Email marketing is one of the best ways for your business to sell to its target audience. If used correctly, it is highly trusted by those who have opted-in to receive your marketing messages. Research has shown that those who have already interacted with your brand are likely to buy from your email content.
To be able to achieve these results however, you need to be following strict email marketing etiquette. Some of these rules are not just because consumers will dislike your content and perhaps remove themselves from your list, but also because they would violate laws in various countries.
So what are three of the most important email marketing etiquette rules you must observe?
1. Use A Third Party Email Provider
When you are creating an email list for your party or family newsletter, creating a long blind-copy or group list is fine. However, when you want to engage your target audience, you need to use a professional email marketing service.
There are several reasons for this which will impact how professional your marketing content will look to the receiver. For instance:
- An email marketing provider allows you to include an opt-out link for those who want to unsubscribe.
- You can’t scale up your email marketing campaigns when you have a successful business or a large list.
- It is easier to make mistakes when using a general mail client rather than an email marketing software program.
A professional service will also provide you with more functionality such as email list segregation, stylish templates, monitoring of campaign success and automation. While these can be done manually, it would take valuable time away from your business and subsequently lower the return of investment in your email marketing campaigns.
2. Gain Permission Before Emailing A Contact
Don’t assume you have permission because you have received contact details via a business card, telephone call or because they have followed you on social media. Instead seek permission by either having them sign up through your website or getting them to write down their permission on a sign-up sheet.
This isn’t just polite, because no-one likes to receive something they don’t want to but it can also be a legal requirement. According to marketing laws, you must have sought permission from any individual you email. An individual is counted as anyone who is not attached to a business, is not in a limited company or if the email address has identifiable information included within it.
Therefore, legally, you can only send cold-emails to addresses like firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. There is no telling who will be monitoring these email addresses and it is unlikely to be a decision maker.
3. Give Subscribers The Opportunity To Opt-Out At Any Time And Easily
The final rule is another legal requirement, especially in America where it is part of the CAN-SPAM laws. You must give subscribers the opportunity to say they no longer want to receive your email marketing messages. This can easily be done by your email marketing provider with a simple link to automatically unsubscribe them from the list.
In addition, you should also manually remove those who request via email that you remove them from your mailing list. This may take some time, but is a legal requirement.
It is also important because if too many people report you for sending spam, your server can be blacklisted and this will make it harder for you to send marketing emails.
These email marketing etiquette rules are to protect the customer and build trust with them. Significant benefits can be had from following them, mainly that your company’s server will not be blacklisted allowing you to send content to all your contacts. This in turn will improve the return on investment from your email marketing campaigns.
- Assess your email marketing behaviours against these rules.
- Make changes that are required.
Do you have any other email marketing etiquette rules to suggest? What mistakes do you often see from other companies?
Let us know in the comments below.