls that all marketers succumb to at one point or another, so don’t feel bad if you’re making any — or all — of them.

If your email marketing program does need some work, don’t beat yourself up. Take a step-by-step approach to implement some of these suggestions to generate incremental improvements for your program.

The important thing is that you stay alert to stay on top of email marketing best practices and avoid common email marketing mistakes as a result. Also, make sure to observe and analyze your own program data. There may are likely things specific to your audience that you can do to keep them engaged!

Responsive Website Guide


About the Author

Not so fast!
Don’t miss our latest B2B marketing insights. Sign up to receive Industrial Marketer in your inbox.