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Five Mistakes Email Marketers Make


When technology advances, so do email marketing best practices, yet some marketers tend to ignore them and keep doing the same thing they've always done.

While getting an email campaign up and running in the first place can be rather simple - finding a provider, creating a list and sending messages - the hard part is continuously putting in work to manage, refine and improve campaigns moving forward.

If marketers are slow to adopt new email strategies, the risk of antiquated emails degrades brand recognition and reduces email marketing return on investment (ROI). Here are some outdated email marketing strategies could be causing your contacts to ignore your emails.

1.  Too Many Graphics

Emails that contain only images are a big red flag for the spam filters. While this strategy may have creative intentions, it actuality lowers a campaign's deliverability rate. You need to aim for a good balance of text and images as this will help ensure more emails reach their intended targets and also increase interaction rates.

2. Multiple Calls-to-Action

When email marketing was just starting out, the school of thought was that it was best to maximize the messaging that recipients see every time they open an email. Eventually, this strategy led to emails that included numerous calls-to-action (CTAs), which was overwhelming for readers. Today, marketers have found that each message should contain a clear, singular CTA (e.g., taking advantage of a sale, signing up for a newsletter, completing a survey or following the brand on social media).

3. More is Not the Merrier

Early email marketers believed that the more emails, the better. Because email is still the most effective form of marketing in terms of ROI, many professionals today are still sending emails at a frequency that is too high for their recipients' liking.  If you are like me, then the fastest way to get me to hit the unsubscribe button is to send me emails more than once a week (other than a newsletter subscription).

To avoid this mistake, brands will want to use segmentation to send just the right message at the right time to the right audience.

4. Purchasing Contact Lists

Believe it or not, marketers are still buying lists of contacts who have never chosen to receive emails from their brands. This practice is not only ineffective, but it also comes with the risk of getting banned by email service providers (ESPs). Large ESPs have sophisticated technology that can detect honeypots - decoy email addresses set up just to catch habitual spammers - which are often included in purchased lists. This situation should be avoided by using lists comprised only of contacts who originally opted in to receive emails from your company.

5. Relying on Open Rates

Many marketers use open rates as their only indication of a campaign's success. And while open rates are certainly helpful to monitor, other key performance indicators (KPIs) should not be ignored. When measuring email success, a superior indicator to monitor is click-through rate (CTR). This data will not only indicate how many people opened the email, but, more importantly, how many people were intrigued enough by the content to want to learn more about it.

If you are currently using any of these antiquated practices, stop.