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The online world is a fast moving place. Things change seemingly overnight and what used to work wonders for a marketing program, doesn’t necessarily hold the same power that it did in the past. Email marketing was one of the first ways to market your business online, so there is a good chance that you have had an email campaign for a while; but has it gone stale? Sure, your email program may be fully functioning and provide decent results, but if you don’t continually check on your practices and examine new thoughts and ideas, you could be on a slow path to a diminished program that doesn’t yield the results it could.
When it comes to list building, it wasn’t always organic and opt-in. List building wasn’t always regulated and people chose quantity over quality and added email addresses to their lists any way they could. We now know that the best way to get a great response is to send to people who are interested and wanted at some point to receive more information from you. If you aren’t already, be certain that you aren’t using old practices of list building and adding random, untargeted people to your lists. If your list is solely permission based you will get a better response; when you send out messages to people that you know have or had interest in you or your products, you are more likely to at least get the message opened, which is the first step.
Subject lines are also a way to get people to open the message. The theories behind making great subject lines used to be full of pointers like, “only let your subject be a few words long” and do NOT use any trigger words ever. Those theories are only half-truths now. Long subject lines may not be fully visible to recipients in some email client viewers; but the content and concept isn’t lost on the reader. Don’t write a mini novel as a subject line, but include key points and concepts that are in the message. When it comes to trigger words, it’s not that you can’t use them at all, just use them sparingly. If something really is free, let the recipient know, but don’t go over board with it, and avoid heavy usage of trigger words.
Times change, and the rules of email marketing have changed. Online marketing is an ever evolving beast, and in order to be successful you have to evaluate your practices often, be flexible and innovate when possible.