email campaigning 101

04 Nov
I can see my mailbox from here

I can see my mailbox from here

Since I see a lot of questions on LinkedIn and other professional sites about this, I thought it was time to do a small section on email marketing basics.

You can say mailing campaigns are the new version of doing direct mail campaigns through traditional mail. There are a number of differences though. I will not get into this in detail at this point but anyone can see cost, time to market, devellopment, testing and follow up as a few of the areas that are affected in a positive way.

I count three kinds of mailing campaigns in my book.

There is the pushmail:
an unsollicited, ad hoc, mail, usually telling the readers about a promotion, a one-time-offer or a newsfact the sender wants for them to know.
A good example of this are press releases to specific members of the press.
The receivers have opted in to receive mails from the sender or are on a list from a 3rd party that has sold or rented out the list to the sender.
There is a very low brand connection as these mails are the ones that are thrown away most easily.
Warning: The majority of mails sent in this fashion are spam mails. Be carefull that yours isn’t caught in the net.

Periodic mails:
are the e-equivalent of newspapers, magazines etc… They come at specific times and are content-minded. These mails are intended to inform readers about new in specific areas.
E.g. newsletters, blog summaries, etc…
The readers have asked very specifically for this information.
The brand connection is high, as they asked for the information.
Warning: Do not sent out a mail to often. Readers will get bored with it and unsubscribe.

And the last kind that is used more and more: the event driven mail. Used for marketing to capture the attention of the reader again and again.
These are reminder mails, password mails, when registering a product a mail with a questionnaire in it, etc…
Since these mails are automatically generated, the subscriber is aware that he/she made the action that prompted this mail. So they will not be mad at you for sending the first one.
Warning: However, do not send too much mails because, again, the reader will get tired of them.

So here are a couple of tips:

  • Don’t send too much mail. Try to monitor the unsubscribes and take action when this percentage gets too high.
  • Make your information interesting. Target the information to the needs of the subscriber.
  • Try to keep away from the spam filters. There are a lot of programs out there to find out if your mail will be caught by the filters, make good use of them.
  • Follow up! Read the reports about your mailings, deducts conclusions and take action.

Every mailing is different. There are the different kinds but also the different messages, audience, tone of voice, etc… Use the data that you gather effectively to improve your statistics.

In a while I’ll post something about the practical tips to get your email campaign message to the right person in the right way.

If anyone has something to say about this article, don’t hesitate to comment.


Posted by on November 4, 2008 in email marketing


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

2 responses to “email campaigning 101

  1. Ben Waugh

    November 4, 2008 at 10:27 am

    I must say this is a great article i enjoyed reading it keep the good work 🙂

  2. mdepiere

    December 3, 2008 at 2:01 pm

    Thank you very much!


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