I got a question about what the four elements that comprise a “professional email”. I don’t know why the questioner thought that there were four parts. My best practice has three parts:
Tell them what you’re going to tell them
Remind them what you already said
Good email message structure
Slightly less flippantly, the structure of a good message is based around short sentences, simple sentence structure, short words and a clear indication about what you want the reader to do next.
If you can achieve all those things, that’s a great start.
More sophisticated messaging can come through with brand tone of voice, longer messaging plans over months / weeks and a mix of brand, educational and product/service messages. [Ask me how to plan your email marketing.]
Drafting and editing email messages
My personal method when creating EDMs is to work through these steps
What is the key message?
What is one thing I want the reader to do?
Then I start writing…. beginning with the LAST paragraph
Add in any context that explains the message (in case they are new to my list)
Remind them of benefits
Ask for the money / action
Add a PS.
Then I sleep on it overnight. Always.
Because most of my messages can be improved and that only happens after time passes. I think my brain matures the message and having a bit of time after having written it means I can move into editing mode. That is a very different brain space and a different skillset.
Now I’m not a visual specialist so I get someone who is good at images to contribute here when I can.
And then you just need to do it many times to improve your skill.
https://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/green-chameleon-s9CC2SKySJM-unsplash-scaled.jpg17072560Rebecca Caroehttps://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CAS_Logo_1line_RGB.jpgRebecca Caroe2020-06-23 14:09:122020-06-23 14:14:01Key parts in a professional email
One of my clients did something ill-advised and their account got flagged by MailChimp as spammer.
Goodness that’s a tough call and the restrictions placed on the account are significant.
The good news is that I succeeded in untangling the situation and restoring the account. BUT it would have been better never to have got into that situation in the first place.
And so if you’re tempted to re-use an old mailing list, don’t. Digging out old lists from a few years ago who haven’t been mailed and who haven’t had a history on your account is a big risk. If your email service provider gets a higher than normal bounce or spam reporting rate, it will be noticed. I think ISPs are very vigilant at this time.
If you do want to re-use an old list, I suggest you create a separate audience and after the first mail-out has identified unsubscribes and bounces, then later merge it into your main audience so it doesn’t contaminate your good standing.
Good mailing list hygiene
Something to do today – run through your email list and check off whether you have everything in place to enable personalisation. Correct first name, last name, company name? No capitals? Can you deduce recipients’ names from their email address e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org
Now start planning out your segmentation. Here are three easy segments for you to set up.
Focus on retention
For most direct marketing at these times, I recommend retention rather than acquisition. It’s easier to keep than acquire a new customer.
Three quick campaigns you can run
Repurchases – a suitable date after the last event
Best sellers – your top 20% of sales by product
Referrals and testimonials – ask your customer to do ONE thing for you
Untangle a spam label by Mailchimp
No related posts.
https://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/spam-tin.jpg376496Rebecca Caroehttps://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CAS_Logo_1line_RGB.jpgRebecca Caroe2020-06-10 15:06:462020-06-10 15:06:46Overcoming a spam label by MailChimp
The uncertainty and change facing us is a new challenge. I have been doing short mini videos through the lockdown. They were designed to give fast tips for action.
Now I’m hosting longer form discussions with a locals who are smart thinkers and smart do-ers.
I want to know what the Government is doing for SMEs. And so I booked two interviews. One with a business owner and one with a member of the Small Business Council working with MBIE. What they told me shows how far we have to go and the sort of resources YOU can expect to get in the form of support for your business future.
SMEs and public policy
First up is Vaughan Winiata – we are talking about small medium enterprises in New Zealand.
New Zealand businesses are facing an uncertain future.
What is the SME landscape
What skillsets are needed to advance an SME business?
Bridge-building to Wellington policy makers
What are your Top 3 things you would like Stuart Nash Minister for Small Business to address in the $20 Billion budget set aside for assistance for SMEs
Andy Hamilton is on the Small Business Council
Andy and I talk tips and tricks for business owners facing challenges.
The landscape of SME business owners and how they are faring in Lockdown
Have you worked in a recession before or not?
Can New Zealand go digital?
Should all firms be direct to consumer DTC?
Which model of capitalism do we want? Stakeholders are more than shareholders – they include customers, suppliers and staff
Small Business Council and working to improve business life for SMEs
Are you trying to understand how your marketing needs to change?
This article sets out the themes which you can use in your own firm to help discern the new rules, the new landscape and the new markets we are now trading in.
The new marketing reality
Nothing is clear. This is obvious.
But that’s hardly helpful for us marketing people who need to keep on creating campaigns, keep on filling funnels and keep on pushing our recovery efforts after lockdown.
Signs are emerging about what consumers are interested in and where they will look favourably on brands.
I am regularly scanning the world looking for examples and inspiration of what can be done and how you can do it for your brand.
What consumers value
Top home-stay business Look After Me surveyed their audiences and found a distinct shift in sentiment.
Instead of favouring flying on holiday, most now prefer car travel; most prefer to book with local companies to “keep money in the NZ economy”, and most now prioritise accommodation “cleanliness” over price, comfort and wifi provision.
Financial and economic news website, Interest.co.nz asked its readers what they value. The answers were clear from the start – every single segment of reader who was surveyed came back with similar views. Two quotes suffice
Your people have a better understanding of fringe issues, more reliably, than any other NZ news outlet. Your reporting on these peripheral matters shows incredible strength. And that makes the world better.
With the woeful quality of NZ journalism it’s my only trusted source of financial news.
Clues about the new priorities can be found from a range of commentators. Some have been “banging this drum” for a while, others are interpreting new data.
I look to global trends as well as industry-specific experts when trying to find a pattern worth following.
Mark Carney, Central Banker, says the “The economy must yield to human values“. By this I interpret that people matter over profit and that the capitalist model of pursuing profit over all other goals is being challenged.
She realised that kindness isn’t weak but strong: a foundation from which to grow a business that has truth, integrity, longevity and commerciality. As we move away from a time of rabid consumerism and ‘peak stuff,’ Mary believes we are entering a new type of economy. One built on kindness and a Triple Bottom Line: people, planet and profit – in that order. And business who organise themselves around this kinder way of behaving, will be the ones that win.
And Jonathan Haidt, a social psychologist, interprets apparently polarising reactions to the same situation in terms of “moral intuitions and values”. In this way, relaxing lockdown provokes both protests against restriction of liberty from social distancing and protests about growing exposure to harm by going back to work. Both can be understood from underlying moral values.
In the context of Brexit and the lockdown, he found
Remainers placed more emphasis on the value of care and the need to minimise harm, whereas leavers placed more emphasis on the value of personal liberty. When evaluating an action or a policy, remainers would ask “will this cause harm?”, whereas leavers would be inclined to ask “will something restrict our freedom?”.
The moral values of your brand now matter. The alignment and prioritisation of your internal teams across departments will be different now. Your emphasis on the planetary community needs to be interpreted into both the bottom line and operational mores.
This is tough and will definitely evolve as fear of infection subsides and rises with waves of the pandemic. In New Zealand now we are feeling relatively safe – lockdown is in Level 2 and we are back at school and work. Compare our situation to Brazil or New York and value will be very different.
Here are some themes which may emerge – to what extent does your brand and business subscribe to these?
Local resilience > global efficiency
High corporate debt > riskiness of underlying equity
Will the state continue to be engaged within private commerce?
Is resilience > risk now?
How are tail risks managed?
We all understand the fear of unemployment now.
The price of everything = the value of everything, including global heating.
Economic dynamism and efficiency ≠ solidarity, fairness, responsibility and compassion
What is the new Maslow hierarchy?
Values and needs are realigning.
Now that we fully realise the deep inter-dependency of our global community, will this change our prioritisation about health, wellbeing, global supply chains and personal independence (doing what I want) compared to communal dependence (doing what WE need)?
Can we learn to trust experts again?
Will our approach to climate change (surely the biggest existential threat to our way of life) be adjusted to reflect these new values and to form a new consensus on priorities compared to risks?
What did your company do during Covid-19?
Writing the history of this period can wait for now.
Yet I am certain that the judgements will fall on brands and the public perception of where they were before and after the emergency passes will be based on “people” outcomes not “profit” outcomes.
I bet Greg Foran wishes he was still at Walmart and hiring thousands of new workers rather than at Air New Zealand and laying them off.
This will have the resonance of “what did you do in the War?” and whether you judge the outcome to be “good” or “bad” will depend to a large part on the consumer’s view of whether you were a hoarder or a generous giver; whether you laid off staff, furloughed or retained staff; whether you hoarded resources or paid over the odds to acquire over others or whether you generously supported others.
Adjust brand positioning
Once you know what values your consumers now have you can start customisation to respond to this new priority.
How important are these people? Very. How much do we value them? A lot. And how many do we know? Lots.
This is great marketing because it is a classic member-get-member programme aligned to the issue of the day.
Brand repositioning post-Covid19
Look After Me have taken a lead by redesigning holidays into packages that theme around hobbies and interests, that are local and have quality marks for locally owned businesses with high cleanliness scores.
Smart. Easy to understand. Aligned.
There’s a Recession too
And of course the recession is already creating new winners and losers. Take a browse through the Emergency Business Forum questions business owners are asking and their own perceptions of “need” and the consistent themes emerge
growth of online ecommerce or at a minimum a website
how do we reach our customers
fresh marketing ideas
finding distributors and stockists
learning about digital media
how to get customers to switch to online
why word of mouth doesn’t cut it any more
migrating from in person to online
starting a customer database
Part of me groans when reading these; part of me rejoices.
Blending the practical with the strategic is going to be critical in giving quality guidance and up-skilling. Yet the problem lies as much with medium as small businesses. Speedy decision making is easy for the owner-operator and will not be so easy to apply to enterprise.
Hi – we are two Strength & Conditioning coaches who have started an online business during lockdown. Our business is called Limitless and focuses on delivering athletic Strength and Conditioning Programmes and all that goes with. We now need to move towards branding (properly) and a website build. I was wondering if you could recommend a supplier that might suit our needs. Obviously we are a start up and need to do this in stages and in a cost effective way – but also someone that might understand the nuances of the fitness industry and its unique content creation.
Content creation for marketing
I have built three fitness businesses all around the sport of rowing.
Get that website built as the team suggest above…. but while that’s happening, start to build your profile as experts on Facebook, Instagram and through blogging and podcasting.
Take a look at your most recent email marketing campaign and review where people clicks and how many people clicked on each link.
I found that we were getting a lot of clicks in an unexpected place and we were able to correct that in our next campaign iteration. I also recommend a chrome extension which will help you appraise your website clicks.
https://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Click-analysis.png4241384Rebecca Caroehttps://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CAS_Logo_1line_RGB.jpgRebecca Caroe2020-05-19 16:41:092020-05-19 16:41:09Click Analysis to raise ROI
https://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CAS_Logo_1line_RGB.jpg00Rebecca Caroehttps://creativeagencysecrets.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CAS_Logo_1line_RGB.jpgRebecca Caroe2020-05-14 09:10:072020-05-13 15:13:05Marketing for short planning horizons