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  • Top 10 Email Campaign Examples That Convert Jan 18, 2021 at 12:52 PM

    Crafting the perfect email campaign is tough. Figuring out how to design it, when to send it and what to write can be even tougher. Each email campaign needs to be noticed, opened, clicked and remembered.

    Did you ever send an email campaign that did not deliver the desired ROI? It could be because recipients didn’t notice your email or did but never clicked on the call-to-action (CTA). You’ve probably wondered what is keeping you from getting the desired email marketing KPIs. In most cases, the answer is a poor email design. Yet, not everyone will face these struggles. You can ensure your email campaign will stand out in the recipients’ inbox by taking advantage of email campaign examples that are expertly designed, eye-catching and, most of all, convert.

    “An email marketers’ goal shouldn’t be simply reaching the inbox but also ensuring higher engagement and conversion.” –
    EmailOut

    There are numerous ways to measure your email campaign’s success. However, what your recipients think of your message and how it makes them feel is crucial. Thus, instead of primarily focusing on getting higher raw numbers, give more attention to the visual aspect of your email campaign (the design) – the numbers will follow. To ensure you will be sending more modern, awesomely-designed emails that convert, take a look at the top 10 email campaign examples that will get you inspired and help you stay ahead of the competition.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following top 10 email campaign examples that convert:
    1. Medium
    2. PayPal
    3. Evernote
    4. Trello
    5. Mint
    6. Artifact Uprising
    7. Rothy’s
    8. Beardbrand
    9. J. Crew Factory
    10. Cards Against Humanity
    Ready to dive in?

    In 2020, according to recent email marketing stats, roughly 306 billion emails were sent and received daily with the number predicted (and expected) to increase in 2024 to over 361 billion daily emails. For an email marketer, these stats are drool-worthy. Yet, with a lot of recipients simply skipping emails without bothering to open them or worse, reporting them as spam, email marketers must find new and engaging ways to capture their target audience attention.

    Your old email campaign templates have probably worked pretty well so far delivering a satisfactory ROI, but… why settle for good when you can have great results. Thus, take your email marketing campaign to the next level by crafting eye-catching, creative, high converting emails that will motivate your recipients to take immediate action. How? By drawing inspiration from email campaign examples that have proven to be successful.

    Top 10 Amazing Email Campaign Examples
    You’ve been sending and receiving emails for years. In fact, you have most certainly received some quite questionable and poorly designed emails in your inbox. Whether such email marketing campaigns were unexpected, uninformative or had subject lines with some disturbing formatting such as “uRgEnt SAle – ONly toDAY!!!!”, I bet you didn’t even hesitate to delete them or report them as spam, I am right?

    Email has managed to stand the test of time, yet some email marketers fail to update their email marketing strategies to ensure email campaigns will warrant the recipients’ precious time and attention. If you want to stand out and shine in the inbox then you will certainly have to carefully think through your email campaign’s design – from grid layout through the subject line to content and call-to-action (CTA). Your target audience plays a crucial role in the overall look and feel of your email marketing campaign, so don’t forget about those precious subscribers/clients when browsing through and adapting one (or more) of these top 10 email campaign examples that convert.

    1) Medium
    [​IMG]

    Medium.com’s “Daily Digest” email campaign is the perfect example of an excellent, highly-personalised email marketing campaign. The five elements making this campaign the epitome of “the most wanted” email are –

    1) personalisation based on the users’ preferences and interests
    2) a featured article that also matches the subject line
    3)
    recipients are given a heads-up on the read-time
    4) the author recognition offers a more personal feel
    5) categorisation of content makes it easy to scan

    2) PayPal
    [​IMG]

    PayPal’s email contains many elements recipients will love seeing in an email campaign. The opening copy is not only clever and concise but the overall concept reflects a relatable benefit of using the company’s service. Furthermore, both call-to-actions are strategically placed and emphasise on providing further information about the service.

    Imagine this – “You are having a nice time catching up with friends over some mouth-watering food, however, when the bill comes everyone starts fussing about paying it.” This is such a common pain-point and PayPal’s tapping into it by piquing the interest of the recipients with an easy solution – the PayPal app.

    3) Evernote
    [​IMG]

    First thing Evernote users receive when they sign up to the service is a welcome email which advises the recipient to download the product app. This email campaign example has a clean and simple design, to-the-point copy, sticks to the company’s style, a clear call-to-action (CTA) and acts as a continuation of the conversation that the user started when visiting the website and signing up for the service. Evernote generated more than 200M users, proving this email campaign design works.

    4) Trello
    [​IMG]

    An email campaign without a call-to-action (CTA) is like an email marketer who doesn’t send marketing campaigns – unthinkable. Therefore, make sure every email marketing campaign includes at least one call-to-action. However, stay away from boring, overused CTA button copy such as “read more” or “click here”. Instead, go for a catchy, fun, action-driven, unique and relevant copy as Trello did in their campaign. For example, if you want to drive more email sign-ups rather than using “signup here” get more creative (but don’t do it simply for creativity’s sake) with something like “Be Smarter” or “Learn Our Secrets” or “Join The Troops”.

    Did you notice the neat, simple design? It’s easy to navigate, gives the reader exactly what they need without annoying them and provides highly-relevant information.

    5) Mint (Intuit’s personal finance app)
    [​IMG]

    Mint’s email marketing campaign is an excellent example of a successful campaign for two reasons

    1) a catchy headline – the word “credit” scares most people and when you read it in an email it will certainly give you pause.“How much do I really know about my credit?”, “Are credit myths fooling me?” – all questions arise from reading one simple word poking at the recipient’s curiosity and that’s exactly why they will open and engage with the email.

    2) no overwhelming zig-zag design elements just clean, simple lines – Mint’s use of colour pops and high-quality imagery in precisely on-brand and perfectly reflects the simplicity of the platform. The visuals which are highly-relative to the topic of the email help complete the overall feel of the campaign.

    6) Artifact Uprising
    [​IMG]

    Artifact Uprising’s email campaign is a shining example of breaking the boring email design mould. By utilising one of the top email marketing trends for 2021 – the broken grid layout, the company not only succeeds at creating a compressed replica of their website’s style but also delivers a relevant message that’s on par with the company’s branding.

    The three reasons why this email campaign example works are –

    1) branding is consistent – successful branding does not always need big bold letters, screaming colours and a gigantic logo. In their email marketing campaign, Artifact Uprising uses fonts and imagery throughout the body which are directly pulled from the guide that’s being promoted. This approach creates a seamless experience for the reader as they scroll and click-through the email campaign.

    2) hooks readers with descriptive copy – every section in the layout with an image is complemented by concise, easily digestible copy. The clever part of the campaign is the fact the email promotes a guide offering 6 Tips To Photograph Spring, however, the email only has two tips leaving the recipient hungry to know more. No one likes the Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO) and Artifact Uprising is creating a sense of urgency which inspires immediate action.

    3) perfectly placed call-to-action – three completely different, yet quite obvious CTAs are sprinkled throughout the copy. All with the same goal, inspiring the recipient to get the guide giving them more than one chance to do so.

    7) Rothy’s
    [​IMG]

    Rothy’s promotional email to people who’ve opted-in to the company’s marketing correspondence but have yet to make a purchase is yet another amazing email campaign example that works. There are two distinct reasons why this email campaign example stands out –

    1) not only is there an animated element at the top of the campaign, but the GIF in the body taps into most peoples’ default response to SMS/direct messages – they simply can’t resist temptation and have to read them.

    2) the campaign utilises actual names, genuine and authentic conversational elements and images (i.e. the kitty) that look and feel as you’re eavesdropping on someone’s conversation. A sense of curiosity creates a sense of urgency and a desire to know which, to have a successful email campaign, is exactly what you need and Rothy’s have nailed it.

    8) Beardbrand
    [​IMG]

    Dormant email lists with little to no engagement can be harmful and bring no value to your business. Yet, Beardbrand has found an original, creative and unique way to re-engage inactive subscribers and bring the brand at the top of the subscribers’ minds.

    The subject line of the re-engagement campaign “How fast can you grow?” is enough to pique the recipient’s interest. (I certainly would have opened it if I had a beard!) Furthermore, rather than focusing on the fact people have been inactive for two or three months, the brand built its re-engagement email campaign on the simple fact that “human hair grows about 0.5 inches a month” followed by “your beard grew 1.5 inches since your last visit.”

    This smooth and unique approach allows the brand to outline the recipient’s inactivity without the guilt-trip. Afterwards, Beardbrand swiftly changes the topic to their products with a clever twist – “While you can’t make your hair grow faster, you can make it healthier.” Shockingly, the key to healthy hair is……? You guessed it, Beardbrand’s products.

    Once the smooth engaging intro has piqued the subscriber’s interest, the brand goes for the gold and wraps up their re-engagement email by showcasing product recommendations –

    [​IMG]

    Yet, instead of using a boring CTA like “Recommended Products”, the brand triggers the recipients’ FOMO with a brilliant call-to-action – “Check out what I’ve missed.”

    9) J.Crew Factory
    [​IMG]

    For many of us, present wrapping poses a huge struggle. J. Crew Factory noticed and recognised this pain-point and subsequently, created an email marketing campaign offering a solution to all those DIYers who can’t pull off a Pinterest-professional wrap job – gift cards.

    The email’s design is clean and concise, offers two options for picking up gift cards (two clear CTAs) and lowers the purchasing barrier even further by including a map of the nearest store location at the bottom of the email. There is even a discount. What could be more enticing than that?

    10) Cards Against Humanity
    [​IMG]

    This might be an old Black Friday email campaign example by Card Against Humanity, yet it’s pure brilliance and I couldn’t stop myself from sharing it with you. It’s exceptionally sarcastic, completely insane, cynical and, to say the least, quite unusual type of email campaign to send out BUT… it grabbed your attention when you read it, didn’t?

    What’s even more unusual is that the company is announcing its online store will be closed for Black Friday. Moreover, they are asking recipients to give them money for no apparent reason via a call-to-action that’s completely against email design best practices.

    Did this email campaign succeed? It did. It turned out the company (also known for its charitable fundraising) managed to raise $71,145 by offering absolutely nothing. The follow-up campaign revealed where all those donated money went. So, were people giving money for nothing? You can read more about this awesome email campaign here.

    Final Thoughts
    Occasionally, even the best and brightest of email marketers can get stuck while crafting a perfect design for an email marketing campaign. If you’ve reached this far then you’ve checked out all the email campaign examples. Did you notice anything?

    Some of the email campaign examples had a great copy, others were all about design, and then some were simply brilliant and quite entertaining from top to bottom. There is not one single simple and amazing way to create a great email marketing campaign. What worked for all those companies in the email campaign examples listed may not work for you. It’s trial and error. However, it always pays off to follow best practices and A/B test your email campaigns before you unleash them into the world.

    Regardless of your goals, there is always room for improvement. For some of you, it’d be small tweaks to the design, for others – top-notch copywriting. No matter what needs improvement, all these email campaign examples aim to get your creative juices flowing and inspire you to create a campaign that will convert – and perhaps even be featured in one of EmailOut’s upcoming articles.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    Email Marketing Automation Strategy 101
    2) Writing Marketing Emails 101
    3) What Is An Email Drip Campaign?
    4) The Ultimate Email Preflight Checklist

    This article was originally published on 6 January and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Email Marketing Trends For 2021 Jan 5, 2021

    The COVID-19 pandemic brought about many challenges and permanent changes for both businesses and consumers. Email marketers had to quickly transform their short and long-term email marketing strategy to ensure a successful transition to the “New Normal”.

    As we head into 2021, the pandemic continues to impact marketing strategies and budgets within businesses of all sizes and industries. However, it’s time to switch gears (if you haven’t already) and see which email marketing trends for 2021 will play a pivotal role and help you successfully improve your email marketing strategy.

    “Email has an ability many communication channels don’t: to create highly-personalised, relevant, valuable touches – at scale.” – EmailOut


    The “New Normal” has forced many businesses to shut down, cut their budgets and go into survival mode due to the restrictions put in place. Consumers have completely changed their purchase behaviour and the way they interact and engage with brands. Yet, one thing remains certain – email marketing is and will continue to be the driving force behind consumers’ purchasing decisions and the top marketing channel for customer nurturing, acquisition and retention.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following email marketing trends for 2021:
    1. What will impact your email strategy for 2021?
    2. Top 5 email design trends for 2021
    3. Top 3 email automation trends for 2021
    4. Privacy trends for 2021
    Ready to dive in?


    Factors That Will Impact Your Email Marketing Strategy For 2021
    Email marketers and businesses must look for innovative ways and explore new opportunities to ensure the success of their email marketing efforts.

    Before diving into the top email marketing trends for 2021, let’s have a look at four vital elements that must be considered when developing your email marketing strategy for 2021.

    1) COVID-19 industry recovery: Your email marketing strategy depends on it
    Different nations and demographics have been hugely impacted by the pandemic and the recovery of the most hard-hit industries to a pre-COVID level could take more than 5 years.

    Analysis conducted by McKinsey shows just how a muted recovery scenario is expected to play out across different industries –

    [​IMG]

    “Email marketing trends in 2021 will be driven by the K-shaped recovery from the pandemic that has seen some companies excel while others struggle. Grocers, e-tailers, digital entertainment providers, tech providers, and other companies that have done well will focus on better personalisation, segmentation, and automation as they inch closer to achieving the 1-to-1 marketing paradigm,” according to Chad S. White.

    Industries that have been majorly impacted by the pandemic (i.e. airlines, hotels, traditional retailers, etc.) will focus on improvements and invest in shifting from traditional email templates to modular email architectures to decrease the time it takes to create an email campaign, increase engagement rates and widen their audience.

    2) AI hype & the underground AI revolution: Strategy first, solution second
    Your business’s size, sector and digital maturity will be the determining factors in how you must adjust your email marketing strategy in 2021.

    The most essential principle in email marketing is sending the right message at the right time to the right person. That will never change. Yet, knowing what the right message is for whom and when to send it can prove to be quite difficult to pinpoint since customers can be unpredictable and behave differently especially in a post-COVID world.

    While AI is quite a hot topic among digital marketers, don’t think it’s the answer to everything. If your email marketing strategy does not truly require AI, don’t push it into being a “must-have”. An AI solution can be a very powerful tool, yet it will only help you with the specific niche tasks it was built for. However, the AI revolution means email marketers can take advantage of tried-and-tested email marketing solutions which have been improved to work in collaboration with AI-based methods.

    Overall, as an email marketer, you need to pick a solution that will aid your goals based on your strategy rather than simply purchasing something because it has an AI sticker.

    3) Digital Customer Experience (CX): The starting point for email marketing
    Customer experience (CX)
    is customers’ impression of your business (brand) as a whole throughout the entire customer journey. According to Salesforce, 88% of customers expect businesses to accelerate digital initiatives because of 2020’s events. Furthermore, due to the spread of COVID-19 digital demand has soared, leading to 68% of customers stating that the pandemic elevated their expectations of brands’ digital CX.

    Since the COVID-19 outbreak, more and more people headed online to make purchases. For a lot of marketers, the ultimate goal now would be to mimic the physical experience of buying by creating a swift, easy and memorable online experience. A smashing CX, essentially, will act as a catalyst for boosting your customers’ perception of your brand.

    According to the email marketing guru Kath Pay, there are three elements of CX marketing:
    1. Being helpful
    2. Putting the customer front and centre
    3. Personalising the customer’s experience
    Utilising email is a perfect approach to create a positive customer experience for your subscribers. With perfectly designed, highly-personalised email campaigns you can put your subscribers on a customer journey from the second they sign up through their first purchase to any and all subsequent purchases. Welcome and Thank You emails, discount and special offer messages, confirmation emails, reminders, feedback and survey emails are just a few prime examples of emails that promote positive customer experience.

    Go beyond just removing barriers. Create a fantastic digital CX using your brand’s tone of voice, messaging and, of course, helpful email programmes.

    4) Be real and authentic: Better personalisation creates lasting connections
    All consumers are looking for a more personal connection with brands and email marketing holds the key to delivering one. Rather than sending generic bulk emails, be interested in your consumers and send them highly-personalised emails. If you aren’t personal, you aren’t relevant and you are not connecting to your customers.

    Think about dynamic content, behaviour-based personalisation, buyer personas and even utilising AI solutions if they genuinely benefit your plans. By sending consumers highly-personalised, valuable, relevant email campaigns you encourage better engagement and conversion rates. Ah, and remember, make sure your recipients can choose the type of emails they want to get from you; include a link to your preference centre. The more you show consumers you care about them, the better results you’ll achieve.

    Email Design Trends For 2021
    A new year, possibly a new you (thank you New Year’s resolutions!) and why not even a new email design?

    Email design is an essential element to a successful email marketing strategy. Yet, the face of email marketing has changed thanks to the COVID-19 outbreak. However, there’s no need to despair. Instead, put your designer cap on and create something that will definitely turn heads and ultimately increase your engagement. Take a look at the top five email marketing trends for 2021 –

    1) The Minimalist Design
    Overcomplicating things is unnecessary especially when you can drive your point home in a more simple, uncluttered and visually stunning email design.

    Minimalist emails have fewer elements making them less distracting to allow the recipient’s main focus to be what you want them to do. Components such as white space, easy to read typography and muted colours are key to crafting the perfect straightforward attention-grabbing email campaign.

    Fewer words can deliver more meaning. Thus, don’t clutter your email with tons of imagery, weird hard-to-read fonts and numerous call-to-actions (CTA). Keep it short, simple and to the point.

    [​IMG]

    2) CX Boosters
    Customer experience (CX) will forever be altered due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, it’s your responsibility to ensure the customers’ journey will be seamless and swift.

    For some shoppers, online purchases might be a first. For others, it’s an already adopted buying practice. Whatever the case, you must help customers navigate the process as easy as possible. You can easily achieve that with your email marketing campaigns by inserting CX boosters such as –

    a) providing a link to immediately open support chat;
    b) offering website navigation tips; and
    c) answering FAQs regarding purchasing your products/services online

    Here is a prime example of providing good customer experience by MADE

    [​IMG]

    3) The Broken Grid Layout
    It’s not “a must” for your email to always be neatly structured with perfectly aligned columns; and, somewhat boring, overused traditional layout design. A rather surprising email marketing trend for 2021 is the broken grid layout.

    Let’s clear up a few terms first. A grid layout is a structuring and organising method that allows marketers to arrange content such as images, text, buttons and other elements into a certain layout. Keep in mind that a grid layout is rather a concept than a defined method. Take a look at these four grid layout examples

    [​IMG]

    A broken grid layout, in the simplest terms, is an email layout that defies the traditional standard grid layout. It could mean adjusting columns’ width and/or row size; overlapping and/or stacking design elements; adding animation; and, any other tactic going beyond the standard grid designs. A broken grid layout allows email marketers to create unique, visually-engaging, highly-entertaining email campaigns; and, offer a memorable and distinguishable experience to the recipients.

    The fashion brand Zara has done a wonderful job at defining the confines of traditional email layout design with this campaign –

    [​IMG]

    4) Motion in Emails: Videos, GIFs and Cinemagraphs
    Including video content in your marketing emails increases your click-through rate by 65%, decreases unsubscribe rates by 26% and boosts open rates by 19%. Those are some pretty impressive numbers proving video in email has been a major email marketing trend in 2020 and will only increase in popularity in 2021.

    However, email marketers must consider one vital factor when attempting video in email. Many big-time email providers such as Outlook and Yahoo do not allow video playback. Therefore, your best course of action might be either embedding a link to the video leading to your website or YouTube channel or use animated GIFs or cinemagraphs instead. For example, you can implement a GIF rather than a still image; and, link it to a video on your YouTube channel –

    [​IMG]

    5) Join the Dark Side: Dark Mode for Emails
    Back in 2018, Apple added dark mode to its desktop email client. In 2019, iOS mail introduced dark mode, too. Other ESPs, including Gmail, followed suit announcing support for dark mode. Thus, there is no denying it… dark mode is here to stay.

    To brush up on your knowledge, dark mode is a reversed colour palette that uses light-coloured typography, user interface (UI) elements and iconography on dark backgrounds. Dark mode is becoming a rising email marketing trend for 2021 because –

    a) it is easy on the eyes minimising eye-strain;
    b) it reduces screen brightness preserving your mobile device’s battery;
    c) it improves content legibility; and
    d) users may simply prefer darker interfaces

    Take a look at this example by Land’s End, the brand’s navy-clue logo is barely visible in dark mode which could’ve been avoided if they had considered dark mode when designing their email campaign.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    The following email clients and apps currently offer dark mode

    a) mobile apps – iPhone mail, iPad mail, Gmail app (Android and iOS), Outlook app (Android and iOS)
    b) desktop clients – Apple mail, Outlook 2019 (Mac OS and Windows)
    c) web clients – Outlook.com and Hey.com

    Regardless of which email design trend you decide to utilise, make sure you always follow email design best practices and don’t forget to always test your emails before you unleash them on your email list(s).

    Email Automation Trends For 2021

    Analytics + Email Marketing = Triggered Hyper-Personalised Email Campaigns


    This is the perfect formula for a fantastic email marketing automation strategy; and, one of the major email marketing trends for 2021. Have a look at these three email automation techniques you should implement in your email marketing strategy for 2021 –

    1) Welcome email series. If you want to send just a single email you can do so. Yet, email marketing experts found out that creating short onboarding email series is a fantastic way of welcoming new subscribers, setting expectations and boosting your engagement rates.

    [​IMG]


    2) Transactional emails. This type of email presents an opportunity for email marketers to seize the momentum of a recent purchase. Therefore, give the customer information about their purchase/order; but also, use the opportunity to engage them further by either offering similar products/services or asking for their feedback. Keep in mind, transactional emails’ open and click-through rates are eight times higher compared to any other email and they can generate up to six times more revenue.

    [​IMG]

    3) Special occasion emails. With milestone emails such as anniversary and/or birthday emails, email marketers can leverage personalisation and ensure each one of their customers feels special by offering them tailor-made offers and special discounts.

    [​IMG]

    There are limitless possibilities for you to automate your email marketing, think about how you can leverage these techniques to engage your audience.

    Privacy Trends For 2021
    In the world of email marketing, the existence of laws and regulations guarantees you use your email for good, not evil. Yes, there are quite a lot of privacy regulations email marketers must comply with. However, all email marketing laws are focused on one main thing – creating a better email marketing experience for both marketers and recipients.

    Take a look at a few of the benefits brought about by privacy laws –
    • 41% of email marketers witnessed a decrease in unsubscribe rates
    • 76% of email marketers report an increase in open rates
    • 55% of email marketers report a decrease in spam complaints
    • 75% of email marketers report an increase in click-through rates
    If you are sending emails across borders then you have to be 100% compliant with international email marketing legislation. After all, regulations differ from country to country and what makes you compliant in one country could be completely off-limits in another and you might be subject to hefty fines with lots of zeros.

    Have a look at the top six privacy guidelines related to email marketing –

    1) always obtain consent before adding and emailing people
    2) create a privacy policy to provide detailed information about how you collect, use and store users’ data
    3) always keep consent records
    4)
    allow subscribers to revoke consent easily by including an unsubscribe link in every email
    5) never use false or deceptive messaging
    6) clearly show your identity by including a physical address

    Ultimate Guide To Email Marketing Laws >>

    Final Thoughts
    Each email marketer has their one-of-a-kind outlook and an explicit approach of fusing traditional email marketing skills with continually progressing techniques. However, with each new decade, email marketing trends and techniques that have been used in the past might not be as effective and efficient as they have been.

    It doesn’t matter if you are an email marketing veteran or a newbie who’s just starting out with email marketing, separating fleeting fads from new and still developing email marketing trends and evolving best practices can be quite a challenge. However, research and collective experience can help you navigate the changing email marketing landscape.

    2020 has proven pretty challenging, yet email marketing continues to demonstrate an amazing ability to adapt to meet consumers’ ever-changing needs. With these key email marketing trends for 2021, you are ready to face anything the new year throws your way and ensure your email campaigns will be fresh, relevant, focused and, of course, boosting your ROI.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    Email Design Hacks
    2) Email Marketing Trends 2020
    3) How to Create A Successful Email Automation Strategy?
    4) Email Marketing Automation: Busting Common Myths

    This article was originally published on 22 December and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • How To Collect Emails For Email Marketing? Jan 4, 2021

    Email marketing reigns supreme with 91% of consumers rating it as the top marketing communication channel. It not only helps marketers build long-term relationships with their customers but it is a proven way to nurture leads and convert them into long-lasting customers.

    Regardless of the business you operate, your email list is the most important element of a successful email marketing strategy, as well as, the most valuable business asset. If you are starting from scratch, or just want to grow your email list, how do you plan on collecting emails?

    “Focus on growing your list all of the time as newer subscribers are more engaged adding to healthier open rates and ROI.” – Karl Murray


    Your mind-blowing email campaign is ready to be unleashed. However, if there’s no one to send it to, what good is it? If you are wondering how to collect emails or simply add quality subscribers to your email list, you need to ensure two things: 1) you have a method in place to reach people and 2) you have a process in place to collect emails.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following topics:
    1. An email list – definition and stats
    2. Collecting emails for email marketing the right way
    3. How to collect emails: 15 tried-and-tested email list building techniques
    4. How to create a sign up form with EmailOut?
    Ready to dive in?

    By knowing your target audience’s needs and understanding their interests, you can create highly-personalised, compelling offers and content that will entice more people to join your mailing list and convert them into customers. You may lack the time or know-how to create – or expand – a quality email list. There are plenty of challenges to overcome to develop and maintain a healthy email list. However, fortunately for all email marketers, there are lots of tried-and-tested easy methods to collect emails for email marketing.

    What is an email list?
    Before you start running, you first need to learn to walk. Therefore, let’s start with the simple basic – what is an email list?

    An email list is a collection of email addresses (from customers, leads and subscribers) gathered through online (i.e. newsletter sign-ups, websites, lead-generating campaigns, etc.) or in-person (i.e. live events, leveraging business cards, etc.) for the sole purpose of distributing marketing emails to multiple recipients. An email list can shrink as people opt-out (unsubscribe) or due to natural decay or grow depending on the methods used to solicit a person’s contact details.

    Take a look at these statistics –
    • email lists naturally decay by about 22.5% every year
    • roughly one in three US email list subscribers purchase a product/service from a brand they’ve received a marketing email from
    • 42.3% of Americans subscribe to email lists to receive savings and/or discounts
    • 59% of subscribers opt-out from an email list because they receive too many emails
    • 43% of people unsubscribe from an email list because the information they receive is no longer relevant
    • 60% of consumers prefer to sign up for a brand’s email list to receive promotional offers compared to 20% who follow brands on social media for deals
    • 78% of marketers state email list segmentation is THE marketing automation feature they cannot do without
    • 57% of email subscribers spend between 10 to 60 minutes browsing marketing emails during the week
    Now, are you ready to start collecting emails for email marketing? I have compiled a list of 15 list building techniques that will help you collect emails the right way.

    How To Collect Emails The Right Way? 15 Proven Email List Building Tactics
    Email list building can often be quite annoying to the potential subscribers. The tactics email marketers implement to request emails can often affect the users’ experience. If the experience is irritating or, overall, bad – users will just abandon the signup process and leave your website.

    Pop-ups, for example, are considered to be one of the most popular email list building methods. Yet, if you don’t time the pop-up correctly and provide a clear reason for it showing up on your page as well as offering value for the users’ data, you risk not only a drop in website (page) traffic but also an overall poor experience. Therefore, it’s important to familiarise yourself with all possible tactics on how to collect emails the right way.

    Take a look at these 15 email list building techniques
    1. Make sure you have your sign up form hosted on your website – or on a dedicated landing page.
    2. Create a signup call to action button on your business’s Facebook page.
    3. Create captivating and interesting visuals to encourage people to opt-in for your mailing list and publish them across your social media channels.
    4. (post-COVID) Due to the pandemic, trade shows and networking events have been moved to the digital world and can be attended online. Thus, make sure you participate in online networking events and distribute a sign-up link to your email list to the attendees. Remember, make it clear what they are signing up to and how it’ll benefit them and their business.
    5. Set up and host your own online event (i.e. webinars, online training, etc.) and ask the attendees to join your email list to receive more useful information, beneficial content, etc.
    6. Make your email signature work for you by including a link to your sign up form.
    7. Turn your employees into lead-gen machines. Offer an incentive (i.e. financial reward, two additional holiday days, etc.) to each employee that adds new subscribers to your mailing list.
    8. Giveaways with a twist. Offer people a free how-to guide, video tutorial, infographic, whitepaper, ebook, etc. and ask them to sign up to your email list to qualify for whatever you are offering.
    9. Get referrals. Ask your customers and existing subscribers to encourage friends and/or colleagues to sign up to your email list. In exchange, give them a discount.
    10. Use Pinterest! You can use Pinterest for more than just holiday decoration ideas, keto-recipes and fashion tips. You can turn it into your very own lead-gen machine. How? Quite simple. Build an offer, pin it and link it to your awesomely designed sign up/opt-in landing page (check out EmailOut’s newsletter sign up page). Bonus tip: Add a disclaimer on your sign up form ensuring people know their personal information is safe and won’t be used for nefarious purposes.
    11. Take advantage of YouTube. Make and upload tutorials, how-to training videos, product/service reviews videos, vlog series, etc. At the end of each video material include a link to your sign up form and offer viewers the opportunity to join your troops and receive even more valuable, highly useful and relevant content.
    12. Use LinkedIn! Social media is a very powerful tool. Especially if you invest in it. LinkedIn ad formats can help you cater to the growth of your email list. Post your sign up form and sponsor it. Alternatively, just create a sign up call-to-action button on your business’s LinkedIn company page.
    13. Use a lightbox or pop-up overlay. There are different pop-up forms marketers can choose – exit, floating bar, full screen, inline, sidebar, gamification. Each one serves a purpose and requires the marketer’s careful consideration. For example, an exit pop-up (when a person attempts to leave a webpage) can serve as a sign up form encouraging the user to opt-in to your newsletter. An extremely useful tool for adding pop-ups to your website would be OptinMonster.
    14. Each email campaign can work wonders for growing your email list. By including a forward-to-a-friend link, you will not only make sure your subscribers can share your highly-relevant campaigns but also act as lead-gens and help you gain more subscribers. Just make sure each campaign has a call-to-action leading people to your sign up page.
    15. Your blog is a powerful tool. Make sure each one of your blog posts has a clear call-to-action including a link to your sign up form at the end.
    With these tried-and-tested email list building methods, you will no longer wonder how to collect emails and where to start. You utilise all of them then make a cup of tea, relax and monitor how each one performs. Once you have a clear idea of the results, you can pinpoint which method (or methods) deliver the best conversion rates and stick to it.

    How To Create A Free Signup Form with EmailOut?
    When you have a professional email marketing platform on your side, creating a sign up page is a breeze and requires just a few clicks.

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    Why don’t you give it a try? >>>

    Final Thoughts
    There is more than one way to build – and grow – a healthy, high-quality email list. However, before you even start testing any email list building techniques, there are three very important things you need to have in place first.

    1) Knowing your audience. Who are the people you are targeting? What’s their name, job, age, interest? You need to create a buyer persona. Once you do that, crafting the perfect email campaign will be easy.

    2) Nail your landing page. Even if you don’t have a website with all the bells and whistles (which, honestly, you should), all you need for building and growing your email list is a landing page which hosts your sign up form. Actually, according to stats, only 63% of small businesses have a website leaving a whopping 37% of small businesses without a significant online presence!

    3) Maintain a healthy email list. Regardless of starting from scratch or just growing your emails list, you need to make sure you do regular clean-ups of any inactive subscribers. For example, stats point out 30% of subscribers change their email address every year. So, it’s recommended that you clean your email list(s) every 6 months – at minimum.

    Remember, buying or renting email lists no matter how easy it might be, is a huge no-no for email marketing. Why? Permissions.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    Best Practices for Your Email List Management
    2) Does The Name Of Your Email List Matter?
    3) Personalisation 101
    4) Permission-based Email Marketing

    This article was originally published on 21 December and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Digital Marketing News: Twitter, Google And The Future Of Ecommerce Dec 23, 2020

    Will Twitter release a new tweet reply control option? What do you know about Google’s December 2020 Core Update? How did Google Ads improve its lead form extension? What is the future of ecommerce post-COVID?

    “Innovation needs to be part of your culture. Consumers are transforming faster than we are, and if we don’t catch up, we’re in trouble.” – Ian Schafer


    In this article, we’ll cover the following digital marketing news:
    1. Twitter working on a new tweet’s reply option
    2. The release of a new Google Core Update
    3. Google Ads improves its lead form extensions
    4. [Report] The Future Of Ecommerce In 2021
    Ready to dive in?

    Social Media

    Twitter Testing A New Option For Tweet Replies

    Back in August 2020, Twitter rolled out its new tweet reply control options which offered users a new way to manage who can interact with their tweets. Four months later, reverse engineer expert Jane Wong noticed the company is now working on a new addition to the tweet reply control options which, if made available, will allow users to limit their tweet replies to “followers-only”.

    upload_2020-12-23_11-8-13.png

    Currently, the tweet reply options are –
    • Everyone – the default public option
    • People You Follow – limits replies to only the people you follow
    • Only People You Mention – replies are limited only to the @Handle in the tweet
    The new Twitter reply option – “Your Followers Only” – will give Twitterers one more approach to managing replies and control following discussions.

    Why should you care? With this new Twitter reply option, users will be able to facilitate more specific discussions within their Twitter community while also weeding out spammers and trolls. For example, if you want to have more meaningful and informed conversations amongst people within your niche, this new tweet reply option would be extremely useful and beneficial as it will prevent anyone who wants to add spammy replies like a link to their Fiverr account from doing so.

    Search Engine and SEO News

    Google’s December 2020 Core Update

    Google is infamous for its updates. The second it drops a new algorithm and digital marketers are left to interpret the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) data and deduce how their digital marketing efforts will change. In 2020, Google released only two core updates – in January and in May.

    Now, seven months after the last Core Update, Google has rolled out a new Core Update called… the December 2020 Core Update. Original, I know.

    upload_2020-12-23_11-8-54.png

    The May 2020 Core Update was quite big and broad taking Google a couple of weeks to fully roll it out. However, Google’s December 2020 Core Update started rolling out within a few hours of the initial announcement followed by Google’s advice that “as is typical with these updates it would take one to two weeks for the update to fully roll out”.

    As with previous Google Core Updates, the company is quite tight-lipped about what the new algorithm will change and how it will impact digital marketers. The only way to grasp the full extent of the update is to wait for it to fully roll out and see. One digital marketer expressed his anxiousness about the core update with the following brilliant and quite funny Twitter reply.

    For more information about Google’s Core Updates, visit Google Search Central’s blog.

    PPC and Ads News

    Google’s Improvements To The Lead Form Extension

    With people still adjusting to the COVID-19 pandemic, they continue to look for different ways to connect with businesses. In fact, according to Google research, one in three shoppers would prefer to buy from a company offering them a wide range of ways to reach them.

    To help businesses connect with more potential customers, Google Ads introduced (back in August 2020) a new lead form extension focused on driving more high-quality leads across Search, YouTube, Discovery and Display Ads inventory.

    What are lead form extensions? A Google Ads feature that helps advertisers to generate leads by allowing people to submit their information in a form directly within an ad.

    This month, the company announced three new enhancements to the lead form extension which will offer advertisers an easier and more effective way to manage their business.

    1) Easily share your lead forms for more efficiency
    Based on advertiser’s feedback regarding the challenges of managing lead form extensions – especially across campaign types, Google Ads decided to make things easier and help advertisers save time by making lead form extensions easily shareable across Search, YouTube and Discovery campaigns.

    2) More question options
    To make things even easier when creating the lead form and ad message, Google Ads will now offer advertisers a range of over fifty pre-made questions allowing them to customise their lead form to fit their business needs. The benefit of this improvement is that it will route submissions to the correct team (i.e. sales) and add leads to the right email list.

    3) Receive leads automatically
    Previously, advertisers had to download sign-ups manually into a file, save it and then upload it to their email service provider. This process cost advertisers delays in their email automation sequence kicking off causing a lack of engaged leads and higher-than-usual unsubscribe rates. With this new improvement, you will no longer have to worry about following up on a lead on time to close a sale. Advertisers can now set up webhooks which will automatically send leads from the lead form extension directly to their CRM system.

    Digital Marketing News

    The COVID-19 pandemic jump-started a shift in consumer behaviour. With lockdowns, travel bans, shops shutting down and work-from-home orders, ecommerce has peaked exponentially. So, what would the ‘New Normal’ look like for ecommerce?

    Shopify’s newly published report “The Future Of Ecommerce” focuses on outlining ecommerce growth through and beyond the COVID-19 crisis. The report is a combination of Shopify’s global merchant and consumer data to create a framework of trends and predictions on how ecommerce will shift in 2021 based on current consumer behaviour.

    Shopify itself witnessed an unprecedented growth this year as new stores created on the platform grew 71% in Q2 2020 compared to Q1 2020 followed by a record number of merchants added to the platform in Q3 2020.

    Take a look at a few key takeaways from the report –
    • at the height of the COVID-19 crisis, 10 years of ecommerce growth occurred within just 3 months
    • 84% of consumers shopped online during the COVID-19 pandemic
    • 75% of consumers tried different stores, websites or brands during the pandemic
    • almost 49% of consumers stated they’ll shop online more frequently post-COVID
    • 64% of consumers (globally) want their orders shipped for free
    • around 42% of consumers want brands to be socially responsible
    • 50% of global ecommerce sales occur on marketplaces where consumers search for solutions instead of brands
    Shopify interviewed 25+ industry leaders, investors and commerce experts to create “The Future Of Ecommerce” report. To review each trend in-depth and examine the practical steps you can take to future-proof your business, click here.

    Final Thoughts
    Do you have any suggestions or ideas about which digital marketing news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

    EmailOut offers the most generous email marketing software freemium product for professional micro-businesses and SMEs across the globe coupled with the very best rates for large volume corporate senders. Take a look now.

    This article was originally published on 6 December and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Email Industry News: Microsoft 365 and Gmail Dec 18, 2020

    How many Microsoft 365 accounts were targeted in the most recent email spoofing campaign? Is Google really about to delete your Gmail content next year?

    “An email can make or break a potential opportunity, so send – and respond – to emails wisely.” – Leila Lewis


    In this article, we’ll cover the following email industry news:
    1. Microsoft 365: Phishing email campaigns target 200 million accounts
    2. Gmail: Your content could be deleted soon
    Let’s dive in.

    200M Microsoft 365 Accounts Targeted In A Phishing Email Attack
    A large-scale, well-organised email spoofing campaign targeted 200 million Microsoft 365 users particularly in the financial services, health care, insurance, manufacturing, utilities and telecom sectors.

    The cybercriminals were leveraging a domain spoofing technique to create emails that mimic supposedly legitimate Microsoft.com addresses (i.e. [email protected]). According to Ironscale’s VP of R&D Lomy Ovadia, “the attack is comprised of a realistic-looking email that attempts to persuade users to take advantage of a relatively new Office 365 capability that allows for them to reclaim emails that have been accidentally marked as spam or phishing messages.”

    Once the recipients click on the link in the email copy promising to take them to a secure portal where they can review and act on the so-called ‘quarantine messages’, they will be asked to enter their legitimate Microsoft credentials on a fake authentication page which will, consequently, be harvested and most likely sold on the dark web.

    Businesses keen on preventing such phishing attacks are advised to ensure their defences by configuring email authentication protocols, such as DMARC, built precisely to block domain spoofing.

    Google Warns Gmail, Drive and Photos Users About Possible Content Deletion
    As standard, Google accounts come with 15GB free storage. This allowance is shared amongst three Google products – Drive, Photos and Gmail.

    However, new rules are coming into force next year; and, they will put your content at risk if you are not checking-in every two years. According to Express, the company has begun emailing users of its three most popular products notifying them of the upcoming change –

    We are writing to let you know that we recently announced new storage policies for Google Accounts using Gmail, Google Drive (including Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Forms and Jamboard files) and/or Photos that bring us in line with industry practices. Since you have previously used one or more of these products in your Google Account storage, we wanted to tell you about the new policies well before they go into effect on June 1, 2021.

    Google’s email notification continues by clarifying that if users have been inactive for 2 years in Gmail, Drive or Photos, the company may delete the content into the product(s) in which you are inactive. Furthermore, the company also states that if users exceed their storage limit for 2 years, they may delete your content across Gmail, Drive and Photos.

    The good news is Google will notify users multiple times before taking deletion actions. Moreover, the earliest date users will find their content removed is June 21, 2023, since the new policies will not come into effect till June 2021 after which Google users will have two years to comply.

    You can read more about Google’s update to storage policies here.

    Final Thoughts
    Do you have any suggestions or ideas about which email industry news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

    EmailOut offers the most generous email marketing software freemium product for professional micro-businesses and SMEs across the globe coupled with the very best rates for large volume corporate senders. Take a look now.

    This article was originally published on 6 December and can be found here.
  • How Does COVID-19 Change Email Marketing? Dec 15, 2020

    The COVID-19 outbreak caused an unprecedented shift in consumer’s behaviour and created new unexpected challenges for businesses. Everything marketers thought they knew about their consumers changed exponentially.

    Despite all the years of carefully monitoring email marketing KPIs and optimising email campaigns, marketers were left navigating uncharted waters in a desperate attempt to stay afloat during the pandemic. Many businesses had to adjust their short and long-term email marketing strategies to ensure a successful and effective transition to a post-pandemic email marketing world.

    “Email marketing is – and will always be – both consumers and marketers’ most trusted communication channel, especially during a time of crisis.” –
    EmailOut

    With the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, global lockdowns and work-from-home orders, the business world witnessed a rapid shift in email marketing behaviour. Nevertheless, email remained a significant driving force behind consumer’s purchasing decisions and will, most likely, continue to be the most trusted, go-to marketing channel preferred by consumers – and marketers – in the future. But, how did the COVID-19 pandemic affect email marketing? Did email marketers increase or decrease their sending volume? What was the consumers’ response to COVID-19 pandemic? What would email marketing post-COVID-19 look like?

    In this article, we’ll cover the following email marketing post-COVID-19 topics:
    1. Businesses’ reactions to the COVID-19 pandemic
    2. Email providers’ reactions to the pandemic
    3. Email subscribers’ reactions to the COVID-19 mayhem
    4. Post-COVID-19 email marketing
    Ready to dive in?

    Within a few months of the COVID-19 outbreak (March 2020), businesses switched their communications into high gear and started pouring more and more resources into reaching their consumers through email. Even companies who did not initially invest in email marketing software or previously developed a strategy began to change their ways to remain in business. By April 2020, overall email sending volumes were skyrocketing.

    As people increasingly stayed and worked from home, their online shopping behaviour changed causing ecommerce purchases to soar.
    • global traffic to ecommerce platforms rose almost 12% from January (when the virus was first identified) to March (when COVID-19 started spreading)
    • the amount of unique digital shoppers in Q1 2020 rose 40% YoY (year-over-year)
    • in March 2020, YoY unique page views and order counts reached 15% and 21% respectively, before skyrocketing in April 2020 to 88% and 96%
    However, what is email marketing’s role in driving online sales during the pandemic? What do consumers think about email as a communication channel during the COVID-19 mayhem? How does consumers’ engagement impact email marketing KPIs such as open, click-through and click-to-open rates?

    How Businesses Reacted To The COVID-19 Pandemic?
    The pandemic affected businesses in various ways across all industries. From disruption in services through shortages of goods to shutdowns, the COVID-19 outbreak turned email marketing – and the world – upside down.

    The first noticeable change was the way companies were reacting to the disturbance caused by the pandemic; and, how businesses had pivoted their short-term email marketing strategies to adapt to the ‘new normal’. The two main responses to the pandemic were –

    1) Shift in email topics and keywords
    In early spring, when email marketers initially began to respond to the pandemic, many had urgent COVID-related news and messages they wanted to pass to their subscribers. From changing working hours and open/closed locations through safety protocols to updates on products/services, all industries were focused on delivering important information to their consumer base to ensure customer retention.

    Email campaigns’ subject lines during that period were a clear reflection of the rapid change caused by the pandemic. More and more emails sent from March 2020 onward contained language focused on keywords such as “coronavirus”, “COVID”, “important”, “update”, etc. As COVID-19 spread, subject lines became more focused on emotions with keywords like “safe”, “community”, “together”, etc. Traditional email marketing keywords such as “free”, “sale”, “new”, etc. continued to be part of subject lines and email copy, too.

    Since the first lockdown, internet usage has increased by 70% and open rates were boosted by 25% week-on-week. As an email marketer, would you want to miss that opportunity?

    Even now, with a second lockdown already behind us (in the U.K.), people are still looking for information on how to deal with the mayhem. Therefore, make the most of the peak in engagement and increase your email communication to offer your consumers highly-personalised, useful, relevant and exciting content to keep them engaged and entertained.

    2) Increase in email sending volume
    With the stay-at-home orders, working from home and not one but two lockdowns, businesses predicted subscribers would also begin to ‘consume’ more emails and they were right.

    During the early weeks of the pandemic, email send volumes skyrocketed and remained high ever since. Granted, some businesses (depending on industry) are sending more than ever before; while others have decreased the number of sent emails. This is how average email send volumes changed across five industries since the COVID-19 outbreak –
    • Health Care – 66% increase between mid and end-March
    • Financial Services – 47% increase at the beginning of March
    • Technology & Hi-Tech – 47% decrease at the beginning of May
    • Communication – 30.5% decrease in mid-March
    • Sports & Activities – 36% decrease at the beginning of March
    How Email Providers Reacted To The Pandemic?
    During the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses became more liberal and less discriminating about their mailing lists. Companies threw careful segmentation out the window and started sending crisis communications to their entire subscribe base regardless of past subscriber engagement.

    Due to this, senders encountered delivery issues, spam filters and recipients’ complaints. Furthermore, email providers and ISPs routinely filtered, flagged and blocked domains with a ‘spamming’ reputation; making it quite difficult or even impossible to get placement in the subscribers’ inbox.

    Normally, sending more emails to less discriminated email lists will result in more filtering, spam traps and significant hits on the sender’s reputation. However, due to the exceptional nature of the crisis, that’s not precisely what email providers witnessed. There were, indeed, drastic increases in spam trap hits in the beginning and middle of March. However, by mid-April, the spam traps metrics had stabilised; senders were no longer facing significant hits on their deliverability rates.

    The reason: Mailbox providers that have been steadily strengthening their reject algorithms over the past years have loosened their logic (to an extent) since the start of the pandemic allowing more emails to be delivered. In fact, COVID-19-related emails were around 2% more likely to reach the subscribers’ inbox compared to non-COVID-related emails.

    The average email marketing metrics (across all industries) for April 2020 –
    • Average open rate – 21%
    • Average CTR – 3%
    • Average CTOR – 15% (2% increase compared to March)
    • Average unsubscribe rate – 0.14%
    • Average bounce rate – almost 1%
    Based on email marketing metrics (and stats), the most optimal day to send emails during the pandemic is Monday. The best day for highest CTOR and lowest unsubscribe rate is Sunday.

    With in-store shopping mostly unavailable, lockdowns and work-from-home orders, consumers on a global scale had no other option but to turn their focus on online shopping. It’s only natural for marketers to up their email marketing game with the amount of time people were spending online. Hence, email became the primary go-to source for product discovery, possible discount finding, delivering valuable content, etc. during the pandemic.

    The bottom line: Email subscribers, as well as consumers, are more interested than ever in what businesses have to say and/or offer (via email) during the COVID-19 pandemic. Always, always monitor your campaign reports to evaluate the performance; and, of course, optimise your email the best way you can to deliver an excellent highly-personalised experience to your audience.

    How Email Subscribers Reacted To The COVID-19 Mayhem?
    The most important email metric for all marketers has always been the audience’s engagement. Since the start of the pandemic until recent days, email subscribers have exponentially changed their email habits and consumer behaviour.

    Initially, subscribers were especially engaged with COVID-19-related emails as it was top of mind. This, of course, proved to be quite fortunate for senders as the major portion of their email sending volume was primarily related to the pandemic. However, as the year progressed, subscribers’ engagement levelled. Stats point out that email subscribers were 30% more likely to open a COVID-19-related email during the first few weeks of the pandemic, with open rates for such emails especially spiking during the weekend.

    However, despite the subscriber’s tolerance for pandemic-related emails being high, COVID-19 complaint rates spiked compared to non-COVID complaints reaching as high as 8.2% in mid-March.

    The bottom line: Email marketing post-COVID-19 (and during) has changed exponentially. Thus, to stay afloat, email marketers and businesses must adjust their long-term email marketing strategy. Monitor your email campaigns’ performance; evaluate the results; and, if necessary, make adjustments to maximise the impact of your campaigns with perfectly optimised, on-point, highly-personalised and uber relevant emails.

    Email Marketing Post-COVID-19
    It’s been 10 months since the pandemic’s outbreak. Businesses’, email providers’ and subscribers’ response to it have now settled into a somewhat predictable pattern.

    Companies have dialled down on pandemic-centred emails with only around 3% of their total sending volumes including COVID-related keywords. Yet, they have not completely returned to their pre-COVID email strategies and sending volumes. Rather, they have adapted their email marketing to meet the new reality and deliver an excellent consumer experience. Most marketers have returned to normal email campaigns with traditional call-to-action (CTA) such as “sale”, ”now”, “daily”, etc.

    Consumers’ email habits and purchase behaviour have completely changed during and post-COVID-19 due to the numerous lockdowns, work-from-home orders and in-store unavailability.
    • 48% of consumers have increased their online shopping since the pandemic’s outbreak
    • 91% of consumers consider email as their preferred communication channel
    • 25% of consumers are willing to share their personal data to gain a more personalised experience and offers
    • 88% of global consumers are planning to stick with the brands they switched to over the lockdown(s) rather than revert back
    • 32% of consumers in the UK have switched to less expensive products/services to save money compared to 31% in the U.S.
    • 45% of consumers are using mobile devices for shopping since the COVID-19 outbreak
    Overall, consumers of different ages and across different locations have exponentially changed their habits and patterns since the outbreak. Most have moved to digital channels as a means to engage with brands while they cope with the pandemic; with email reigning supreme above all other marketing communication channels.

    Final Thoughts
    The impact of COVID-19 had the entire world reeling. While initially businesses and subscribers struggled to adjust and adapt to the ‘New Normal’, now things have somewhat settled. Yet, one thing will remain altered by the pandemic and that is consumers’ behaviour.

    It is quite impossible to say with certainty what email marketing post-COVID-19 will look like. (I would, but my crystal ball got lost in the mayhem.) What you can do to ensure your business’s survival is to follow email marketing best practices, always test, constantly monitor and be vigilant about how and what you communicate to your targeted audience. Understand what your subscribers and consumers need and make sure you deliver.

    Furthermore, the increase in open, click-through and click-to-open rates is a very clear indication that email marketing is and will remain the driving force behind consumers’ purchasing decisions. Thus, it’s highly likely that email will continue to be the most trusted go-to marketing channel in the future. Take advantage of that and adjust your long-term email marketing strategy accordingly.

    Lastly, follow three simple steps to ensure your email marketing post-COVID-19 will not fall short –

    1) consider the worth of your email – is the information you’re sharing unique and important to your target audience?

    2) maximise your email campaign’s impact – email marketing KPIs across the board have increased proving the subscribers’ eagerness to hear from your business. However, don’t abuse this, keep delivering value to your audience without overwhelming or, worse, annoying the recipients.

    3) test, observe and optimise – from subject lines and email copy through sending times to email layout and overall design, make sure you’ve tested all variables (one at a time) if you want to deliver the most highly-personalised, relevant and valuable experience to your subscribers and consumers.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    How To Improve Your Sender Reputation?
    2) 12 Call-To-Action Examples That Convert
    3) The Ultimate Guide To Email Marketing Laws
    4) Email Personalisation 101

    This article was originally published on 8 December and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Resending Emails: Should I Or Shouldn’t I? Dec 14, 2020

    Do you know what every email marketer’s nightmare is? Low open and click-through rates. The amount of time and effort you spent on crafting the perfect email campaign just doesn’t seem worth it for a handful of opens. So, should you resend emails to non-openers to boost your open and click-through rates?

    You might think resending emails sounds redundant since your recipients already ignored your campaign the first time. However, according to stats, resending emails to non-openers can boost your campaign’s initial open rate by almost 9%. So, why not make a first impression – twice?

    “An email without clarity is like an annoying mime: Just say what you want or get out the way!” – Jordie van Rijn


    Customers receive emails on top of email every day. It’s quite easy for your email campaign to get lost in their inbox. Therefore, you need to remember that not everyone on your email list will read every single email you send them. However, by resending emails to non-openers, you will effectively pull ahead of the competition while also boosting your open and click-through rates as well as your ROI.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following topics:
    1. Resending emails – insights
    2. Why should you even bother resending emails?
    3. Resending emails best practices
    4. How to resend emails to non-openers with EmailOut?
    Ready to dive in?

    Crafting a single email requires quite a lot of work. From conceptualising and copywriting through designing and testing to sending and monitoring, there’s no doubt that quality emails take time. But, when you witness your hard work generating poor results and low ROI then have someone like me suggest you should try it again it’s easy to get discouraged and think “why should I even bother?”

    In the past, email marketers had to manually resend emails to non-openers to avoid bombarding – and annoying – recipients with the same content. However, today, you can automate the entire process with just a couple of clicks simply by choosing the right email marketing software.

    Ready to find out whether you should or shouldn’t resend emails to non-openers?

    Resending Emails: Definition and Insight
    Resending emails
    or remailing (also referred to as follow up email marketing) is an email marketing strategy that allows marketers to resend emails to recipients who did not open a campaign the first time they received it (known as non-openers).

    The goal of resending emails is to avoid your genius email campaign falling flat. Instead of despairing the low initial performance, you can go back to the drawing board and with a few tweaks improve your email campaign’s open and engagement rates.

    Furthermore, recipients read emails on everything from the traditional desktop through smartphones and tablets to the smartwatch on their wrist. However, they don’t always take action. Thus, by resending emails you can place your email towards the top of the inbox, spark their interest and add some more “Oomph!” to your bottom line. Be careful and don’t overdo it though. You want recipients to engage, not be annoyed.

    An important element to consider with resending emails is permissions. When a person agrees to be on your mailing list, they have given you their permission. However, how far does that permission go? Does it cover resending emails to the same subscribers when they didn’t open them in the first place? If recipients explicitly agreed to receive marketing emails then the answer is yes, you can resend your emails to them.

    Ah, it’s important to remember that resending all of your email campaigns is unnecessary. One or two emails should do the trick.

    Resending Emails: Should Or Shouldn’t You
    Resending emails will give you a second chance at making a great first impression.

    There are six reasons why you should implement resending emails in your email marketing strategy –
    1) 8 out of 10
    promotional emails never get opened because –
    • recipients fail to notice your email in their inbox
    • your campaign’s subject line doesn’t catch the recipient’s attention
    • contacts who’ve opted-in haven’t opened, clicked or engaged (inactive subscribers) with your email campaigns in any way for a predetermined period of time (3, 6, 12 or more months)
    If you have inactive subscribers on your email lists, try to re-engage them instead of saying “Goodbye!” However, if your recipients failed to notice your email or the subject line failed to lure them in, instead of giving up, give your email campaign another chance by resending it.

    2) you get a second chance to engage your recipients and significantly improve your campaign’s performance

    3) resending emails is extremely time-efficient since it takes only as much time as composing a new subject line

    4) resending your most important email campaigns will not harm your email lists and sender’s reputation IF you follow best practice and keep your lists clean

    5) you can schedule automated resends for soft bounces (i.e. temporary deliverability issues like full inbox)

    6) the most significant benefit of resending emails is not only the increase in open and click-through rates but also the growth in sales

    There is only one reason why you shouldn’t resend emails –
    1)
    simply because stats and research says it’s the best way to improve results

    Don’t get me wrong, learning from other’s experiences (both their success and failure) is beneficial in various ways. However, no two cases are the same. Thus, what worked for one business might not necessarily work for another. It’s all about testing, monitoring and improving. It’s a learning curve.

    Overall, while resending emails can breathe new life into your campaigns and improve your email marketing KPIs, you ultimately need a bigger goal behind your second try. After all, what’s an open or a click-through worth if it does not lead to conversion be it a subscription or a purchase?

    Resending Emails Best Practices
    As an email marketer, you know how essential your email campaign’s content is for the success of your strategy. Thus, whenever you are resending emails do your best to follow these top five best practices

    1) Variety is the spice of life.
    You can resend emails to non-openers just the way they are, however, why don’t you spice the email’s design a bit? Switch the colour palette. Add a fun image. Tweak the structure/layout. If you are about to have a second go, isn’t it better to ensure you’ve done everything possible to improve your chances? By spicing up the design of the resent emails, your recipients won’t get a weird deja vu when they finally open your email.

    2) Work smarter, not harder. Use segmentation.
    At first, you might feel slightly uncomfortable and unsure about sending the same email twice to the same recipients. However, it’s important to remember that non-openers never saw the campaign in the first place. Thus, they have no idea what’s in your email.

    So, instead of making the mistake of bombarding the same recipients with the same content, make sure you’ve segmented your email list accordingly. This way, you will ensure the right people get the right message at the right time.

    With EmailOut (the best Mailchimp alternative), creating segments is extremely easy. You can now target single email lists or behaviours such as non-openers and/or specific link clicks.

    With EmailOut, segmenting your non-openers is remarkably easy – try it out.

    3) Don’t disregard frequency. Get your timing right.
    Despite non-openers well… not opening your email, they will still recognise the sender name in their inbox. Therefore, be careful when you resend emails. If you resend too quickly after the first email campaign, you risk the email ending in the spam folder or worse, people unsubscribing. There are numerous stats regarding the best sending times, however, they might not apply to you. Nevertheless, this is what my extensive research showed –
    • the perfect days of the week to send emails are Tuesday and Thursday
    • the optimal time of day for sending email campaigns is between 8 a.m. – 10 a.m.
    However, the recommended time for resending emails is 48 hours after the first campaign was sent.

    4) Subject line makeover.
    If your subject line didn’t catch the recipient’s attention enough to result in an open, why would you use the same one when resending an email? Even if you make no other changes, make sure to update the subject line – every time. Take a look at your reporting. Were there any particular subject lines that grabbed the recipients’ attention and got a positive response?

    5) Emphasise your call-to-action (CTA).
    The call-to-action is the most important element of any email campaign, especially resent ones since your goal is to persuade the recipient to take action – convert. It’s not necessary to make major changes to your call-to-action. Small, impactful tweaks such as colour change or button size will do the trick. Just make sure the CTA placement is noticeable and the message engaging.

    It’s essential to remember that you should not resend more than once. If your recipients have already ignored your email campaign twice, they are not interested and will not open further follow-up emails – move on.

    How To Resend Emails To Non-Openers with EmailOut?
    Resending emails to non-openers with EmailOut requires marketers to create a segment for non-openers which can be done in a few simple and easy steps.

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    Once you’ve created the segment, resending your emails is even easier. All you have to do is copy the campaign you initially sent (it’ll show up in Drafts), make the necessary changes (subject line, different imagery, tweaked CTAs, etc.), follow the steps and when you reach the final step, select the segment tab > choose your segment and then hit send (or schedule).

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    The best part about using EmailOut to resend your emails to non-openers is not only that it’s extremely easy to do it, but also it allows you to drive the message home – again – without having to create a shiny new campaign from scratch.

    Try it out now with a FreeForever account >>>

    Final Thoughts
    Resending emails to non-openers (or non-clickers) is a game-changer that will have a huge impact on your open, click-through and engagement rates as well as ROI.

    Regardless of the situation, be it making a mistake in the email copy or recipients not acknowledging your email due to a poor subject line (non-openers), resending emails is the perfect way to rectify that and make a great first impression a second time. Make sure you are using best practice and you’ll witness a massive improvement in your email campaign’s performance.

    With the right professional email marketing software on your side, resending emails will be quick and easy to implement. Thus, you have no excuse for not trying it out. After all, you can only gain from utilising this strategy.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    27 Top-Notch Email Subject Lines
    2) Email Design Best Practices
    3) The Ultimate Email Checklist

    This article was originally published on 7 December and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Email List Segmentation Best Practices Nov 30, 2020

    Your email database is the most valuable element of your email marketing strategy. Your subscribers’ interests, goals and needs differ. You can’t send all of them the same email. To deliver highly-personalised, relevant and valuable content perfectly tailored for each subscriber, you need email list segmentation.

    A good email marketing strategy depends on having a strong, loyal and healthy email list that will maintain high deliverability rates. Obviously, all email marketers focus on building and maintaining high-quality email lists. However, the true email experts nurture evergreen email lists by focusing on the following email list segmentation best practices to really achieve top results.

    “A small list that wants exactly what you are offering is better than a bigger list that isn’t committed.” – Ramsay Leimenstoll


    Is your goal an increase in open and click-through rates as well as decrease unsubscribe rates? Email list segmentation is an extremely powerful approach which can help you achieve that and boost your email marketing campaigns’ performance. With a well-managed email list, you can send more personalised high converting email campaigns. Yet, figuring out the best approach to segment your email list can be quite daunting. Instead of wasting precious time trying to figure it all out, take advantage of these email list segmentation best practices.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following email list segmentation topics:
    1. What is email list segmentation?
    2. Types of email list segmentation
    3. Why is email list segmentation important?
    4. Top 8 email list segmentation best practices
    Let’s dive in.

    Email List Segmentation: Definition, Types and Importance
    What is email list segmentation?
    A targeting technique used by email marketers to divide their email list into smaller groups (segments) based on specific criteria. Usually, email segmentation is used as a personalisation method to deliver more relevant and valuable email campaigns to your subscribers. Each segmented email list helps email marketers cater to their subscribers’ independent needs/interests rather than crafting and sending one generic email campaign to all.

    The top six types of email list segmentation are –

    1) Demographic list segmentation
    Information like age, gender, job occupancy and income level can tell you quite a lot about a subscriber. The more demographic information you can obtain during the sign-up process, the better chance you’ll have to create a more highly targeted segmented email list. However, be careful. Asking for too much personal information from the get-go can spook people from signing up at all.

    2) Geographic list segmentation
    This type of email list segmentation helps marketers divide their subscribers based on location and send them targeted email campaigns at the right time (different time-zones and all). It is also quite valuable for businesses where location greatly influences people’s purchasing decisions. By segmenting your email list using geographical location, you can more easily target your email campaigns based on regional factors such as local customs and holidays, events, special location-based offers and even the weather.

    3) B2B and B2C list segmentation
    You may have multiple marketing channels, some B2B, some B2C, clearly, you cannot and should not send a B2B email aimed at a sales manager or marketing specialist to a housewife that would be buying your product directly from a retail store.

    Segmenting between B2B & B2C is obvious but many marketers miss the opportunity to fine-tune each of these audiences further either with specific content or based on previous behaviour or both.

    4) Content-specific list segmentation
    To utilise this type of email list segmentation, you will have to rely on specific subscribers’ data. Demographic, geographic, behavioural and psychographic data are the most common variables contributing to content-specific list segmentation. The more you know about your subscribers, the better you’d be able to segment your email list. Examples: What page (or pages) did the person visit on your website? If they downloaded content what was it and where did they download it from? Did they buy anything?

    5) Behavioural list segmentation
    This is the most powerful email list segmentation type because the subscribers are being segmented based on real actions. Essentially, your subscribers will be divided into segmented email lists based on their behavioural patterns. Examples: How long did a person stay on your website or a specific page? On an average visit, how many pages do people view? Are visitors impulse buyers – visit and quickly buy? Or, are the nervous buyers – visiting your website a few times a week, adding the same products/services into the shopping cart and then cancelling?

    The best types of behavioural email list segmentation are based on –
    • purchase behaviour
    • benefits
    • lifecycle stage
    • level of engagement
    • occasion
    • customer satisfaction
    • customer loyalty
    Behavioural email list segmentation will help you improve targeting accuracy, provide better-personalised email campaigns and experience, sift engaged and unengaged subscribers and make tracking success easier.

    6) Influencer list segmentation
    Customer loyalty is no longer just about purchase amounts and purchase frequency. It’s also about who recommends your brand. Examples: Do you have any testimonials or reviews? Who has given them? Do you have people sharing your brand on social media? Who are they? Which social media platform are they sharing on? Subscribers who’ve become voluntary brand ambassadors must be appreciated and nurtured. Place them in a special segmented email list and show them some love so that they will continue sharing your content providing a boost to your business.

    Why is email list segmentation important? It is proven that segmenting your email list will increase open and click-through rates, as well as, decrease unsubscribe rates. Furthermore, it will also help improve your email marketing campaigns’ performance and maintain a robust email database. Ah, if you are wondering, it’s equally important for both B2B and B2C email marketing.

    Think about this, you have a huge email list with all kinds of subscribers with different needs, interests, desires and goals. Do you want to send them highly-personalised, extremely relevant valuable email campaigns that will convert? If the answer is “Yes!” (as it should be) then you need to segment your email list. What better way to do that than utilising email list segmentation best practices?

    What is a healthy email list? Any email list that has good deliverability, frequent new subscribers, high open, click-through and conversion rates (engagement) and low bounce and unsubscribe rates is a healthy one. However, to have a healthy email list, you need to implement constant monitoring, follow email marketing best practices and keep your email list clean.

    Email List Segmentation Best Practices
    You’ve spent time on organically growing your email list – without any shortcuts like buying or renting lists, you will have to nurture and monitor them to keep them strong and healthy. Yet, email list management is often overlooked as other matters take precedence. However, poor neglected email lists with disengaged subscribers can cause many problems – decrease in email deliverability, negative impact on email marketing KPIs, increase in bounce and unsubscribe rates, poor sender reputation and inevitably, the potential collapse of your entire email marketing strategy. But, with the help of email list segmentation best practices, you will be able to monitor and protect your most valuable email marketing asset – your database.

    1) Choose A Suitable Email Provider
    Before you start with segmentation, you need professional email marketing software that offers an email list segmentation feature amongst email automation and analytics. Preferably one that’ll offer you all these and more without costing you an arm and a leg.

    Open a FREE account with EmailOut and take a look >>>

    2) Create Buyer Personas
    A buyer persona is a semi-fictional research-and-data-based profile depicting your ideal targeted customer. By knowing your subscribers, you’ll be able to create buyer personas based on their traits, characteristics, interests, needs, desires, motivations, choices, purchase preferences, etc. Afterwards, you’ll just have to segment your subscribers based on common, mutual criteria.

    For example, subscribers interested in Android mobile devices will go into segmented email list “A” and subscribers interested in Apple mobile devices will go into segmented email list “B”. Keep in mind, buyer personas not only make email list segmentation easier, but they also help with creating valuable relevant content.

    3) Figure Out Which Subscriber Goes Where
    You’ve already gathered enough information about your subscribers. Now, it’s time to analyse it and choose the best segmentation approach. It all depends on your business. For example, if you are selling a healthy way of living, you will drive segmentation for people who love sports, athletes, vegetarians, vegans, people with health issues, overprotective parents (*wink*), etc.

    4) Start With Simple Email Segments And Evolve
    There’s no reason to make your life harder by trying to create and leverage all possible segmentation straight from the get-go. Instead, settle on a simpler email list segmentation model that involves 2 or 3 segments. Remember, you can always add more segments down the road as you continue learning more about your subscribers and consequently, perfecting your email list segmentation to a “T”.

    5) Keep Collecting Information About Your Subscribers
    People signed up for your mailing list for a reason be it to get more information about a product/service, receive valuable and beneficial content or stay up-to-date with recent news. However, the basic data you’ve collected about them on signup won’t allow you to personalise your email campaigns to the highest level. To do that, you’ll need to keep collecting personal information. The more you know about your subscribers, the better you can personalise your email campaigns and deliver relevant, valuable content that converts.

    For example, allow your subscribers to periodically update their profile information and preferences. A simple link to your preference centre will do the trick. If initially, they are not interested in participating, maybe consider offering them an incentive – a special discount on a product they showed interest in or two-weeks free access to a service, anything that will persuade subscribers to take any action and end up with you knowing more about them.

    6) Maintain Healthy Email Lists
    By now, you know how important a healthy email list is for the success of your email marketing strategy. However, there might be some inactive subscribers that just sit in your email list costing you money. That’s right, most email marketing platforms charge based on subscribers. Thus, you must ensure that you maintain a clean, strong, healthy and engaged database.

    Email databases naturally decay by about 22.5% every year. Therefore, with inactive subscribers and email list decay in mind, you need to clean your email lists periodically. These are some of the things you need to consider when doing a data clean-up –
    • remove duplicate email addresses
    • remove email addresses with typos
    • update (if possible) invalid email addresses – if not delete them
    • delete email addresses that bounced (soft and hard bounces)
    ^All of these features are automatic with EmailOut – try it out now.

    7) Do You Have Permission To Send?
    Email marketing is permission-based. Therefore, if you have not obtained explicit consent from the people on your email list, you are violating email marketing laws.

    Furthermore, emailing people without their consent kills trust, causes open and click-through rates to stagnate, forces recipients to report your emails as spam subsequently dragging down your deliverability rate and lastly, damaging your sender reputation. You might even end up on a blacklist. Do your due diligence and remember, never buy or rent email lists from third-parties. It is probably illegal within your jurisdiction, if not it certainly is not best practice. Purchased subscribers have not given YOU permission to email them.

    8) Allow People to Easily Unsubscribe
    If the goal is to keep people on your email list, isn’t it kind of wrong to make unsubscribing easy? Has that thought ever crossed your mind?

    If someone wants to opt-out (unsubscribe), they will – one way or another. There’s no point in hiding the unsubscribe link. However, if you decide to be cheeky, keep two very important things in mind –

    1) if subscribers don’t see a way to unsubscribe, they’ll mark you as a spammer
    2) it is a legal requirement to include an unsubscribe option in all of your emails

    There are four main reasons for people to unsubscribe –

    1) irrelevant content – the content they are getting is not what they signed up for
    2) overwhelming email frequency – bombarding subscribers with emails is not the path to success. Instead, choose an email frequency that works for you AND your recipients. Why not allow the subscriber to tell you how often they want to hear from you?
    3) spammy looking emails – from the subject line to the overly salesy language in email copy, your email should not be riddled with spam triggers that will annoy subscribers
    4) recipients have no clue who you are – people might’ve forgotten they signed up or someone else might’ve used their email address to opt-in (my Mum used mine when she signed up for online zumba classes) make sure your recipients know why they are receiving your emails

    The same way your subscription process is easy, fast and painless, you should ensure unsubscribing is also fuss-free.

    Final Thoughts
    No matter how much you want to grow your email list and increase your revenue, remember that quality is better than quantity. Therefore, grow your email list organically – never buy or rent lists.

    Email list segmentation might be slightly daunting but it has an incredible potential that will empower your marketing. There is pretty much no limit to the personalisation of your email campaigns when using it. Not only does email list segmentation help you generate more revenue, but it also resonates with your targeted audience better because your email campaigns’ purpose is solely focused on the subscribers’ profile (needs, interest, occupation, location, goals, income, age, gender, etc.). Consequently, all of that effort is reflected in your ever-increasing email marketing KPIs.

    Bottom line: whether you are reaching out to new subscribers, trying to re-engage old ones, promoting products/services or delivering valuable content, smart segmentation and utilising email list segmentation best practices will help you meet your subscribers where they are and deliver hyper-focused, highly-personalised, perfectly-targeted and relevant email campaigns.

    Are you ready to start segmenting your email lists? Give EmailOut a try and master email list segmentation today.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    The Truth About Bought/Rented Email Lists
    2) Writing Marketing Emails 101
    3) Email List Building Secrets

    This article was originally published on 9 November and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • The Ultimate Guide To Email Marketing Laws Nov 20, 2020

    In the world of email marketing, the existence of laws and regulations guarantees you use your email for good, not evil. You’ve heard of email marketing laws like the CAN-SPAM Act, GDPR, CASL and the UK’s Data Protection Act 1998, right?

    All these email marketing laws outline a number of conditions email marketers are required to follow to avoid not only damage to their sender reputation but also, being slapped with hefty fines. As intimidating as this sounds, if you are using professional email marketing software to send your email campaigns, you are most likely already in compliance with most email marketing legislation.

    “If you think compliance with email marketing laws is expensive, try non-compliance.” – EmailOut


    Spam continues to be a massive issue on a global scale. All around the world, governments have worked hard to put laws and regulations in place to protect people from malicious unsolicited emails. Many email marketers are aware of local email marketing laws, however, when it comes to international regulations, their knowledge is somewhat lacking. Since email marketers are required to comply with so many email marketing laws, it’s inevitable for things to get a bit overwhelming and confusing.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following email marketing laws:
    1. The U.S.
      • Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography And Marketing (CAN-SPAM) Act of 2003
      • the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)
    2. The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
    3. Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)
    4. Australia’s Spam Act of 2003
    5. The UK
      • Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) (EC Directive) 2003
      • Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018
    6. China
      • Consumer Rights Protection Law 2013
      • Measures of the Administration of Internet Email Services 2006
    7. Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Act 2012 (PDPA)
    8. Brazil’s Lei Geral de Proteção de Dados Pessoais (LGPD)
    Ready to dive in?

    You’ve organically built a high-quality email list. Your email template is unique and overall, amazing. The email campaign’s copy is well written, engaging and relevant. It appears you have everything you need to unleash your email into the world. But… are you sure you’re compliant with all email marketing laws?

    If you are sending emails across borders then you most certainly have to be very familiar and 100% compliant with international email marketing legislation. After all, regulations differ from country to country and what makes you compliant in one country could be completely off-limits in another and you might be subject to hefty fines with lots of zeros.

    Statistics show that 62% of people keep receiving emails from brands even after they’ve unsubscribed; moreover, 66% of people receiving emails from companies they’ve never even heard of. This goes against all email marketing laws, data privacy regulations and consumer demands.

    People want more regulations. 80% feel there should be more laws protecting their personal data. Furthermore, 35% of customers often exercise their privacy rights with email providers.

    With email marketing laws like –
    • the GDPR (implemented May 2018)
    • the CCPA (effective as of January 1, 2020)
    • the PDPA (in effect since May 2020)
    • the LGPD (implemented August 2020)
    • the DPA 2018 (into effect since May 25, 2018)
    • the CASL (effective since July 1, 2014)
    • the CAN-SPAM Act (implemented January 1, 2004), and
    • the PECR (effective since December 11, 2003)
    If only email senders took note and implemented the above, I’d say peoples’ desire for more rules and regulations should be fully satisfied.

    To determine whether a particular country’s email marketing laws apply to you depends on three main things –

    1) whether you are based in that country
    2) if your ESP is based in that country
    3) whether your recipients are based in that country

    Now, to make sure none of you will be slapped with fines that have lots of zeros, it’s imperative to be aware of all email marketing laws and, of course, comply with them.

    Email Marketing Laws In The U.S.

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    The CAN-SPAM Act

    When emailing subscribers in the U.S., the primary legislation you must fully understand and be 100% compliant with is the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (CAN-SPAM) Act of 2003. The CAN-SPAM Act is one of the longest-running email marketing laws in the world. Compared to legislation in Europe or Canada, it is far more relaxed.

    To comply with the CAN-SPAM Act, you need to follow these guidelines –
    • avoid the use of deceptive email addresses, names, domain names or subject lines that will mislead the recipient
    • identify the message as an ad if a recipient has not given you explicit consent
    • specify any adult content or graphic imagery in your copy clearly in the subject line
    • include a physical address
    • provide an obvious and straightforward way for users to unsubscribe and fulfil requests within 10 days
    • monitor what others are doing on your behalf (if your email marketing is done by another company, you must ensure it is compliant)
    Non-compliance with the CAN-SPAM Act can be costly. Each email in violation of the legislation is subject to penalties of up to $43,280.

    For more information on the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003, click here.

    The CCPA

    The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) is legislation allowing any California-based consumer to demand to see all their personal information obtained and stored by businesses as well as a full list of all third-parties their personal data has been shared with. Additionally, this law also allows consumers to sue businesses if there is a violation of the privacy guidelines without an actual data breach occurring. Essentially, the law’s intent is to enhance privacy rights and consumer protection for Cali-based consumers.

    These are the guidelines you need to follow to comply with the CCPA –
    • updating your Privacy Policy
    • conducting a personal information audit to determine –
      • the type of personal information collected
      • the source(s) of personal information
      • if you sell personal information
      • if you share personal information
    • setting up a process to facilitate “the right to know” and “the right to delete”
    • setting up a “Do Not Sell My Personal Information” page if you are selling personal data
    The Right To Know: Any consumer has the right to know what, how and for what purpose their personal information has been collected. If your business receives a verifiable request, you are obliged to make the information available within 45 days without charging the consumer for it and you are not required to provide personal information to a consumer more than twice in twelve months.

    The Right To Delete: Any consumer has the right to invoke their right to delete. If you receive a verifiable request to erase, you are obliged to delete the consumer’s personal information from all your records as well as request all third-parties you shared it with to do the same. However, there are certain exceptions to “the right to delete”. You will not be obligated to abide with deletion requests if the personal information collected is necessary for one of the following reasons –
    • to perform a contract
    • to ensure security
    • for debugging purposes
    • exercising free speech
    • to comply with the California Electronic Communications Privacy Act (CalECPA)
    • to conduct specific research
    • for solely internal and plausible uses
    • to comply with a legal obligation
    The CCPA applies not only to California-based businesses but to any business operating from anywhere in the world that is processing the personal information of consumers based in California will have to adhere to the CCPA’s requirements.

    Email Marketing Laws in Europe: The GDPR

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    If you’re emailing European subscribers, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is what you will need to ensure that you are compliant with. This law’s purpose is to protect the data privacy of all European citizens. Even though the GDPR is an EU regulation, it applies to and will be reinforced upon all global businesses that collect and email EU-based subscribers.

    Since its implementation, and even now, the GDPR confuses email marketers sometimes. Whilst it does address permissions, it’s primarily focused on the processing of personal data. For example, GDPR explicitly permits email marketing when the personal data is processed correctly but PECR is the email marketing law that outlines permissions.

    To ensure compliance with the GDPR, you will need to –
    • obtain the consumers’ valid explicit consent to receive marketing emails (soft opt-ins and pre-checked boxes are not allowed)
    • keep clear records of each consumer verified consent
    • allow consumers to revoke their consent just as easily as they’ve given it
    • only use the collected emails for the purposes you said you would
    • provide access to their data if the users request it
    N.B. Buying or renting email lists might seem like the most brilliant approach for business growth, however, it is not. It will be harmful to your brand and email deliverability, lead to poor results and, most of all, this practice is in direct violation of the spirit of email marketing laws.

    Despite the fact the UK withdrew from the EU on January 21, 2020, it will remain subject to EU laws including the GDPR until the end of the transition period – December 31, 2020.

    Violation of the GDPR can result in fines of up to 4% of the annual global turnover of the preceding fiscal year or €20 million (about £18 million) – whichever is greater.

    You can find more information about GDPR here.

    Email Marketing Laws in Canada: CASL

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    Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) does not apply exclusively to Canadian businesses. If you are sending marketing emails to Canadian citizens, you will be subject to CASL. This regulation’s purpose is to protect Canadians from spam, personal data leaks and other types of digital tech misuse.

    To make sure you comply with CASL, you need to –
    • always obtain explicit consent from each person
    • ensure the consent form is plainspoken and has your business’s identification and contact information
    • make clear people can revoke consent anytime they want
    • always keep records of consent
    • include the name of the business, contact info and instruction to unsubscribe in all marketing emails
    • process unsubscribe requests within 10 days
    CASL defines two types of consent – implied and express. Consent is considered to be implied when –
    • a person has purchased a product/service from your business in the last 24 months
    • you’re a registered charity or political organisation to which the person has made a donation, volunteered or attended an organised meeting
    According to CASL, implied permissions expire – for purchase, it’s valid for 2 years; for an enquiry about a product or service, it’s valid for 6 months. Overall, if a user has not renewed their implied permission, it’ll expire.

    Consent is considered to be express and valid when the following information is included –
    • a clearly stated concise description of the purpose you want to obtain the consent
    • a brief of the emails you’ll be sending
    • the business’s name and contact info
    • a clear message about revoking consent at any time
    Essentially, if people have opted-in into your marketing communications they have given you their express consent. The most common examples of express consent are filling in a signup form, clicking on links to confirm the subscription, checking a box during a purchase process or over the phone. Also, express permission does not expire.

    If you violate any of the regulations in CASL, the penalty can reach up to CAD 1 million for individuals (USD 770,630/£586,930) and up to CAD 10 million for businesses (USD 7.7 million /£5.8 million).

    To find out more about CASL, click here.

    Email Marketing Laws in Australia: The Spam Act 2003

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    The purpose of the Australian Spam Act 2003 is to protect Aussie subscribers and prevent Aussie senders from sending spam and disrupting user’s personal data. Essentially, the Act forbids sending unsolicited commercial emails (a.k.a spam) with an Australian link. According to the Act, “a message has an Australian link if it originates or was commissioned in Australia, or originates overseas but was sent to an address accessed in Australia.”

    To ensure you are compliant with the Spam Act 2003, you must –
    • ensure your subscribers accept your Privacy Policy and any other rules involved when obtaining explicit consent
    • always include your company name and contact info in every email
    • provide a clear opt-out and process unsubscribe requests within 5 days
    • never use email harvesting or buy/rent email lists
    Emails from government bodies, registered charities, registered political parties and educational institutions can be sent without consent to Australian recipients.

    The penalties for noncompliance with the Spam Act 2003 can reach up to AUD 2.1 million ($1.5 million/£1.1 million).

    For more details about Australia’s Spam Act 2003, click here.

    Email Marketing Laws in the UK

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    Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) (EC Directive) 2003

    The Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 also referred to as PECR or the EC Directive is legislation under which email recipients located in the United Kingdom must have consented either by express or implied permission to receive marketing communications from you. This regulation is pretty similar to the Australian Spam Act and CASL, however, the main difference is regarding the number of days you have to process unsubscribe requests and clean up your email lists.

    To comply with PECR, you must –
    • obtain explicit consent to receive marketing emails from each of your subscribers
    • never hide your identity
    • always introduce yourself and provide detailed contact information in every email
    • give users a clear and simple way to unsubscribe or request to be deleted and ensure the request is processed within 28 days
    For individuals, UK anti-spam law has something known as a soft opt-in. Essentially, it means that in certain cases you can email subscribers as if they’ve consented even though they have not done it.

    To comply with the soft opt-in rule, you must follow a certain set of guidelines –
    • prove you’ve obtained the person’s email address “in the course of the sale of negotiations for the sale of a product or service”. Simply put, if the recipient is already a customer then they’ve softly opted-in
    • only directly market to existing customers in respect of similar products/services
    • always give the recipients a method to refuse the use of their contact details at the same time they’ve initially provided them
    • as with all international email marketing laws, users must be given a visible clear way to unsubscribe from your email list in every email
    Remember, legal opt-in and opt-out regulations are only applicable to individuals. If you want to contact a corporate body, you can do so without them having to explicitly opt-in.

    If you violate the EC Directive, you can be subject to penalties as high as £500,000.

    More detailed information about the EC Directive can be found here.

    Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018

    The Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) is legislation aimed at protecting the privacy of personal data. The DPA was first composed in 1984, updated in 1998 and enforceable until May 25, 2018, when it was superseded by the Data Protection Act 2018. The DPA applies to any business or individual who holds or uses personal data of others within the EU and the UK.

    The purpose of the DPA 2018 is to –
    • facilitate the secure transfer of data within the EU
    • prevent businesses and individuals from using and holding inaccurate consumers’ data
    • assure people how their personal data is and will be used
    • provide people whose personal data is stored (a.k.a. data subjects) with the legal right to check the information business’s hold about them
    • offer data subjects more control over how data controllers handle their data
    • ensure there is accountability regarding how businesses securely handle data
    • make sure organisations keep individuals’ personal data safe and secure
    • command data users or data holders to register with the Information Commissioner
    The eight key principles of the DPA 2018 (and GDPR) are –

    1) fair and lawful processing of personal data
    2) the personal data must be processed for specific lawful purposes
    3) adequate, relevant and non-excessive personal data
    4) accurate and up-to-date personal data
    5) not keeping personal data longer than necessary
    6) processing personal data per the rights and freedoms of data subjects
    7) personal data must be kept safe
    and secure at all times
    8) transferring personal data outside the EEA (European Economic Area) without adequate provisions in place for its protection is prohibited

    If at any point you receive a request for access or deletion, you must respond within a month.

    Remember the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica Scandal? The data protection violation which happened in 2015 resulted in the maximum possible penalty – £500,000. In a very lucky turn of events for Facebook, this data violation became public (early 2018) before the implementation of the GDPR. Otherwise, the ICO would’ve slapped the social media conglomerate with a fine of 4% of Facebook’s 2018 global revenuearound £1.7 billion.

    Email Marketing Laws in China: Consumer Rights Protection Law 2013 and Measures of the Administration of Internet Email Services 2006

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    If you are email marketing in China there are two very important email marketing laws you need to abide by – the Consumer Rights Protection Law 2013 (CRPL) and Measures of the Administration of Internet Email Services 2006 (MAIES).

    The CRPL 2013 forbids the distribution of commercial information and materials to consumers unless you have obtained their consent via a request or the consumer has explicitly rejected the information/materials.

    The MAIES 2006 purpose is to regulate and safeguard the legitimate rights of consumers using email services via the internet in the territory of the People’s Republic of China.

    Overall, both email marketing laws aim to protect Chinese residents and people who at the time of receiving marketing emails are on Chinese territory.

    To comply with both pieces of legislation, you must –
    • state your emails are sent for commercial purposes at the opt-in stage
    • obtain verifiable explicit consent to send marketing emails for every user
    • clearly state your business information and sender name
    • ensure you’ve clearly outlined that any links to third-party services have nothing to do with spyware and in no way can facilitate hackers
    • give people an easy way to unsubscribe from your mailing list and process opt-out requests within 30 days
    • avoid any political or other sensitive topics in your email copy
    • identify any advertisement by using the English words for “advertisement” or “ad” or their equivalent in Chinese in your email subject line
    Violation of MAIES 2006 can result in fines of up to CNY 30,000 ($4,525/£3,446); whilst non-compliance with the CRPL 2013 can result in a maximum fine of CNY 500,000 ($75,419 /£57,393).

    You can find more information about MAIES 2006 here and for CRPL 2013 here.

    Email Marketing Laws in Singapore: The PDPA

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    The purpose of the PDPA is “to govern the collection, use and disclosure of personal data by organisations in a manner that recognises both the right of individuals to protect their personal data and the need of organisations to collect, use or disclose personal data for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances.”

    If you breach the PDPA, you will be subject to fines of up to 10,000 Singapore dollars (USD 7,417/£5,643) and you could also be imprisoned for up to 3 years.

    To ensure compliance with the PDPA, you must –
    • obtain the individuals’ consent to collect, use and disclose their personal data
    • clearly outline the purpose of collecting, using and disclosing the individuals’ personal data – you cannot collect personal data simply because you have access to it, there must be an explicit purpose
    • make sure the personal data collected is accurate and complete
    • never transfer personal data outside Singapore if the jurisdiction to which the data is transferred to does not provide legal protection
    • ensure that you’ll retain the personal data ONLY for as long as there are a business or legal reasons to do so
    • always offer people a way to opt-out from your email lists
    • check the Do Not Call (DNC) Registry (three separate registers covering telephone calls, text messages and faxes of businesses who do not want to be contacted for marketing purposes)
    Non-compliance with the PDPA can result in fines of up to 10% of the company’s annual turnover or $1 million – whichever is higher. Stiffer fines will be imposed only on businesses with an annual turnover above $10 million.

    For further information regarding Singapore’s PDPA, click here.

    Brazil: The LGPD

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    Brazil’s LGPD is the first legislation to provide a comprehensive framework that establishes rules for collecting, handling, storing and sharing personal data of Brazillian citizens. Essentially, if your business has subscribers/customers from Brazil, this legislation applies to you and you must comply.

    To comply with the LGPD, you need to –
    • have a clear explicit consent request and not hide it within your Privacy Policy
    • outline the purpose of the consent request
    • only process personal data necessary for the fulfilment of your stated purposes
    • maintain records of the data processing activity
    • allow people free and easy access to information about the processing of their data
    • ensure the accuracy of the collected data and keep it up-to-date
    • be transparent about how you process users’ data
    • safeguard the collected personal data from unauthorised access, accidental and unlawful destruction, alternation and unsolicited communication
    • offer a clear and easy way for people to unsubscribe from your marketing emails and delete subscribers’ data if they’ve requested it
    • appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO) (this is also required under GDPR)
    The maximum fine for violating the LGPD is 2% of the total revenue for the prior fiscal year (excluding taxes) and up to a total of BRL 50 million ($9.3 million/£7.1 million) per violation.

    More on the LGPD can be found here.

    Summary

    Unlike all the other email marketing laws where consent must be given before sending marketing emails, the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act does not require consent before emailing as long as you’ve included an option for recipients to unsubscribe. Furthermore, to ensure 100% compliance, it is your responsibility as the sender to keep a record of obtained consents – i.e. subscribers’ IP address and opt-in date and time as an example. Remember, with the exception of the CAN-SPAM Act, all other email marketing laws require you to obtain the users’ consent.

    If subscribers no longer wish to receive marketing emails from you, all email marketing laws agree that you must give them the opportunity to opt-out. While there are different opt-out methods (i.e. via a call to support or an email reply), including an unsubscribe link in every email is a must and a legal requirement.

    The most important things to remember in terms of unsubscribe requests are –

    a) never charge the person who wants to opt-out, and
    b) never ask for more info

    Offering an easy and clear way for your subscribers to opt-out is a legal requirement under all email marketing laws. The only difference concerns the time allowed to process an unsubscribe request. While legislation may give you up to 30 days to do so, subscribers certainly won’t. Not to mention the hefty fines you’ll be subject to.

    Bottom line: always obtain explicit consent, collect, handle, process and use personal data with care, never transfer data outside of your country without ensuring the recipient country has proper data security legislation in place, be honest and clear about your intention for the data and, most of all, always provide an option for people to unsubscribe.

    Remember, understanding email marketing laws is not just about avoiding massive fines. It’s about mutual respect between your business and its subscribers.

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    Why Using Purchased Email Lists Is A Very Bad Idea
    2) Why Is My Email Going To Spam
    3) Email Security Best Practices
    4) Email Marketing Laws By Country

    Disclaimer: We have spared no effort to give you the best overview of the different data laws across the globe. However, please keep in mind that this article is a summary, not definitive and it is your responsibility to fully understand the law as it applies to your jurisdiction and those of the recipients you plan to email. Should you decide to rely only on the information provided in this article, you do so at your own risk.

    This article was originally published on 2 November and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Digital Marketing News: Twitter, Google My Business, Microsoft Ads and WordPress Nov 18, 2020

    Can Twitter’s Q4 2020 Marketing Calendar help you with your marketing plan? How are Google My Business Listings getting hijacked? What can Microsoft Advertising’s Promotion extensions do for advertisers? Is the end-of-year release of WordPress 5.6 about to cause the same problems for websites as WP 5.5?

    “Mediocre marketers think in terms of campaigns. Great marketers think in terms of growth frameworks.” – Neil Patel


    In this article, we’ll cover the following digital marketing news:
    1. Twitter’s Q4 Marketing Calendar: Don’t Miss Out On Promo Opportunities
    2. Google My Business: Beware of listings’ hijacking
    3. Microsoft Advertising’s Promotion extensions arrive just in time for the holidays
    4. WordPress: Version 5.6 might break websites
    Ready to dive in?

    Social Media

    Twitter’s Event Calendar To Help With Strategic Planning


    Have you mapped out your marketing plan for Q4 2020?

    With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 didn’t play out as marketers and businesses planned, expected or hoped. However, with the holiday season just around the corner, companies still have multiple opportunities to boost their seasonal promotions.

    Coming into the last two months of an already hectic year, marketers need to make sure they have honed their marketing campaigns to perfection because after sitting down at the table for Thanksgiving, you blink and it’s Black Friday then blink again and Cyber Monday has arrived then another blink and it’s Christmas.

    Twitter’s revised Q4 2020 Marketing Calendar is the perfect source for marketers and businesses to utilise when crafting and/or polishing their marketing campaigns. It highlights potential tie-ins for promotions you might have not considered yet. Though, who can forget Black Friday and Cyber Monday, not to mention – Christmas?

    If you are looking for some last-minute tips for crafting the perfect Black Friday or Cyber Monday email campaign, take a look here.

    For Santa Claus approved Christmas email marketing ideas, look here.

    Search Engine and SEO News

    Google My Business: An Increase In Listings’ Hijacking

    Joy Hawkins, a Google My Business (GMB) expert and overall brilliant SEO guru, reported she’s been seeing “quite a large increase in the number of GMB listings getting hijacked” over the past few months.

    Criminals trying to hijack GMB listings have been at it for years using all sorts of sketchy tactics. Unfortunately, every single time Google gets wind of it and cracks down on these tactics, the hijackers come up with new ones.

    One of the most effective hijacking tactics is to request access to a Google My Business Listing through the “claim this business” option. There is quite a lengthy thread in Google My Business Help which outlines almost one hundred posts regarding GMB listings hijacking attempts.

    If you get any sort of emails regarding “ownership request of your Google My Business listing”, the best thing to do is not reply and delete them. Furthermore, Joy recommends avoiding too many people managing your GMB listing as it’ll increase the possibility of one of them accidentally approving an unauthorised party to control your listing.

    The best approach to preventing your Google My Business listing from being hijacked for malicious purposes is to limit the people managing your listing, ignore and delete any type of unauthorised ownership requests and always be vigilant.

    PPC and Ads News

    Microsoft Advertising: Promotion Extensions Now Available

    Are you ready to promote your offers and special deals for Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas?

    Microsoft Advertising made available its Promotion extensions for all advertisers in the U.S. and just in time, too. The holidays are just around the corner. Promotion extensions allow advertisers to highlight a special offer or deal in their text ads, as well as, bind their deal to a holiday or special occasion. This feature is quite similar to Google Ads Promotion extensions, including the ability to choose from a list of occasions (i.e. Balck Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas) and events.

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    Advertisers can set up Promotion extensions in three places: at the account level, at the campaign level or the ad group level. All advertisers need to ensure the landing page for their text ad includes the promo details. Thus, always make sure it is in place before you start a promotion.

    Promotion extensions are highly customisable –
    • occasion (optional) – it highly specifies what the ad is all about. Advertisers can select a holiday or a special occasion (like back to school). You can find a full list of the available occasions here.
    • promotion type and item – advertisers can specify the type of offer (i.e. sale, discount, etc.) and clarify which items (i.e. products and/or services) are included in the promotion
    • promo details (optional) – it allows advertisers to clarify the requirements of their offer (i.e. “code – emailout123” or “for orders over £20”)
    • displayed start and end dates (optional) – advertisers can specify their offer’s deadline. Promos will not run after the end date, however, advertisers can choose to run their ad before the start date.
    Why should you care? With the holiday season coming up, promotional offers will help you set your ads apart from the competition. Moreover, with promotion extensions now available in Microsoft Advertising, you can sync your promos across Microsoft and Google campaigns – for consistency.

    Digital Marketing News

    Do you remember how millions of sites broke after WordPress 5.5 was rolled out in August 2020?

    Well, get ready because the upcoming WordPress 5.6 release (expected December 2020) has the potential to do the same. The reason: the new WP version will render the jQuery Migrate Helper plugin – used by many websites – “useless”.

    jQuery is a set of scripts giving sites functionality such as animation, interactive elements and makes the creation of plugins and themes much easier since it handles features common to sites and manipulates CSS. jQuery Migrate is code that allows sites with plugins using older versions of jQuery to keep functioning.

    After the WordPress 5.5 release caused millions of sites to stop working, the company introduced a plugin – Enable jQuery Migrate Helper – aimed at restoring all the broken sites.

    The launch on WordPress 5.6 will be the second step of modernising the use of jQuery by updating the jQuery Migrate library to the latest version. However, the effect on websites using the Enable jQuery plugin to keep from falling apart will be the same as with the WordPress 5.5. – millions of websites will suffer all over again.

    Why should you care? Many plugins and theme developers have already updated to the latest jQuery version which will fix any issues. However, there are still quite a few plugins and themes with older versions. People using such non-updated plugins and themes may encounter problems. If you are utilising the Enable jQuery Migrate Helper plugin, once you login into the admin panel, you’ll know if you may experience unexpected website behaviour – there will either be an error message (meaning you will) or there won’t be (meaning you won’t).

    Final Thoughts

    Do you have any suggestions or ideas about which digital marketing news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

    EmailOut offers the most generous email marketing software freemium product for professional micro-businesses and SMEs across the globe coupled with the very best rates for large volume corporate senders. Take a look now.

    This article was originally published on 1 November and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Email Industry News: MailChimp & A New Data Privacy Law Nov 17, 2020

    How will MailChimp’s new policy to censor email content affect marketers? What criteria will the company use to determine which content is misleading? Is there new data privacy legislation coming our way?

    “Authenticity + Honesty + Relevancy + Value = The Perfect Email!” – EmailOut


    In this article, we’ll cover the following email industry news:
    1. MailChimp to fact-check all users’ email content
    2. California further strengthening data privacy protection
    Let’s dive in.


    MailChimp: A New Policy On Content Censorship

    MailChimp has become judge, jury and executioner when it comes to the content users distribute using their email marketing platform.

    Apparently, the sneaky change in their pricing structure, the slew of user complaints and the near-impossible cancellation were just the tip of the iceberg. Now, the company has decided to adopt a new policy that will censor content based on MailChimp’s “sole discretion” on whether or not emails are misleading and should be removed.

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    The policy change became effective on October 28 and its main purpose is to determine – and clarify – the types of content prohibited from being sent via the MailChimp platform. Furthermore, the company said it’ll enforce the new censorship rules by “issuing a warning or suspending or terminating an account.”

    These changes bode the question: “What are the criteria MailChimp will base their decision on to determine if the content is misleading or false?” Moreover, how would the company know what’s in the email content without actually reading it? Would that be a violation?

    Bottom line: at least MailChimp isn’t pretending there’s an objective, consensus-based approach to decide which content is true and which is false. The company’s pretty much saying that misleading, false and inaccurate content is what they decide it is – simply because they can. Now, MailChimp may be a popular ESP but they are not irreplaceable. Due to all their previous accidents and now this new censorship policy, a lot of users are recommending and switching to better professional email marketing software.

    The CCPA 2.0: The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) of 2020

    On November 3, Californians have voted on and passed Proposition 24: The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) of 2020 which is pushing California further ahead in terms of data privacy legislation compared to the rest of the U.S.

    This new legislation adds to Cali’s already effective data privacy law – the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and aims to close some of the loopholes.

    The CPRA 2020 will –
    • prevent organisations from sharing personal information
    • limit the use of “sensitive personal information” incl. precise location, race, religion, social security information and any other info categorised as personal
    • prohibit personal data retention for longer than required (or necessary)
    • triple penalties for violations involving minors (under 16)
    • create a new California Privacy Protection Agency which will replace the attorney general’s office as the enforcer
    • expand the private right of action for consumers
    • create new commitments for opt-out links
    The new data privacy legislation will also slightly change who is considered a “covered business” and, consequently, who must comply. Under the CPRA 2020, to be a covered business, one of three requirements must be met –

    1) the business acquires at least 50% of its annual revenue by sharing or selling the personal data of California-based consumers
    2) the business’s gross revenue is over $25 million
    3) buy, sell or share the personal data of more than 100,000 Californians (changed from 50,000 under the CCPA)

    The CPRA 2020 will not come into effect until January 1, 2023. Until that time, the CCPA would remain in force.

    Why should you care? Assuming this data privacy legislation comes into effect, businesses subject to CCPA – and all other email marketing laws – must ensure they have studied and understood all the new requirements. Regardless of where your business operates, if you are sending marketing emails to users around the globe, compliance with email marketing laws where the recipient resides is crucial.

    Final Thoughts
    Do you have any suggestions or ideas about which email industry news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

    EmailOut offers the most generous email marketing software freemium product for professional micro-businesses and SMEs across the globe coupled with the very best rates for large volume corporate senders. Take a look now.

    This article was originally published on 1 November and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • What Is The Best Constant Contact Alternative? Nov 16, 2020

    1995: the year Contact Contact appeared on the market. Spam laws weren’t in existence then. Younger, more dynamic email marketing companies may provide your business with more up-to-date technology, features and support than the old tired incumbents, which is probably why you’re now reading an article on the best Constant Contact alternative.

    Does Constant Contact’s one-month free trial include access to all features? Or, do you get just basic functionality? Is the platform easy to use? What about the pricing? Do you constantly get upsold with features other platforms offer for free? How easy is it to cancel your subscription? Are you happy with Constant Contact’s customer support? All are valid questions. All, crucial points email marketers must consider when looking for the best Constant Contact alternative.

    “If switching to a new ESP gave you all the important industry features for free, why would you continue to pay for them elsewhere? ” – EmailOut


    Email is most companies’ primary method of one-to-one communication with their clients and prospects. Due to the importance of your email marketing channel, it is imperative to ensure that your new email provider ticks the following boxes – price, ease of use, features, knowledgeable near-instant support, reporting and more. Thanks to bold, somewhat geeky and extremely brave tech enthusiasts, Constant Contact’s position as one of the top ESPs is now challenged by cheaper, friendlier and overall superior delivery platforms. You are here because Constant Contact is no longer working for you and you don’t want to pay an obscene amount of money for poor service. If you are wondering what I am waffling on about – keep reading. You’ll discover what the best Constant Contact alternative is and how this ESP will cover all your current pain-points.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following topics:
    1. Pros and cons of using Constant Contact
    2. Constant Contact’s perfect alternative
    Let’s dive in.

    Type “What’s the best Constant Contact alternative?” or “free constant contact alternative” into Google and you’ll get overwhelmed by all the conflicting opinions and information. To make an informed decision when looking for the best Constant Contact alternative, you need to consider all possible factors – advantages, disadvantages, competitor analysis, possible alternatives and, of course, customer reviews.

    Constant Contact – Advantages & Disadvantages

    Constant Contact is one of many popular ESPs at the disposal of businesses of all sizes. However, despite expanding beyond just email marketing services and into websites, social media marketing and more, there are conflicting opinions whether Contact Contact is the best email marketing platform for businesses.

    Constant Contact offers its users numerous marketing tools. Especially in email marketing and website building. Based on public reviews, these are some of the advantages of using Contact Contact followed by the disadvantages.

    Constant Contact Advantages
    • email templates
    • marketing automation
    • email tracking
    • email scheduling
    • spam testing
    • ecommerce integrations
    • website builder
    • Facebook, Instagram and Google Ads
    But, there are two sides to every coin. As such, there are also several disadvantages of using the Constant Contact platform as reported by its users.

    Constant Contact Disadvantages
    • high price point – pricing is based on the number of stored contacts
    • lack of transactional email capability – time-sensitive emails such as password resets, shipping notification, order confirmations, etc. will have to be managed by a separate (paid) service
    • no ongoing FREE plan – new users only get a one-month free trial
    • lack of advanced automation – no way to set up a complex email series with an “if/then/else” criteria; automation sequences such as welcome emails only available with paid plans; auto-responders only when people sign up
    • unstable website builder
    • lack of near-instant customer support
    • buggy user interface (UI)
    • no in-app mobile preview feature
    • lack of fluid template design
    • limited personalisationpersonalisation is limited to the subject line and greeting
    • lack of dynamic list segmentation
    • available in only two languages – English and Spanish
    • inability to upload more than five images to the platform without upgrading to a paid plan
    • no A/B testing at all – users will have to split test their email campaigns manually which is incredibly complicated and time-consuming
    • near impossible cancellation – tons of user complaints about the lengthy and almost impossible process to cancel your subscription and, unfortunately, reaching anyone at the customer support team is the most Herculean task
    • billing users before their one-month free trial expires
    • billing clients after they’ve cancelled
    • PRICEY!
    Constant Contact’s Biggest Disadvantage

    Ultimately, apart from awful customer support reported by its users, limited functionality and buggy user interface, the biggest downside of using Constant Contact is that the platform has only a one-month free trial after which, if users have up to 500 contacts, they have to pay £180 per year. There is a catch though. The free trial is well… free regardless of how many contacts you’ve uploaded BUT once it expires, you’ll be paying a substantial amount in order to keep all your contacts.

    Furthermore, if you have up to 2,500 contacts, you’ll be paying the whooping £360 per year. Those prices cover the basic email plan. If you want to go ‘Pro’ and have access to useful tools and features, you’ll have to pay £540 per year for a database of up to 2,500 contacts.

    Did I mention 2019 was definitely not a good year for Constant Contact? They faced a lot of scrutiny and dissatisfaction mostly due to the awful customer support reported by their users, bug-ridden UI and almost-impossible cancellation process. With all those things still reportedly happening, no wonder you ended up here – looking for the best Constant Contact alternative.

    The Best Constant Contact Alternative Is…

    Email marketing software comes in various shapes, sizes and, most of all, prices. Yet, somehow, many still get stuck with the wrong one.

    It doesn’t matter if you are a small business operating from your garage or a huge business with an army of marketers brainstorming in conference rooms. The common marketing goal for all is to acquire and retain customers, build strong and prosperous relationships, deliver relevant beneficial content and, of course, an increase in ROI.

    Unfortunately, due to a poor choice in ESP, you might find yourself sitting in front of your computer (or laptop) at two in the morning slurping on yet another can of RedBull mumbling to yourself – ”Why can’t this bloody software do all I want it to?”

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    You are not alone. I have the best Constant Contact alternative for you – EmailOut. If you never heard of them, trust me – you are missing out on the best FREE email marketing software out there. Let me reveal why.

    With EmailOut, you will get all the essentials – and more – without spending a penny of your hard-earned money or overwhelm your already stretched budget.
    • amazing list management tools – from data cleaning through data segmentation to personalisation and custom fields – you’ll get it all (without upgrading)
    • gorgeous free email templates – all email templates have drag-and-drop design elements which you can change, replace or customise at any time plus you can also import your HTML if you’d like
    • spam and inbox testing (at no additional cost) – you can spam test your campaign against 23 of the most popular spam filters; the inbox preview test lets you review your campaign in over 70+ different email clients and mobile devices
    • automation features – onboarding email sequence, triggered email campaigns, autoresponders, etc. – EmailOut allows you to do it on any plan, even the free one
    • email tracking and marketing analytic tools – measure all the most important email marketing KPIs and track your campaigns’ performance
    • round-the-clock near-instant tech support from EmailOut’s awesome experts
    ^All of these features are available on every plan, including FreeForever.

    Convinced to give EmailOut a try? Take a look now >>>

    Other Constant Contact alternatives may come close to aligning with your marketing needs, however, none have better pricing than EmailOut.

    If having access to all these features for free (trust me, there are no sneaky costs) was not enough to convince you, I’m certain the pricing will.

    The guys at EmailOut do not believe in hidden costs buried deep in the small print or T&Cs that, let’s face it, no one has the time to read. They don’t lock features behind a paywall.

    If you have up to 2,500 subscribers you can send 12,500 emails for free, for life. You only start paying when you hit 2,501 subscribers and you’ll never have to pay for extra features. Right about now, you are probably thinking “I’m probably going to get just the bare-bone features, right?” Well, if you consider rich automation and autoresponders, detailed tracking and analytics, and list segmentation for A/B testing bare-bone then yeah, you are getting just bare-bone features.

    Intrigued? Then you are ready to test the professional email marketing platform similar to Constant Contact but better because it includes all the features all the time and is less pricey when it’s not being free forever.

    Final Thoughts
    There are a lot of Constant Contact alternatives out there. Nonetheless, the decision of which email marketing software fits best depends on your business’s requirements and how you see it scaling.

    A company like EmailOut that keeps the simple things obvious and makes powerful features accessible to all without sneaky costs and upselling, with a FreeForever plan that gives a marketer everything they need and more, is the best Constant Contact alternative on the market.

    I know you might be sceptical listening to a stranger’s advice (we’ve all been warned about it since infancy). However, it’s not my advice you should listen to but rather trust yourself. Do your own research. Test alternative email marketing tools. Draw a comparison chart. Evaluate all variables (ease-of-use, features, pricing, customer support, reviews and feedback). Only then will you be ready to make the best and most informed choice for an alternative to Constant Contact.

    If you already made up your mind, give EmailOut a try. Open your FREE Email Marketing account and see how you can scale your business without breaking into a bank.

    Ah, and remember, with EmailOut the magic word is FREE!

    This article was originally published on 31 October and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Digital Marketing News: Google, Facebook & the FTC and A CX Study Nov 2, 2020

    How is WhatsApp expanding its business potential? Where did Google Search Console’s “request indexing” feature go? Are Facebook Ads scamming people out of their hard-earned money? How will customer experience look like in a post-COVID-19 world?

    “Innovation needs to be part of your culture. Consumers are transforming faster than we are, and if we don’t catch up, we’re in trouble.” – Ian Schafer

    In this article, we’ll cover the following digital marketing news:
    1. WhatsApp expands its in-app shopping options
    2. Google Search Console: Where is the “request indexing” feature?
    3. The U.S. FTC’s reported millions of dollars in Facebook Ads scams
    4. [Study] Customer Experience in a Post-COVID-19 World
    Ready to dive in?

    Social Media

    WhatsApp: Shopping, Payments and Customer Service

    Back in 2014, when Facebook bought WhatsApp for the whopping $19 billion, the company’s idea was to follow its traditional monetisation strategy and include ads into certain features to generate notable income from WhatsApp users. However, that strategy hasn’t worked out and in early 2020, Facebook announced they are abandoning plans of inserting ads into WhatsApp.

    Nonetheless, Facebook has not given up. They just changed strategy. On October 22, WhatsApp announced their new approach which will focus on expanding the messaging platform’s in-app shopping opportunities and offer brands new tools for handling their communications. But, if you want to use some of the advanced functions, it’ll cost you.

    Furthermore, WhatsApp is also planning on a new option that will allow businesses to use Facebook’s hosting services to handle their WhatsApp messages. According to WhatsApp, “providing this option will make it easier for small and medium-sized businesses to get started, sell products, keep their inventory up to date, and quickly respond to messages they receive – wherever their employees are.”

    Search Engine and SEO News

    Google Search Console: The Disappearance Of The “Request Indexing” Feature

    In mid-October, Google announced the “request indexing” feature within Google Search Console has been disabled as the company is making “some infrastructure changes”.

    upload_2020-11-2_12-46-41.png

    According to the announcement, Google will continue to find and index content via their regular crawling and indexing methods. John Muller shed some more light on this action, confirming that the temporary disappearance of the feature “will not affect normal crawling and indexing.”

    Recently, there’ve been a lot of complaints, generally arising from the ongoing Google indexing issues which occurred earlier in October, regarding Google’s inability to index new content quickly enough.

    Many SEO experts used the “request indexing” feature as a way to push their content (which Google had a hard time indexing) to the Google Index – even during the weeks that Google was having indexing issues. Maybe Google can no longer handle the load? Or, there might be other indexing issues and that’s why Google is temporarily shutting down this feature? Whatever the case, currently users cannot push content into Google’s Index until the feature is enabled again which is expected to happen in the coming weeks.

    PPC and Ads News

    The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC): Facebook Ads Are Promoting Scams

    Social media is a great way to stay in touch with friends and family during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, social media platforms have also become quite the popular scammer hangouts, too.

    In the first six months of 2020, consumers have lost $117 million compared to $134 million back in 2019.

    [​IMG]

    According to the FTC’s official report, Facebook and Instagram are the social media platforms primarily abused in 2020 where scammers are trying to cheat users out of millions of their hard-earned dollars. Nearly 100% of consumers said they’ve been scammed via a Facebook or Instagram advert. Overall, scammers are putting ads on Facebook and Instagram without the intent to ever deliver a product or service.

    The FTC states that the scammers are abusing the ads features on these platforms to make their ads look trustworthy. The government watchdog further states that “these scam ads look real and can be carefully targeted to reach a particular audience. The scammers can delete comments on their ads or posts so that negative responses don’t show up and alert people to the con.”

    The FTC quotes eight types of scams discovered on Facebook Ads: online shopping, romance scams, economic relief, income opportunity, grant money, giveaways, multi-level marketing (MLM) and pyramid schemes.

    You can read the official Federal Trade Commission’s report here.

    Digital Marketing News

    The COVID-19 outbreak has changed customer experience (CX) probably forever. From customer behaviour to in-person interactions, the pandemic has disrupted everything; and, brands have been forced to adapt to the changing customer patterns.

    A recent study by Precisely and Corinium surveyed more than a 100 UK-based customer experience leaders to help businesses understand the ways COVID-19 has reshaped the business landscape.

    A brief overview of the study –
    • 86% of customer experience (CX) leaders have adjusted their strategies due to the COVID-19 pandemic
    • 79% of CX leaders stated an increase in digital interactions with their brand due to the COVID-19 pandemic
    • 50% of CX leaders state customers demand a more seamless and integrated digital experience
    • only 31% of customer experience leaders believe customers will go back to the “old ways” of doing things once the pandemic is over
    • companies are considering a range of CX-related investments for 2021 as follows –
    1. data integration and integrity technologies – 60%
    2. integrated multichannel customer experience platforms – 46%
    3. chatbots with “live” functionality – 42%
    4. digital self-service platforms – 37%
    5. interactive voice-response telephone systems – 33%
    6. interactive and personalised video – 32%
    7. email communications – 30%
    8. CRM systems – 28%
    9. customer analytics platforms – 24%
    • 83% of CX leaders reported having been hit with serious disruption
    • 50% of customer experience leaders state that one of the most major upheavals among the customer journey is onboarding
    If you want to further explore the barriers and key challenges businesses are facing and must overcome to deliver an outstanding customer experience in the post-COVID-19 world, download the report here.

    Final Thoughts
    Do you have any suggestions or ideas about which digital marketing news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

    EmailOut offers the most generous email marketing software freemium product for professional micro-businesses and SMEs across the globe coupled with the very best rates for large volume corporate senders. Take a look now.

    This article was originally published on 20 October and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • Gmail & Microsoft 365 Phishing Attacks Oct 30, 2020

    What does Gmail’s new compose-time functionality entail? How many people did Microsoft Team’s recent email phishing attack affect? Which are the top 10 most impersonated brands in Q1 2020?

    “A bad email reputation is like a hangover – very hard to get rid of and it makes everything else hurt.” – Chris Marriott


    In this article, we’ll cover the following email industry news:
    1. Gmail’s new compose-time functions
    2. Microsoft: fake Teams email phishing attack
    Let’s dive in.

    Gmail: Enhancing Google Workspace Add-ons
    Google Workspace add-ons are already doing a lot of cool and beneficial things for Gmail users. In addition to offering new ways to interact with other daily used apps, Google Workspace add-ons for Gmail are about to become more feature-rich.

    The new compose-time functionality will allow third-party add-ons to alter and format messages in Gmail. With the new and enhanced functionality, users will be able to –
    • make modifications to the To, CC, and BCC fields
    • adjust the subject line
    • insert content to the beginning and end of the message and more
    [​IMG]

    These new compose-time functionality enhancements require the user’s authorisation to access the features. Once authorised, they will work in both Gmail on the web and mobile. However, Google Workspace Admins are the only ones that can whitelist which third-party add-ons they want to be enabled for their organisation – for security reasons.

    Microsoft Teams Email Phishing Attack
    Between 15K and 50K Microsoft 365 users have been targeted by a sophisticated email phishing campaign.

    Cybercriminals are impersonating Microsoft Teams via an automated targeted email campaign aimed at stealing the recipients’ login information. Since the platform is an instant-messaging service, the recipients of this phishing email are more likely to open it in an attempt to respond quickly to whatever message they might’ve missed based on the notification.

    [​IMG]

    Within the body of the email, there are three links mimicking Microsoft Teams each one leading to a phishing landing page. Moreover, all the phishing landing pages look convincingly like a legitimate Microsoft login page. However, once a recipient enters their credentials, they are harvested by the cybercriminals who intend to use them for nefarious and malicious purposes – including but not limited to complete account takeover.

    With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, cyberattackers leveraging enterprise collaboration and conferencing platforms like Microsoft, Zoom and Skype has become quite worrisome. Moreover, 96% of phishing attacks are delivered by email; with the average breach costing small and mid-sized businesses $3.92 million.

    Furthermore, according to recent research, the top 10 most impersonated brands for Q1 2020 were: Apple, Netflix, Yahoo!, WhatsApp, PayPal, Chase, Facebook, Microsoft, eBay and Amazon.

    Final Thoughts
    Do you have any suggestions or ideas about which email industry news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

    EmailOut offers the most generous email marketing software freemium product for professional micro-businesses and SMEs across the globe coupled with the very best rates for large volume corporate senders. Take a look now.

    This article was originally published on 20 October and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.
  • 12 Call-To-Action Examples That Convert Oct 29, 2020

    You planned and crafted a beautiful email campaign with the perfect subject line, spot-on copy and an offer your recipients can’t refuse. You are already patting yourself on the back on a job well done. But, before you hit “send”, are you sure you’ve included an actionable and properly optimised call-to-action?

    I don’t mean the simplistic “Buy now!” or “Read more” call-to-action (CTA). I’m referring to a call-to-action that will be truly effective, perfectly optimised and will fit your email campaign’s goal(s).

    “Action is the fundamental key to all success. For your email campaign to achieve success, it needs to contain a strong, straight-forward call-to-action.” –
    EmailOut

    From writing amazing and relevant copy through to using attention-grabbing hooks to making an offer your subscribers will find beneficial, you did everything you were expected to. Yet, your click-through rate is not nearly what you anticipated it to be. Wondering what went wrong? You might’ve neglected to optimise your email campaign’s call-to-action (CTA). Today, I will unveil the secret of how to make your call-to-action stand out, the best and worst CTA wording and give you some killer call-to-action examples.

    In this article, we’ll cover the following topics:
    1. What are the main elements of a killer call-to-action?
    2. Call-to-action words: DO’s and DON’Ts
    3. Call-to-action examples
    Let’s dive in.

    Each one of your email campaigns serves a purpose. Without a call-to-action, your subscribers will have nothing to act on. Consequently, that will reduce your emails to nothing more than a piece of information. That’s not necessarily a bad thing but… without an actionable call-to-action, you will not get the ROI you are aiming for. Thus, make sure your email campaigns have either a hyperlinked call-to-action or a clickable CTA button.

    The copy and design of your CTA have a significant role in your email marketing campaign’s overall success. From colour through to placement to choosing between a hyperlink or button CTAs, all play a vital role in whether or not your subscribers will notice and interact with them. With that in mind, here are some intriguing stats about your call-to-action in email marketing –
    • 48% of brands prefer to match the colour of the CTA to one in their brand logo
    • button-based call-to-actions improve CTR by 28%
    • call-to-actions with first-person language increase clicks by nearly 90%
    • the average CTA button contains 14 characters, with the shortest character count being 3 characters (“YES”) and the longest 66 letters
    A call-to-action with perfect design, relevant copy and spot-on placement will make a world of difference to the success of your email campaigns. Don’t just slap a dull, over-used, boring CTA in your email – it won’t work. Instead, learn how to write and design killer CTAs that will convert.

    The Three Main Components Of A Great Call-To-Action
    If you want to design a kick-ass call-to-action that drives results, you need to know the three main elements that make the perfect call-to-action.

    1) Copy
    Words are free. How you use them though… that might cost you. CTA buttons offer a limited word space and when it comes to email that limitation might be double. Therefore, when crafting your call-to-action copy make sure your message is short, clear, with active (buy, join, visit, etc.) and urgent (now, expire, today, limited, etc.) words as well as personal pronouns (I, my, me, etc.) and offer benefits.

    Pro tip: If your call-to-action takes more than 6 seconds to read, it’s too long.
    Pro tip 2: Personalisation is not only for your email copy. It also goes a long way with your CTA.

    2) Design
    You got the words right. Now, it’s time to put them into a stunning visual design. To ensure you are on the right track, I recommend following CTA design best practice –
    • use a bold and legible font that complements the rest of the email’s copy
    • apply contrasting colours to draw the subscribers’ attention and make the CTA stand out
    • pick the right size – the average call-to-action button is 47.9 pixels tall, you can pick a bigger one but make sure it won’t overwhelm your copy; send a preview test to see how it renders on both desktop and mobile devices
    Pro tip: Take advantage of professional email marketing software where you can choose from several pre-designed and fully optimised templates with a call-to-action design ready to use.

    3) Placement
    Once you have the words and the stunning design ready, it’s time to drop your CTA into the email copy. But, where? Debates over the best CTA placement have been ongoing for quite some time and it seems an agreement won’t be reached anytime soon. However, there are two important things to consider when deciding your CTA placement –
    • you want your call-to-action to be easily noticed without the subscribers scrolling down your email copy too much, therefore, why not place it in the above-the-fold area? (in the viewable area of the preview-pane)
    • you want subscribers’ main focus to be on your offer, therefore, why not place the CTA towards the bottom to avoid being overly aggressive and pushy?
    Defining the perfect CTA placement isn’t easy. For some, a CTA at the top might work, whilst for others, the one at the bottom will convert better; and, for the rest, a call-to-action placed in the middle of the email campaign is the best location with the highest results. It’s all pretty much a “trial-and-error” process. Try different placements and perform A/B testing to see which one drives the best results.

    Once you’ve figured out the most convenient and logical placement that drives higher engagement, it’s all smooth sailing going forward. You can also consider including more than one call-to-action, but do try not to come across as too pushy. It might put your subscribers off and turn them into unsubscribers.

    CTA Wording: DO’s and DON’Ts
    You get limited word space with CTAs. You can either go simple and a bit dull, overcomplicate with too much text or try to be as original and witty as possible to lure the recipients and have them take the desired action. Of course, that will only happen if you already have developed great copy that grabbed their attention and your CTA is just the final nudge needed to “seal the deal”.

    I’ve curated some of the most common tried-and-tested power words you can use in your call-to-action broken down by category.

    1) To encourage purchaseshop now, shop our fall collection, act now, save today, yes! I want one, start saving today, get 50% off now, get free shipping, free gift with purchase, etc.

    2) For the holiday seasonfind holiday gifts, shop Santa’s favourites, get it before Christmas, spread holiday cheer, ‘tis the season – donate now, our Christmas gift: 30% OFF, etc.

    3) For contentread more, learn more, curious? Read now, get your ebook, download today, keep reading, get the full story, etc.

    4) For eventsbook your ticket, register now, sign me up, save me a seat, get your spot, count me in!, I’ll be there!, etc.

    5) To collect feedbacktake a survey, leave a review, tell us what you think, give us your thoughts, your opinion matters, how did we do, etc.

    6) For social mediafollow us, stay connected, like us on… (Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, etc.), share on social media, etc.

    I know you want your call-to-action to be perfect, fully optimised and actionable. However, make sure to avoid friction words. Some of the most common ones are: apply, download, submit, order, sponsor, support, complete, switch, find, start, visit, etc.

    Think about it. How often do you want to spend time downloading or applying for something? All subscribers want is to get the end benefit downloading or signing up will bring them. Therefore, to avoid annoying your subscribers with friction words, replace them with some of the call-to-action examples above.

    12 Call-To-Action Examples
    Now that you know how to create a call-to-action that converts, let’s take a look at 12 call-to-action examples from different brands that nailed it.

    1) Charity Water

    [​IMG]

    This example from Charity Water showcases CTAs focused on familiarising the subscriber with the organisation’s history and background. As unusual as it might be to have three CTAs in such a short campaign, they have been purposefully used to build trust and affinity with the subscriber. The call-to-actions are prominent, clear and to the point.

    2) J.Crew

    [​IMG]

    This email campaign is designed to lead the recipients to the brand’s awesome “25% off” deal followed by four demographically-based CTAs. From the typography and point size through the gradient background and colour scheme to the email copy, all elements guide the recipients from a place of just being interested to a place where they’ll take action upon the brand’s offer and start shopping.

    3) Zoom

    [​IMG]

    Since the COVID-19 outbreak, Zoom has become one of the most popular video conferencing tools. This email example showcases the company’s intent to get people to register for their webinar. The message is clear, focused and creates a sense of urgency. The entire design offers a sense of exclusivity making the CTA even more effective than the boring overused and simple “signup” copy. Each element of this campaign is reverse engineered around the call-to-action leading directly to it.

    4) Banana Republic

    [​IMG]

    The thing that makes Banana Republic’s email so good is the colour scheme (lemon yellow) which is relatable to the main message – “fresh effect”. The keyword has been used twice, in the title and the call-to-action, making the entire email campaign more cohesive, effective and ultimately, successful for the company’s end goal.

    5) PlayStation

    [​IMG]

    PlayStation’s holiday-themed email campaign showcases personalisation can be used not only in the email copy but in the call-to-action as well. By personalising your CTA, you will make it that much more inviting to the recipient which, consequently, will drive better results and ultimately, higher revenue.

    In PlayStation’s case, the company is focused on rewarding its customers by giving them a limited-time gift to show their appreciation. The email is clean, simple, to the point and with a prominent perfectly placed CTA which cannot be lost on the recipient.

    6) Lonely Planet

    [​IMG]

    This email example from the Lonely Planet has it all – CTAs for social media, both hyperlinked and button call-to-action and, of course, great copy. The brand has decided to emphasise on the actions they wish recipients to take by including five logically placed CTAs promoting their content. From the colour scheme, typography and copy, the company’s call-to-action screams “click me” and also keeps the recipients on task.

    7) Spotify

    [​IMG]

    Take a look at Spotify’s email, for example. The call-to-action simply exemplifies best practice. It contrasts strikingly compared to the background and tells the recipient exactly what will happen if they take action. The less time there is between the call-to-action once clicked and the result, the better. In this example, if the recipient already has the app on their phone, they don’t have to wait for anything. However, if they don’t, Spotify went the extra mile and added links redirecting the recipients to the proper app stores where they can get the app in just a couple clicks.

    8) Chubbies

    [​IMG]

    The copy of your call-to-action is what will ultimately convince the recipient to take action – or not. Each call-to-action must trigger an emotion in your recipient. Take a look at Chubbies email, for example. They tap into the recipients’ fear of missing out to get people to click-through. They included 2-day free shipping, a fun image, witty email copy and, most of all, a prominent carefully crafted CTA which immediately grabs the attention.

    9) Lancome

    [​IMG]

    Lancome’s email campaign’s non-direct call-to-action serves as an invitation to the recipients to explore Halloween makeup ideas without the intent to purchase.

    10) Artifact Uprising

    [​IMG]

    This brand has given its email campaign and CTA a very original twist. As you can see, the telephone and the gradient background colour work together to visually lead the recipient to the call-to-action. Moreover, the copy above the CTA also entices people to take the survey thanks to the $10 discount code offered. From the mail copy to the call-to-action, everything is clean, original, witty and enticing – all the necessary elements of a successful email campaign that converts.

    11) HelloFresh

    [​IMG]

    When trying to connect with subscribers who’ve lost interest in your product/service, you have to step up your game if you want to grab their attention and get them back. Therefore, your “come back” call-to-action needs to be perfect and placed within an irresistibly outstanding email campaign.

    Take a look at HelloFresh’s email campaign. They are pulling off the “come back” CTA perfectly. There is an attention-grabbing discount which is surrounded by stunning mouth-watering imagery leaving the recipients drooling for their next meal.

    12) Moo

    [​IMG]

    Is there anything in this email campaign that does not grab your attention? From the scarce but to the point and witty email copy, the funny imagery and the prominent perfectly placed CTA – “HI-YAH!”, Moo’s entire purpose is to offer the recipient a reward and, of course, entice them to get it. If I got such an email, I’ll be clicking-through.

    Final Thoughts
    The power of your email campaign lies within the actions they drive. To encourage swift actions from your subscribers, you need to have a killer call-to-action – on top of awesome email copy, of course.

    The top five things to take into account when designing a call-to-action that converts are the number, the placement, the design, the copy and the ability to test your CTAs. With these in mind, you will ensure that your call-to-action is making the right impact on your target audience.

    The type of your email’s call-to-action depends on three factors: your business’s industry, your target audience and your email campaign’s purpose. With those out of the way, crafting a call-to-action that converts won’t be as tough as you might think. This article has already given you all the knowledge you need plus some amazing call-to-action examples. Are you ready to design an outstanding call-to-action that converts?

    Highly recommended further reading –
    1)
    Email Design Best Practice
    2) Optimising Your Emails for Small Screens
    3) The Ultimate Email Checklist

    This article was originally published on 26 October and can be found here.

    Open your Unlimited Sends one-month free trial today – after your first month with us you can switch to our FreeForever account giving you 12,500 sends to 2,500 contacts each and every month for free, forever. Corporate email marketing? Contact us.