The best way to improve your email marketing is to ask an expert what works and what doesn’t. He has years of experience ahead of you, so he has the prerequisites to give you good advice.
To find out what are some of the best strategies to tackle email marketing, we turned to the experts who are deeply involved with the game of email, and picked their brains with a few questions about what works and what doesn’t.
Professionals achieve expert status because they learn the hard way: testing, continuous improvement, testing again, taking risks, comparing notes with other professionals, and shipping campaigns no matter what.
The reason someone is an expert at email marketing is because they’ve done the hard work. There are no shortcuts to gaining expertise. You have to go yard by yard, until you get the touchdown.
Today we are interviewing Bjarke Bekhøj, the leader of Compell.dk, a very active online marketing company located in Aarhus, Denmark.
Bjarke started Compell back in 2011, and it’s the brainchild of his passion for online marketing.
In this interview with Bjarke we are covering several important topics related to email marketing:
- common mistakes companies are making
- great email marketing tools
- the ROI of email
- companies just starting to use email marketing
- and more…
Q1. Tell us about yourself and about your company.
Compell is an online marketing company located in Aarhus C, Denmark. At Compell we specialize in a variety of online marketing disciplines such as email and social media marketing, SEO, link building and remarketing.
I started Compell back in 2011 and the company is the ‘product’ of my passion for business strategy, sales and marketing. A passion that my team of coworkers, with their different fields of expertise, and I strive to put into use every day, in order to improve our clients’ businesses and let them benefit from the value of online marketing.
We deliver tailored solutions and measurable results because we believe that every client is different and has different needs in order to succeed.
All this from a very down-to-earth work environment, where our clients feel just as much as home as we do ourselves.
Q2. What are the 3 biggest or the most common mistakes companies are making when running email marketing campaigns?
- They use inside-out content that is irrelevant for the receivers.
- They do not put any effort into making the subscribers lists grow before sending out one newsletter after another.
- They forget that the emails that we send out today mostly are opened via smart phones or tablets and they therefore neglect the fact that the newsletters’ content may not be seen or read as intended.
Q3. What are your favorite email marketing tools? Why did you choose these tools, and how did they help you?
Campaign Monitor and MailChimp are both excellent tools for email marketing.
Actually, they both share a great deal of features and possibilities, but there are still differences, such as price and usability, which is why we work with both email marketing services.
We often use Campaign Monitor because it has a great usability to it – not just for us but for our clients as well.
By giving our clients access to their own accounts in Campaign Monitor, they can easily learn to understand the mechanisms that lies behind the creation of a newsletter, making it easier and more beneficial for both parties to plan and create newsletters and the client’s email marketing in general.
MailChimp actually has a more sleek design and a great usability to it – however, this is mostly limited to professionals who work with the system on a daily basis.
To a client it may be too complex to actually understand the features of the service within a short-term period, which is why we limit the use of MailChimp to our professionals within the company.
Q4. How does the ROI of Email Marketing compare to other popular marketing channels (website, social, search etc)? Is Email Marketing a viable source of clients/revenue?
Email Marketing is the most viable marketing solution both short term and long term.
Email Marketing gives continuity in the communication with your clients, which fosters a great basis for a loyal relationship between you and your clients – and that, of course, equals a measurable ROI.
Q5. Let’s say a new company is just trying out email marketing, what would you recommend them to do? Can you help them outline a basic plan/strategy?
There is a simple way to put this: “Launch crap – but launch!”
When trying out email marketing you must start with the basics.
Ask yourself: “Whom, what and why”, and you have already come a long way.
The next step: Just do it!
You might be nervous that what you are launching is not good enough or needs lots of adjusting, but you can literally spend months trying to adjust and perfect your content.
Try asking yourself: “What could be worse than launching crap?”
Well, the answer is simple: Not launching anything!
Once you have sent out your first newsletters you can begin to adjust and maybe design new templates etc. to perfect the content – all the while your lists of subscribers and customers are growing thanks to your email marketing efforts.
Q6. What would be the 3 essential resources on email marketing that make/made a difference for you? (articles, websites, books, reports, whitepapers)
Working with email marketing on a daily basis makes it essential that you keep yourself up to date.
By following blogs at Campaign Monitor and MailChimp we are always up to date with the most recent tools or features in these services.
These blogs are great if you want to learn more about optimizing your email marketing while working specifically with Campaign Monitor or MailChimp.
For a more general outtake on email marketing I recommend Deliverability.com.
This blog delivers some very ‘boiled-down’ and simple guidelines or rules, that will help you optimize your email marketing.
Q7. Please share with us a very useful/interesting email marketing tip or trick.
Try using email marketing as a 1:1 tool.
Normally you probably want to send out your email to as many subscribers as possible, but sometimes you just need to send out one mail.
Using your email marketing service to deliver a 1:1 newsletter is an interesting way of making sure that your information gets out to that one specific person while “disguising” it as a message meant for a public audience.
Key takeaways, insights and tips from Bjarke Bekhøj, Compell.dk:
- Email has great ROI, both long term & short term.
- Launching a “crappy” campaign is way more useful that not launching at all. Trial, Error, Optimize. Repeat.
- Optimize your email newsletter for multiple devices.
- Even though you are blasting a whole email list, personalize your newsletter so that it looks & feels like you are sending a personal email.
- Grow your email list continuously.
- Learn about the basics and grow with each new campaign.
Thank you Bjarke for this interview.
Check out Compell.dk website here.
Like Compell.dk on Facebook here.
Folow Bjarke on Twitter here