There are so many ways to get your message out there; tweet, post, share, blog, videos and then there’s email. As we speak I have 12 sitting in my box from companies I follow. I haven’t deleted them, I do want to at least glance at them. Several are from a company I enjoy getting information from. Email marketing may strike many of us as old-fashioned, or some may even try to sell you that email marketing is dead. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, with a strong content marketing approach, email can be more powerful than ever.
But there’s only so much time in the day — you don’t want to spend time on things that aren’t producing meaningful results for your company. How do you know if your time spent on your email campaigns are worth it?
Here are 6 metrics you should be watching to assess if your email campaigns are worth your time, or your customer’s time.
1. EMail Marketing Clickthroughs
One of the reasons you’re sending an email in the first place is to get people to click on something (or a few things) … so tracking the number of clicks you get on newsletters over time is a great way to judge if your email is useful. If the number is slowly going down, you might need to rethink your email strategy.
Notice that I didn’t mention opens before clicks. Opens are notoriously hard to measure. Sure, you can keep an eye on the metric and react if it dives drastically from one email to another, but the metric itself doesn’t give you reliable information.
2. EMail Marketing Conversions
Besides measuring what people are clicking on in your emails, you should be looking at what they do after the click. Do they convert on the landing page form? Or maybe sign up for the event you advertised? Or maybe just click on a CTA in a blog post? Regardless of what you want people to do after they click on your email, you should be tracking those actions. The reason you send emails isn’t just to get clicks — you want people to do something after they click, whether it be consuming a piece of content or becoming a customer. If your email tool is hooked up to the rest of your marketing software, tracking this metric becomes easy.
3. EMail Marketing List Growth
Over time, you’ll want to get more and more people clicking and converting on your email. More people in your list generally means more people will click on your email, and more people will convert on the content. Sure, list growth isn’t everything, but you need to have enough people getting your newsletters in the first place to make the rest of your numbers follow suit.
4. EMail Marketing Forward Rate
This metric is essential to growing your list. It sound weird, but growing your email newsletter list by emailing people who are already in your database works because of the possibility of forwarding. So if you’re trying to get people to forward your emails, you also need to keep an eye on how many people are getting the content forwarded to them.
Your “forward rate” isn’t a set-in-stone number — you’ll need to look at a composite of metrics to see how forwards impact your emails and database growth. Email marketing programs can’t tell how many people click the “Forward” button on an email, but there are two ways you can get an idea of your “forward rate”:
If the content you link to in the email has a form on it, you can track the number of conversions on that form.
You can include a call-to-action with a short, trackable link to forward the email to a friend, and track the clicks on that link.
Neither metric is perfect, but they can give you a general picture of how forward-friendly your email is.
5. EMail Marketing Delivery Rate
Generally, we’re talking about all of those bounced emails that can’t be sent to an inbox because the inbox is full or the address isn’t valid, among other reasons. So your delivery rate is the total number of emails sent minus the total number of bounces, divided by the total number of emails sent. Your delivery rate should be above 95% — if you notice it slipping below that in general, try to clean up your list. If you notice one email in particular has a low delivery rate, see if there are any spammy red flags that would make an ISP block your email from being received.
6. EMail Marketing Overall ROI
If you’re going to use email newsletters to grow your business, you should be able to tie their efforts to your bottom line. With closed-loop analytics, analytics from initial touch to the end of your campaign, you should be able to figure how many visitors, leads, and customers your email newsletter content generates, and how much revenue they all bring in. This is definitely the most difficult of the metrics to track, but if you can use your marketing software to find these numbers, you and your boss will be delighted.
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