• Responses To Three Key Trends Already Dividing Winners From Losers In 2015
    Virtually our entire industry took stock of what we learned in 2014 and resolved to do something different this year. We're eight weeks into 2015, and the leaders are dealing with sweeping trends that pose important challenges to email marketers. Others are falling behind, but it's not too late to make up ground.
  • Opens, Clicks, And Blocks In The Third Age Of Email Deliverability
    In the First Age of Email Deliverability, there were no rules and few if any consequences for bad behavior. In the Second Age, ISPs armed their users with the "report spam" button -- and senders that received too many complaints saw their emails junked or blocked. In the Third Age, which we're in now, ISPs factor engagement metrics into their filtering decisions, with those decisions made on the individual as well as global level. These changes mean that email subscribers not only have to tolerate marketers' emails, but have to at least occasionally engage with them -- which in turn ...
  • Are You Gearing Up To Meet Email Marketing Trends?
    Email marketing is constantly evolving. Staying on top of the transformation is vital, but knowing what's coming is just the first step. You also need to know which new skills, perspectives, infrastructure and management backing you'll need if you want to thrive in this new environment.
  • Top Line, Bottom Line, And Waistline
    Marketers sweat the top line, lead optimizers sweat the bottom line, but executives sweat the waistline. In this age of machine learning, advanced algorithms and the hype of real-time personalization, looking simply at incremental sales as the driving proxy is an exercise in measuring inputs, not company health. The leaders of this world want to know how fit you are to compete today and tomorrow, and what exercises you are doing every day/week/month to build sustainability.
  • What My 15-Year-Old Webmail Account Says About Today's Email Marketers
    This month my Yahoo account turns 15. It doesn't get much use these days - aside from the occasional seed list for a client project - but it is an epic archive of my life, my career, and to an extent, the evolution of email marketing. While I'm not going to share the dishy details of my personal correspondence through the years, I can relay a few email marketing insights that became evident while I perused my old account.
  • The Best Email I Ever Received
    Many years ago (and I mean MANY), when I started my career in email, I had a mentor whom I still respect very much. She showed me some tough love, challenged my opinions, and taught me how to be confident in the advice and direction I shared with clients. Thank you, Tricia Pridemore (or more affectionately referenced by me as TRob). One of the most important lessons I learned from her was the 40/40/20 Rule of Email Marketing. I would walk into just about any meeting with her, and she would tell clients that 40% of their program's success was ...
  • Using Data To Empower Your Customers
    Data is more than a one-way selling tool we use to create relevant or meaningful email content that targets and remarkets to customers and prospects in order to persuade them to buy more from us. Here's a radical idea to build value and engagement: Give the data you have on customers back to them in highly personalized email content that helps them make better buying decisions or engage with you in ways they otherwise wouldn't have.
  • Stats Tell You Everything -- And Nothing
    Did you know that women blink nearly twice as much as men? And our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our ears and nose never stop growing? And the average lifespan of a baseball is seven pitches?
  • Overcoming Email Reporting Blind Spots
    Email is a mature channel with a fairly good set of measurements, right? Yes and no. On one hand, it's good to have a set of measurements that appear to be somewhat consistent across our industry. It makes it possible to create industry benchmarks and for email marketers to quickly understand the state an email program when transitioning to a new role or working with a new client. On the flip side, relying on standard metrics has created blind spots. These gaps are causing email marketers to overlook important points that are great opportunities to modify strategy and approach.
  • The New Litmus Test For A Great Email Marketing Program
    I used to say the hallmark of a great email marketing program was a robust A/B testing program. It's not just because I consider A/B testing a key optimization tool and a vital part of "listening" to subscribers, but because if a brand is taking the time to follow a rigorous A/B testing calendar and methodically building on lessons learned, then chances are very high it's doing lots of other things right. While I still believe in the power of testing and what it signifies about an email program, I now have a new litmus test for email marketing greatness ...
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