Search the internet for email marketing and you’ll find yourself sifting through a barrage of websites from around the globe, promising to ‘grow your business, ‘connect with your customers’ and increase ROI’. It’s mind boggling how many companies there are out there offering this service so selecting the right one to make the most out of your company’s precious, clean opted-in, data can be a minefield.

A few years ago it was a simple as writing some copy, possibly adding a logo and hitting send.  Now it’s become something we study and research. There are clicks and open rates and even click to open rates to think about and measure. There’s subject lines and split A/B testing to consider. There’s your audience, segmentation, bouncebacks, data cleansing, SPAM traps, inbox testing, downloaded images, and much, much more.

Not only that, latest technology proudly offers you an impressive volume of analytics and sending metrics ranging from what software the recipients are using and location to engagement timeline and clicking hotspots.  

Email marketing, when followed up in a methodical way, has become gold dust for the modern marketer and a very powerful tool. Choosing the right company to meet your requirements is vital.  This series of articles will help to address exactly that, starting with……Choice Criteria, how and who to choose.

Who & how to choose?

It’s not only a barrage of information you’re faced with but an onslaught of questions such as…Do you go local or choose the biggest? Is cost the major factor? Do you need a free trial or just go with what your head of marketing is familiar with? Is it support you need the most? If so, then surely the agency that has a named account manager is best to help you through those tricky email marketing moments.  Ask yourself what really matters the most? What does your business want to achieve from your email marketing? How can it work for you to save time and be an asset rather than a chore?

Whether you are a small business who has accumulated a pool of opted in data and not sure what to do with it or a well-established blue chip firm with hundreds of employees that’s built up years and years of customer info, you still need to ask yourself the same questions before selecting the right email marketing agency. Here are a few you can start with:-

What is it that you need from your email marketing?

  1. Maintain relationships with existing customers
  2. Reach new customers
  3. Email employees once a month about corporate news
  4. Email prospects about the latest products
  5. Sell more products
  6. Brand awareness
  7. All of the above

Do you have the ability to run an email marketing platform yourself?  

In order to manage an effective email campaign there’s two vital tools you need – experience and knowledge. Without both of these things, it’s unlikely you’ll get the results needed, and your great products and messages won’t get the exposure they deserve. Maybe you’ve run an email-marketing platform before and do have the experience and knowledge that’s needed to recognize future pitfalls and troubleshoot an email that’s achieved a very high spam score.  That’s great; you can run the system in-house, so you’ll want to go for a more DIY service. 

Maybe you have absolutely no experience with email marketing at all and neither do your employees, then you’ll need help from an agency for a more managed service to design, build test and send your emails and just provide you with the results.

Perhaps your business would benefit from a both DIY and managed so you’ll have a monthly newsletter that’s built by an experienced developer using more advanced HTML, dynamic content and animated gifs. You’ll also have more targeted emails built in house and populated by your marketing manager using a template that’s been set up by a more experienced developer/designer, all you need to do is add info. Just like every person’s needs in life are different so is every business’s email marketing needs.

What’s the size of your mailing list and is it GDPR compliant?

The very first place to start with setting you up with email marketing is to look at your data. Consensual, refined data is worth more then gold and will make or break your email marketing strategy.

Do you know what size of your mailing list is and where has it come from? Or more to the point do you have recorded consent? If the answer is “no”, take them off the list. If the answer is “not sure” or “well they haven’t said they don’t want to,” take them off the list. Only if the answer is “yes” should you click send — consent is crucial. Your data needs to be up to date, clean and all recipients should have a relevant interest in your company’s message.

When the legislation came into force in May 2018 it requires businesses of all sizes within the EU to adhere to strict new regulations regarding any personal information they hold. To make sure your data held is compliant and meets this new regulation go to the ICO website for more information as not adhering to GDPR legislation may incur a heavy fine.

Closing Thoughts

As the ever-accelerating development of email marketing makes it harder for us to select the right agency, we thought it would be a refreshing idea to have an email marketing company who fits into your expectations, not the other way around.

mmunic listens to your email marketing requirements and builds a package around those needs. Whether you are hands on experienced email marketing or a complete novice who doesn’t have the time to build emails we’ll adjust our input to exactly how much you want us to be involved.

Learn more about the mmunic approach in next weeks blog…

Feel free to share your thoughts on this article, share with others or contact the mmunic studio