Marketing departments are experiencing increased pressure from C-Suite to prove return on investment. From social media to email marketing, if the task falls under the marketing umbrella, significant impact on the bottom line must be proven.
For email marketing, optimization and testing practices like A/B split testing have proven to be extremely effective means to improve email performance. Routinely running tests enables email marketers to make decisions based on concrete data rather than gut instincts. This makes dreaded C-Suite reporting a little less, well, dreaded.
But are email marketers testing the right email elements? Not according to the 2012 MarketingSherpa Email Marketing Benchmark Report. In the report, we discover the most popular testing elements, including subject line (e.g. phrasing, length), message (e.g. greeting, body, closing) and layout and images are not always the most effective. See the full report’s full findings in the chart below.
Next time you’re preparing to test marketing emails, consider testing the following elements:
The MarketingSherpa data show only 26 percent of email marketers test From Line, yet it’s 29 percent effective. According to Silverpop’s Loren McDonald, the From Line matters today more in email marketing now than ever before for a number of reasons:
- Attention spans and time spent on email are shrinking
- Consumer inboxes are flooded with commercial messages, transactional messages and social media notifications
- Many email recipients use mobile devices to triage their inboxes, reading only what they’ve saved later on their laptop or desktop
- ISPs increasingly factor in relevance to their junk filtering algorithms and are adding prioritization features or enabling users to sort and view email according to whether the sender is a contact
It may seem strange to test the landing page instead of subject line, message, images or other email elements since contacts don’t see landing pages unless they’ve already taken action in the email. But according to the MarketingSherpa data, testing landing pages should be a priority, and this makes sense because the landing page is part of the funnel for registering conversions.
There are a number of tiny tweaks you can make to your landing pages to make a big difference in form conversions from your email marketing. HubSpot shares a few ideas in this blog, including changes to headline, copy, form location and form submit button text.
Every element of your email, from your subject line right down to your CTA, may be perfect, but what happens if you’ve targeted the wrong audience? A whole lot of nothing. Facebook allows you to target those who’ve “liked” your page by gender, relationship status, educational status, interested in, age, location and language, and LinkedIn allows you to target your audience by company size, industry, function, seniority and geography – your email marketing software should allow you to do the same.
TowerData email intelligence can help you discover more information about your email subscribers, segment your database for improved targeting and reach contacts through multiple channels. Learn more about our available database enhancements by visiting here.
Photo Credit: Leo Reynolds