In our last blog, we discussed all the benefits of email marketing. Email marketing is an efficient way to boost your sales and build relationships with your leads for little cost. However, no form of marketing is the right call all the time. So, let’s discuss a few of the instances when you should avoid email marketing and what you can do instead.
Email marketing works very well when directed at audiences to whom your brand is relevant. However, if your emails go out to the wrong demographic or audience, you may be wasting a lot of time and resources that will simply get deleted. It’s important to be careful who you target with email marketing rather than trying to cast too wide of a net. The latter method is a good way to ensure your emails end up in spam boxes.
What to do instead? Take some time to research your target audience. Who is your product or service made for? Busy human resource directors? Mothers? College students? Consider creating target audience personas to flesh out who would be most likely to take an interest in your brand and why. What problems are they facing that your brand can help them resolve?
It might be alluring to use free email marketing programs like Gmail or Outlook. However, there are drawbacks to that plan. For one thing, Gmail and Outlook do not provide any reports or analytics with regard to how your emails have been received. You can’t measure your progress, which is an essential part of any marketing plan. You also might run a higher risk of your emails bouncing with Gmail and Outlook as opposed to a professional service. That can hurt your IP reputation overall.
What to do instead? Consider signing up for a service like Mailchimp or Substack. These are affordable, even including limited free plans. They allow you to send out email campaign newsletters, and you can get a report on how your email campaigns are performing. If you have a higher budget, you can seek out a more dynamic email marketing platform that focuses on analytics.
Even if you’re a sole proprietor, it looks unprofessional to send your email marketing from a personal email account. It might clash with your brand, confuse consumers, or go to their spam folders. It also makes it difficult to manage segmented contact lists or what to do when someone requests to be removed from your email list.
What to do instead? Create a professional email address, one that ends with the name of your brand ideally. Google Workspace allows you to create custom professional emails. Mailchimp and Substack also send your emails from their website rather than through your personal email. Keep some distance between your personal and professional life when sending these emails.
These days, consumers are probably more likely to open your email on their phone than they are on their computers. But the emails you send that look fine in desktop view may not have the same effect on mobile. That neat design that you think looks good when you send it from your computer may turn into confusing blocks that cut off the text on mobile. This can be a big issue, since most consumers will simply delete the email if it has a clunky or difficult-to-read design.
What to do instead? Test your email format out on mobile as well as on desktop. Better yet, consider using a service that offers templates compatible with mobile as well as desktop. While you’re at it, make sure your website is optimized for mobile, as well. If you draw in your audience only to lead them to a webpage that they also struggle to read, it won’t be much better.
If you’re not receiving very strong engagement, or if your engagement is stalling completely, that may be a check engine light for you. It doesn’t mean you have to stop email marketing completely, but you may need to pause and take stock of your email marketing strategy. Your emails may not be as relevant to your target audience as you think, may seem pushy or spammy, or there may be other reasons they’re going ignored.
What to do instead? Figure out what’s going wrong with your email campaign. If your engagement was taking off and then slowed to a stop with no change in the strategy, it may just be that “shiny new brand” syndrome has worn off for most of your customers. Consider expanding your audience. Do some research into what your audience responds well to and what they respond poorly to, and adjust accordingly.