Six don'ts for email marketers

6 don’ts for email marketers

Some tactics just won't fly with the customers on your targeted email list, and since you went to great lengths to acquire those addresses, it's key that you don't let a rookie mistake make recipients click the unsubscribe button.

If you're looking to make sure you don't fall into bad habits in your email campaigns, keeping these six "don'ts" in mind can help you stay on the straight and narrow.

Don't send red-eye emails
Although debate continues as to what time of day is optimal to send promotional emails, the simple answer may be that no one best time exists. Rather, certain segments of your email list should be sent messages at different times of day based on data revealed through analytics.

However, there is one hard fact about the matter: Late night emails don't work. A recent study by Retention Science showed that promotions sent while recipients are asleep account for just 6.5 percent of email conversions. Don't bank on winning customers when they wake up in the morning, either, as only 28.5 percent of conversions happen before noon, while 65 percent occur during the long stretch of hours between afternoon and evening.

Don't email too often
Overly frequent email blasts can make your campaign an annoyance for some customers. According to Entrepreneur Magazine, AWeber Communications' chief marketing officer Erik Harbinson recommended giving recipients an option as to how frequently they'll receive your messages as soon as you acquire their email address. He also noted that when contacts unsubscribe, you can ask them if they'd rather receive your emails less often.

Don't send everyone the same message
Insufficiently personalized messages can foster disinterest in consumers. Entrepreneur Magazine suggested that marketers segment their contacts in their email database at least by geographical location, so that recipients don't get a bad impression of your brand when they receive an email from you offering them a promotion in a city they don't live in.

Campaigner noted that it's essential to personalize the content your emails link to as well.

"Segmentation also applies to your web content as well; you don't want to send a CEO to a landing page that is meant for marketing managers," the source wrote.

Don't copy others' strategies
Your emails can be a highly effective tool for articulating your brand. As such, it's important not to mimic competitors' campaigns, even if they've been successful, as it may prevent you from communicating your company's identity to customers.

Econsultancy suggested marketers observe the competition and learn from their successes and mistakes, rather than simply adopting a strategy because a large firm in the industry has used it.

Don't use spam words
CAN Spam compliance is more than just a set of rules marketers have to follow. If you understand spam filters, the guidelines of the law can help you increase your email campaign's effectiveness.

Email service providers assign senders a spam score, and if the score is too high, your messages will go straight into your contacts' spam folders, Campaigner pointed out. Phrases like "once in a lifetime opportunity" will affect that score, as will using all caps and promising anything for free. The source also reminded marketers that emails with unattractive HTML layouts can be interpreted as spam.

Don't ignore your data
While it's easy to get bogged down in all the information analytics provides you, it remains an essential tool. Econsultancy insisted that personalization based on customer behavior is a reliable strategy in email marketing.

Chris Gore, a data scientist at Retention Science, highlighted how analytics solutions providers like his company can help marketers.

"By leveraging big data we are able to help them deliver the right offers at the right times, thus enabling our customers to not only acquire new customers, but more importantly, retain existing ones," Gore said.

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