We know about the basics of email marketing and list-building campaigns. Now, it’s time to explore the more advanced aspects of email marketing.
Think of it this way: When you hit “send”, how can you be confident that:
#1: Your recipient will receive the email, and
#2: He or she will actually open it?
Item #1: Controlling CAN-SPAM and email filters. SPAM filters are notoriously sensitive, and it can be hard to write messages that don’t use the many “red flag” words — words like “free” and “bonus” are almost sure to get your email flagged and directed to the SPAM folder, and that’s the last thing you want.
Beyond that, marketers in each country must comply with their nation’s regulations regarding email marketing. In the U.S., where AffiliatePrograms.com is based, all messages must be written and sent in compliance with the The CAN-SPAM act. That means each message must:
• Identify itself as an ad;
• Refrain from using false or misleading header information and subject lines;
• List your physical or mailing address; and
• Allow recipients to opt out of your list, and make it clear and easy for them to do so.
Get more explanation at the FTC’s official website.
Consider the spam filters and the relevant advertising laws, then, with every message you send, and you’ll be doing most everything you can to make sure each email message reaches its recipient’s inbox. And that’s exactly where you want it.
Item #2: Keep it relevant, and interesting. Ok, the email’s in the inbox. Now, how can you be sure it’ll be opened, read, and acted upon?
“Email newsletters, announcements and ads were novel in the beginning,” writes Vertical Traction‘s Rob Van Slyke. “People subscribed to everything they could find. Brands were sending anything and everything with no targeting. The novelty soon wore off, and brands had to rethink their game plan.
“Email marketers adapted to the demands of subscribers by providing increasingly more relevant and personalized content,” Van Slyke continues. “Many are still struggling on how to accomplish it but we have identified the challenge and the consequences for not adapting are clear. Give me relevant content and let me control my subscriptions or I’ll unsubscribe.”
It’s as simple as that, though for some it’s a lot simpler as a concept than actual practice. But if you’ve built an effective list where mostly interested parties have opted in, you’ve got a headstart here already. The people are in the building. You just have to get on the stage.
That means writing subject lines that are interesting and relevant — and not just the date, or “The Newsletter”. That’s not interesting, and isn’t likely to be opened in today’s fast-paced multimedia Internet reality.
Personalization helps here, as well. People are more likely to respond to friends, or those who are familiar enough to know their names. So, consider personalization applications as you construct your email marketing campaigns.
What advanced email techniques work well for you? Have some tried-and-true methods proven particularly helpful — or blown up in your face? Sound off and let us know what you think of advanced email marketing.