Email marketing is a battlefield. Victory is met with solid strategies. With a holistic email marketing strategy, brands can build lasting relationships, boost revenue, and scale faster.
While it’s true that campaigns can be different, fundamentals bring structure, coherence, and a unique personality to your marketing efforts. This is where an email marketing template shines.
So, if you want to build the perfect email marketing strategy template, stick around. In this article, we’ll be going through the following:
- How to build the foundations of your email marketing strategy.
- Creating email marketing briefs.
- Best practices for building your own email marketing strategy.
- How to track success through analytics.
- Email marketing strategy template examples.
Where Do You Begin With An Email Marketing Strategy?
Planning for your email campaigns should always be considered. Before starting the strategy-building process, ask yourself the following questions:
- Why is your brand investing in email marketing?
- What are your business goals?
- Who is your target audience?
- What kind of content will they receive?
- How will you measure success?
The answer to these questions will serve as a good starting point for your campaigns. And one of the most essential elements in any campaign is your email marketing strategy brief.
Creating An Email Marketing Strategy Brief
A marketing strategy brief answers the questions of the whys and hows of your email campaigns.
Let’s say you want to create an email marketing strategy for a website focused on teaching how to build a successful coffee shop. The email marketing brief can go something like this:
Who is your target audience?
- Small coffee shop owners that want to scale.
- People who want to start their own coffee shop.
Why are you investing in this email campaign?
- To build an audience through valuable content and to increase revenue from affiliate links for coffee products and equipment.
What emails will you be sending?
- Welcome emails
- Product recommendations
- Promotional emails
What type of content can your audience expect?
- Tips for creating a successful coffee business.
- Informative articles that tie into our affiliate products.
How frequently are you planning on sending emails?
- Newsletters and other informative content will be sent once a week.
- Product recommendation articles will be sent every month.
Do you have any reference email campaigns to draw inspiration from?
- Barista Institute’s newsletter.
- Starbucks’s “at-home tips” emails.
A Step-By-Step Email Marketing Strategy Template
With a brief at the ready, you have a good foundation for creating your email marketing strategy template. To make it more effective, follow these best practices:
Set Your Goals
A clear goal helps you create coherent strategies for email marketing aligned with your brand’s mission and vision. You can do a lot with email. So, be specific with what you want.
To streamline the goal-setting process, you can use the SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-bound) method.
Let’s use the coffee website as an example:
- Specific: We want to improve revenue from our affiliate marketing programs.
- Measurable: We want to boost click-through rates by 7% on our product recommendation emails. Other relevant email marketing metrics will be tracked using analytics.
- Attainable: The website has seen consistent growth over the last 2 months, but we continue to have low CTR on our emails.
- Realistic: With the continued growth of organic site visitors, we’re projecting to increase our email subscriber count and our email CTR.
- Time-bound: The goal must be met within the first quarter of this year.
Carry Out Audience Research
G.I. Joe was right when he said, “Knowing is half the battle”. In email marketing, you need to know your audience. This helps you understand what type of content they’re most interested in.
This type of research can be achieved in several ways. Some of the most popular include:
- Tracking activity/patterns on your website or store.
- Competitor analysis.
- Analyzing blog content and finding the most engaging pieces.
- Looking at social media analytics.
Your research can give valuable insight that helps your marketing team’s decision-making process.
For example, you might find out that your audience is most active during a certain time or day of the week. This would be a perfect opportunity to promote content during that time block.
Reflect On Previous Results
If you have a solid strategy, you don’t need to create a new one for every campaign. Insights from previous campaigns can be used to improve the next.
With Instantly’s Analytics tool, you can see the performance of your current campaign and see how it compares with your previous one. It also includes key metrics like email open rates.
From here, you can identify which strategies work, the ones that need improving, and the ones you need to let go of.
Instantly’s A/B testing also allows you to run campaigns simultaneously to see which campaign is more effective for a specific audience segment.
Segment Your Audience
There is no one-size-fits-all strategy for email marketing. This makes email personalization the golden standard for any campaign. But, doing this manually for each email isn’t a stainable way to scale.
The simple fix to this issue is segmentation. Remember, a campaign could have entirely different demographics. For example, you’re a SaaS company selling software to digital firms.
Emails related to day-to-day use cases of your product are best sent to engineers. Meanwhile, emails detailing the cost-efficiency of your product might be best suited for decision-makers.
With Instantly, email personalization is made easy through automated segmentation. You can use the tool to segment groups based on different criteria such as job titles, purchase histories, interests, geographic location, and much more.
Build Important Events Into Your Calendar
Scheduling and keeping up to date with important events help you consistently be top of mind for your audience. So, don’t forget to add important dates to your email marketing calendar. This can include events such as:
- Business events.
- Product updates/launches.
- Promotion campaigns.
- Milestones such as anniversaries.
Each date needs to align with your SMART goal (each goal should be time-bound). Consider how far in advance you need to start marketing for each event.
You can work around these events and make them fit the dates you already outlined in your email marketing strategy template. But don’t make the mistake of posting content only on the event day. There should be a build-up to keep your audience excited.
Plan Your Campaigns By Date
Plotting out your email campaign on your calendar is the culmination of all your research and preparation. This will serve as the timeline for your email marketing strategy.
Look back at your audience research, evaluate your content, and see which type of content fits what demographic. Then, look into your goals and see if your content ideas align with them.
After solidifying your goals, target audience, and content—plot them on your calendar. There’s no fixed schedule for any email campaign. But you don’t want to overwhelm your audience.
As a start, try sending a weekly email newsletter. These should include content that provides immediate value, not just product promotions.
However, if you are running promotions or product launches, send emails highlighting key features, add discounts, promo codes, or vouchers to entice your audience to make a purchase.
Write Your Emails
After plotting out your campaign, it’s time you start creating your emails. These emails should be personalized and contain relevant, valuable content.
If you want to improve efficiency, you can draw inspiration from email marketing templates. The templates you want to use should have the following:
- Personalization in the subject lines
- Preview Text
- Valuable content
- Relevant media (if necessary)
- Social Media buttons
- Call to action (CTA)
Using templates is a great way to streamline any email outreach strategy. And, as always, track your emails using analytics and conduct A/B testing to see which email copies work best for what audience segment.
Email Marketing Strategy Template Example
If you’re still unsure of how to start creating your own email marketing strategy template, here are some examples to help you get the ball rolling:
IDENTIFYING TARGET AUDIENCE:
EMAIL SENDING SCHEDULE:
What Metrics Should You Track?
You need to run analytics for your campaigns to see if you’ve met your goals. Here are some of the most important email marketing metrics to look out for in every campaign:
This metric tracks how many emails you sent actually landed in your recipient’s inbox. Several factors need to be considered for deliverability such as subject lines and spam words.
You also need to warm up a new email address to improve deliverability. This is done by consistently sending and receiving naturally.
For the best results, try out Instantly’s AI-powered email warm-up. It automates everything from email scheduling to the content in your warm-up emails.
This metric tracks the percentage of recipients that opened your email. Higher open rates are indicative of an engaging email campaign.
To improve open rates, focus on your subject line. Timing your emails also needs to be considered. The best time for sending emails depends on your demographic, but as a rule of thumb, don’t send emails over the weekend.
This measures the percentage of recipients who opens a link or clicks a button in your email body. High open rates don’t necessarily equate to high CTR.
When this happens the culprit may be a poorly designed call to action. For every email, your CTA must be clear and concise. It could be a link to your site, a blog, a contact form, and more.
Email Bounce Rates
You don’t want a high email bounce rate. Having too high of a bounce rate can damage not only your campaign but your domain’s reputation.
Email service providers may view addresses with high bounce rates as spam bots attempting to send unsolicited emails. To lower bounce rates, you need to clean up your email list. Remove contacts that don’t respond or open your emails even after re-engagement campaigns.
Revenue is what will ultimately drive your business forward. In every campaign, the ROI is a clear indicator of a successful and profitable campaign.
To calculate your ROI, list down all the costs related to your campaigns. This includes the software, staff, and other overhead costs.
Then, divide the revenue from the campaign and multiply it by 100. For example, a campaign that costs $1000 and earned you $7000 in revenue would be ($7000/$1000)*100—a 700% ROI.
If you want to streamline and automate analytics tracking, Instantly has you covered. Its analytics dashboard is intuitive, engaging, and can even show comparisons between campaigns.
Develop Your Campaign Once It Has Launched
When you start your email campaign, you need to be flexible. Anything can happen that can affect the flow of your campaign. So, to help you prepare, consider the following:
- Understand your audience and never forget to personalize. Remember, different demographics respond better to different types of content and strategies. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to email marketing.
- Be ready to switch strategies to account for changes such as current affairs, market updates, and more.
- Use automation to streamline the flow of your campaigns. You can automate things such as segmentation, personalization, warm-ups, and scheduling.
- Look at your analytics to convert raw data into insightful information that can help you make better data-driven decisions.
- Analyze your data in real time. This allows you to make quick changes if certain strategies don’t play out the way in your favor or if the content becomes irrelevant.
Email marketing strategy templates can help your brand get your ideas off the whiteboard and into your recipient’s inboxes. Before spending precious time and resources on it, consider the following:
- Always set your goals before every email campaign.
- Research your target audience.
- Content should be relevant to your target audience.
- The best way to ensure emails are relevant is through segmentation.
- Key email marketing metrics should be tracked to ensure goals are met.
If you want to track key metrics more efficiently, ensure high email deliverability, and automate email campaigns, Instantly’s got you covered! Try it out for free today!