6 Easy Ways to Level Up Your Email Marketing

By Cara Chatellier, Founder & Creative Director at Bubbly Creative

Let’s talk about email marketing. Your inbox is no-doubt full of emails from all sorts of businesses. So, what makes you click and open?

Some businesses choose to send out simple email blasts from their account, while others work with professionals to create captivating graphics and designs. According to DMA, for every $1 you spend on email marketing you can expect an average return of $42! If you’re looking to capitalize on your ROI and make email marketing work for you, here are a few tips to improve your email marketing strategy!

  1. Automate Emails

When you plan your emails, you can take the time to design them any way you’d like. Instead of choosing a font or design last minute and potentially losing some of your brand continuity, when you use a service like Net Atlantic, you’ll gain access to designers who have rock-solid knowledge of HTML and know the Dos and Don’ts of email design. They’ll work with you to create unique email marketing templates that render correctly and consistently, reflect your brand, and provoke action from your recipients. They’ll also take the time to build and test the final design to ensure it looks correct for all of your subscribers.

2. Don’t Skimp on the Visuals

Embedded content like images, gifs, and infographics can lead to significantly better email responses. Images, gifs, and infographics, allow you to connect with your subscribers and include information you can’t get across through copy alone. According to wishpond.com, “by using GIFs in emails, senders can see a 6% increase in open rate and a 109% increase in revenue!”

Many subscribers skim or completely ignore large blocks of text. Visuals allow you to get information across to your subscribers at warp speed.

3. Improve Subject Lines

According to Convince & Convert, 35% of email recipients open an email based on the subject line alone. The opening line is your first chance to grab subscribers’ attention and show them what your brand has to offer.

We recommend using:

  • Emojis 👋
  • Intriguing language “Don’t miss this limited time offer!”
  • Personalizations “Hey, Cara… we think you’ll love these!” (these can increase open rate by up to 50%!)

A subject line is like a first impression, make sure it’s a good one.

4. A/B Test

If you’re looking to try some new ideas with email marketing but are not sure how your subscribers will respond- A/B testing is your next step. Simply put, A/B testing is the process of sending multiple versions of an email out to clients and analyzing how they respond.

For example, to find out what embedded content is most successful for your subscribers, you could send out two separate emails:

  1. One using infographics.
  2. The other using a GIF.

If you receive more sales or traffic from one or the other, you’ll know what your subscribers prefer. A/B is often offered by professional services (like Net Atlantic) and can help your business create a clear path to success.

5. Use an Email Marketing Platform

Your options are endless when it comes to choosing an email marketing platform. Services like MailChimp, Constant Contact, and more have free programs where you can design creative and simple emails. However, their free versions leave a lot to be desired. Many need a knowledgeable partner who can support your business as it grows. With a platform like Net Atlantic, you’ll reach more customers, increase engagement, and generate more revenue.

With over 20 years in business, Net Atlantic takes your phone calls, discusses strategy with you, ensures great delivery, and gives you deep, insightful actionable reporting. A pioneer in email marketing, Net Atlantic provides the best combination of a great email campaign sending platform, personal technical support by phone email, and chat, and competitive pricing.

6. Hire a professional

If you’re reading these ideas and feeling overwhelmed, one of the best things you can do for your email marketing is to outsource! Working with an email marketing expert or digital marketing agency, like Bubbly Creative, who can help guide you to choose fonts, subject lines, gather your client list, learn what your subscribers respond to, and send out your emails, can be a big weight off of your shoulders. Why not free up your time to allow you to focus on what you do best?

Email marketing can be wildly impactful for your small business. But doing it well will take some time and effort to master. Don’t worry, Net Atlantic and Bubbly Creative have you covered. It’s time to make your small business pop!

Cara Chatellier is the Founder & Creative Director of Bubbly Creative in Salem, MA. Bubbly Creative specializes in making small businesses POP through digital and content marketing.

Top 3 Newsletter Advertising Networks to Monetize Your Email Newsletter

Make More Money with Your Emails by Including Selected Advertisers

Advertising Networks Defined

What are advertising networks? They are companies that act as an intermediary between publishers and advertisers to create a meaningful and profitable advertising experience. They connect publishers that want to sell space in their newsletter with advertisers who want to pay for the space.

Depending on your business model as a publishers of an email newsletter, advertising revenue can be a major source of your income.

The Opportunity for Increased Revenues from Your Newsletter

Ads in emails are used by many publishers who want to monetize their newsletter. Email advertising revenue can be bread and butter for lots of companies. If you’ve worked hard to increase your subscriber list with thousands of subscribers, this is a big opportunity to at least consider. Further, if your newsletter subscribers are an audience demographic that an advertiser would want to target, even better opportunities are possible.

Although you may be reluctant to do so, you can make good money from your newsletter by allowing advertising in your email newsletters. In fact, it may create a whole new revenue stream for you, a stream that may pleasantly surprise you with results.

Also, don’t forget that readers expect to see advertising. It’s part of life. We get many quality newsletters ourselves that have ads in them, and we feel that the reader experience is not negatively impacted, especially if the advertisement is relevant.

Some Guidelines and Standards to Aspire To

There are some standards that should be met to maximize the earning potential. First, you should have a large enough email list. This should be over 2,500 subscribers, but having more than 10,000 will really help your monetizing potential. Second, ideally your open and click through rates should be average or above average. This is important, as it determines how many people click on the ads in your newsletter, and how much money you will ultimately make. See if your industry is listed below and if your newsletter compares to the industry standards.

How to Get Advertisers for your Email Newsletter

So, how can I advertise in my email newsletter? These three vendors below are viable and reputable newsletter advertising networks to consider when selling advertisement space in your newsletter.

  1. Letterwell

Letterwell makes it easy to source various types of newsletters, reaching more targeted and niche audiences.

They have stringent background checks on their vendors, so the authenticity of newsletters’ engagement rates are truthful. Not just any newsletter can use Letterwell; everyone has to go through an application process. Their acceptance rate is 35%, which means only reliable newsletters are chosen. It has an easy to use dashboard for all users.

It is 100% free, unless you want to gain extra exposure and pay to move up in their search results. Letterwell is a reliable and easy-to-use platform for anyone. Start selling your space here.

2. LiveIntent

LiveIntent is another newsletter advertising network. They have 2000+ publishers and 290 million unique readers.

Actual LiveIntent users have said that the platform is easy to use and has helped them generate a large amount of revenue.

LiveIntent works with small and large companies, one being General Mills. They increased their email newsletter revenue by 26%. The LiveIntent team was able to work with the company and reformat their templates to increase premium bid rates and receive better engagement.

If your company wants a more personalized and hands-on company to work with, LiveIntent is your best bet.

3. BuySellAds

BuySellAds works with many different companies like Firefox, HGTV, and Roku. Their customers have seen an average of 15x increase in revenue, 38% increase in ad sales, and 45% lift in remnant earnings.

They connect email newsletters with top brands to make direct sales with their marketplace. You deal with the advertisers directly so you have a chance to see exactly what the ads look like.

As the publisher, it gives you financial control by allowing you to set the rates for your advertisement space. They also offer ad block recovery, where you can recapture your lost revenue due to ad blockers.

If you want more control over the ads being placed in your newsletter, BuySellAds is definitely the platform to use.

Resources

Letterwell: https://letterwell.co/

LiveIntent: https://www.liveintent.com/

BuySellAds: https://www.buysellads.com/

Net Atlantic: https://www.netatlantic.com/

How These Surefire Strategies Turned Around a Poorly Performing Newsletter

There are many challenges that come with improving delivery statistics.

As email marketers, we spend hours developing strategy, finding content, perfecting formatting, and eventually sending to our subscribers. We all know there is nothing more gut-wrenching than finding out the message wasn’t delivered to subscribers. This was occurring to one of our current clients before they came to Net Atlantic.

The Elijah List is an organization that gives trustworthy and daily prophetic worship and intercessory content to their followers. This organization sends about 50 million emails per month. A few years ago, while sending through their former email service provider (ESP), they noticed that their delivery statistics started to decline for their several hundred thousand subscribers.

Email deliverability is one of the biggest ongoing challenges for email marketers. Email deliverability asks a simple question, does my message get to the inbox?

The choice of an email service provider can directly affect deliverability. First, your ESP can affect how long mailings take. If you’re a company sending multiple emails a day, your morning email campaign might not even be completely sent before your afternoon send begins. Second, if your ESP’s server is shared with other client email, your list could suffer. If other clients of your ESP have a bad reputation or invalid email addresses, your list could suffer from low inboxing. Lastly, if the shared server was blacklisted by an Internet Service Provider, your mailings might not even be received at all.

There are many different ways to figure out Why Your Emails Are Not Going Into the Inbox. After signing up with Net Atlantic, our email delivery team was able to provide The Elijah List with a series of carefully executed recommendations to dramatically increase their inboxing.

Net Atlantic realized that these deliverability issues were based on multiple factors, including subject line text, server sending speeds, and message formatting. The first fix, that being increasing sending speed and capacity, was easily solved. Amazingly, our large number of servers and email sending volume allowed the ramp-up time to take only one week. The email delivery time was reduced from three hours at the former email service provider to just thirty minutes. After just a few sends, the Elijah List saw improved delivery rates, open rates, and conversions. Other fixes were also applied for improved results.

Deliverability is crucial. Successful deliverability leads to success in email marketing, increases and conversions, and helps win inbox competition with other competing email and newsletters. Working alongside with you, Net Atlantic gives you the tools and resources to continually monitor inboxing rates, activity, and engagement levels to better understand what a subscriber wants and then to tailor your email marketing to their wants and needs.

Read more about the Elijah List in this case study and subscribe to The Elijah List here.

Resources

The Elijah List: https://www.elijahlist.com/index.php

Net Atlantic, Inc: https://www.netatlantic.com/

Why Your Emails Are Not Going Into the Inbox: https://www.netatlantic.com/resources/articles/how-to-find-out-why-your-emails-are-not-going-into-the-inbox

26 Real Ways to Increase Engagement in Your Email Newsletter

By Alyssa Rice

One of the most important things that can happen when you send email is that your readers engage with your email.

What exactly is email engagement? It’s when your readers open your email, keep it open for a while, click on a link in your email, forward your email to a friend, reply to your email, drag your email from a promotions tab to their inbox tab, respond to a Call To Action (CTA), and other positive behaviors.

So how do you generate email subscriber engagement? How do I get a reader to complete a call to action (CTA)? Read on!

1) Craft a great email subject line

This is where your reader begins their journey. If you do not capture attention here, they will not even enter your email. Here’s a list of 164 eye-catching subject lines.

2) Leave a cliffhanger

This is our #1 tip, even though we have it listed as the second item on this list. Do not reveal everything in your email. One of the goals of increasing engagement is to receive more clicks. Start to tell a story, leave it on a cliffhanger, and add in a “read more” or “finish the story here” links to get the readers to your website or blog. If you put it all out there in an email, then what’s the incentive for a subscriber to click through to your website?

3) Tell a story

You want to tell a story in the most creative and unique way possible. Do this through tips, tricks, success stories, news, and more. Add in personal experiences that pertain to your business. Better yet, include your employees and photos of your employees. According to PixelFish, customers “may feel more comfortable reaching out when they think they know who will be answering their call”.
The take-away here is to make your message personal. That alone adds interest. And it increases engagement.

4) Create dynamic visuals

How unappealing is an email with solely words? Dynamic visuals, moving pictures, and more will catch the eyes of your readers and will lead them to click on your links. Nobody likes to just see a blob of words. Canva is a great free tool to easily create great looking graphics to use in emails and on web sites.

5) Segment email lists into specific groups for increased relevance

When users sign up for your email list, do you ask for anything specific? Categories like gender, age, geographic location, and more can divide customers into different target markets. You can split these users into segmented lists. Paying customers could be on one segment. Free trial customers prospects could be on another segment. Certainly your messaging to these two groups will likely be different. 
According to WordStream, click-throughs are 100.95% higher in segmented email campaigns than non-segmented email campaigns. The more you know, the more you can increase engagement.

6) Supply a conversation avenue and next step

You can create a “conversational avenue” with your clients. A conversation avenue is simply a way to empower your readers to continue the conversation. Many readers want to. You can ask them to comment on a blog, begin a discussion group, share their own story or experience, or plan to host a virtual Zoom meeting. This way, a more personalized relationship is made and will increase the chance of engagement. People like to have conversations, in whatever form that may take. Be open to expanding outward into new methods, platforms and technologies to enable conversations.

7) Include incentives

Create an incentive for engaging! Including a coupon or a free gift with an order is a great way to increase clicks.

8) Write about timely or breaking news and events

Everyone wants to be the first to know. People cannot resist clicking on late-breaking information. This can generate high engagement.

Check out the other 18 real tips on our Net Atlantic website.

How to Write a Great Newsletter

Writing a great newsletter is not for the faint of heart. There are many intricate details that will make or break your subscribers’ attention. Here is a list of must haves that you need to utilize:

1) Craft a hard-to-forget subject line

When you look at an email, what is the first thing you read? The subject line encapsulates the entire content of the newsletter. Draft a line that makes the email impossible not to open.

Here, you can see the use of offers.

2) Balanced content

Trust us, nobody wants to read a newsletter that is just selling business. To avoid people unsubscribing, balance your newsletter content between educational and promotional. Mix in a current event, and explain why your business can offer a product or service to help the current event.

3) Frequency

Create a specific day to be sending your newsletter. Nobody wants to read a newsletter sent twice a week. Choose one day a week or month to include all the information needed. Content is king and consistency is queen.

4) Maintain simplicity

Big blocks of text and long articles are not a sight for sore eye. Use subheadings, a bullet point list, bolded phrases, and shortened a paragraphs to create an easy to read newsletter.

5) Offer freebies

Who doesn’t love free swag? Offering a discount or a prize will catch their attention in this email and the rest of them. They will always be coming back to read your newsletter in case there are more deals on the way.

One of the most influential email marketing thought leaders is Writer, Speaker, and Digital Marketing pioneer Ann Handley. In this article, she discusses 17 short and sweet ideas on what makes for successful emails in 2020.

Sign up for our Net Atlantic newsletter here and receive exclusive tips, industry tricks, and maybe even some freebies!

Keep Marketing in Economic Tough Times

Many businesses have felt the financial impact of the closures and changes in 2020 due to COVID-19. Some companies have made the strategic decision to lessen their marketing budget. However, keeping your marketing consistent and on-track is crucial for the success of your business. Interactive marketing – especially email marketing – offers cost-effective options that can help your company survive and thrive, and be well-positioned for the return of better days.

If you stop advertising and marketing, you may inadvertently give your customers and prospects the impression that you’ve gone away or given up. Don’t set the stage for your competition to move in. Instead, move your dollars to more effective marketing channels that give you maximum return and results. And if your competition is pulling back, all the more reason to seize the opportunity to make your company more visible, and build awareness and relationships for the long term.

Research shows that companies that consistently advertise even during recessions perform better in the long run, according to a Knowledge@Wharton article titled “When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Don’t Skimp on Their Ad Budgets.” A McGraw-Hill Research study looking at 600 companies from 1980 to 1985 found that those businesses which chose to maintain or raise their level of advertising expenditures during the 1981 – 1982 recession had significantly higher sales after the economy recovered. Companies that advertised aggressively during the recession had sales 256% higher than those that did not continue to advertise. Check out the article here.

Stopping your marketing efforts can also incur more costs in the future. Regaining your voice and share of the market will be a difficult task if your marketing efforts stop.

Another authority on the subject is veteran copywriter Craig Huey from Creative Direct Marketing Group, an accomplished California marketing company. Craig Huey, President of CDMG, has shared valuable insights on this issue on his website and in webinars. On March 19th, 2020, he wrote “…if you continue your marketing throughout the disruption, you’ll most likely be the one to emerge as the dominant player when normalcy returns to the world”.

Putting your marketing to a halt will only be a detriment to your brand and finances. In times like these, consumers are looking for trust. If you maintain success during troubling times, consumers will view your brand as trustworthy.

Top 10 Best Email Marketing Practices to Implement Now

Do you want to increase engagement, sales, and conversion rates?

Setting goals for your email marketing campaign and deciding how to achieve them is a tough task. By following industry best practices, your company will be positioning yourself to completing said goals. Our 25+ years in this industry has taught us a thing or two about email marketing strategy.

Here, we list our top ten best email marketing practices that your company needs to begin now.

Top 10 Best Email Marketing Practices to Implement Now

1. Build your email campaign with a specific goal in mind – decide what you want to accomplish with this email marketing message, then build the message from there.

2. Engage your busy reader immediately with a powerful subject line. The email subject header is your first and best chance to catch the reader’s attention, so be bold, not bland.

3. Keep the email subject line short and sweet. Get your message across in 30 characters or less (including spaces between words).

4. The first line of your email message – what your readers see as snippet text or a pre-header in their email “In” box – must get right to the point and reinforce the headline message included in the subject line.

5. Include a strong, specific call to action in the email – and do it at or near the top of the message. If you ask the reader to visit your web site, provide a clickable link to the relevant landing page(s).

6. Make your message concise and relevant. Send information or an offer that your customer needs and wants, based on past purchasing behavior or other actions.

7. Personalize your message, and match the right offer to the right person. Don’t send the same promotional message to previous buyers as you do to prospects.

8. Limit your use of images, and don’t use audio, video or Flash unless you’re sure they will work or display properly in the email programs your recipients use. A safer bet is to simply include in the email a clickable link to rich media content on your web site.

9. Test – so you know what works and what doesn’t. This allows you to improve response rates in future email campaigns.

10. Get permission to send email to clients and prospects alike. Don’t sabotage the goodwill you’ve built by failing to ask recipients to opt-in.

Is There Life Beyond Google? Alternative Search Tools to Try

Privacy could be a thing of the past.

Governments, companies, advertisers, and other entities are constantly collecting information from you. Social media, websites, emails, and more take your information and share it with others daily. By inserting cookies and storing your searches, your information is surely not kept private.

Most people are aware of incognito mode in their Google browser. The public was under the impression that this browser was 100% private, and did not collect information like regular browsers. To the public’s dismay, this was not entirely the truth.

The major tech giant was introduced with a $5 billion lawsuit this past month. Google allegedly broke privacy laws by allowing Google Analytics, Google Ad Manager, and website plug-ins to collect data during incognito mode. They continued to track all searches on this mode, whether they be personal, intimate, or potentially embarrassing.

Google is currently sitting on $117 billion in liquid reserves, so unfortunately this lawsuit payout could just be a mere slap on the wrist. Fortunately, you have a choice as to who earns your business (and searches) online.

With this news of this privacy breach, Net Atlantic has put together a list of alternative search engine recommendations that you can safely browse on.

  1. Startpage. This search alternative emphasizes privacy. They do not collect, share, or save any personal information, set cookies, or store IP addresses and searches. Try it out here: https://www.startpage.com/
  2. DuckDuckGo. There are no data searches collected or stored. You also do not receive ads based on your searches. Use this link: https://duckduckgo.com/
  3. OneSearch. Verizon’s search platform does not track your personal or search data or share it with advertisers. There are also no cookies. Click this: https://www.onesearch.com/
  4. Swisscows. Their privacy policy reads “We do not collect any of our visitors’ personal information. None whatsoever.” Check it out: https://swisscows.com/
  5. Bing. This engine does not share any personally identifying information publicly or with third-parties. Check it out: www.bing.com

Do you know of any other safe search engines? Let us know in the comments below!

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