Email marketing is one of the most consistent and stable forms of digital marketing of the last 30 years. It’s especially effective for small businesses to reach and communicate with their customers and community. There can be plenty to consider and strategize for effective email marketing. Therefore, to start your 2024 off right, we’ve created a list of some essential DOs and DON’Ts of email marketing for small businesses.
- Set Up DMARC Authentication: The Domain Message Authentication Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) is a protocol that authenticates those sending on a domain. This allows you to track and monitor everything sent on your domain, preventing the possibility of someone spoofing your domain and sending false emails on your business’s behalf. It’s best practice to set this up, but in 2024 it is also becoming a requirement from Google and Yahoo.
- Verify Your Sending Domain: Effective email marketing requires using a third-party platform for creating campaigns, designing automations, managing audiences, and more. However, to send on your domain’s behalf, these services require you to authenticate your domain. Be sure to do this, so your emails come from your domain rather than the service’s proxy. Along with DMARC, this is also becoming a requirement of Google in 2024.
- Link Everything: It might sound simple but don’t forget to link every image and button in your email. Along with opens, you want people to click on your email marketing to access your small business’ services and products. Users also now expect images and buttons to be linked and may become confused when a relevant image doesn’t go somewhere.
- Keep Branding Consistent: Your email marketing, like any marketing, should be consistent with your brand. This ensures its messaging and appearance properly reflect your business. That consistency with your business, its other marketing, as well as keeping it consistent throughout all your email marketing will increase your audience’s trust in your emails.
- Avoid Spam Complaints: A healthy sender reputation is critical for the success of your email marketing. It allows your emails to reach users’ inboxes where they will open and click them. This is why you need to avoid spam complaints, which will harm that sender reputation. Be sure you are only sending emails to subscribed recipients and follow Canadian regulations to avoid spam complaints.
- Forget About the Alt Text: Emails usually include at least a few images that are part of your messaging. It’s essential for your email marketing’s accessibility that you define the alt text for each of these images. This allows anyone who may have difficulty seeing these images can still comprehend your content.
- Have Too Many Calls to Action: Don’t overburden your email with too many messages. Stay focused and limit the call to actions you want your recipients to perform, or else they may become overwhelmed. Research has shown that keeping an email down to at most two calls to action seriously improves click rates.
- Write Wordy Subject Lines: Just like you shouldn’t overburden the contents of your email marketing, you also should keep your subject lines short and sweet. Remember, brevity is the soul of wit. The recommended maximum is 9 words, but an effective email marketing subject can be even shorter. Try to create something that is quickly captivating and piques a recipient’s interest. Let the email itself do the job of delivering the full message.
- Forget the Unsubscribe Button: It’s legally required in Canada to include an option for your audience members to withdraw their consent to receive messages. The new requirements by Google in 2024 will also require this unsubscribe to be only one step and easy to see within your email itself. Plus, making this easy will reduce receiving spam complaints that will harm your small business’ sender reputation.
- Send Without Testing Your Email: After you have diligently designed and written out that perfect email campaign, don’t just schedule and send it out to the world without first testing it yourself. Every email platform provides testing tools to send the email to a single account. This allows you to make sure everything is linked, is linked correctly and displays properly. Be sure to test it with a few different email service providers. Even certain versions of some providers are infamous for not displaying emails correctly. Also, make sure to test the device on desktop and mobile devices since assets may appear differently on each kind of device.
Mastering the Power of Email Marketing
Email marketing continues to be a powerful tool for any small business’ digital marketing. It’s a powerful channel for effectively and directly communicating with your audience. These email marketing dos and don’ts will help you start to master its techniques. If you’re looking for more advice to improve your email marketing for 2024, or are hoping to start email marketing, contact our marketing services team at Rosewood.