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  Email Marketing Tips Newsletter: 

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

You Made It To the Inbox - Now What?

Previously, we discussed some of the problems in getting your email to the inbox. We concluded that a good sender reputation was the most important item!

We talked about acquiring a quality mail list, so you can get to more inboxes. We said that a quality list helps your sender reputation and that, in turn, gets you delivered to more inboxes.

But, what happens after it gets there? The focus today is about what kinds of things will assure that your emails, once they reach the inbox, will get more scrolls, click-throughs, and purchases!

There are several things that can affect how your email is treated, once it reaches the inbox, including the following:
  • The headers - What is in the From and the Subject fields?
  • The creative - How is your email rendered?
  • The fold line - Are the really important items ABOVE the fold line?
  • The HTML - Do you have coding errors?
  • The spelling - Are there spelling mistakes?
Let's now discuss each of these things further.

The Headers
Not only is the From of your email closely tied to your sender reputation, but having a "Brand" identity can encourage receivers to open and read the email. For example, if a subscriber signed up for "Bargain of the Day!" and they receive an email from ABC Company, they may not realize it contains their bargain of the day.

Last time we said that together with the headers, the Subject line was probably the most important item in determining whether or not a message would be read. Be sure to write the Subject line carefully!

The Creative
The "Creative" refers to your email, which is designed to eventually lead to a purchase of services or goods. There are many things that can help or hinder this objective.

For example, how does it look with graphics displayed, when viewed in service provider domain A versus domain B? How about without graphics? Or, in a purely text version? How does it look when viewed with Outlook? How about with the AOL email client?

It's important to know exactly how your email will look in each of these circumstances ... More specifically, how they will render in the combinations of domain and email client that account for most of your list members.

And, of course, that important concept of "Relevance" needs to be considered, in term of both personalizing your messages and targeting them to your subscriber's interests.

The Fold Line
To understand the phrase "above the fold", just think of a printed newspaper, which is typically delivered and displayed to customers folded up, so that only the top half of the front page is visible. The items that are "above the fold" are either considered to be more important or are meant to lure the potential buyer into buying a copy of the paper.

This term has been extended to refer to that part of a webpage that is visible without scrolling. It has also been applied to marketing emails, to define that part of the email visible in the preview pane. Here again, there is variability in different domains and when viewed with different email clients - You want to be sure your emails will look their best when viewed by most of your list members.

The HTML
Your HTML should be free from errors. HTML errors cause display and other issues, which can cause your entire message to be rejected as low-quality and not worthy of consideration.

The Spelling
Like HTML errors, spelling errors can make the entire email look lower in quality. Additionally, to the tech-savy among your subscribers, they can make your message look like a phishing scheme, since spelling errors are a common component of such emails.

Too Many Details!
A terrific thing about working with All Web Email is that they will take care of these details for you. All Web Email uses tools that will let you preview how the message will appear in 90% of all inboxes! Visit the Design Page for more information.

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