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11th Feb 2020 in Business

When it comes to email marketing Mailchimp has become one of the favoured providers but getting to grips with all its functions seems like a mammoth task.

Simon Harper is a Freelance WordPress Ninja, Graphic Guru, and owner of SRH Design based in Bangor, Northern Ireland. He’s designed and built websites since 2009 and has been freelancing for over ten years, working with clients through the UK and Ireland.

Simon delivered a highly engaging workshop on email marketing, specifically using MailChimp, at a Cathedral Quarter BID Lunchtime Learning event. His talk was packed full of useful nuggets, but here are some key points for email marketing for your business:

“There is no 100% proven anything for email marketing” said Simon.

“Instead, seek to achieve truth from consistency. Deliver relevant and useful content to your customers and speak honestly with them regularly. Each individual audience will have their own quirks and preferences, so what works for one business may not necessarily work for you.

“Using a newsletter or email marketing to generate revenue or build trust with your customers doesn’t need to be complicated, but it does take work. You are seeking to use the power of email to send the right email, to the right people, at the right time.

“Some people may tell you that email marketing is dead, they are very, very wrong – we are sending more emails now than ever before. The key is to send emails that customers want to open.”

During his workshop, Simon shared seven top tips for email marketing:

  1. Always be automating – good, targeted and segmented automated emails = higher click rate. With a free MailChimp account you can only have one automated email. Make this your welcome email. In general, it has a 3x higher click rate than any other email you will ever send.
  2. Make everything personal and human-sounding.
  3. Test everything, always.
  4. Measure the right data.
  5. Get to the point quickly.
  6. Double-check everything.
  7. Consistency breeds success!

Simon added: “If you have more than 2,000 contacts in your audience, you really should be using segments. This is a powerful tool that enables you to send more customised email campaigns based on a range of factors, such as merge fields, star rating, sign up date, etc. Subscribers with two or less stars aren’t engaging with you enough, subscribers with four or more stars are your best friends and you should be engaging with them more often.

“Make a template or two to ensure your branding is consistent and ensure every email has at least one call to action. Though we may hate to admit it, plain text emails have a purpose and should also be used – they get results. Stick with single column emails where possible, use one font, and two colours – the keep it simple theory holds true for email marketing as well.”

The General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) were at the forefront of everyone’s mind in 2018, and it is important to remember their impact on email marketing. Simon reiterated this during his workshop:

  1. Ask permission – email marketing requires consent (or at the very least a “soft opt in”).
  2. Give every recipient a method of unsubscribing in every email (usually in the footer).
  3. Tell them who you are in every email (usually in the footer).
  4. Remind them why they signed up.
  5. Keep subscriber information safe.
  6. Be honest in your subject line.
  7. Maintain the cleanliness of your contact lists (remove those who never open or read your emails).

Simon’s workshop goes into a lot of great detail on email marketing, including lots of tips for using MailChimp more effectively (even with a free account!). Check out the full recording of Simon’s workshop here >> https://www.cathedralquarterbelfast.com/whats-on/lunchtime-learning-email-marketing/

To find out what Lunchtime Learning sessions are coming up go to https://www.cathedralquarterbelfast.com/lunchtime-learning

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