Take Your Email Program Back To School With These Fundamentals

Back to school in the Trivunovic household means getting accustomed to a new routine, checking off items on my children’s back-to-school supply list and reviewing their lessons plans for the third and fifth grades. Studying their lessons plans triggered some good advice that we as email marketers should keep in mind for executing our programs: It’s all about going back to the fundamentals.  
Consider these elementary subjects and how you can apply them to ensure your email program makes the grade:

Science: Data

There are no vinegar volcano experiments in email marketing, but data science is something that all marketers should consider.  It’s no secret digital marketing allows us to learn more about our customers than we ever imagined.  And it’s time you start applying these insights in thoughtful and strategic ways.  Our customers expect relevant communications — and we need to deliver on these expectations by letting past behavior dictate our programs.  For example, using behavioral triggers based on browsing behavior, purchase history and specific moments in the customer journey will allow you to fully leverage what you know about your customers to deliver timely, relevant communications.  



Art: Creative

Expressing creativity through art class may not have been your favorite activity — but it’s not an elective in your email program. As content creators, we need to keep in mind how our subscribers are consuming our content.  Humans in general have the ability to process images much faster than text. In today’s increasingly distracted world, one could argue the creative elements that make up your email message are more important than ever.  But creativity isn’t just about the imagery. Your email messages need to strike a balance with the right amount of text and imagery. How you organize your message plays a critical role in your ability to engage and convert customers. Testing email layouts and different images will allow you to home in on what the right mix of content and creative is for your audience.

English: Proofreading

While we aren’t writing essays as part of our email marketing communication strategy, what we learned in English class still applies. In fact, keeping the fundamentals in mind might be even more important since we only have a few lines of copy to get our message across and engage our audience.  Incorporating a proofreading and QA process may seem elementary — but it is a critical component that shouldn’t be overlooked.  If you do make a mistake, consider sending a follow-up email correcting it.  You shouldn’t make a habit of it, but we all make mistakes, and sometimes these unexpected messages will perform better than your original communication.

Math: Measurement
It doesn’t have to be calculus, but you won’t be able to advance your email program without measuring its performance. Understanding and analyzing KPIs provides you with the proof points necessary to advance your strategy. Don’t assume something is working based on open rates or click rates. Dig a little deeper to truly understand how your customers are engaging with and using email.  Even if they didn’t convert, your email may have influenced them in other ways.  

As you prepare for back to school, consider what the appropriate lesson plan is for your email program.  Putting a renewed focus on the fundamentals may be exactly what your program needs to make the grade.

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