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Email Marketing Best Practices: 5 Common Myths Debunked

Posted by Brandon Choquette on Fri, May 02, 2014 @ 08:09 AM

E-mail MarketingEmail marketing has become one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your website and boost your sales. Marketing through email has been used for many years, making it vulnerable to myths about how effective it really is. Generally, there are misconceptions about every industry, and within sales, there are plenty of misconceptions about email marketing. But if we're going to make any progression in the industry, it is important to debunk these myths. There are many misconceptions about email marketing that are invalid and Image Works is here to help debunk these common email marketing myths once and for all.

Myth: Email Marketing is not a Lead Generator. We talk a lot email marketing as a large component in lead nurturing. However, email marketing can also serve as an effective lead generator, if executed correctly. By 'executed correctly' I mean: when you're creating relevant and sharable content. Always include a 'forward to a friend' link within your email and ensure that the links within your email are fully tracked and easy to share. Many times, prospects will share a video, landing page or eGuide found in your email, helping to generate leads through an organic brand ambassador.

Myth: All emails need to be short and to the point. Not all emails need to be constructed in the same 'cookie-cutter' manner. While some of your emails should be short and sweet, it's acceptable for some of your emails to be lengthier. For example, if the product you are featuring in your email is complex, your subscribers may expect you to include a larger amount of content and will be perfectly happy to scroll to learn more or see additional content. Regardless of the length of your email marketing messages, there are common components that every email should contain. Include an obvious and clear call to action and make sure to always place it above the fold.

Myth: Every email must have unique, original content. Don't get us wrong, you should aim to create content that should be engaging and awe-inspiring. However, try including a mix of content in your emails, including newsworthy articles as well as original content and offers. The best method to keep your prospects interested is by offering information that they will appreciate and deem relevant. By sharing these resources, you will establish yourself as a leader in the industry and help to develop a relationship of trust with recipients.

Myth: Open rate is the most important metric to track. While this may seem true, it is more useful to focus on click-throughs; opens mean nothing for two reasons. Most email users make use of their preview pane-- preview panes automatically send back an "open" response to your email even if the content hasn't been read. Conversely, if an email is opened but the images have not downloaded, an open response isn't send even if every word is absorbed.

Myth: Sending a lot of emails annoys customers. While it is true that customers can be quickly turned-off by receiving continually stale, salesy or spam emails, sending fresh, valuable content regularly not only keeps you top-of-mind but works to loosen the mindset of your customers and prospects because you're familiar. Some recipients may unsubscribe but they will probably be those least apt to need your product or service.

We have found that as long as your e-mails and subject lines feel fresh, varied, and not spam-like, it is nearly impossible to send too many emails to your clients. Yes, some people may unsubscribe. But the impact you get from sending more emails far outweighs the loss of a few subscribers. Besides, you can reduce the number of unsubscribes by giving customers an option to reduce the number of emails they receive rather than unsubscribing completely.

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Topics: email marketing best practices, CT Inbound Marketing, how to email market, email marketing, myths about email marketing

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