Digital marketing strategies continue to advance. Personalization and customer engagement is at the forefront more than ever before, adding more elements to digital marketing strategies and forcing marketing teams to up their game. Strategies like email marketing that were once basic are now filled with personalization and wide ranges of data. If you’re not careful, mishaps can happen. Here’s how you can avoid an email marketing disaster. You can also use this email marketing checklist to remember these key points.

Start with your goals and audience

Your marketing strategy must come first. Before you ever launch an email campaign, you need to think about who will receive your message and what is the action you wish for them to perform? This means designing a goal of each email communication in advance of execution. You should always have a reason why you’re sending an email along with the actions you’d like your audience to complete after receiving your message. If you can’t clearly articulate these baseline elements, then it’s highly likely your message will deliver little value.  

Truly providing value to your audience means sending the right message, to the right people, at the right time. You need to understand how to tailor your message and send messages to relevant segments – do not batch and blast!

You also need to set clear goals with every email campaign you create. Remember, the purpose of setting goals is to measure your progress. Hopefully when you reach your milestones, you’ll be able to track your success and identify “how” and “what” you should measure prior to execution.

Gather your email requirements

You know why you’re sending the email and who will receive it, great! Now it’s time to collect and create the assets you’ll share with your audience. Requirements typically include your email message, call to action, images, data, measurement, testing and business goals. Often, there’s a ton of necessities, so make sure you don’t cut corners on this process. Spend some time to create a repeatable process for all your email campaigns equipped with project briefs and campaign kickoffs to ensure everyone is on the same page and ready for action.

Start building your email

Email design is essentially what your audience will receive in their inbox. Make sure your email communicates your message in an esthetic way while respecting your brand standards. Obviously, fill your email with all the required assets you’ve identified, but you’ll also need to include some requirements beyond your brand. Make sure you abide by items like CAN-SPAM and other email regulations that can get you in trouble or reduce your email’s deliverability. Don’t forget, over half of emails are opened on mobile devices so make sure you’re not only designing for mobile, but that you email will render well across all mobile and desktop clients.

Testing and Quality Assurance

Before you send your campaign, you need to make sure everything is in tip-top shape. Send yourself a test message and comb through everything from the basics like checking spelling, links and images to more advance features like personalization and other data rules. Double checking your emails are critical so you should consider using testing software (like to streamline efficiency and easily identify errors.

Testing can also include split tests to see what content or design is best to capture your audiences interest. Adopting a practice of A/B testing is always recommended to improve campaign performance. 

Measure and Optimize

Did you reach the goals you set out to achieve? Now’s the time to measure and see if you did. Analyzing data in a concrete sequential format can give you an indication of where your audience stalled or hit roadblocks. Reflect on those patterns and strategize how you can modify future campaigns for a better performance.

At Three Deep, we believe data is our DNA. It’s what makes performance marketing possible. Know what you want to measure. Identify how you’ll measure it. Understand how your measurement and analytics will fuel future campaigns. Do this and you’ll create a culture for testing and optimization. If you have any questions on getting started, we’re happy to help!