Email is an effective and affordable marketing tactic. Implementing email marketing is straightforward, thanks to the best email templates and platforms that allow you to segment your lists and track results. Notably, email helps you deliver personalized content based on customer purchase history and prospect engagement, and customers can respond directly to offers.
However, like all marketing channels, email marketing has its share of obstacles to overcome. We’ll take a closer look at the most significant issues plaguing marketers and how to use email marketing best practices to solve them.
The six biggest email marketing challenges include earning new subscribers, increasing open rates, retaining subscribers, boosting click-through rates, and achieving measurable ROI.
To email people legally, they must opt into your email list. If you buy an email list and try to use it in a campaign, you’ll likely get kicked off the email platform and be flagged as a spammer. It’s critical to build an email list organically, even if that takes time.
Solution: The best way to earn new subscribers is to explain the benefits of opting into your list. Have a clear value proposition to answer people’s key concerns. For example, explain that you’re providing meaningful product updates or sending special offers that aren’t available anywhere else.
Let people know precisely why they should subscribe to your emails and how your emails will benefit them. Here are some ways to promote your list and boost subscriptions:
Other ways to grow your email list include adding a link to employee signatures, displaying gated offers on your website, and requiring an email address from your website visitors for them to access quotes and certain resources.
On average, email open rates are around 21%, according to Mailchimp, though this rate differs by industry. Since an unread email doesn’t do you any good, increasing your email open rates will improve your email marketing campaigns overall.
Solution: You can increase your marketing emails’ open rates in several ways.
A compelling email with an interesting subject line won’t matter if all your emails get sent straight to the spam box. Passing the spam filter has always been a massive email marketing challenge. Additionally, full inboxes and non-existent email addresses create deliverability issues.
When your deliverability rate is exceptionally low, ISPs may block you. Poor deliverability is a sign of wasted time, money and effort.
Solution: You can take several steps to improve your email deliverability rates.
It’s great to add subscribers, but keep a close eye on your unsubscribes. Are your subscribers hitting the unsubscribe link regularly? If so, there could be a problem with your content, frequency and relevance. If you have a bunch of active subscribers, it pays to make every effort to keep them.
Solution: The best way to keep your current subscribers is by sending relevant emails to the right audience. Try these tips to keep subscribers engaged:
Another top email marketing challenge is improving email click-through rates (CTRs) and maintaining a consistent number. Even if recipients open your emails, it doesn’t mean they’ll read your content and click on the links inside. If they’re not clicking, you don’t have a good chance of converting them into paying customers.
Solution: Your low CTRs may be a result of disinterested subscribers. Try these methods to capture their interest enough for them to click your links:
Measuring digital marketing ROI isn’t easy. Maybe you saw a 4% increase in CTR for your latest email blast, but did you experience any increase in conversions or leads?
Solution: Closed-loop marketing can help achieve measurable ROI to resolve email marketing challenges. With closed-loop marketing, you’ll follow a subscriber from the first point of contact (visiting your website) to their final conversion into a paying customer via website cookies and internal communications.
Do take these actions when planning and launching an email marketing campaign:
Here’s what not to do in email marketing:
Attach files to bulk emails. Attachments are OK if you send a one-to-one email on a specific topic and the recipient expects an attachment. Otherwise, avoid attachments at all costs.
New challenges will arise with email marketing, of course, just as they will with any other marketing channel. But don’t give up: You can overcome these problems by making the right moves and observing your performance. Use the tips here to handle the current biggest email marketing challenges, and watch your efforts pay off in conversions.
Shane Barker contributed to the writing and reporting in this article.