Category Archives: email

If you send out newsletters or email campaigns to your subscribers, here are some things to keep in mind.

Tips for Email Marketing: This presentation covers the basics – what to do with the subject, the “from” field, and the email body; how to make it more likely that your emails are opened and clicked on.

Using Images in Email Marketing: Should you or shouldn’t you? If you do, what do you need to be careful about?

Common Email Marketing Mistakes: Just don’t do any of this.

Or read on for more email marketing advice.

Mistakes Are a Marketing Opportunity

Mistakes typosMistakes happen. Someone mixed up a customer order or made up a bill wrong. You send out an email to the wrong list. There’s a bug in the rice. (This happened to me not so long ago.)

No matter how hard you try, how good your employees are, or how rigorous your quality-control process is, some things slip through the crack.

It’s how you manage after the mistakes where your company’s culture and customer support shows. How you handle the customer after she complains, or after you discover the mistake, determines whether you can manage to retain her.

When I got that tiny bug in my rice, the restaurant manager apologized profusely and when I refused another serving of rice, offered another dish as replacement. We were at a lunch buffet, but for the rest of the meal, we got served at the table. It’s been some months, and I still remember the incident, but I have mostly good feelings about that restaurant. In contrast, I’ve had many experiences at other restaurants where the wait staff made a mistake but were quite blasé about it.

So I found this recent email from the CEO of PowToon both amusing and admirable.

Continue reading Mistakes Are a Marketing Opportunity

Our Best Posts of 2012

New Year fireworks

started this blog nearly two years ago, when I wanted a space to put down my thoughts about marketing. Better Marketing wasn’t a business then — it wasn’t even the blog name.

It’s this year, after we started as a business, that we actually started writing regularly — and this is the 60th post of the year.

We would like to end the year by spotlighting both our most popular posts — that is, the ones you readers liked best — as well as my favorite posts.

Continue reading Our Best Posts of 2012

Common Email Marketing Mistakes

Diwali is next week. Did you send out special offers or greetings to your customers and prospects?

While everyone is talking about social media, email marketing remains an excellent way of nurturing your prospects and customers. In this post, I look at some common mistakes marketers make in email campaigns, through a few Diwali-themed marketing emails I received.

Wasting the Subject Line

Here is a screenshot of some Diwali offers in my inbox.

Diwali Emails as Seen in Gmail

Continue reading Common Email Marketing Mistakes

The Opposite of Marketing: Keeping Your Product Attributes A Secret

Didn’t we say, don’t keep your customers guessing? Well, if that wasn’t clear enough, here is a story of how a company can make it very difficult for potential customers to understand its offering. SocialEdge is a product (or service?) by Infosys. In their words:

“Infosys SocialEdge provides a comprehensive way to engage with consumers, influence their purchase decisions and provide post-purchase assistance”.

Does that tell you what SocialEdge actually is or does? It doesn’t even explain how it’s “social”!

Below is a Twitter conversation I had about this yesterday. Continue reading The Opposite of Marketing: Keeping Your Product Attributes A Secret

Marketing Reading: Memorable and Bad Content

Did you know you can now display cover photos on Twitter? HubSpot has a handy guide on how to use this feature. I’m going to update ours next week, and you should too!

Have you tested your email unsubscribe process lately? Do this next week!

Stop trying to create great content: create memorable content instead.

I love the comments on my post on Search Engine People about bad content ruining it for the rest of us. Especially: Continue reading Marketing Reading: Memorable and Bad Content

Where and How Should You Publish Your Content?

So you’ve got your objectives pinned down, you know who your audience is, and you have a list of topics in mind. But what form of content are you going to create and where are you going to publish it?

Bird's nest with egg next to a wall
Create original content and decide how and where you want it delivered: like the pair of pigeons who chose my balcony to nest in

Settle down and grab a pen: I’ve got a lot of questions you need to answer.

Continue reading Where and How Should You Publish Your Content?

Email with lots of images

Using Images in Email Marketing

One of the “rules” (read: “accepted practices”) of email marketing is to not use a lot of images in your emails. There are several smart reasons for this:

  • Unless the recipient has emails enabled by default, she only sees blank blocks where the images are until she clicks on “Display images.”
  • Since the recipient has to download images but can see text by default, focus on the text. The top first few lines of your email that get seen in the reading pane or without the recipient scrolling down are extremely important, and unless you have really  involved subscribers you need to use text to engage their attention and get them to keep reading (or download the images).
  • Images take time to load, especially if your recipient has a slow internet connection.
  • Spam filters don’t like lots of images, especially an entire email that is just an image or a block of images.

All of which are good reasons to not use too many images in your emails. Look at this email I recently got after signing up for a free e-book.

Continue reading Using Images in Email Marketing

Weekend Reads for Better Marketing: First Edition

Starting today, we’ll post a round-up of useful marketing news and tips every Friday, just in time for the weekend. So you can read on a lazy weekend afternoon and get to work on Monday improving your marketing!

Seven steps to a high-converting email marketing campaign: excellent advice. If you plan to start an email marketing program or have one already and want to improve it, go read.

My favorite marketing writer, Lisa Barone, offers four ways to fairly use content created by other people (and I’m using one of those here).

Lisa Barone also explains how you can use social media to build trust. Continue reading Weekend Reads for Better Marketing: First Edition