By Stacey Hartman
Establishing an online presence for your small business seems like a no-brainer nowadays. So you set up your site, linked up your company social media profiles, and created an email marketing campaign. Customers are loving your weekly emails and your subscriptions (and sales) are growing. You’re good to go now, right? This is exactly what you were aiming for, after all.
Well, sort of. It’s a good start, but there are steps needed to ensure that you don’t lose the subscriber base that you worked so hard to build. Let’s take a look at a few of the major ways that you could be losing email subscribers.
1. Purchasing email lists
Your subscriber numbers are slowly growing, but they could always grow faster. And let’s face it, those email lists look pretty tempting after all the hard work you’ve done. Resist the temptation. The list is typically sold to many people, rather than just you, so those email addresses are likely already being spammed with unsolicited email. That, and some email list providers gather their email lists in sketchy ways. And, since you’re probably not the only person who bought the email list, the recipients are much more likely to mark you as spam.
You might be asking how this would impact the legitimate subscriber base that you already have. If you’re sending emails to a chunk of users who are marking you as spam, it could impact your ability to continue sending future email campaigns. Some ISPs and email marketing providers will begin to block your email campaigns due to your poor reputation. Keep your subscriber list clean and relevant.
2. Failing to set expectations for customers
When customers sign up for your emails, they might be making assumptions on the content that you’ll be sending to them. Maybe they assume you’ll be sending them coupons when that was never your intention at all. And when your email marketing doesn’t match up to their expectations, they might become upset and leave.
A good way to avoid any misconceptions over your email marketing is to include expectations along with your sign up form. Let them know how often you’ll be emailing, what you’ll be sending, and how often you’ll be sending them. Setting up the expectations from the beginning will help you keep your subscribers happy.
3. Forgetting to keep your marketing content focused
Your email marketing is something that should be connecting you to your subscribers. You’ve already set the expectations with your customers, but keeping the content focused can be a struggle. Losing that focus can also cost you your subscribers.
To keep focused, keep informing. Your customers want to know about your business. Giving them information feeds that relationship. Give them brief tips or tricks on using your products. Highlight an upcoming event. Let them know the story of how you came up with the inspiration for your products. When you keep the focus on informing your readers, they’ll be more likely to engage.
4. Not testing your email campaigns
There’s nothing worse than firing off the email campaign that you’ve been working on and realizing that you missed something in your email. Maybe there’s a massive typo in your subject line. Or maybe the link that you included to your new product isn’t working. Avoid that sinking feeling and be sure to send yourself a test message first.
Beyond just typos and bad links, though, you’ll also want to pull up that email on multiple browsers and email clients. Just because the email looks amazing in Chrome doesn’t mean that Outlook is going to load everything correctly. Being mindful of other methods of accessing your emails ensures that your messages can be successfully received by your subscribers.
5. Neglecting to build campaigns for mobile devices
A growing number of users are accessing their emails primarily with their phones. As people shift their email consumption habits, it’s important to shift your email formatting as well. Here are a few quick tips:
• Use mobile/reactive email templates when you’re building your campaigns.
• Try to keep your email subject lines shorter to accommodate the smaller viewing area.
• When you’re testing your email campaign, you’ll want to be sure to test them on mobile devices at the same time. Tracking your email campaigns to see which devices are most common will help you to narrow down your tests.
• Keep your campaigns concise and your call to action clearly defined.
Email marketing can seem a bit daunting, but keeping these tips in mind can help you hold on to the audience that you worked so hard to build. Want to learn more? Check out the GoDaddy Garage email marketing archives and download the free email marketing guide for small businesses.
Bio: Stacey Hartman has been with GoDaddy for more than eight years, helping customers with SEO and business distribution via GoDaddy’s Search Engine Visibility and Get Found tools. Outside of work, she enjoys traveling, gaming, reading, and baking award-winning cheesecakes.