How to Steer Clear of The Spam Folder While Sending Mass Emails

How to Steer Clear of The Spam Folder While Sending Marketing Emails

Marketing Emails: How to Steer Clear of The Spam Folder While Sending Mass Emails

Email marketing is one of the most lucrative tools for businesses trying to connect with their customers. It allows you to connect with the right customer at the right time with the right message. However, it’s not an easy job. On average, marketers spend around 20 hours per week on email campaigns that they manage manually. They first have to plan out the campaigns, get the email design and content ready, and then send it out to each name of their list. Sounds cumbersome, right?

Did you know that nearly one-fifth of the emails that are sent to you never really reach you? According to Return Path’s 2017 Email Deliverability Benchmark Report, 20 percent of email never reaches the inbox. So, where do these emails end up? The spam folder.

While the spam filter saves people from a lot of email frauds, it is the arch-nemesis of all marketers. Theoretically speaking, 1 out of every 5 marketing emails you send, might just end up in spam folders. That being said, it’s not impossible to make it to people’s inboxes. Here are some tried and tested hacks that can help you steer clear of the spam folder while sending out your marketing emails.

#5 Best Practices to Avoid The Spam Folder For Your Marketing Emails

1. Clickbait no longer works: Avoid misleading subject lines

Traditionally, marketers played with the email subject lines to evoke curiosity and get people to click on their emails. But gone are the days when marketers preached hacks like adding “Re:” or “Fwd:” “Free” to your email subject lines. Now, you talk to an aware audience that not only avoids your gimmicks but also actively reports them.

Using overhyped subject lines that don’t match the contents of your email may get you a higher open rate, but it will also get you much higher customer dissatisfaction. They’d not only unsubscribe to your email but can also report your emails for phishing or spam, thereby getting your blacklisted.

The key is to keep your subject lines crisp and engaging, but not deceptive. So, avoiding phrases like “free gifts”, “exclusive offers”, “claim the prize”, etc is a good start.

2. Reputation matters: Work on your IP credibility

Statista reports that spam messages account for 53.95 percent of e-mail traffic in March 2020. That is more than half of the emails sent out worldwide. So, falling in this lot is rather common for a marketing email. Your emails have to clear two checkpoints: ISP gateway and Spam Filter and can get blocked at either of these junctions.

To get clearance at these checkpoints you need to ensure that the IP address from which the emails are being sent out has a good reputation. Building your IP reputation can be tricky because a single wrong step can cost you your IP credibility. To avoid that from happening, here are a few steps that you can take:

 

  • Start Small: Send out emails to a handful of audience. For starters, always send out emails to an audience that is aware of your brand and is likely to check your email or better still, respond to it. This helps ISPs in knowing that your emails are relevant.
  • Send Emails to Subscribers: When a person subscribes to your content, they permit you to send email communication to them. So, always send emails to your subscribers and not random lists that you may have procured from third-party sources. Ideally, Ideally, use double opt-in or confirmed opt-in for the subscription.
  • Separate marketing and transactional emails: Marketing emails are sent to a group of customers or prospects to nudge them towards taking some action towards your brand. On the contrary, transaction emails are sent to individuals helping them in completing a transaction or a process related to your product or service. An individual is usually expecting the transaction email and is likely to act upon it. When you mix these with your marketing emails, your customer gets disoriented and can unsubscribe from your mailing list. So, you keep the communication for marketing and transaction totally separate.
  • Keep tabs on your IP reputation: It is always good to monitor your efforts. While you keep building your IP credibility, you should use tools like Senderscore.org, TrustedSource, to know your IP reputation. You can also use get your IP certified via Sender Score to ensure that your emails reach the inbox through most of the major ISPs out there.
The path to inbox

Source: ReturnPath

Send Emails to Subscribers
Transactional Email vs Marketing email

Source:  Funneloverload

3. Be neat and tidy: Clean your subscription lists

We’ve already established that your IP reputation is of utmost importance for the deliverability of your emails. This reputation takes a direct hit if you send too many hard bounce emails. They instantly trigger the filtering and blocking of your IP.

A hard bounce occurs when the message has been permanently rejected either because:

 

  • The email address is invalid
  • The email address does not exist

To avoid this, you need to regularly purge your mailing list of all inactive recipients from your list, filtering out all users who have not opened or clicked your emails in a few months. Several email service providers (ESPs) give you clear analytics to help you clean better. A good idea is to find the right ESP or email marketing tool that provides this option. Here is a guide that can help you in finding the right email marketing tool.

4. Balance is the key: Set the right email frequency

Too much and too little of anything is always harmful. If you said too many emails to a person, you might annoy them into unsubscribing your or reporting you as spam. If you barely send them an email, our prospect or customer is likely to forget about you.

Setting an adequate email frequency is crucial to the deliverability of your email. The key is to not overwhelm them but to keep them connected to your brand. Ideally, you should send one email per week. If you have a special offer to make, you might add another email, but you should not send more than two marketing emails to one person in the same week.

5. Content is the king: Keep email content in check

Last but definitely not the least, is working on the content of your email. Your message must be absolutely relevant to the receiver. A good practice is to always focus on what your receiver would like to know about your brand, instead of what you’d want to tell them.

Certain technical details like keeping the text to image ratio as 4:1, adding all tags to images, making emails mobile-responsive are also crucial in building your brand and IP reputation. You can refer to our guide on writing a good marketing email to help you with this.

In the End

You would find a lot of articles dealing with what goes inside a marketing email, but it’s equally important to take care of the technicalities of email delivery. The best of email copies fail to deliver results if they end up in the spam folder. An ESP can help you tackle a lot of these problems, especially for building your IP credibility and cleaning your mailing lists. You can check out our article about comprehensive guide on B2B email marketing or ESP to learn more about it.

How To Find The Right Email Marketing Tool For Your Business?

Email Marketing Tool For Your Business

How To Find The Right Email Marketing Tool For Your Business?

Email marketing is one of the most lucrative tools for businesses trying to connect with their customers. It allows you to connect with the right customer at the right time with the right message. However, it’s not an easy job. On average, marketers spend around 20 hours per week on email campaigns that they manage manually. They first have to plan out the campaigns, get the email design and content ready, and then send it out to each name of their list.

How To Find The Right Email Marketing Tool? Sounds cumbersome, right? Not just that, they then have to manage responses to the emails, if any, and reply actively otherwise your prospect or customer might get disinterested in the brand. So, you’d probably need a person to just manage marketing emails who’d have to be on their feet 24X7 manually setting up emails and sending them out from time to time. As the world moves towards automation in all walks of life, email marketing automation has also become commonplace. So, you can just offload all the management of your marketing emails to an email marketing tool that allows email automation.

Find The Right Email Marketing Tool For Your Business

Source: Salesforce

Before diving any deeper into email marketing tools, let’s first understand what Email Automation means.

Email automation is the ability to send pre-decided emails that are triggered based on specific customer behavior. For instance, when you sign up for a trial version of some online app, you soon get an email about why you should upgrade to the paid version. That’s email automation. It allows you to get send out the right message to the customer at the right time without having to manually do the work each time.

To get email automation, you need a third-party email marketing tool. While there’s no right or wrong tool out there, choosing an adequate tool requires research and clarity. To get you going on that, here are 10 things that you should consider while selecting the right email marketing tool for your business.

10 Things To Consider While Finding The Right Email Marketing Tool For Your Business

Customizable Templates

It’s futile to invest in an email marketing tool that doesn’t help you in creating the emails for your marketing campaigns faster and better. So, you should look out for tools that have built-in templates for you to use and generate emails instantly. That being said, you don’t want to be completely restricted by the tool. Therefore, ensure that the tool also allows for an ample amount of customization in these templates. That way, you can pick a template, modify it to suit your brand language, and create emails in a jiffy.

HTML Coding

In the present times, if you want to stand out in the competitive market, you need to go beyond simple designs and create emails that are nothing short of being webpages themselves. They should be well designed, clickable, and even have embedded multimedia elements to engage the customer. To get this kind of customization in your marketing emails, you’d probably sometimes need to code your emails in HTML. For that, you need a tool that’s compatible with HTML coded emails.

Website Integration

As soon as you place an order on Zomato, you get an invoice on your registered email, right? That’s because the website or the app is integrated with an email marketing tool. So, as soon as you perform and action, an email corresponding to it gets triggered. Email marketing tools that allow website integration helps you build your leads automatically. Imagine you have a blog, and you want people to sign up for your weekly newsletter if they like the content on the blog. Now, without a tool that allows website integration, you’d have to weekly manually collect the list of people that subscribed to your newsletter, upload the list to your email sending tool and then send the newsletter. With tools that allow integration, the list gets updated automatically.

Event Registration

Imagine you’re hosting a webinar and you create an amazing landing page for people to register at. Now, you’d want people to get details about the webinar or the link for the webinar instantly on their email once they’ve registered. To do that, you need a tool that allows you to create event-specific forms through which you can set up automated emails specifically for the event. If your company does online and offline events often, you should strongly consider tools that allow event registration.

Customized Landing Page Options

For companies that are starting out in the digital space and don’t have a website, a tool that provides the option of creating email campaign-specific landing pages is a great way to build marketing funnels. A good option for those looking for this kind of feature is Constant Contact. It allows you to create landing pages from its repository of templates that can be customized as per your needs.

Footer Specifications

Most marketing tools have certain pre-specified messages for all emails that are sent out via that tool. These messages not only

Find The Right Email Marketing Tool For Your Business

include options to report and unsubscribe from the email list but also have small promotions for the tool itself. Clearly, you’d not want your marketing emails to promote another tool, right? So, while choosing a tool, you also check whether or not there is an option to change the standard footer message. Ideally, you should go for a tool that gives you the liberty to customize footer with your social media links and add endnotes like in Mailchimp.

Reporting Features

You spend so much time figuring out your email marketing campaigns. The effort would be futile if you are unable to know the impact your email has had. While all tools give you some sort of analysis about the effectiveness of your email marketing efforts, you should take time to check out tools that have clear metrics that they report. A good tool would tell you the open rate, click-through rate, and the bounce rate of your emails.

Sender IP Address

All your efforts of creating the perfect marketing emails go down the drain if your email gets marked as spam about an Internet Service Provider. This happens when you send too many emails daily to a lot of people. However, you can prevent your email from getting marked as spam by ensuring that the sender IP address is considered as credible by ISPs. So, when you research a tool, you should also check the credibility of its IP address. Tools like TrustedSource and SenderScore can help you know the ‘sender reputation’ of the email marketing tool.

Find The Right Email Marketing Tool For Your Business

SPF and DKIM setup

You also want the ISPs to know that you are worthy of sending the email and you are who you say you are. Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM), are the verifications you give to the ISPs confirming the identity and authenticity of your email domain. When you select a tool, you should also read whether or not they have these verifications in place, or else you’d easily fall victim to email spoofing (somebody taking control of your email domain)

Pricing

Lastly, it is important to consider the pricing that each tool has. Depending on your budget, you should compare the services provided by each tool and choose one that fits your needs but is also affordable. Most email marketing tools either charge you on the basis of the number of campaigns or one the basis of the sender list. If you think you are going to be sending a lot of emails but to a handful of quality leads only, you should go for sender-list based pricing. On the other hand, if you think you would be doing more of cold outreach to long lists of recipients, going for campaign-based pricing is preferable. Also, do not forget to check out any available offers on the pricing. Often, email marketing tools have some discounts available.

In the End: Try Before You Buy

While you should check all these features of different email marketing tools and compare them with one another, it’s better to try them out before making a purchase. Tools like Mailchimp allow you to explore all it’s features and pay only when you actually send out a campaign email. So, you can create templates, manage lists, and get comfortable with the tool before investing in it. Always remember to start small, use a tool, and then upgrade/purchase as per your business requirements. To summarize, there is no perfect tool out there, just the right tool that fits your needs.

How to Write An Effective B2B Marketing Email?

Effective B2B Marketing Email

How to Write An Effective B2B Marketing Email?

Out of the innumerable marketing strategies available to businesses nowadays, email marketing has been one of the most effective ones, especially for B2B companies. We had earlier covered why email marketing is a great choice for B2B businesses.  But merely knowing that you should send emails to communicate with your clients and prospects is not enough. You should also know how to write these marketing emails, right? After all, as William Carlos Williams rightly says, “It is not what you say that matters but the manner in which you say it; there lies the secret of the ages.

This brings us to the next big question: what’s the right way to write a B2B marketing email? Given the fact that there are different types of emails and what you write in an email depends entirely on the message you want to convey, we can’t give you a ready-to-use email. However, what we can do is to give you tips to write any B2B marketing email effectively.

5 Tips to write an Effective B2B Marketing Email

Here are some tried-and-test tips and best practices that you should keep in mind while crafting a B2B marketing email.

#1 Know your audience

Imagine serving meat to a purely vegetarian family? It’s a catastrophe waiting to happen. Similarly, if you serve an email to an audience that you don’t know well, your audience is unlikely to understand the message you are conveying.

Knowing your audience means understanding their preferences. Based on these preferences, you set the content, visuals, and tone of your email. For instance, an email to a millennial would have to be conversational and witty. You could even include Gifs and memes in it. But an email to the CEO of a company about trying out the demo of your product can have nothing of that sort. It has to be crisp, to the point, and with informational visuals only.

The key is to always create your email as if you are talking to them.

#2 Be concise

It’s rightly said, brevity is the soul of the wit. No one wants to read long dragging emails about why they should become your client. MarketingExperiments even did an experiment to prove that concise emails work better. They sent a longer copy version and a shorter copy version for the same campaign to the same audience at different times. While the longer copy got 183 conversions, the shorter one got a whooping 366. That’s literally a 100% more conversions. So, you need to cut to the chase and tell the receiver exactly what you want to convey.

#3 It’s all about the subject line

All the effort you put into creating a marketing email goes down the drain if it’s not even opened. And what makes people check out an email? A catchy subject line i.e. anything that nudges them to read more or find out what the email is about. Brevity is important here too. For instance, the famous subject line by MAC cosmetics, “M∙A∙C Black Plum Friday – Join in on Black Friday Fun with a New Deep Purple Vamplify. Plus Free Shipping and Samples” was a huge fail. Ideally, your subject line should not be more than 30 characters.

Sample of buzzfeed email

That being said, don’t go overboard while trying to be catchy and clickbaity. A famous fail at this was Buzzfeed’s email about getting fired. However, clickable the subject line was, it got Buzzfeed in a huge controversy because of its apathetic copy. So, always know your limits too.

#4 Define clear next steps or CTA

Imagine an email that says, “Hey we are launching a new product, and here are its features.” Do you think it will work? Definitely not. There is no direction in the email about what the receiver should do with the information you just shared. Instead, if the email says, “Hey we are launching a new product, and here are its features. Why don’t you try it out? Doesn’t that sound more complete. Because now your reader knows the next step he should take after reading the email. That being said, you don’t want to make them too confused. So, don’t put too many different CTAs. For instance, you can’t write ‘try it out”, “reply if you are interested” and “buy now” all in the same email. Focus all your content on one key action.

#5 Take care of the technicalities

While most businesses keep focussing on getting the content and visuals of the email right, they forget on the technical details. A good email is one that loads easily and is easy to read. To ensure this, you need to keep the size of images in the email low, so that it even loads on a poor network. Not just that, you should also add alt tags to images, in case they don’t load.

Another thing that most companies forget in terms of technicalities is making their email responsive to different devices, especially mobiles. Emails that don’t display well on mobiles are likely to get deleted within three seconds. This was the cause of failure Macy’s Wardrobe Sale Email.

Mobile email marketing

In the End

While these tips would help you write awesome marketing emails, don’t overdo it. 69% of email users unsubscribe from a business or non-profit email because the organization sends too many emails. So, plan your emails such that you are not bombarding the receiver with a huge volume of emails.

The best way to manage the frequency of emails and even automate emails, and personalize them is by using a good email marketing tool for your business. That way, you can manage your mailing list and send bulk emails seamlessly.

Overall, the key is to have a plan. Plan your email’s content, when it would be sent, to whom it would be sent, and what is its goal. If you do that accurately, your email will reap great results.

Understanding B2B Email Marketing: A Comprehensive Guide

B2B Email Marketing

Understanding B2B Email Marketing: A Comprehensive Guide

Back in 1978, a young creative thinker, Gary Thuerk, sent out an email promoting his company’s computers to 400 people and made sales worth $13 million from it. Little did he know, that he had sown seeds of one of the most effective marketing strategies the world would ever use: Email Marketing.

Today email marketing is the go-to choice for almost every company as it is the most direct and effective way to convert leads into customers and customers into loyal, raving fans. Interestingly, while every business out there is using emails to reach out to its prospects, trends suggest that email marketing works the best for B2B companies. Now, before dividing any deeper into the effectiveness of B2B email marketing, let’s talk about what email marketing means.

What is B2B Email Marketing?

Email marketing is a digital marketing strategy that allows companies to reach out to their prospects and leads via email. And when business-to-business a.k.a. B2B companies use this strategy to target clients or client-to-be, it’s known as B2B email marketing or email marketing for B2B companies.

Moo Promotional Email

Types of B2B Marketing Emails

Depending on the type of message you share in your email, there are 5 common types of marketing emails that B2B companies use:

Promotional Emails

As the name suggests, these are emails that you sent to promote a standard, one-time offer. This includes sales, discounts, and premium rates that you may plan to offer. These emails are the best choice when you are looking for instant gratification as they drive conversion real quick. The image on the left is an example of a good B2B promotional email by Moo, an online printing and design company for businesses.

Email Newsletters

Newsletters are emails that you send to your prospects and customers to remind them regularly about you. The sole purpose of these emails is to ensure that your customer is connected and engaged with the brand. For instance, the digital writing tool, Grammarly, sends “Weekly Writing Insights” to its users that have details about the users writing performance, common errors, and some articles from the Grammarly blog.

Transactional Emails

Remember that automated email you get whenever you sign up on a new website? Or the one you get when you try to change your password somewhere. All these emails that you get while interacting with a brand, are transaction emails. How they help in marketing, you may ask? Transaction emails guide the user through your brand, ultimately making sure that they don’t feel ignored or lost. That way, users feel connected with your brand.

Lead Nurturing Emails

So, you got a company’s marketing head to sign up on your website to try your product? What next? How do take them from being a prospect merely interested in your brand to a customer? You do this by sending them a tightly connected series of emails with a coherent purpose and full of useful content all nudging them to buy your product or service, and these are known as lead nurturing emails.

Behavioral Emails

What happens if your customer stops using your product/service? Or you want to convert a client from a free trial to a premium account? These are defined customer behaviors that you want to get for your brand. And the emails to derive this behavior or action are known as Behavioural Emails. One of the best examples of this is Apple’s renewal email.

Apple Behavioral Emails Example

Why B2B companies should go for Email Marketing?

Venturebeat says that there are 43 different marketing categories available for a business. But you can’t use them all, right? Here’s why going for email marketing is a great choice if you are a B2B company.

B2B Email Marketing helps you connect to the right audience

When you have a mailing list of clients or companies you want to target, the message reaches directly to your audience, and not to a random group. As a result, you are more likely to get conversions. A Monetate survey states that for a business 4.24% of visitors from email marketing buy something as compared to 2.49% of visitors from search engines and 0.59% from social media. So, you are more likely to make a sale if you communicate directly with your target audience.

Your audience prefers it

Any business leader is more likely to prefer an informational email that comes from a known source than a random Facebook ad while making a business decision. That’s probably why 72% of B2B buyers are most likely to share useful content via email because it is communication that more often than not, they’ve permitted for.

It has more ROI

This is pretty straight forward. For every $1 spent on email marketing, the average return on investment is $38, that’s higher than any other platform. As a direct communication channel, email marketing drives more conversions. At the same time, the cost of running an email campaign is far lesser than running a paid promotion on social media. So, your overall ROI is much higher.

Email marketing will never die out

Remember Orkut or Google+? They are nowhere around now, right? Some say even Facebook is dying. While no one can predict the lifetime of these social platforms, we know for a fact email, is here to stay. It can evolve but never die. So planning your marketing around it is fool-proof.

 

To conclude, email marketing is one of the most powerful tools available to businesses to reach out to their target audience. It is more focused, has better ROI, and lets you engage with your customer more efficiently. So, put your time, efforts, and money into building a solid mailing list. You can know more about how to write an effective B2B marketing email on our blog. Remember what Ramsay Leimenstoll has rightly said,

“A small list that wants exactly what you’re offering is better than a bigger list that isn’t committed.”