Considering that email marketing focuses on empirical data collection and application, it’s surprising how much misinformation is out there about email marketing. Buying into hyped-up trends, or avoiding important techniques because of bad information, can prevent from running truly optimized and efficient campaigns. Here are five of the most common myths about email marketing – and the truth behind them.
1. More Is Better
This seems to be the ethos driving a lot of email marketing companies and products, that seek to swell your subscriber list ever greater, as though that were an end in and of itself. The truth is that adding to your subscriber list only matters if you’re adding motivated consumers, who are going to be susceptible to your campaigns. Focus on improving the percentages of people engaging with your emails, rather than the total number of people receiving them.
2. Every Lost Subscriber Is A Problem
Building on the previous misconception, this is the idea that whenever your subscriber count decreases, you need to adjust your strategy and implement solutions to prevent a mass exodus. The reality is that disinterested readers are doing you a favor by removing themselves from your overall pool. You should only really be alarmed if your unsubscribe rate rises above 1%, and only then if you see a resulting drop in traffic to your site or sales.
3. You Should Live In Fear of Flagging
You should definitely take steps to avoid being flagged as spam, but the truth is that most people don’t take the time to flag emails. Less than 0.05% of people take the time to hit the spam button. If you’re tip-toeing to avoid being flagged, you’re probably not marketing as aggressively as you could be.
4. Email Marketing Is On The Way Out
Odd how a rumor about an industry’s impending death can perpetuate itself, even in a flourishing industry. While online marketing in general faces challenges, as the Internet continues to figure out exactly what the hell it wants to be, email is still the preferred primary channel of communication for more than three-quarters of Americans. People automatically assume that concert tickets and reservation confirmations will be sent to their email. Email is still a powerful and versatile medium, and marketing through it will continue to be robust and effective.
5. Emails Should Be Sent On A Specific Day Or At A Specific Time
While there’s some truth to the notion that sending emails at particular times is better than others, the tendency in marketing circles is to get far too specific. This causes a few problems. First, if you’re following the same “best practices” as other marketers, you’re going to be hitting subscribers’ inboxes at the exact same time. Second, it ignores the variation within types of emails. You’re better off seeing how promotional offers fare in the evening compared to newsletters in the morning and vice versa than treating your messages as a monolith.
Your campaigns deserve attention! Don’t fall for these false ideas and sabotage yourself.