1- Use double opt-in: Make sure that people receiving messages from you are actually interested and eager to receive messages from you. E-mail marketing, especially for small business, is more effective when people themselves opt to receive messages.
2- Motivate people to sign up for your updates with a bonus: As the conventional saying goes, if you want people to do something then ask them. Ask them to subscribe by placing a subscription forms. An additional bonus can improve the chance that somebody will sign up for your newsletter significantly.
3- Segment your list: The more specific your segments get, the better able you are to deliver content that speaks directly to their interests, making you a fixture in their inbox they don't want to get rid of.
4- Use a trusted and reputed e-mail marketing service: If you have more than 1000 subscribers, you will need the services of a professional e-mail marketing service, make sure that they have good reputation and they are not known for sharing subscriber information with 3rd parties.
5- Build a relationship: Although some would think email marketing is all about one-way communication, it is actually the best two-way communication tool. It is important to design and send emails that speak directly to your customers and match with their interests.
6- Use compelling subjects: Your subject should encourage people to immediately open your message. If your e-mail subject is uninspiring they will most likely ignore it. Remember that when somebody receives your e-mail message he or she can only see two things: who has sent the message, and what is the subject. Create a sense of urgency in the subject and offer something irresistible.
7- Keep your messages clear and relevant: Keep it highly relevant and clear to your subscribers. Use words that are proven within your industry or email list segment . Create a sense of urgency so that users will take actions and responses as quickly as possible.
8- Place clear Calls to Action: Make sure recipients of your email marketing message know what you want them to do (and what they can expect in return). At the end of the day, you want them to click-through to reach your landing page or do a specific action, so make it clear for them to see and click.
9- Offer a different communication method: Use your existing owned online and social media profiles together (ex. website, Twitter or Facebook, etc…). Include them in your email marketing copy so your customer know how to connect with all your online profiles.
10- Design newsletters with Mobile in mind: With the growing number of people checking emails on mobile devices there is also an increasing need to optimize emails for the small screen.
11- Track & Test: Analytics help you streamline your campaigns and improve their effectiveness. It is important to track, test and then use the insights to improve your email copy. For example, analytics can tell you on which day your contacts open your e-mail messages the most.
12- Know your best distribution timing: It is important to test different distribution times during the week to see what works best for you and your customers.
13- Stick to a schedule: Once you have decided to send your newsletter on a particular day of the week, stick to that schedule. Don’t just randomly send your marketing messages. This way they become used to hearing from you on a particular day.
14- Make it easy to “Unsubscribe”: Unhappy subscribers are worse than no subscribers. An easy and fail-safe way to unsubscribe is a way to make subscribers happy.
15- Make it easy to “Update” email address: Make it easy for your subscribers to update their information.
An e-mail marketing campaign evolves gradually. You can easily purchase or lease subscriber lists and start sending your messages from day one but this is not a long-term strategy. You must develop your own list because this is the most effective way of carrying out the persistent e-mail marketing campaign.