B2B Email Marketing: 12 Common Mistakes
There are many online tools available to today’s B2B marketers, such as social networks, blogs and press releases. However, one touch point that remains critical is B2B email marketing.
B2B marketers still view emails as the most personal way of generating and nurturing leads. They can also be used to effectively build and reinforce brands. For this reason, it’s hugely important that businesses spend some time putting together a comprehensive B2B email marketing strategy, but there are some common pitfalls that every company needs to avoid.
Here, we’ve listed a number of common mistakes that marketers make when it comes to email marketing – and suggested ways to avoid them.
1. You’re Targeting the Wrong Audience
Haphazardly contacting the person in the highest position because you think he or she is the final decision maker is risky indeed. By trying to grab the attention of the super-busy MD, or the over-stretched CEO, you may be overlooking the person who is more likely to respond. It’s vital that you take a systematic approach to identifying your target audience. Conducting an A/B split test will help you discover audience is best for your email campaign. Remember – for the best results, your targeting needs to be refined on an ongoing basis, according to the data you collect from previous campaigns.
2. Your Subject Line Is Too Long
Give some serious thought to your subject line. An effective email title is short, attention grabbing and inspires the reader to open the email. Plus, the standard 40-character limit subject line is shortened when emails are checked via mobile devices, so be sure to factor this in to the copy creation process.
3. You’re Writing Too Much Copy
Emails need to be concise, but they also need to include the most important information. Be sure to include three points early on: differentiations, key benefits to the customer, and how the customer can respond. Any additional content needs to offer more reasons why your reader should contact you.
4. You’ve Created a Weak Landing Page
A strong landing page reinforces the customers decision to respond, provides continuity from the original email, and convinces them to fill out a response. Don’t oversell on your landing page – make calls-to-actions clear, and keep all content on-point to avoid any confusion.
5. You're Using Cheap Lists
Your email list can make or break the success of your campaign. It helps to have multiple lists with different URLs in order to determine whether it was the list itself that was the cause of a lacklustre campaign, or whether you’re facing another issue.
6. You're Forgetting Business Schedules
In the B2B arena, most of your clients will be in the office from approximately 9am until 5pm on weekdays. Knowing when your key audiences will be active will help you strategise the most effective time to deliver your emails.
7. You're Neglecting to Test the Project
Before execution, to achieve optimal results from your campaign, it’s important to test subject lines, images and copy. Use A/B split testing to ensure your messages are reaching the right people, and remember that you can always learn from your historical campaign data.
8. You’re Only Paying Attention to Click-Through Rates
When you only measure standard metrics, you miss information like the page’s prospects visited on your website, how often they visited the page, and bounce rates. All of this data combined will help you form an accurate picture of how well your email campaign is performing, and where the most impactful changes can be made.
9. You’re Not Analysing Results
If clients are opening your emails but not completing the desired call to actions, there may be an underlying issue with the way you’re running your campaigns. Perhaps your copy isn’t clear enough? Maybe there’s a technical problem with the website that’s preventing the recipient from getting in touch? It’s important to try to identify any issues straightaway, then seek to resolve them as quickly as possible.
10. You're Failing to Maintain Connections with Prospects
Use check-in emails to build a relationship with clients. Reaching out in this way shows genuine interest, builds communication channels, and may lead to feedback that can be used to improve future campaigns.
11. You’ve Adopted a Multi-Send Approach
You cannot expect a one-off sales email to generate business. ‘Fire and forget’ emails no longer work. Look to run an automated customer journey campaign. Initially, work to establish yourself as a trusted voice – you can then move onto more direct sales messages later in the journey.
12. You're Using a 'Fit for Purpose' Email Service Provider (ESP)
Many “free” ESP platforms use shared IPs and domains, and will be overly strict in accepting cold data. Take your time to find the right ESP and ensure that you platform meets your needs.
If you’re looking to market your business online, developing a clear B2B email strategy is paramount to your success. Know who you’re targeting, discover the best times to contact them, and learn which of your messages creates the best response.
It’s important to make sure the content you’re sending via your B2B email is offering value to all of your customers. Gauge what the customers wants, whether it’s genuine case studies, tailored marketing news or insider tips, and show them how you can help by directing them to your most vital resource – your website.
Avoid the common mistakes made above and your B2B email marketing campaigns are sure to bring value to your business!
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