Email Marketing advice usually targets attracting more new email subscribers and email copywriting, but there is an aspect of email marketing that is just as powerful but much overlooked.
Email Marketing Metrics!
Any decent email service like Aweber will give you a wealth of email metric reports. This is valuable information because it tells you how well you are doing, the health of your list.
I know why it is overlooked, it feels like math, and not many of us are good at math. Good news though, it’s not really, in fact I can deal with these numbers without getting any nose bleeds at all, and if I can, you can!
What are email metrics? They are the numbers that tell you useful information about the last email you just sent out, or all of the emails you have delivered.
First metric you need to keep track of, again, is much overlooked.
It’s your UNsubscribes. While most people obsess on how many people they are attracting, that is like filling a leaky bucket. You will make much more progress if you plug your holes!
You will always have a certain amount of churn, but you want to limit the number. Find out why people leave and adjust your behavior accordingly when you see important patterns. Normally you will have an option to get an email when someone unsubscribes and supplies a reason, keep track of those reasons.
Unfortunately there is always someone who can’t be bothered using your clearly marked unsubscribe link, or worse has a strange opinion of what spam is.
These come out as “complaints”. All you can do is make sure you spell out that the person opted-in (and confirmed) to receive the information and that there is an easy way to leave should they want to. If they still mark it as spam after that then they are being malicious and there is nothing you could do.
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Tracking Email Marketing Effectiveness
As you can see in the image above, as well as complaints there are also bounces (emails that didn’t arrive for whatever reason), opens and clicks.
Opens can only be tracked if you send HTML emails because they use a tiny one pixel image to see if the email has been read. Clicks require the URLs to be changed to go to a redirect script. Obviously if someone clicks you can infer they opened the email too!
When people ask me what good open and click through rates (CTR) are, I always tell people that just like the gym you should measure against yourself, not against other people. Your list, audience, precise niche and style are unique to you.
Obviously you want the opens and CTR to be as high as possible, but sometimes you don’t need the reader to do anything but read, and sometimes readers prefer plain text emails so you can not track opens.
The main thing to keep in mind is if you work on boosting these numbers then you can be way more effective without trying to attract any more people to your list.
As well as your email effectiveness you also want to be looking at where your sign ups come from. I use Google Analytics “goals” for this but I have also been testing other services.
Double Your Email Marketing Effectiveness
We are going to look at email marketing copywriting in this series, which has a huge effect on your email marketing effectiveness, but what everyone can do is look at their numbers over time and learn from them.
- Which blog posts drew the most subscribers?
- Which emails drove the most people to leave?
- Are there subject lines that pulled more opens?
- How were the links worded that achieved the most clicks?
- Do you know the type of messages that got noticed more than others?
- Which words or phrases meant you got marked as spam?
It’s only by tracking your performance and learning from the numbers that you will improve. Practice and experience are the best teachers when it comes to email marketing.
In the next installment we will look at how you can accelerate this learning and boost your email marketing effectiveness even more, you will want to subscribe now so you don’t miss it!
Table of contents for series: Email Marketing Tips
- Email Marketing Tips: What is Email Marketing?
- Email Marketing Tips: List Building
- Email Marketing Tips: Getting More Email Subscribers
- Email Marketing Tips: Email Tracking
- Email Marketing Tips: Email Testing
- Email Marketing Tips: Introduction to Email Copywriting
- Email Marketing Tips: Writing Effective Email Subject Lines
- Email Marketing Tips: What to Write About