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Angie Picardo is a staff writer for NerdWallet. Her mission is to help consumers stay financially savvy, and save money with the best savings account.
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Today, email marketing is a must. A solid campaign can help you gain customers, readers and promote your brand. But it’s also one of the easier marketing methods to screw up. Put “free” in your headline? You just likely triggered a spam filter. Just blindly sending emails in the hopes for a response? That’s a big no-no.
Don’t worry, we’re here to help fine-tune your email campaign.
Here are six common, and uncommon, mistakes made in email marketing today:
Your emails need editing. Poor grammar, spelling mistakes, blocks of text and broken links all hurt your company’s image. A single misspelled word can make your brand reek of amateurism or, worse, make it sound like a scam.
Never press “send” without editing your copy. Check and double-check each text element in your email every time. Get an extra pair of eyes to look your copy over to make sure everything’s perfect. This editing includes checking fonts, scannability and making sure any links in your email land on the correct page.
If your subject line is in all caps offering a “GREAT DEAL — GIVING OUR PRODUCT AWAY FOR PRACTICALLY FREE!!!!” you’re going to have a bad time. In fact, your copy will likely end up in the spam bin.
Your entire copy, from the “unsubscribe” button to the “from” line, should be presented in a professional manner, or you’ll come off as spammy and intrusive.
Let’s say you’re busy working and a customer or partner hurriedly tells you of a holiday you’ve never heard of. You write it down, and then promptly forget it. Weeks later you see the holiday made headlines in your local newspapers and you smack your head knowing you just missed a massive opportunity to gain loyal customers. This could’ve been prevented with a publishing calendar.
The old days of “blasting” out an email to reach a lot of customers at once are, thankfully, dying. Mass emails end up alienating customers more often than not. It doesn’t make them feel like they’re in a relationship, but rather that they’re on a list where you’re simply trying to SELL! SELL! SELL! them something they don’t want. News readers don’t read articles they’re not interested in, and customers don’t read copy that doesn’t concern them.
Do you want instant access to 30,000 permission-based emails which you can “blast” for business for only a nominal fee? No, you don’t, because it’s bad practice, can be considered spam and may be illegal. Sending unsolicited emails breeds contempt for your brand, and can mark you as a desperate spammer.
You don’t test your emails because you think all emails appear the same regardless of which email program they appear in. You’re wrong. Sending an email which isn’t tested across different email platforms and computer systems can make your email appear strange and off for those customers who don’t have the same set-up as you. Which is all of them.
Don’t have the resources to test out your emails? Wrong. You do. Ask friends, family, and coworkers to take a quick look at your copy and provide feedback. Enlist your computer-literate friends, too. Different people use different computers and email platforms and, often, can provide better testing and feedback than you can on your own. Ask them if appears strange or out-of-place and adjust accordingly.