Email Marketing Best Practices – Be Brilliant

Clients always ask us:

What is a good open rate for my campaign?

That is a good question but we are unable to answer because it depends on the:

[checklist type=”checked”]

  • Quality of your subscriber list: were they added or did they sign up?
  • Relevance of you to your subscribers: do people look forward to receiving your campaigns?
  • Delivery day and time: did you send it at 3 a.m. on a Sunday or 9 a.m. on a Tuesday?
  • Subject line: does it encourage an open or is it generic?


So we thought we would outline 10 important things to bear in mind.

[heading]1. Do you have a Plan?[/heading]

Do you know why you are sending campaigns to being with? Do you have a goal in mind?


Make a plan

Maybe you want to send subscribers directly to your website shop pages where you can [tooltip title=”The gold dust”]see who clicked product links[/tooltip]. Maybe you update your website on the same day each month and want to send subscribers to those landing pages a day afterwards. Or you have an event and want to create some buzz beforehand, changing the subject line each time (e.g. “Next Week”, “This Week”, “Tomorrow!”) leading up to it.

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  • What will be your subject line?
  • What day of the week will you send? (See Google Analytics for your high-traffic day)
  • What time of the day depends on when your subscribers check their email
  • To what web page(s) will you send your subscribers?


As Robert Baden-Powell said, “Be prepared!”

[heading]2. Be Consistent[/heading]

If you say you will send a monthly newsletter, send it monthly. If you miss a month, apologize in your next campaign. People are creatures of habit and may look forward to receiving your campaigns on a specific day.

Use a FROM name — personal or business, and stick to it. Become familiar with your subscribers and generate loyalty.

[heading]3. Be Concise[/heading]

People very rarely have time to read a novel in an email. They have busy lives and probably have to deal with 50 emails every day.

Therefore, if you have a long blog post, use the first 2 paragraphs then send them to your website to read the full story.

[heading]4. Create Relevant Content[/heading]

If you say your newsletter will contains tips and tricks, don’t send them product news. It’s that simple.

Be fun, entertaining, and relevant to your newsletter signup description. The better the connection with your readers, the more loyal they will become.

Use personalization to make a campaign seem more relevant. It’s always nicer to receive an email which starts with, “Hey Paul”.

[heading]5. Use Testing Tools[/heading]

Use the Subject Line Tester in Market 2 All to run 2 different subject lines against each other. Our system will use a portion of your subscribers in the test then send the wining subject line to the remainder. This maximizes your open rate and lets you see what works and what does not.

AB testing

A/B Split Testing


[bar_graph title=”Subject line 1″ percent=”70″][/bar_graph]

[bar_graph title=”Subject line 2″ percent=”45″][/bar_graph]


Alternatively, try different times of the day and maybe a different day of the week. When you know your optimal delivery times, stick to it (see #2).

[heading]6. Analyze & Adjust[/heading]


Pay attention!

The heartbeat of our system is the reports. They can tell you everything from open rates to click rates, mobile devices to countries, unsubscribes to spam flags. You can even compare campaigns.

Pay attention to those unsubscribes and if they are too high, you may be sending irrelevant content.

Campaigns can be opened days or even weeks after they are delivered so make sure you don’t take the “day after” reports as final. Wait a week then take a look.

[heading]7. Don’t be a Spammer![/heading]

Don’t send too many campaigns; stick to your stated schedule but if you do veer off, let people know your plan. Keep them down to one or two a week at most. The more you inundate a subscriber’s inbox, the higher the likelihood that they will unsubscribe or worse, flag you as spam!

And we know that you know purchased lists are rubbish, right? Just don’t do it.

[heading]8. Encourage Sharing[/heading]

Social sharing

Share your wealth

When a friend, colleague or family member shares something with you, chances are you will read it. Why not use the power of the Internet to tell your story and share your campaigns?

Every Market 2 All campaign includes:

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  • Forward to a Friend
  • “Like” the campaign in Facebook
  • “Tweet” the campaign in Twitter


You can even drop those easily into your campaigns at strategic positions to help people out, or forward a campaign to someone who gave you their business card to encourage them to sign up to your newsletter. The possibilities are endless.

[heading]9. Creatively Develop Your Subscriber List[/heading]

Subscriber lists rarely shrink in size, they usually grow over time. But how you develop your lists is important. Luckily, Market 2 All provides some awesome tools to help you with that:

Subscribe options

  1. Standalone signup page; no need to have a website at all!
  2. Subscribe form
  3. iPad Enlist form to display at exhibitions or locations
  4. Add a checkbox to an existing form
  5. Integration into existing tools

[heading]10. See #1[/heading]

Yup, start again.

[text_box title=”What Do You Think?” text=”Let us know if you need help with any of these points or advice on your current campaigns.” margined=”yes”][button href=”” css_classes=”button_hilite”]Get in Touch[/button][/text_box]

Paul Mycroft

Having emigrated from south London, England, Paul has moved between cities in North America, building a loyal following since starting the business back in 2002. Many US and Canadian clients are with him today who were there from day one.