Is Your Email Marketing Premier League…or More Sunday League?

A survey of 1,100 digital marketers points to the email ‘dream-team’ for any company. The Adestra/Econsultancy Email Marketing Industry Census 2014 not only identifies key attributes and structure for the perfect approach, but strategic areas on which to focus when building a team from the ground-up. With email marketing producing the best ROI of any channel, and more sales attributable to it than ever before, getting the approach right is valuable to your business.

Unfortunately, there are many ways to get this approach wrong which leads to lower performance and lower esteem. The majority of emarketers (58%) said their own email campaign results were ‘average’ or ‘poor’. This shows there is significant scope for improvement – and league promotion – for many using this consistently reliable marketing channel.

“While email marketing delivers strong ROI for companies, with the right resources and approach it could contribute even more to the bottom line” said Heather Hopkins, Senior Analyst with Econsultancy. “Email is too often viewed as a cheap channel even though marketers tell us that on average it accounts for over 20% of sales. Putting the right resources behind email campaigns to personalise communications and tailor offers based on advanced segmentation and behavioural targeting, can further improve the results of email marketing.”

So what is the ultimate resource- and cost-efficient team structure for an email marketing operation? While it does vary across size and sector, there are common elements that will make campaign returns soar. Marketers can use these as a checklist in their quest for reaching the email Premier league…

1. A dedicated team

83% of companies with teams dedicated to email marketing also rated the channel as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ for ROI. Defenders defend, attackers attack, you need the right people with the right skills doing the right jobs.

2. Understand and use the functionality available in your email system

37% of the companies using more than three-quarters of their email system’s functionality rated their ROI as ‘excellent’. Just like in the beautiful game, the more you use the experience at your disposal, the better your results!

3. Focus on strategy/optimisation/reporting  

Nearly two-thirds of company marketers (63%) are spending more than two hours on design and content for a typical campaign, with only 17% spending at least two hours on optimisation. To improve the likelihood of success with email marketing, companies need to spend proportionally less time on the creative elements and more on optimisation.

4. Focus on making automation work

Marketers know the benefits of automation but only few are using more than basic triggers to send automated emails. No wonder success is limited and 49% consider implementation unsuccessful. Ironically you need to invest time to save time!

5. Use more email marketing best practices

Use more email marketing best practices. Improved segmentation, better list cleansing, personalisation, and integrations are all helping to deliver strong ROI. More than 77% of companies doing advanced segmentation rated email as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’.

6. Don’t forget mobile

While 2013 saw big growth for mobile optimisation, lack of time is preventing more progress. Today 47% optimise emails for mobile, and 61% have a ‘basic’ or ‘non-existent’ mobile strategy. You have to be in it to win it.

7. Look to the future

64% of companies would like to improve personalisation, 64% automation and 62% segmentation. The top area for improvement in 2014 is strategy, the top teams don’t just stand still.

8. Match your team to your email platform

Team structure also depends on a company’s email provider – Match your team to maximise use of the platform. And don’t forget about the cost of support. Players still need coaches, nutritionists, and training staff to keep their performance top notch. Can you rely on your supplier for your team’s support, or do you need to staff-up internally?

Have you read the 2014 Adestra/Econsultancy Email Marketing Industry Census yet? Download your copy and start building your playbook today.

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