While 60 percent of U.S. adults in a study by TechnologyAdvice Research say they read marketing emails from businesses, just 16 percent do so regularly. What’s keeping more customers from reading and responding to your emails? Maybe you’re making one of the 5 most common email marketing mistakes the study uncovered.
- Emailing too often: According to the survey, this is the number-one mistake businesses make when it comes to sending email. Some 43 percent of respondents say they get emails from the same businesses too frequently, and almost half say the best way businesses could improve email marketing is by sending emails less often.
- Sending irrelevant emails: Almost half of survey respondents say they get irrelevant emails from businesses every day; another 30 percent say they get this type of email at least once a week. People don’t have much patience with this; over 30 percent of respondents say that irrelevant content as one of the main reasons they flag a business’s email as spam.
- Sending emails that recipients didn’t subscribe to: More than one-third of people surveyed (36 percent) say they will flag business emails as spam if they didn’t specifically subscribe to receive them. For best results, use a double opt-in system to add new subscribers to your email list; always send a “welcome” email to new subscribers so they know to expect future emails from you; and make it easy to see how to unsubscribe from your emails.
- Not segmenting or personalizing emails: Customers today expect emails personalized to their interests and past buying behaviors. Rather than being disturbed by personalized emails, customers welcome them. In fact, about one-fourth of survey respondents say “more personalized offers” are the best way businesses could improve their email marketing. Segmenting email recipients into niches based on factors such as demographics, browsing behavior and purchasing behavior is another smart tactic that is easier to do today. For example, if you segment recipients into men and women, know that men are most likely to read marketing emails with news and updates, while women are most likely to read marketing emails that offer promotions and discounts.
- Sending emails that don’t include anything of value: Nearly half of respondents say they would like to get more quality content in business emails; one-fourth say the best way businesses could improve email marketing is by providing more informative content. “Consumers expect businesses to provide value in exchange for their attention,” said study author Zach Watson, Content Manager at TechnologyAdvice, in announcing the survey results. With so many demands on their time and attention, if you want your customers to notice your email, you need to invest some time in providing quality information and content they can use.
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Karen Axelton is Chief Content Officer of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses.