Email marketing has been with us for so long, always evolving and adapting to the spirit of the times: so we’ve plenty of best practices to look at and we even risk to go on autopilot when starting a new project.
So I’ve asked a bunch of fellow Mailchimp Partners their best advice on how to kickstart an email marketing project in 2021, apart from the obvious (for me) consideration on the centrality of good content.
That’s my tip to start with: do a serious content inventory throughout your website, social profiles, outposts; you probably have a lot of good content to repurpose for your welcome series, drip campaigns, and regular newsletters.
People should subscribe to your emails not only to get a one-time discount on your products, but to actually open and read and appreciate the emails you send: so prepare an inviting promise and… overdeliver and delight them.
But now, let’s listen to the wisdom of experts.
Every email campaign comes down to two main elements: who is your audience; and what is your message. To kickstart your 2021 campaign, start with looking at those two elements and strategize some fresh and exciting messages for the audience(s) you want to reach. Once you know the right messaging for the right subscribers, set real goals for the program, from opens and clicks to website visits and audience growth. Then, sit back and measure. Once you see your program start to produce results, you’ll have incentive to keep it going or continue to improve it to build even more engagement.MaryAnn Pfeiffer
Digital Marketing Strategist 108 Degrees Digital Marketing
My top tip for kickstarting an email marketing program is to start one … with a plan. Email marketing goals can be a lot like New Year’s resolutions. We start off with the best of intentions and then without a plan or the right habits in place we quickly default back to inconsistency and where we were last year.Glenn Edley
So, this year make a plan. Have a focus for each quarter to give you something to align your plan to and stick to it. For example, Q1 could be engagement. Set up a simple retention email with an offer that goes to those customers who haven’t opened an email for 30 days. Remove them if they don’t act on it. This will clean up your list and improve your response.
Director & Email Strategist Spike
Let’s read those numbers and look for insights!
Take a look back at your engagement rates from 2020. Due to COVID, there’s gonna be a certain percentage of your audience that have dropped off, partially due to their personal situation, but also due to changes in professional circumstances, such as employment status. I would kick off 2021 with a reengagement campaign.Doug Dennison
CEO & Co-founder MailNinja
Even though 2020 was a miserable year for most, for email marketers it represented an opportunity. In many cases, open rates, click rates, and conversions rose as many people turned to digital content delivery and shopping. In 2021, if things start to return to “normal”, it will be important to watch for shifts in subscriber/consumer behavior and react accordingly. For example, in-store promotions and events may be options again. Email marketers will need to be mindful of reviewing analytics, looking for trends, and shifting quickly to maximize results.Adam Q. Holden-Bache
Director of Email Marketing Enventys Partners
Think about the journey how people interact with your website or mailings. Think which information you would like to know for further personalization and segmentation. Oh, I almost forgot, the best time to sending an email campaign has a little bit changed with more people working from home.Nick Beuzekamp
CEO and Founder Online Marketing Bonaire
If you wanna kickstart your email program in 2021, then a great place to start is to build a welcome series that is sent automatically to new subscribers. This gets you started with automation, is something that new subscribers will really appreciate, and sets a standard for you to build on!Robin Adams
Owner and Founder ChimpAnswers
Start a quick spreadsheet and make an email calendar for January. We usually plan one email per week and write the general topic, the Audience you plan to send to, the target send date and the date you want to have the draft ready by. Then just dive in and get started. I love to batch emails so you can get a month completed all at once. Then schedule them out and sit back!Emily Ryan
Co-Founder and Email Strategist Westfield Creative
Just do it! Even I am guilty of not emailing my list as much as I should.Amy Hall
If people signed up for your email it’s because they want to hear from you. They’re interested in what you have to say and what you do. You asked, they said please and now you’re telling them, tough luck, I don’t wanna. Don’t be a spoiled toddler, email your community!
Let people know what’s new in your industry… that can be the latest gadgets, tips and hints, or answer questions you get on a regular basis. Answering a client question once a week or once a month is a perfect email format. You’ve probably already answered the question in an email directly to the sender: why not let everyone else in on the secret?
Some of my emails that have received the most engagement are emails that come from my heart. I had to email to let everyone know that I was taking care of my Dad in his last years of life and I was honest in the email. I received so many replies with heartfelt best wishes and tips for making his and my life better. I send out a Happy Thanksgiving email with a list of things I’m thankful for and I received lovely emails back with best wishes and even some thankful lists too.
I love to receive lists of links to tools, gadgets, fun social media posts or videos. They lighten my day. It doesn’t have to be a bunch of links… 3 to 5 work. These are quick and easy emails to put together. I always look forward to opening these types of emails.
And if you can’t think of anything to write, make a video and send a link to it. Sometimes it’s just easier to talk things through rather than type. If that’s your expression, use it and send a video every week or two.
Email Marketing Strategist and Certified Mailchimp Partner and Consultant Amy Hall