The Summer Olympics are set to begin and there’s no doubt that athletes from every nation have spent nearly their entire lifetimes training for that big moment in the spotlight. Equally well trained are today’s B2B marketers, who should also be preparing for their moment in the spotlight. When is that moment? At the end of the year, of course—when every initiative is evaluated as either a hit or a miss.
If you’re looking to add more hits, now is the time to take stock of your email campaign fitness for your final lead generation push toward meeting 2016 revenue goals. Consider these five B2B email tactics to take you successfully through the rest of the year:
- Minimize copy (or break it up): I’ve written about the importance of subject lines previously, and while this is critical in generating opens, the content within the email message itself must deliver on that subject line promise. But it needs to be short and to the point; nobody has time to labor through blocks of text or long paragraphs any more. If your message is complex or has several key points, break up copy with bullets or numbered lists, as they’re easier to scan and your readers can more quickly target the most compelling content.
- Design wisely: A well-designed email will grab your audience’s attention and motivate action. Use color that supports your message theme and brand, and images that quickly convey your message – readers can interpret them faster than words. Finally, be sure your layout works on mobile devices, on which more than half your readers will be viewing your messages.
- Be targeted and relevant: The days of generic email blasts are dead. Instead, aim for highly targeted and personalized messages that speak to the needs and desires of your prospects based on communication you’ve already had with them, or previous actions they have taken. With proper targeting, these messages can still be high volume, but should be refined as content is consumed. Also, for new prospects, be sure to tailor your messages to their customer profiles, firmographics information and more.
- Leverage automation: Automating select email communications not only makes marketers’ lives a (little) bit easier, but also often delivers superior results. Recent studies show that automated (or triggered) email messages average over 70% higher open rates, and over 150% better click rates than standard messages. So be sure (if you haven’t already) to have automated emails written, designed and programmed to send as welcome and thank you messages, milestones (e.g. birthdays or anniversaries), abandoned purchases, renewal notices or dormant contacts. These messages, by default, will be timely, relevant and personal – and deliver better business outcomes.
- Test early and often: By testing your emails constantly, you’ll learn more about your target market and achieve better results with each new campaign. While there are many email aspects to test, there’s no need to overcomplicate things. Start with A/B testing your subject lines, your “send” days and/or times, and your offers and/or calls to action (CTA). Use your testing “winners” in subsequent campaigns to deliver improved results – then test again.
Don’t delay: ensure these important email tactics are in your email playbook now so that you can get yourself ready for the upcoming lead generation season. By zeroing in on these best practices sooner rather than later, you will almost certainly be on your way to a gold medal by end of year.
Outward Media’s accurate, targeted email data can help you convert more prospects into customers to meet your year-end goals. Ask us how. Also, take a look at our complimentary new e-book on building a successful email marketing database.
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