Do you know if people are actually reading your emails? While it might seem like a silly question, successful email marketing can’t run on hopes and dreams alone. It’s important that you know how to measure the performance of your email efforts, and that you’re regularly tracking the right email metrics so that if they’re not hitting the right marks, you can make the necessary adjustments.
Gathering key email metrics tells you a few different things. First, it says whether your emails are driving engagement with subscribers, and if so, what kind of engagement they’re driving. And second, they tell you how you compare to others, both in your industry and beyond it. All of this is crucial to know if you want to maximize the impact of your email marketing campaigns.
What metrics should you be paying attention to then? Well, before we dive into that, let’s cover a few basics.
Why is Email Marketing Important?
Email marketing remains one of the most effective marketing channels. It offers a higher return on investment compared to other digital marketing methods. Additionally, email campaigns allow businesses to reach a targeted audience, deliver personalized content, and establish credibility and trust with customers.
Setting Goals for Email Marketing Campaigns
Defining clear goals is step one towards determining the success of your email marketing. By setting goals, businesses can align their email marketing efforts with their overall marketing strategy.
Here are all the components that go into setting your goals.
Identifying the Target Audience
Who are you trying to reach with your brand and message? Without establishing your target audience, your email marketing will not be effective. By segmenting your audience based on certain demographics, interests, industry, and behavior, you can tailor your email campaigns to resonate with their needs and preferences.
Defining Campaign Objectives
Every email marketing campaign should have a clear objective. Whether it is to generate leads, promote a new product, or nurture existing customers, defining the campaign objective will help you create targeted and focused email content.
Establishing Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Measuring the success of your email campaigns requires establishing key performance indicators. This could include various email metrics like open rates, emails forwarded, click-through rates, and conversions. Keeping a pulse on these KPIs will tell you how effective your campaigns are and assisst with any data-driven improvements.
More on these metrics in a bit.
Building an Effective Email List
An effective email list is the foundation of successful email marketing. By implementing strategies to grow your list organically and keeping it clean and up-to-date, you can ensure that your emails reach the right audience.
Opt-in Forms and Subscription Methods
Opt-in forms and subscription methods play a vital role in building your email list. By placing opt-in forms strategically on your website, offering incentives for signing up, and utilizing lead magnets, you can encourage visitors to subscribe to your mailing list.
Segmenting Your Email List
Segmenting your email list means creating sub-lists based on similar criteria of your subscribers. For example, if you want to send a specific message to your agency clients, then you’d create a list that only includes your existing clients that are part of an agency. By analyzing subscriber data and segmenting based on factors such as demographics, purchase history, or engagement levels, you can deliver more relevant and engaging emails.
Cleaning and Maintaining Your List
Regularly cleaning and maintaining your email list is crucial for email deliverability. By removing inactive or bouncing email addresses and implementing a re-engagement strategy for inactive subscribers, you can improve the overall health and effectiveness of your email list.
Crafting Compelling Email Content
Compelling email content is essential for grabbing attention, engaging subscribers, and driving desired actions. By focusing on subject lines, personalization, and relevant email copy, you can increase open and click-through rates.
Subject Lines That Grab Attention
The subject line is the first thing subscribers see in their inboxes. By crafting attention-grabbing subject lines that create a sense of urgency or curiosity, you can increase the chances of your emails being opened.
Personalization and Dynamic Content
Personalization allows you to deliver tailored content to subscribers based on their preferences or behavior. By utilizing dynamic content, you can further customize your emails to provide relevant information or product recommendations to each recipient.
Writing Engaging and Relevant Email Copy
The content of your email should be engaging and relevant to the recipient. By understanding your audience and their pain points, you can create email copy that resonates with them and compels them to take action.
Designing Eye-catching Email Templates
The design of your email templates plays a crucial role in capturing attention and conveying your brand identity. By choosing the right template, utilizing branding elements and visuals, and optimizing for mobile devices, you can create visually appealing emails that leave a lasting impression.
Choosing the Right Template/Layout
The template or layout of your email should align with your brand and the objective of your campaign. Whether it is a single-column template or a more complex design, choose a layout that enhances the readability and visual appeal of your emails.
Utilizing Branding Elements and Visuals
Consistency is key when it comes to branding. Incorporate your brand colors, logo, and fonts into your email templates to create a cohesive and recognizable brand experience for your subscribers. Additionally, using visuals such as images or videos can make your emails more engaging.
Optimizing for Mobile Devices
With the increasing use of mobile devices, it is crucial to ensure that your emails are optimized for mobile viewing. Use responsive design techniques to adapt your email templates to different screen sizes, making sure that your emails are easily readable and accessible on smartphones and tablets.
Testing and Optimizing Email Campaigns
Testing and optimization go hand-in-hand when improving the effectiveness of your email campaigns. By conducting A/B tests, measuring and analyzing results, and implementing iterative improvements, you can continuously optimize your email marketing efforts.
A/B Testing Variables
A/B testing allows you to compare different elements of your email campaigns to identify the most effective options. Test variables such as subject lines, email copy, call-to-action buttons, or visuals to determine which version performs better and adjust your campaigns accordingly.
Measuring and Analyzing Results
Measuring key metrics such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates provides valuable insights into the performance of your email campaigns. By analyzing these results, you can identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions to optimize your future campaigns.
The Email Metrics You Should Be Tracking:
Make a point of tracking each of these metrics regularly. Then, compare them among your own metrics over time, as well as the average metrics for your industry. Doing this will let you know if you’re falling short in any areas, and will also illuminate the areas where you’re doing great.
What it is: Click-through-rates tell you how often your recipients are clicking the links within your emails, including your CTAs and links to key areas of your website.
Why it matters: The higher your click-through-rates, the more interest and engagement your emails are driving. Your click-through-rate provides you with insight into everything from how interesting the content is that you include in your emails to how persuasive and enticing your call to action is. When your email content is compelling, you’ll make your marketing emails more clickable.
2. Conversion Rates
What it is: Conversion rates vary depending on what you’re trying to achieve with your messages. Ultimately, they’re what tell you whether or not people are following through with their clicks. For example, you can include a link to your Instagram page, hoping to get new followers, a link to a downloadable asset, or to sign up for a demo on your site. Your conversion metric doesn’t just focus on how many people clicked on these links. It also tracks how many actually gave you a follow, filled out the form for the asset, or signed up for the demo.
Why it matters: Email marketing is driven toward conversions, and in many ways, has everything you need to improve your conversions. Sometimes these conversions revolve around having people complete certain actions, like the ones mentioned above. Other times, they’re more sales-driven, such as getting someone to become a paying customer. An email conversion can even include when someone subscribed to your messages converts someone else into a lead. This happens when your emails are forwarded to people who aren’t prospects, and they sign up to receive more information.
Again, the higher, the better. Conversion rates tell you how engaged and qualified your contact list is, as well as whether you’re successfully guiding them where you want them to go.
3. Open Rates
What it is: Open rates track how many people actually opened your email, as opposed to ignoring it, deleting it, or sending it to their spam folder.
Why it matters: This is a crucial metric to track, and you should regularly be striving to improve your open rate. Even though plenty of people might be opening your email without any further action, you still should always know how often your messages are getting opened in the first place. Put it into context by comparing it to other email metrics like conversion rates and click-through-rates. You can further distill your insights and see how your other metrics compare based on your contact list, as well as how they compare based on how many people opened the message.
4. Spam Scores
What it is: Spam scores tell you how likely it is your emails will end up in the spam folder instead of your prospects’ inbox. It’s based on 17 common features of spam emails, with higher scores indicating a stronger correlation with what email providers denote as spam (and therefore a higher likelihood of being flagged as such).
Why it matters: Forget high rates on opens, click-throughs, and conversions — if you can’t make it out of the spam folder, you’re not going to succeed in those areas either. You can download specific software to help you determine what your spam score is, or you can research the features of spam that are considered in the score and take steps to avoid them. If you’re using email marketing or general marketing automation software, set it up to help you avoid engaging in any spam-like actions, like using certain email spam trigger words, for example.
Implementing Iterative Improvements
Optimization is an ongoing process. Based on the insights gained from testing and analyzing results, make iterative improvements to your email campaigns. Whether it is refining your targeting, adjusting your messaging, or experimenting with new strategies, continuous improvement is key to long-term success.
Automating Email Marketing Processes
Automation allows businesses to streamline their email marketing processes and deliver timely and relevant messages to subscribers. By utilizing autoresponders, drip campaigns, and nurturing leads with workflows, you can save time and effort while maintaining personalized communication.
Autoresponders and drip campaigns are automated series of emails triggered by specific actions or events. By setting up these campaigns, you can deliver a sequence of targeted messages to subscribers at the right time, nurturing leads and guiding them through the customer journey.
Email workflows allow you to automate the lead nurturing process and deliver content tailored to each stage of the buyer’s journey. By segmenting your audience and creating workflows based on their interests and behavior, you can build stronger relationships and increase the chances of conversion.
Trigger-based emails are sent in response to specific actions taken by subscribers, such as abandoned cart emails or welcome emails. By leveraging these triggers, you can deliver timely and personalized messages that increase engagement and drive conversions.
Ensuring Email Deliverability and Compliance
Email deliverability and compliance are crucial for the success of your email campaigns. By understanding spam filters and deliverability factors, following best practices for email compliance, and maintaining a good sender reputation, you can ensure that your emails reach the intended.
Metrics matter. When you track the information above, you give yourself a clear barometer for determining whether your emails are successful — or not. From there, you can extrapolate whether you should keep doing what you’re doing, or if you need to make some much-needed changes.