You might think that if a strategy is working for you, you should just keep doing it more of it. But just like anything else in marketing, an effective email strategy needs to be measured and monitored so that you’re only sending as many as your audience appreciates. If your company sends eDMs (electronic direct mail) on a frequent basis, then the answer to this question depends largely on the type of business you have, who your target audience is, and how frequently they open emails. If your company doesn’t send eDMs often, then the answer is probably somewhere between weekly and monthly. While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer as to how often you should send eDMs as part of your email marketing strategy, there are some best practices that may help guide you in the right direction.
Why you should be careful in sending eDMs For many businesses and organisations eDMs are a valuable part of their overall email marketing strategy, but too many of them too often can be a turn off for your subscribers. In fact, 33% of people said they unsubscribe from an email list when they perceive that they are receiving too many emails from that sender. This doesn’t mean that you should never send eDMs, but it does mean that you should be careful when and how often you do send them. If your strategy is to send eDMs on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, it’s likely that you will lose some subscribers along the way, but you’re more likely to retain your core list that way.
Why is an Unsubscribe Rate Important? Unsubscribes are essentially an open feedback loop that allows your readers to communicate with you when they feel that your emails are not relevant to their needs. It’s important to remember the difference between unsubscribes and spam complaints. 1. Spam complaints are triggered by automated systems that detect spam and block or mark your content as spam. 2. Unsubscribes are triggered by humans, giving you a chance to fix your mistakes and improve your email marketing campaigns. By following a few best practices, you can minimise your unsubscribe rates and improve your email deliverability rates. With more people receiving your content, you have the chance to convert more subscribers into customers.
3. Unopened eDMS: represents the digital marketing equivalent to suffering indifference. A lower-than-average opening rate suggests that your subject line isn't piquing enough interest. It is a good idea to address this issue before you send out your next eDM as a rise in 'unopened' can lead to a rise in 'unsubscribes'.
Opening rates are seldom more than 20-25% for any individual transmission, but only benchmarking will enable you to determine what steps you need to take to address this issue.
Benchmarking: How to determine the optimal frequency for your eDMs Once you know the type of content you’d like to be sending out, it’s time to start monitoring your email marketing metrics. These include things like open rates, click-through rates, and the uniqueness of your list.
You may find that you have a weekly email that is being opened at a very high rate but a monthly email that isn’t as popular. While there isn’t a magic formula that will work for your company, these metrics will help you determine what content your audience is looking for and how often they want it.
(For a list of industry-specific eDM statistics published by Mailchimp, please click the link at the end of this article).
Conclusion: Send regularly and be consistent, but never repeat!
An effective marketing strategy is never set in stone, and it’s important to be agile and willing to change when necessary. If you find that your eDM opening rates are falling then use the analytics provided by your platform provider to trouble shoot.
A common mistake is to keep sending the same eDM over the duration of a multi-week campaign. For example, if your eDMs are broadcast fortnightly and the campaign is 8 weeks-long make sure you have more than one eDM execution.
I would strongly suggest that prior to your campaign launch that you have these executions mapped out each focussing on a benefit and/or application relevant to the audience. This means more planning and effort, but by going that extra kilometre your subscribers will reward you!
Duncrahill Marketing can help you with your eDM strategy and execution.
We all see plenty of digital marketing campaigns every day. Good campaigns get noticed, but the great campaigns get a response. The best way to get responses is to carefully craft and target communications that resonate with its intended audience. Contact us and we'll work closely with you to create campaigns that are designed to help you meet your target and on budget.
The ADMA and some guidelines to consider
The Association for Data-driven Marketing and Advertising (ADMA) is the principal industry body for data-driven marketing and advertising. ADMA is also the ultimate authority and go-to resource for effective and creative data-driven marketing across all channels and platforms, providing insight, ideas and innovation for today's marketing industry.
ADMA - and its global partner GDMA - are member-driven organisations helping support the data-driven value exchange between a business looking to prosper and individuals looking for better ways to engage, shop and thrive in a mobile-centric world.
Below are links to their website and to regulations regarding 'spam' emails. I strongly suggest every marketer make themselves familiar with this website: