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Just send the email already!

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Will Pearson

April 6, 2022

“How much revenue did we generate by not sending that email?”

-Nobody, ever.

As the Co-Founder of a lifecycle marketing studio, I constantly see companies struggling with how many emails to send to their audience. Clients routinely ask, “What is a good cadence?” This question is usually followed by the statement, “Because we don’t want our subscribers to unsubscribe.”

The problem with this approach is that, if you’re not emailing your subscribers, they’re not thinking about you. Try not to think too highly of your brand. The truth is, if you’re not in front of their faces, they have a million other distractions keeping them occupied. 

Being a perfectionist in email marketing is the number one way to make sure you’re not generating as much revenue as you could. Below are the main reasons companies struggle to send the appropriate number of emails. Do you see something here that’s happening inside your organization? Time to fix it ASAP.

Send Time and Day of the Week

Companies are constantly debating if they can increase engagement by sending at 10 a.m. instead of 9 a.m. or on Thursday instead of Tuesday. The harsh reality is it usually doesn’t matter. Good content will get through to your subscribers, no matter what time you deliver it. Sure, you may be able to optimize, but we’re talking negligible increases in most cases. If you’re debating for days about a send time, end the debate and just send it!

At my email marketing studio, we’ve been a part of a few “mistakes” that have turned out to be incredible learning opportunities. For example, a client once sent a Monday morning newsletter at 9:57 p.m. … on Friday. After the immediate panic, we quickly realized it was one of the most-opened and clicked newsletters that this company had ever sent. Maybe it was the surprise factor, but the more likely answer is that the email just had good content that the readers enjoyed consuming.

Branding, Design and Copywriting

Branding and design are generally considered one of the most important components of an email, so putting less emphasis on them might be surprising. And though that belief isn’t incorrect, I’ve seen many companies spin their wheels for weeks trying to decide on a logo, for example. The point here is not to ignore your branding, but rather to input what you have and stick to it. As long as the content is strong, it’s best to get the email out and then learn from it.

Copywriting is similar to branding: it’s important to an email, but it shouldn’t be a blocker. If you’re unsure about a couple of subject line options, don’t fret over which is better — test them! 

I constantly see marketing team members nix and shut down copy, but you should let your audience tell you what they prefer. You can learn from your audience by running A/B tests and seeing which copy creates more engagement and conversions. Most likely, you’ll see a negligible difference between the options, and you’ll be convinced to just move faster next time.

How to Choose Quantity over Quality

Accept that unsubscribes are not a bad thing

I get it: Your instincts tell you that you don’t want your users to unsubscribe. After all, you can’t market to them if they’re not getting the emails. But let me fill you in on a secret amongst email marketers: Unsubscribes are the easiest way to keep your email list clean. Most likely, those people who are unsubscribing were going to do so no matter what; they’re simply not that interested in receiving your emails. Folks who stick around will tolerate a lot of emails from you because they like your brand and are looking for incentive to take action. 

And anyway, what’s the point of keeping a user subscribed if you’re not sending them emails?

Build a calendar, stick to it

If you’re often held up by lack of planning, there’s a simple solution: planning! Build a calendar 30 days out with all of the campaigns you need to send for the month, trusting that a consistent cadence will increase revenue. And, instead of being paralyzed with perfectionism, think of each email blast as an opportunity to communicate with your subscribers and generate sales. Your calendar can consist of the following items:

  • Newsletters
  • Promotions
  • Customer features
  • Holidays

Create templates

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel with each email campaign. Instead, create a handful of email templates that you can reuse with updated content and images in order to feel fresh to your subscribers. Building the initial templates takes some upfront work. Once that work is done, though, you’ll be able to achieve both quality and quantity by creating emails in minutes, not hours, all while knowing it’s on-brand and will look good.

Conclusion

Email marketing can be a painful process. I know because I do it for a living. I see companies struggling everyday to build one email, much less create a scalable process. Instead of overthinking every email, which may delay its delivery and keep your brand out of the mind of your subscribers, focus on creating relevant content that captures your audience’s attention. Then, keep sending those emails and watch your revenue increase. 

This article was originally published on Built In.

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