by Anna Wybieralska Jan 20, 2021

We are a month into 2021 and for many, it means that we get to calmly sum up the previous year and wonder what will happen in the upcoming one.

People will spend this month figuring out the goals for this year, setting the right expectations and preparing to eventually give some of them up.  For email marketers, however, there is no time to stop. The end of the year means rushing to finish any delayed projects and working through a new strategy. When the new year starts you gotta catch up with all your deadlines ambitiously set up before the holidays. In the chaos of marketing plans, most email marketers skip the process of setting up their new year’s resolutions. After all, there is so much work to be done, who even has the time to pause and set up goals and actively follow them through? 

But, here we come to the rescue! We have seven New Year’s resolutions for the year 2021 that will start your journey right. And before you start worrying if you can keep them - we made them as simple as possible, so you don’t get overwhelmed.

1. Spend less and save more

Spend some quality time on figuring out where exactly all your money is going. It’s time to set your budget right. Sitting down with the rest of your team and creating a plan is vital for every company. Especially during the difficult times we are still experiencing. 

You want to outline your budget to keep the most money and get quality service and enough revenue to build your business up, instead of struggling every month. So take some time out of your packed calendar to establish your business spending habits. Do an overview of all your online ads, establish your product roadmap, and more importantly, decide if your current email marketing platform can be switched for something that offers you more, for less.

For example, what if instead of dumping hundreds of dollars on a platform that offers you a set of tools while you’re using only a few of them, you can try switching to a different platform where all your basic needs are met with only $15?

Elastic Email offers in total four plan variations that match the needs of everyone, no matter if you’re more technical or creative. Those plans can be further adjusted and match your specific needs with some add-on features.

2. Lose weight

You can go ahead and hit the gym (once they actually will be opened) to lose some extra pounds but that won’t make your contact lists any lighter. So instead make an action plan based on our suggestions to efficiently get rid of the unnecessary weight.

The first thing you should do is to segment your lists. There are many ways you can do so, but your primary focus should be location, interest and industry. You want to separate people who operate with more official language and the ones that prefer a more laid-back tone of voice. Separating by location will allow you to implement some localized holidays in your email campaigns and make sure you won’t offend anyone with generic wishes on holidays they don’t actually celebrate. By segmenting your contacts you also avoid sending generic messages and provide more personalized content instead.

While you’re segmenting your contacts, make sure you also delete any invalid ones. Better yet, make it automatic by enabling a pruning feature in your Elastic Email account. Then, contacts that don’t open your emails will automatically opt-out from non-transactional emails. Your open rate stays as high as your metabolism when you switch your diet.

That’s not the only thing you can do! There are multiple ways you can lose unwanted weight in your emails. Try to spend some time reviewing your old and new campaigns. Check which of them is no longer needed or if you can merge some campaigns into one. This will ensure that your recipients are not flooded with outdated emails, and it might give you some new, fresh ideas for new emails that will benefit them more.

3. Learn something new

Each new year brings more opportunities to learn something completely new or improve on the things you already know. This is especially relevant in the marketing industry where various trends come and go almost every month.

As long as you stay open-minded and curious, you have the ability to truly make your email campaigns shine. Some companies produce yearly content with all the latest trends and even make predictions of what will be the new basis for successful marketing campaigns. If you really want to out perform yourself, take some additional interest. For example, were you aware just how intertwined psychology and marketing are? There are heaps of tactics that are taken directly from psychotherapists, psychology majors and therapists and could be successfully implemented in an email! Theory of colors or taking into consideration typical human focus times can be a great help in building new campaigns.

There’s more! Why stop on psychology, when you could monitor the latest electronic trends, chatter among developers and even fast food campaigns to learn something that can be applied in your online campaigns. Be bold and go out of your typical marketing Twitter feed to find an out-of-the-box approach to emails.

4. Travel more

Most people enjoy what is familiar to them. They often stay within their comfort zones and comfortably live day by day, or work mostly being focused on emails. This is not the way in 2021. Over the years, social media and other traditional channels have proved very useful in promoting or even creating various businesses. This year is the last call for everyone who hasn’t had the time to take those channels into consideration.

Sure, most companies have some sort of social media - Twitter account, Facebook pages or even Instagram. However, many of the same companies don’t give those channels enough love or even consider them valid email marketing building opportunities.

Social media feeds attract a different type of audience. The one that thinks quickly, makes decisions fast and enjoys the aesthetics along with quality content. So, if you want to build yourself a dedicated recipient base that will be highly responsive, it’s time to launch those social media options at full speed and start gaining some emails.

You might ask how to do this. First, you need to be active on social media, and then offer something in return for their email address. It could be dedicated content that you could promote via Instagram stories. It could be a fun, industry-related quiz that you can post on your Facebook. You could even create a simple Easter egg on your main page and promote it via socials.

There are so many ways you can link your social media and your email marketing campaigns. The important thing to take away from this resolution is just how worth it it is to get out of your comfort zone and try new things. Just maybe, you will find something that will truly resonate with your audience?

5. Listen better

One of the key aspects of working in marketing is to connect with your audience and make sure that they are seeing your company in a positive light. It means that your email and advertisement campaigns should be as non-controversial as possible. It also means that you need to make sure that your recipients feel heard and appreciated. While your support team ensures that all the questions and inquiries are being answered, you have a bigger and much more difficult task at hand. Maintaining that healthy connection between management, the brand voice, company goals and the customers.

Marketing departments don’t usually reach out directly to business customers. The way they go about communication and the ways to create a discussion is slightly different. By creating content that your recipient wants and expects from you, you create a link. But to make sure they feel appreciated and heard takes something other than just sending a marketing email or writing a blog article. That’s why connecting with your audience is so important.

You can do so by implementing a landing page for feedback or directing customers to various review pages and monitoring their replies on a daily basis. But how do you establish a connection via email? Well, the baseline is to write meaningful messages, actively ask for customer opinions and even invite them to try BETA versions of your services or pre-orders of the product. Then, simply ask for their thoughts and actually try to incorporate them when launching an official version. Similarly, try adding some interactive content in your emails to further engage them.

Your customers will notice if you are doing more and if you are putting more effort into your content, and they will appreciate it. They'll also noticif you decide to own up to some decisions instead of ignoring them, or even worse, trying to put the blame elsewhere. If you feel like this is a stretch, just look at the countless examples on YouTube, TikTok or other social media drama that happened throughout 2020.

6. Get organized

If you already segmented your lists and got rid of extra emails you’re halfway done. But you shouldn’t just Marie Kondo your marketing campaigns. If you want to keep your marketing strategy organized, you need to monitor every single email campaign that goes out, check how your blog posts are doing and verify all opinions about your business through social media.

Most importantly, this resolution is something that every marketer should do. Because every time you send a new email campaign you need to check the statistics and hard data to learn something from it.

I get it, we’re not breaking the mold here. All of those things should be done anyway. But, you would be surprised how many people check the analytics and simply accept them without a second thought. What we propose requires a little bit more of your attention.

When monitoring the results of your recent campaign, always look for something to improve and test it. Feeling like your CTR could be higher? Try experimenting with a new way to post links or maybe add some interactive content or added value that will be accessed only through the button. Wondering how to improve your open rate? A/B test your pre-headers and subject lines. See which one was better and try to add it to your upcoming campaign. If you really get into the analytics and try to figure it out, you can learn so much about who your recipients are and what their routines are. See which content was most popular, start producing something similar and always compare.

It might be more time-consuming, but it will be worth it. The positive statistics will go up and the negative will go down.

7. Keep your resolutions

It’s easy to set an impressive amount of resolutions at the beginning of the new year and then grow tired of the expectations you set for yourself. Instead of writing all the things you should do, start small but meaningful. This also applies to your marketing strategy. If you keep on piling goals after goals, you might be overwhelmed. In reality, you can end up with a ton of responsibilities that you simply can’t maintain.

Remember that email marketing is not a race - it’s a marathon. It takes a long time to incorporate all the tactics, even longer to see the results. That’s why instead of giving you 30 different resolutions we decided to condense them into the absolutely necessary, top priority tasks. Surely it will be enough to keep you busy, but not too much to make you feel stressed.

Anna Wybieralska

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