Email marketing remains one of the most prominent elements of digital marketing. With no signs of this slowing down, and marketers should set their sights on improving performance. In this article, we’ll be discussing the various ways you can test and optimize your emails so that you can improve your email campaigns and strategies.
Email marketing is serious business. What we mean by that is, you’re sending a message directly to someone’s inbox, and you ideally want them to open it, read it, find it valuable and engage with it by clicking through to your site. Building your database to send these messages is important, and you ideally want to grow it without losing many contacts along the way. With that unsubscribe button so close, each email needs to serve a purpose and reach the right person at the right time (with the right message).
Since you’ll have put energy and resources into acquiring leads, you’ve got the responsibility of delivering valuable information to them. Your emails need to effectively communicate with them, meet their expectations which are set when they sign up and guide them along their journey with your business.
In as much as emails are purpose-driven and seen as a more professional means of communication (as opposed to direct messaging via WhatsApp, for example), the element of conversation should still be present. This helps you with lead nurturing as it builds relations over time, ensuring that your contacts feel comfortable with your brand and as though they can approach you for help.
It goes without saying that emails that are segmented and personalized will be most optimal. Segments are niches within your overall targeted audience, which fall into various buyer personas. Not only are there different groups among audiences, but they will be at various stages in their relationship with your business, which you need to cater to.
Testing Your Emails
Before knowing how you can improve, you’ve got to assess your current position. To do that with accuracy, the marketing team will need to conduct a test. These kinds of tests are not only designed to show how your marketing efforts are performing, but they also point to changes among your audience. This includes what your customers want, how they want to be contacted, and what they’re interested in communicating about.
A popular form of testing when it comes to marketing is A/B testing. With this method, you test out two versions of something (such as a web page), with one variable changed. This shows you which one of two options is the better performing option with clear attribution. This concept works well for email marketing too, since testing small changes in increments will work best. This ensures that the contacts are not taken aback by changes that they do not expect or recognize.
How to Test Emailers:
- Identify issues - anything that isn’t working or could be improved upon. If you’re unclear on these, analyze your email marketing metrics are ask yourself how you can add more value to the reader.
- Create a goal for the test - as always, SMART goals reap the most rewards.
- Hypothesize up with the ways you’re going to improve upon the issues for long-term results.
- Optimize the email by trying out the improved variation - remember, you’re splitting up two slightly altered versions of an email to send to your audience. Be sure you’ve segmented your audience appropriately.
- Monitor its performance to see if it improves - it’s all about the engagement rates!
For HubSpot’s A/B testing, you’ll need at least 1000 contacts for the test to have conclusive results. It also has helpful tools to help you determine the controls and variations so that your sample size is calculated accurately.
What Can You Test in an Email?
All elements of the email are worth analyzing and optimizing, such as:
- The visuals
- The copy
- The design
- The subject line
- The preview text
- The CTA
- The email signature
- The frequency of emails sent
A test may prove to be inconclusive with no major winner when it comes to results. If this happens, you can adjust the experiment and try again. No major shifts are a result in and of themselves, since it’s telling you that you need to go back to the drawing board for your hypothesis.
Improve and Optimize Your Emails
Email marketing isn’t going anywhere. Businesses should continue to work on building their contact databases with express permission to engage in email communication. Once you have this, you need to engage with them and nurture the relationship over time. Optimizing emails is just as important as optimizing content. It will improve the performance of your emails, and with ongoing and data-driven testing, you can improve your relationships with contacts.
Speak with us at Nexa about improving your email marketing. As digital marketing experts, we can help you with everything from the content to the management and reporting. Let’s discuss where you could be improving your email marketing for more traffic, more sales, and ultimately a higher ROI.