Do you ever get that build up of anxiety right as you’re pressing the send button? If yes, don’t worry about it, you’re not alone. Considering the fact that once an email has reached its destination, it is impossible to recover it in order to modify it. It’s true that it can definitely be a bit stressful; however, when we’re well prepared, this shouldn’t be the case.
Although the error is indeed human and if it does in fact happen to you, just know that all is not lost. You can always send an erratum by following our advice. But seeing as there’s nothing more embarrassing than underlining one’s mistakes in front of a grand audience, it is best to avoid putting yourself in such situations. This is why we’ve prepared the following guide. You’ll find our best tricks and tips for planning emails prior to sending them out.
We even prepared a downloadable memory-aid for you. You won’t need to cross your fingers or involve the email Gods in order to send out your emails without a hinge !
In this article
1. Preparing and listing your targeted groups
Begin with identifying your target audience for the campaign. Make a list of the types of people in which your email is addressing and , if need be, a list of those who you should exclude. Thanks to the advanced search and dynamic groups on Cyberimpact, you can easily filter your contacts according to precise criteria, such as: language, age, etc. Since your emails will be targeted, your opening rate will be much greater. You’ll avoid your subscribers losing interest or unsubscribing since they’d feel like it doesn’t concern them or worse, reports your emails as spam. After, ensure that your lists are up to date by always making sure that you have your contacts’ consent. Also, add any new subscribers and once you’re done, note all the names of the groups that should be included in your email send list . This will make the configuration much faster and you’ll be sure not to forget anyone.
2. Creating the subject and preview text of your email
A lot of time is devoted to the preparation and design of the email, so much that it is often the subject header and overview text that is neglected. Though they are determining and decisive factors that greatly contribute to the success of your marketing campaigns, because even before opening the email, it’s the first thing your recipients will see. Remember that you often only get one chance to make a good impression. If the subject line is not catchy or relevant enough, your email may be ignored. Take the time to write it!
- It should be short (around 45 characters) and represent the content of your email while pique your readers’ curiosity.
- Include one or two sentences describing your email (50 to 100 characters).
- Liven the whole thing up with an emoji or two or dare to add some personalization, like their first names.
Looking for inspiration? We have an article full of ideas for writing the subject of your emails.
3. Determine your sender information
Think for an appropriate sender name and address for your email. It may seem trivial as a detail, but this information can have an impact on their opening rate. When they’re sent from a specific employee, rather than the general name of the company, it’s more personalized and tends to perform better (for example: From “Martin from XYZ Company” rather than just from “XYZ Company”). Also check if the selected email recipients are part of the list of validated senders addresses in your account, if not, add them. Finally, plan where the responses should be returned to so that they can be processed by the right person.
4. Proofread and correct yourself
Draw your recipients’ attention to your calls to action rather than your mistakes. Copy the text from your template and pass it through a proofreader or call on your friends and family to take a second look, but please take the time to proofread yourself! In addition to projecting a less professional image, the presence of typos can make your text harder to read or even changes the way it’s interpreted. Did you know that spammers very often make mistakes in their emails? This is one way to recognize that an email that looks legitimate is not. You wouldn’t want your contacts or the anti-spam filters to mistake your mail for spam, would you?
5. Test, test and test again!
It is probably impossible to over-test an email. While editing it, you may have taken a look at the preview or used the test send tool to send a copy to your inbox, but before it is officially sent, the ultimate test is to send it regularly to a group containing your test addresses. Why a complete mailing? It’s the safest way to test everything. Indeed, some links and features, such as email personalization, are only active in a real mailing.
In your test group, we could find :
- your professional email address;
- personal email addresses from different email clients (e.g. Gmail, Outlook.com, Yahoo, Mail…);
- the addresses of colleagues and the superior responsible for approving the mailing.
And now, here’s what you need to watch for during your tests.
Email layout and image display
Test your emails on the different platforms at your disposal: computer, tablet and mobile. If you have the possibility, also test in different email applications such as Gmail, Outlook, and Yahoo. One of the strengths of Cyberimpact’s email editor is that our models have been tested everywhere and are automatically compatible with most platforms. However, when integrating your content, some common layout errors can disrupt the display of your email.
Email performance in anti-spam filters
There are several tools on the web such as mail-tester.com that allow you to measure the score of your subject or mailing. These usually provide you with an address where you can send your email and they then proceed to analyze it. Use the results to improve it. Also, by testing the email to different inboxes using your test group, it will give you an idea of how different email providers will rank it.
Links and Google analytics
Click on ALL the links in your email. Don’t forget to test the hyperlinks on your images as well. Make sure they all lead you to the right place (right page and language). If you plan to use the Google analytics option in your official mailing to measure the traffic on your website from your newsletter, activate it also for the mailing to your test group. Some sites don’t support UTM settings well which is a common cause of link problems.
Replacing personalization variables
If you have inserted personalization variables in your text, such as the first names of your recipients, make sure that these are replaced by the content from your contacts’ files. To do so, make sure that the fields related to the variables are well filled out in the address details of your test group.
Final revision of the content
At this stage, you should be well advanced. This is your last chance to catch any shells that might have escaped you and get feedback from your colleagues. Don’t hesitate to ask someone outside your organization for their opinion. Check to see if their understanding of the email is consistent with the goal you set for yourself and if they found your calls to action easily.
6. Put the finishing touches
When your content is final, check that each of your images has alternative text and generate the text version of your email. These two elements make your emails more accessible, as they make it easier to convert your content into audio. As a bonus, it is also a good practice to look good in the eyes of anti-spam filters. Adding a text version to your email and alternative text to your images is easy with the tools of Cyberimpact’s email editor.
Being well prepared and properly testing your email will give you the confidence to press the send button WITH confidence. What are your tricks? Feel free to share them with us at the bottom of this article.
Voilà ! You are now ready to send your email !