Learn to target your market with e-mail A/B Split TestingIt’s an accepted wisdom that maintaining an e-mail list and sending out regular e-mail updates is a good idea for your business. But let’s think about why this should be.
Of course, it’s a good idea to have an open channel of communication with your clients, because it keeps them from forgetting about you. A professional newsletter can also increase recipients’ perception that you are familiar and established, and so makes it easier for them to buy from you. But in the end, like everything else in business, it comes down to the payoff. What is the final objective of your email campaign? Better yet, what is the objective of the very next e-mail you’re going to send out?
If the objective is to win a sale, then you’ll already be very clear on this. But often, maintaining a mailing list involves sending out a number of messages with less decisive agendas. You can improve your e-mail marketing campaigns immensely by doing three simple things:
1. Set a goal for every message you send out.
What would you like for this particular newsletter to accomplish for your business? Do you want to inspire your recipients to click through to your web site? Are you hoping to get them to forward your newsletter to their friends so you can grow your membership? Do you want them to fill out a survey? Do you simply want them to trust you more?
2. Think of a couple of different ways you might accomplish this.
If you’re trying to get your message recipients to trust you, then your job is very easy. All you have to do is give them information that is both authoritative and immediately useful to them, and ask for nothing in return. Of course, you’ll have to have this type of information first, so this type of goal is excellent if you are an authority on the topping of your newsletter.
If you’re aiming to induce a specific action, your strategy will be similarly rational: in most cases, you’ll just ask them to do what you want them to do. That isn’t really as simple as it seems, of course. Is it better to ask at the beginning of a message or at the end? In the middle? Should you give them a whole paragraph to pitch the action or just set it aside in a colored box apart from your content? These variables will be different for every newsletter based on the preferences of your demographic and the nature of the information you’re sending out. How do you determine which is best for your purposes?
3. Test them against each other.
Just set up your A/B Split test in our Email Marketing software and send out your mailing. Then pay attention to the results and note them for future mailings. See how easy that was? Now you know something about your client base that you never knew before–you’ve learned a little something about how to induce them to perform a specific action. In your next newsletters, you can keep right on putting that technique to work, or (and here’s the real secret) keep testing. Do a split test every single time you send out a message, and your email copywriting style will just keep getting better and better. It’s just a little more work, and the results can scale exponentially. Use the insights of all of your previous tests to design each of your next tests, so that your knowledge of your customers snowballs into… dare I say… absolute power. Or, at the very least, you can get more people to forward your messages to their friends 🙂
Don’t think small with these insights either. Everything you learn about getting someone to click through to your site is also an insight that can potentially be used to win a sale. Knowledge is money.