Unsubscribe Link: Why You Need It In Your Marketing Emails

We’ve spoken many times about building a contact list as one of the main steps in your email marketing strategy. We have also often repeated how important it is for you to have a clean list. In fact, you’re probably a bit tired of hearing all about it up by now. We get it. But what we haven’t told you about is how important your unsubscribe link actually is.

Some hate them, but unsubscribe links can really help your email deliverability. Want to learn how? Read on!

Email unsubscribe: A friend, not a foe

An unsubscribe link is a link within your email campaign, often placed in the email footer, that allows users to cancel their subscription when they don’t want to receive any more emails from you. As we mentioned, unsubscribe links are important to protect your email deliverability and are also required by many spam laws around the world.

It’s always painful to see people unsubscribing from your contact list, but it’s more beneficial than you may think. We know it may seem backwards to offer your clients an easy way for them to leave, but if you’re providing your contacts with quality content, most of them won’t even look at that unsubscribe button.

Sometimes, though, even the most engaging content might not be the right fit for some of your subscribers. And if this happens and your contacts can’t find your unsubscribe link they may just mark you as spam. You don’t want that, and we don’t want that for you.

Contact lists: is more always better?

Contact lists are something we – as people who send emails – cherish very much. Our businesses often depend crucially on the communications we send out to our subscribers. So, we never want to lose contacts. But when it comes to contact list, more isn’t always better.

Although it’s difficult, you always need to keep in mind that subscribers who don’t engage with your content are not valuable to you. What you want instead is to have a list of contacts that actually open and read your emails, and hopefully that click on and share some of the content too. We recently explained what these email statistics mean for you and how you can improve them to enhance engagement.

Sidekick Unsubscribe Email

Sidekick’s content team keeps its email list clean in a very effective way, notifying subscribers so that they can stay on the list, if they wish; otherwise they will be unsubscribed. This is an example of very good practice.

One way to ensure that your list is clean and that people actually want to receive your communications is to allow them to unsubscribe from your email list. There is absolutely no reason to force someone to stay in your contact list, if they don’t want to receive your offers and communications. It won’t benefit your business in any way, in fact it can cost you business.

But this is probably not enough to convince you… You want to know more, right? Until now you probably thought many contacts = big contact list = good. Well, we’re sorry to be the ones to tell you, but quantity doesn’t equal quality.

Benefits of including an email unsubscribe link

It’s not merely about having a clean list – including an unsubscribe link in your emails has many other benefits.

Avoid customer frustration

We’ve all been there. Without even realising we’ve given consent to receive newsletters from a website or a brand, we start receiving emails that we are not particularly interested in. Hmm… annoying. Especially when your inbox is full of promotional emails that – let’s be frank – you don’t care about.

Why would you put anybody else through this? You know yourself how frustrating it is. Especially if you open a newsletter hoping to find an unsubscribe link… but it’s not there! It’s important to be understanding of people’s needs and preferences and allow them to opt out of your email list, if they wish to do so.

In fact, this improves the whole email marketing experience. As email marketers, we should know that, unlike other social channels, the inbox is for content you specifically want to see.

Groupon Unsubscribe Email

Groupon gives unsubscribing from their Daily Groupon list a fun twist.

Get valuable feedback

If you’re sending a confirmation email to let your users know they are no longer part of your mailing list, you can use this opportunity to gain more information about why they are unsubscribing (and maybe suggest an alternative newsletter of yours they could find more interesting!).

This feedback can be really helpful, as you might learn why people don’t find your newsletter’s content valuable anymore or whether they think your email communications are sent out too often, all of which can inform how you adjust your strategy to best meet your audience’s needs.

Beta List Unsubscribe

Beta List asks its subscribers to take a few minutes to give some feedback on their email communications, so that they can understand how to do a better job.

End up in the inbox, not in spam

There is no other way to say it – fundamentally, including an unsubscribe link in your emails gives you more chances to end up in the inbox rather than in the spam folder. This is also because if people don’t want to receive your newsletters and they find no unsubscribe link when they look for it, they will probably flag your email as spam.

You should know by now how detrimental it’s for your reputation to have emails that end up in the spam folder. Your spam complaints should always be kept to a minimum. At Mailjet, the acceptable threshold of spam less or equal to 0.08%. If your spam rate is higher than the threshold your account can be suspended or, in some cases, even terminated.

Comply with anti-spam legislation

Every country has their own law on the inclusion of an unsubscribe link, as this is mandatory in anti-spam legislation. Since it came into effect in May 2018, GDPR has set the standards and has become a must-follow for any brand with contacts in the EU. Non-compliance with GDPR puts you at risk of fines up to €20 million or 4% of annual global turnover, whichever is greater.

According to article 17 of GDPR, ‘Right to erasure’ or ‘Right to be forgotten’, data subjects have the right to request their data to be erased. Data controllers have the obligation of deleting such data when it’s no longer necessary for the purposes for which it was collected, or the data subjects withdraw consent for it to be collected and used.

Widget consent proof

This applies to email marketing campaigns too. If a contact requests to unsubscribe from a list, they are exercising their rights as data subjects. Your duty as data controller is to delete such data. With GDPR, consent cannot be something that you obtain once and that’s it. The European regulation allows people to choose for themselves and to protect their personal data at any given time, should they change their mind.

How can Mailjet help

Our Sending Policy is very clear when it comes to unsubscribe links, to ensure our clients are protected and we can offer the best deliverability. At Mailjet, “all marketing campaigns must include a clear and concise link for recipients to easily opt-out of receiving future communication. The link must be easy for anyone to recognize, read, and understand.”

As a GDPR compliant solution -, we ensure our clients are on the right side of the law by including an unsubscribe link in all of the emails created with our drag-and-drop editor, Passport. While this link cannot be removed, it can be customized to fit one’s brand.

All of our subscribers are free to unsubscribe from our email list at any time.

Wrapping up

We hope that by now you understand how important including an unsubscribe link is for your email marketing practices. Always remember that consent, unlike diamonds, is not forever.

If you want to learn more about how to keep your contact list clean to maintain a strong email deliverability, check out our post on email list cleaning tips!

Create and send your email campaigns with Mailjet
Easily create and send amazing emails and reach the inbox with Mailjet. Optimize your email marketing strategy and increase your ROI.

Create your account now

Have you cleaned your contact list recently? Have you seen an impact on your metrics? Or maybe you have been able to improve your emailing strategy based on feedback you got from unhappy readers? Tell us all about it on Twitter.

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This blog post is an updated version of the article “Unsubscribe Link: Why It’s Fundamental For Your Email Marketing” by Laura Chieri, published on the Mailjet blog on April, 12th 2018.

Sunset Policies In Your Email Program

It’s that time of day—sunset. The sky is growing dark. An alarm sounds in the distance. You’ve been dreading this moment for days, weeks, months. You know what’s coming.

It’s time for the purge… of your email mailing list.

Okay, maybe using a sunset policy for your subscriber list isn’t quite as scary as your average horror movie. However, many people still hold unreasonable fears when it comes to using sunset policies. Will a shorter core mailing list impact your engagement? How often is too often when it comes to sunsetting? Have no fear–we’ll answer these questions and more in this post. Just be sure to be home before dark… 😱

What is a sunset policy?

While the name may sound ominous, a sunset policy is simply a reference to a common email segmentation concept. Implementing a sunset policy means identifying your unengaged subscribers and deciding whether or not you will still send mail to them.

Depending on which scenario is right for your organization, you may decide to cease further contact with these subscribers, or you may decide to send them a “last call” message or two to see if they’re still interested. This could be a quick text-only email with a few 😭😓😔😞😢emojis, or it could be a video of you singing all the lyrics to “Closing Time” at your desk—whatever gets your point across. Below is an example of a recent re-engagement email that Mailjet sent to its subscribers.

we miss you sunset policies

The email is playful—who doesn’t like cute dogs?—but it has a serious message: Do you want us to keep sending you messages?

Sunset policies exist to further email marketing and email deliverability—and one of the keys to deliverability is focusing on recipients who truly want your emails. By segmenting your subscribers based on their engagement, you can easily focus your attention on those who are currently interested in your products and services.

Note that sunsetting policies are different from actively cleaning your list. When you use sunsetting policies, you stop sending messages to certain subscribers. When you clean your list, you actively remove these subscribers from your mailing list entirely. Be careful not to get them confused.

Want to know more about deliverability best practices? Download our guide now!

Banner Email Deliverability

What will happen if you don’t use a sunset policy?

Not using sunset policies isn’t going to, well, get you purged—but it could bring you a real nightmare on email street (hold the applause, please). It may be tempting to cling to a long list of subscribers… after all, aren’t we taught that more contacts = more potential business? Not exactly.

In fact, continuing to send to unengaged subscribers can hurt your deliverability and weaken the effectiveness of your email program. Having lots of unengaged contacts drives down your open, click-through, and conversion rates—this is because unengaged recipients won’t engage with you. It’s kind of their thing.

Additionally, internet service providers (ISPs) tend to view this behavior in a pretty negative light. If you’re sending lots of emails to unengaged recipients, ISPs see the situation as you focusing less on the needs and wants of your subscribers, and more on sending large, potentially unwanted email blasts. This makes them less likely to trust you and want to deliver your emails to the inbox… which, of course, hurts you and your goals. It’s pretty simple:
Focus on the recipients who will engage with you and keep your statistics up. Luckily, this strategy has quite a few perks.

sunset policies EN stats

The benefits of using sunset policies

As previously noted, using sunset policies has some great benefits. It can be done whenever you want, whether on a schedule or as you go. And, no matter how often you use it, a sunset policy ensures that you’re always staying focused on your active, engaged subscribers. On an email program scale, these are the people who will open and interact with your emails, and keep your open/click-through. rates strong and your engagement high.

On a larger scale, higher engagement helps your business stay consistent and allows for growth. When you’re not focused on trying to lure back customers who aren’t interested, you can spend much more time tailoring your messaging to those who will use your goods and services.

How to implement a sunset policy

There’s a magic word when it comes to sunset policies: segment, segment, segment.

First, figure out how you will separate engaged subscribers from unengaged ones. Will “unengaged” mean anyone who hasn’t engaged with your mail in three months? Six months? 84 years? What works best for you?

sunset policies 84 years

It is a good idea to consider how frequently you send emails when you’re figuring out this timeframe. If you send emails once every couple of weeks, you’re probably okay if you filter out recipients who haven’t engaged in the last couple of months. If you send emails every day, you should make sure you’re excluding them from your email communications much sooner. This helps you avoid sending an influx of emails to uninterested subscribers in the times between your updates.

Once you’ve figured this out, the next step will be to use segmentation to automatically exclude your unengaged recipients. All you need to do is create segments based on the timeframe you just defined. For example, if you send a Daily Digest, you could apply a segment to only send your daily messages to contacts that have opened your emails in the past two weeks.

Sunsetting with Mailjet

You might be wondering–does this fine website I’m currently visiting have any tools that could help me with sunset policies and measuring engagement? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Mailjet’s segmentation tools help you slice ‘n’ dice (but not purge!) your email data based on the categories you want.

You can apply a segment that sends emails to users that have only opened your emails within a prescribed amount of time, like three or six months. Then, you can review these segments and have full understanding of the data that powers (and strengthens) your email program.

Suddenly, separating the engaged from the unengaged just became that much easier.

sunsetpoliciessegtool

When you’re ready to create those engaging new emails, Mailjet’s customizable email template allows you to craft targeted messages and send them to any of your segmented audiences—namely, those core recipients. After sending, you can use their analytics tools to measure both areas of improvement and outstanding successes.

Sign up now to see how Mailjet can help you segment your contacts and send better, more engaging emails that are worthy of celebration. 🎉

TL;DR: Sunset policy takeaways

Hopefully, you’ve learned some information that will make sunset policies look far less scary. Implementing them can only help your deliverability, and they allow you to focus on your true audience. If you’re thinking about using them, make sure you set firm schedules and guidelines for their use to get the best results. In no time, you’ll be seeing the benefits of a sharper, more engaged email list…one that shines even in the dark. Happy sending!

How To Create An Email Newsletter

So you’ve decided to create an email newsletter. Hooray for you! Or maybe someone’s suggested you launch one and you really have no idea what they’re talking about? Whether you’re an email newbie or you just want to make sure you’re doing things correctly, we’ve got you covered. 😏

Right on cue, here’s “The best email newsletter post ever”.

What is an email newsletter?

Basically, an email newsletter is a type of email sent out by companies or individuals to a subscriber list. That list should include existing or potential customers that have signed up and given clear consent to receive marketing communications from your brand. Email newsletters are sent regularly and contain valuable content, like guides, blog posts, news, products reviews, personal recommendations, tips, announcements, and other resources.

Newsletters are an essential part of the email marketing strategy, as they allow businesses to nurture their contacts by establishing themselves as key players in their industry, sharing insights and highlighting new products that will drive traffic to the website.

IFTT newsletter example
Example of an email newsletter

 

What are the pros and cons of email newsletters?

Email newsletters are one of the most popular ways to nurture existing and potential clients. Why? Well, mostly because it’s cheap and has great ROI. Email marketing is one of the most effective marketing channels. The average ROI is £38 for each pound invested and 72% of customers prefer to be approached via email.

Well-designed marketing emails sent regularly, like email newsletters, guarantee constant website traffic, webinars and other event registrations and product sales. Newsletters generally form the largest part of all marketing emails sent and hold a great deal of marketing potential.

Wondering whether setting up an email newsletter is the right step for your business? Let’s have a look at the advantages and drawbacks of sending one.

Pros of email newsletters

Creating a newsletter is not just a way to keep your customers informed about your new product or features, but has many other advantages.

Constant source of traffic

One of the main reasons for creating a newsletter is that it generates regular website traffic. Organic engagement on social media platforms like Facebook is declining dramatically. Banner advertising is rarely noticed in the era of ad blockers. Written press releases sent by email will often be ignored by journalists and online editors.

Luckily, this is not true for newsletters. Emails that reach someone’s inbox are usually seen, and the likelihood that they will be opened is high, provided that the subject line is appealing and the sender is recognized (so make sure your readers know who you are!). If your newsletter is well designed and it contains relevant content, this will enhance your chances of the reader clicking on the calls-to-action for more information.

Cheaper than other channels

Money is important for marketers. So anything that saves you money should be a top priority. And newsletters do.

Don’t underestimate how much money email marketing saves you, compared to using other marketing tools. Paid advertisements like banner advertising, Google AdWords, Facebook Ads and influencer marketing are considerably more expensive than email marketing.

Advanced and easy performance tracking

Measuring the performance of an email newsletter is simple. Your email statistics provide you with all the information you need to do this: open rates, click rates, unsubscribe rates, bounces, which user terminals were used to open the newsletter and when, which links are clicked on, etc. These metrics, along with UTM tags to track engagement through Google Analytics, will help you accurately calculate your ROI and produce target-audience relevant newsletter content.

Mailjet statistics
Email newsletter stats

 

Independence from third parties

When you create a newsletter, you are independent from other service providers and softwares. Publishers and influencers, as well as social media platforms and Google, are much more likely to increase ads cost than an email service provider is.

Easily linked to other online marketing channels

Newsletters and other marketing tools such as social media can be easily and effectively combined. And they can reach recipients anywhere, regardless of whether they are in the office on their work computer, on the sofa at home on a tablet, or on the go on their smartphone. Emails can be opened and read anywhere.

Cons of email newsletters

Where there’s yin, there is yan. Or in other words, where there is light, there is also darkness.While email newsletters provide many benefits, there are also a couple cons to consider.

Absence of physical experience

Unlike with analog advertising media like brochures, flyers, magazines, etc. there is no haptic experience with email newsletters. For instance, a desk calendar is visibly looked at all year round. Emails, on the other hand, do not have a physical presence.

This makes them less durable, but also less annoying to sort and organize. 😉

Ease of deletion

Let’s be honest: emails tend to be deleted more quickly and are more likely to be skimmed through than other media cannot be denied. There are many reasons for this: a full inbox, unappealing subject lines, content that is not relevant, etc.

Although we can try to optimize our messages to prevent this, a 100% interaction rate can never be guaranteed. This is true not only for newsletters, but for all marketing tools.

However, if we weigh up the benefits and drawbacks of newsletters, it quickly becomes clear that the pros by far outweigh the cons.

Pros and cons of email newsletters
Pros Cons
Constant source of traffic Absence of physical experience
Considerable savings Ease of deletion
Easy performance tracking
Independence from third parties
Easily linked to other marketing channels

Don’t take our word for it, though. Create an account and try it yourself! We’re sure you’ll also become a newsletter supporter in no time.

Create and send your email newsletters with Mailjet
Easily create and send amazing emails and reach the inbox with Mailjet.Optimize your email marketing strategy and increase your ROI.

Create your account now

 

How to create an effective email newsletter

OK, so we have convinced you to give newsletters a go. Hooray! To help you make the most of your new favorite marketing channel, we’ve detailed below all you need to know to plan an effective newsletter strategy that’ll make your contacts wish all their emails were like yours. 😏

Set your goals and objectives

First things first, before you even start designing your newsletter template, you’ll need to think about why you want to implement one. Consider the following elements to ensure you’re crafting the right messages.

Identify a target audience

Defining your audience is essential to the success of your campaign. You need to understand what needs and wants your potential readers have to be able to provide value and send newsletters that appeal to your audience.

So think about who you want to reach with your emails and try to be as specific as possible. Consider things like demographics, location, and interests. If you’re aiming at reaching a global audience it can be hard to get precise in your definition, but segmenting your audience can help send more relevant emails.

Determine basic objectives

What do you want to achieve with your email newsletter campaign? Some companies launch newsletters to drive traffic to their website, others want to increase sales on their online shop, or to invite people to upcoming events.

Setting goals gives your newsletter campaign a purpose and helps you measure the performance of your efforts. These specific objectives depend on your individual company’s goals, your vision, and values.

Once you have defined your objectives, you need to determine the KPIs you want to track. If you’re not sure where to start, you might want to consider some of the most typical metrics measured for newsletters: newsletter subscriptions, open rates, click rates, spam and block rates, as well as newsletter unsubscribe rates 💔.

Define your newsletter content

Planning the topic of your newsletter is closely connected to the objectives you have defined, but coming up with content can be hard at first.

To find inspiration, analyze your competitors’ newsletters and newsletters from companies that you think are successful at email marketing. This is likely to give you inspiration about new potential topics, products, events etc. You could also carry out a survey in advance and also ask your contacts to share their thoughts as you grow your newsletter list.

Email Content Calendar
Example of an agency newsletter calendar

 

Use the right platform for your newsletter

Before you start creating newsletters, you need to find a newsletter solution that allows you to create, send and analyze email campaigns.

The problem is that there are many professional newsletter solutions on the market, which can be both a curse and a blessing for senders. On the one hand, you have a wide variety of suitable email providers to choose from. On the other hand, vetting them may feel a bit overwhelming.

So, what is the best email service provider out there and why Mailjet, you ask? 😏

Email platform functionalities you need for a sucessful newsletter

Finding the best emailing platform for your business will depend on the needs of your companies, but here are a few features that can help you make the most of your email program:

  • Drag-and-drop email editor to create newsletters easily in a few minutes.
  • A large and responsive newsletter template gallery.
  • Email personalization and email segmentation features, for creating targeted and relevant email content.
  • Responsive subscription widgets to set up contact lists obtaining full consent.
  • Structured and clear contact management options that allows you to manage your contact lists easily.
  • A/B testing to test your campaigns.
  • Detailed statistics that allow you to analyze and optimize your email newsletter.
  • Optimal deliverability to ensure your newsletters reach the inbox.
  • Integrations with other platforms like WordPress, e-commerce systems, etc.
  • GDPR compliant and other certifications that ensure the highest levels of data security.

 

Mailjet’s newsletter drag and drop tool

 

Build your newsletter subscriber list

In order to be able to create and send a newsletter, you obviously need recipients (duh!). Setting up an email contact list with high interaction rates is relatively simple if you take certain factors into consideration.

Add subscription widgets to your site

To gain new newsletter subscribers, the first thing you’ll need is a responsive subscription widget with a double opt-in process. Add the subscription widget to all the relevant pages of your website. Some of the most effective places to include your widget in are the homepage, the blog, the footer and pages with gated content, such as guides, white papers, and others.

Mailjet allows you to create responsive subscription widgets

 

Double opt-in ensures that no fake email address creeps into your database and damages your reputation and deliverability. If you’re not doing this, you risk being classified as a spammer both by recipients and the ISPs themselves.

Don’t buy email lists

Giving in to the temptation of buying email addresses will result in the same scenario. Purchasing email contacts from third parties is still very popular, because many companies still believe that an email contact list must be as large as possible to be successful. This is by no means true, trust us. Buying contact lists is essentially a waste of money.

People included in such lists usually don’t want to hear from you at all, so this usually results in spam complaints and unsubscribes. These lists also tend to include spam traps, which can severely hurt your deliverability.

Create newsletter landing pages

Besides implementing a responsive subscription widget, special newsletter landing pages are a great way to grow contact lists. These pages enable you to use all optimization opportunities that apply to landing pages.

The potential newsletter subscriber is not distracted from other elements on the website and they concentrate on all the great reasons you’ll give them to convince them your newsletter is the best thing that has been written after Harry Potter.

NY_Times Email Subscription Form
New York Times email subscriptions

 

Explore other channels

There are other ways of growing your email list, such us promoting it on your social media platforms, incentivising existing subscribers to share or encouraging people to join at events or at your physical store.

Consider what benefits prospective recipients may have if they subscribe to your newsletter. Ideally, you have already clarified these reasons in your strategy. Real added value, for example, is provided by things like special offers, advanced information and booking facilities, invitations to exclusive events, regular industry information, access to exclusive content like e-books, email mini-courses, etc.

Get consent from your contacts

But remember, regardless of how you’re getting your subscribers, you should always ask for consent before adding anyone to your email database. Remember what data protection and spam laws (like GDPR) say about consent, and ensure you’re complying with the applicable regulations.

Consent-Form
Consent form example from EA

 

Learn more: For more information and tips on how to build and grow an email list, you can check this complete guide.

Segment your contacts for better targeting

Instead of sending the same message to all of your customers, leverage segmentation to make the most of your emails. Think about how you can use the information you have about your customers to create segments and send more tailored email campaigns that really speak to a specific group within your database.

Build your segments for your email newsletter

To determine the kind of data to use to segment your list, think about what would make sense for your business. Consider if there are some obvious ways to group your customers based on different characteristics.

To give you some inspiration, here are a few examples of the kind of data you can use:

Examples of data segmentation you can use for your newsletter subscriber list
Demographic data Psychographic data Behavioral data
Gender Product preferences Past purchases
Location Interests Average spending
Age Lifestyle Purchase frequency

If you want to get even more specific about your segments, you can combine different types of data and create even more precise groups. For example, you could focus on only women that prefer shopping for shoes and that have made at least five purchases over the past six months.

Once you have different groups of customers with similar characteristics, interests or habits, it will be easier to understand the each segment and craft messages that resonate well with each one.

Craft your newsletter message

Now that you have your segments, it’s time to put them to use. As you start planning your campaign, consider how you can create a message based on these segments. Essentially, you want your campaign to match the segment you’re sending it to, so always keep your audience in mind.

To follow the different data types suggested above, here are some ideas of how you could match your message with each segment:

Ideas to craft your newsletter message according to different segments
Demographic Segments Psychographic Segments Behavioral Segments
Send information about gender-specific products Highlight a certain product category to each segment Send product recommendations or special sales similar to previous purchases
Share special events or deals in the city or area of each segment Focus on products that go with each interest group Offer a discount to customers that spend over a certain amount
Share different products or offers specific to each age group Offer products that match a certain lifestyle Encourage customers that haven’t made a purchase in a longer period of time to come back with a special offer

By matching up the segment with a fitting message, your campaigns will be much more targeted and take into account the different characteristics, preferences and needs of your customers.

Design a beautiful newsletters

The first step to creating a newsletter is setting up an email template. You can use a newsletter template provided by your email service provider (ours are pretty cool! 😎) and adapt it as necessary to match your brand image and your needs.

Alternatively, you can upload a newsletter template you have already created or that you have bought from a third party. In this case, make sure that the selected layout is responsive so that your email campaigns will be perfectly displayed on every end device.

Ready to dive in? There are five main things to consider when designing an email.

Think about content before building your templates

The first and main thing to consider when putting a newsletter template together is content. Is it relevant to your audience? Is it engaging enough? Does it follow your brand guidelines? Keep your content brief and to the point as you only have the reader’s attention for a small amount of time.

How: Use images on top of your email to capture the reader’s attention, followed by brief text and a clear call to action.

firezza email
Here’s an example of great content in practice by ‘Firezza’, a pizza delivery company.

 

Keep your email newsletter simple

Give your newsletters a consistent design and don’t cram your email with too much information. Provide plenty of white space and keep your newsletter simple and neat. If you work with different types of newsletters, you will need to use different newsletter designs, but remember to provide consistency with the same use of colors, font and hierarchy. This ensures clarity and professionalism.

A clear structure ensures that subscribers grasp the content and core message(s) immediately. Insert your company logo> in the upper section so that the readers immediately associate the newsletter to you. Add images in order to attract the readers’ attention, followed by a brief text and a clear calls-to-action.

Google newsletter

How: To have your email render on various devices, be mindful of your email size. Ideal width is between 500 – 680 px. Smart Insight’s handy infographic sums up a range of email design best practices to follow.

Think about colors

Make sure that you’re keeping true to your brand identity and think about your audience. Using specific colors based on your demographic, you can improve your results and ultimately ROI.

How: The more you know your customers, the better you can tailor your emails. To gather information from your existing customers, try running surveys as part of a raffle or competition. You’ll find most users are willing to spend two minutes to tell you about themselves for a chance to win something they want.

Use images wisely

Images and other visual elements optically enhance the newsletter. But beware! Too many graphical elements can impact negatively on your deliverability, as this is a favored tactic of spammers. ISPs know this well, and often block emails containing large images. So always aim for a healthy 60:40 balance between text and graphics.

Another important advice to keep in mind is to remember to add Alt tags to the images and scale them down to the size you want. Bear in mind that some email clients block images, so that subscribers just see a large white area. By adding Alt tags, they’ll at least get an idea of what they should be looking at.

Don’t be pushy

If you want your users to take action through your emails, don’t be too pushy with your call-to-action buttons. Imagine your calls-to-action is a sales assistant in a shop. Are you likely to trust one that’s being pushy, trying to get you to try on a pair shoes or buy a specific blouse? Or do you trust the one where they’re informational, subtle, yet suggestive? Same applies here.

How: Think about the placement of your CTAs (calls-to-action) and try to always have your main CTA above-the-fold. Also make sure it has relevant text. For example, you may find emails sent to a certain demographic may prefer ‘Purchase Now’ to ‘Buy Now’. Research, test and compare your campaigns to improve your call-to-actions.

Ensure your newsletter is responsive

In an increasingly mobile world, your content and entire funnel must be optimized for mobile devices in order to get the most out of your mobile audience. Studies have found that 65% of emails are opened first on mobile devices. In other words, if you haven’t already optimized your newsletters to mobile devices, now is a good time to do it.

Mailjet Responsive
Responsive email with Mailjet’s newsletter solution

 

To get you started, we have gathered a few of the most important steps to take in optimizing your campaign for a mobile audience:

  • Stick to one-column templates so your emails don’t get too wide for mobile devices. Divide your text into smaller sections and make it easy for readers to get an overview of the contents of the email.
  • Make sure your CTAS an links are easily clickable and placed intuitively in the email, to increase the chance of users following them. Also, ensure your landing pages are responsive to get the most out of clicks-through.
  • Avoid using images that are too large, as they can slow down the loading time of the email for users that are making use of their mobile data to fetch your newsletter.
  • Always test your newsletter on several devices. You’ll quickly see how your layout elements are displayed on the different screens and how clear your call-to-action is shown in the email body.

 

Define your newsletter content

An essential part in email design is the content featured in the newsletter. Yes, this might sound obvious, but it’s still forgotten by many that think that a flashy design is enough to wow their contacts.

Tailor your newsletter message

Whether you got inspiration from other newsletters or by conducting a survey, carefully map out the messages you want to share and consider you’ll communicate these to your audience. Define your email voice and the stories you want to tell, paying special attention to your copy.

Need some content ideas for your newsletter? Here are a few:

  • Promoting the latest blog articles.
  • New freebies like guides, white papers, studies, etc.
  • Invitations to seminars, webinars, and other events.
  • Special marketing campaigns like advent calendars, yearly calendars etc.

 

Remember that the content you share in your emails should be directly linked to your goals and objectives. The newsletter is one of the few types of email that can draw attention to multiple pieces of content. But try not to promote too much at the same time, as the majority of recipients click on the first call-to-action. Place the most important information first, and organizing the rest following a clear hierarchy.

Get your subject line right

We’ve talked a lot about how, just as the saying goes, first impressions really do matter when it comes to the subject line. Think about this: if your email is the vault and the content inside is the treasure, your subject line is the key to that vault.

Remember that the tone and language should match the style of your brand. Be bold and try out something new. Being cheeky, using questions, citing the recipient’s name, or even adding emojis, all jazz up the subject line and draw attention to your newsletter. As you’re are probably very reluctant to be labeled as a spammer, avoid using words that can trigger the spam alarm. 😉

 

Also, don’t forget about your ‘From Name’ and pre-header. For the ‘From Name‘, don’t necessarily just use your company name or your department name, but make sure it’s easily recognizable.

The pre-header summarizes the email content and motivates the recipient to pay attention to your newsletter, so make sure it work together with your subject line to incite the readers and encourage them to open your email

How: Know your audience, personalize and A/B test to find the best subject lines for your users.

Don’t forget legal bits in your email newsletter

If you conduct email marketing activities, you must adhere to certain legal guidelines. This means that your newsletter must contain an unsubscribe link.

Mailjet’s unsubscribe link

 

How to optimize your email newsletter over time

With your content ready to go, it’s time to start sending your newsletters. As we mentioned before, the easiest way to go is by using an email service that lets you integrate your contact list, create your newsletter layout, and send your emails in one platform – like for example Mailjet. 😉

Understanding email metrics

Make sure to choose a service that offers tools for tracking and analyzing the newsletters you send, since it’s important to see how your audience responds to the emails you’re sending them. Most newsletter services offer tracking of delivery, opens, clicks, and unsubscribes, which are the essential figures in measuring your efforts.

Here are the main metrics explained:

  • Open rate: The percentage of subscribers who have opened the newsletter.
  • Click rate: The percentage of recipients who have clicked on at least one link or call-to-action.
  • Conversions and/or revenue per click: The percentage of readers who have executed the desired action after left clicking on the target page (purchase, download, read complete blog article, etc.).
  • Unsubscribe rate: The percentage of users that have cancelled their newsletter subscription.

 

Newsletter Stat Overview

Once you’ve sent your first few newsletters, the opens and clicks should give you an initial idea about how your audience is reacting to your emails. This data is a great source for deciding how to optimize your future newsletters, since it tells you which elements of your newsletter can be tweaked.

Make sure you know how to read email stats properly and how to identify what needs to be improved. If your open-rate is low, perhaps your subject line isn’t clear enough. If only few people click on the links in your newsletter, try to make your call-to-action (CTA) stand out more. If a lot of users are unsubscribing, take another look at your contact list or try grouping your contact list into more specific segments to get a more narrowing targeting.

email stats

Use this data to determine the exact performance of your newsletter and make any adjustments to individual elements. We recommend always implementing these adjustments using A/B testing.

Tracking results and optimizing your newsletters should be an ongoing process that you keep doing to continually improve your results. Even when you reach positive results, try aiming even higher and find things that can be improved even further. For example, try experimenting with different fonts, colors, or number of images.

Finding the best time to send your newsletter

The time at which your newsletter is sent is a crucial factor for success. If you are new to email marketing, try different times. Testing and comparing the results of newsletters sent at different times is the best way to know what works for your business.

In most cases, there are some basic rules that you can follow for best results. If you work in the B2B sector, you should send your newsletter during regular working hours. Peak times are usually between 10 and 11 AM, and between 3 and 4 PM. If your business model is B2C, then you should send during the week between 6 and 9 PM, and on weekends.

Of course, there are many different tools that can be helpful. Use a web analysis software like Google Analytics and analyze the exact time when customers visit your website. Send your newsletter at the same time or shortly before, as potential recipients are engaged with your topic and/or they are on their computer at that time.

Best-Newsletter-Sending-Times
Google Analytics view on the best time to send your newsletter

 

Want to learn more about this? Check out our blog post to find out more about the best time to send emails.

Email newsletter examples to inspire you

Want to see some of these tips in action? We’ve got a whole blog post with newsletter examples for you to check out, but we’ve also selected four of our favorites for you to get inspiration and learn the basics.

Check them out below!

Product Hunt

What’s great about Product Hunt is how they use their brand identity to their benefit, using their signature red to make their CTA stand out on the white background.

Product Hunt features one key element, which is placed first, and add some more in-depth value for those avid readers that are always keen to scroll down. Their text-image ratio is also on point, using their visual elements that are perfectly aligned with the brand identity.

Product Hunt email newsletter example
Check out this Product Hunt newsletter here.

 

Netflix

Ah, yeah, have we mentioned we love Netflix already? Netflix uses personalized content to make sure their readers keep coming back to their newsletter and find true value in it.

Also, check out their clever use of CTAs! Not everyone will be ready to indulge when Netflix’s email arrives, so by adding a combination of ‘Play’ and ‘My list’, they maximize their click rates and potential conversion.

netflix email
Netflix is one of our all-time favorites

 

Skyscanner

When one signs up to the Skyscanner newsletter, they know what they’re looking for. Wanderlust-provoking articles with travel tips and suggestions that will help us daydream about being somewhere that’s not the office… And, oh man, do they deliver.

There’s no question about the value added that their content offers, which makes their newsletter a great way to nurture contacts until they are ready to convert. And when they are, they’ll find personalized deals to inspire them and encourage them to click-through.

Skyscanner Newsletter

Fitbit

At Fitbit, they have a clear goal in mind with their newsletter: to drive traffic to their blog, which is meant to inspire readers to become more active and make the most of their device. So they highlight their content value at the top (‘Top articles picked for you’) and smartly present their articles in a responsive design that is easy to read (and click!) on mobile.

Fitbit email newsletter example
Check out this Fitbit newsletter here.

 

Send awesome email newsletters with Mailjet

Ah, yeah. This is where we try to convince you about how much you need Mailjet… Well, you do!

As we’ve said before, sending a newsletter requires the right email partner that’ll make it easy to create, send and track your email performance, and that’s what we’re great (like, really great) at.

With Mailjet, you’ll be able to build and manage your email lists using our subscription widget contact management features, and you’ll get to carefully segment your database to send content that your readers really want to read.

If you haven’t already, try our drag-and-drop email editor, Passport, which will help you leverage our amazing template library or create your designs from scratch on the interface to create stunning responsive emails that look good on all devices.

And once your email is sent out through our interface, via SMTP or with our flexible APIs, you’ll be able to effectively track and optimize performance with detailed metrics, testing and comparison tools that will help you take your email to the next level.

Want to learn all that Mailjet has to offer? Check out all our features here!

Create an account now and try Mailjet for free to kick-start your newsletter strategy! 😎

Create and send your email newsletters with Mailjet
Easily create and send amazing emails and reach the inbox with Mailjet.Optimize your email marketing strategy and increase your ROI.

Create your account now

Understanding Inbound Marketing

Imagine that you’re trying to pick a movie to watch. You look up “best fantasy films” online and see a movie about a “chamber of secrets” listed on a blog—intriguing. You decide to give it a watch.

Without even realizing it, you’ve demonstrated the power of inbound marketing. As the spread of technology continues to grow, companies are finding more and more ways to market their products and services—often through inbound marketing. Shifting to a new way of marketing may seem difficult, but it’s quite easy once you know the basics. We’ll give you the rundown on inbound marketing and how to use it effectively as a winning tool…without messing with any cursed diaries.

chamber of secrets

What is inbound marketing?

A lot of advertising and marketing strategy comes from the concept of presenting a concept or service to a target audience in an attention-getting way—for example, a commercial that plays during popular television shows. However, audiences can become uncomfortable or unresponsive when faced with continuous, “hard sell” strategies.
This is where inbound marketing comes in. Instead of focusing on pushing a product in front of a consumer, inbound marketing focuses on drawing in the consumer organically and inspiring them to find out more about the product. In the digital age, this often takes the form of interactive social media posts, call-to-action emails, newsletters and blogs, and more.

Inbound marketing versus outbound marketing

Inbound marketing and outbound marketing may sound similar, but they have a variety of differences between them. So, what makes in different from out?

Outbound marketing

Here, you’re sending out a message—via, for example, television commercial, billboard, or magazine ad–and hoping for a response from whoever in your audience may be in need of what you’re advertising. 

Outbound marketing has its place, but attempting to base your entire marketing strategy around it ignores the more organic ways inbound marketing can pull in new customers and build relationships with older ones.

Inbound marketing

Inbound marketing is based around the concept of drawing customers in. As mentioned before, this involves creating helpful, high-quality content for consumers. If they’re searching online for a product or service you provide, how will you ensure that they reach your page instead of another’s? If they want a quick video, social media post, or usage guide that provides more information, will they find yours first?

Inbound marketing is all about creating successful content that answers questions and provides information. By giving consumers what they want and need, you can pull them into your sphere of influence and help them choose your solution.

Benefits of inbound marketing

Inbound marketing has many benefits that will help strengthen your overall marketing strategy. Some of these include:

  • Higher quality leads — when you simply put your advertisements and calls-to-action in front of a large audience, it’s hard to gauge how many people will respond, and how interested those people will be. With inbound marketing, you encourage people to research your organization and find out more for themselves. Those who have this interest will be more likely to have a serious interest in your products and services, and more likely to do business with you.

 

  • Deeper, more credible consumer relationships — if you just send out a few impersonal, non-specific messages to your audience, they won’t really know who you are, what you do, or why they should trust you. Using blogs, videos, and other strategies to answer questions and offer encouragement will impress your audience and let them know that you are credible, knowledgeable, and genuinely invested in them.

 

  • More opportunities to find what marketing works for you — if you are only invested in outbound marketing, you’re not really exploring the full potential of how you can connect to your audience. With inbound marketing, you may discover that you have more success with email, social, or other inbound strategies than you do with traditional outbound marketing.

How to build an inbound marketing strategy

No matter what form it takes, inbound marketing strategy has four desired steps:

inbound marketing strategy

Steps in your inbound marketing strategy

Attract

By creating quality content that is optimized for your audience, you can attract potential new customers. This is done by answering their questions, providing information about your products and services, and appearing approachable, not insistent. Focus on quality content creation, search engine optimization, and experimenting with a wide variety of social platforms.

Convert

Convert attracted visitors to leads by obtaining their contact information. Content is key here as well—create welcoming, interesting, and informative landing pages and sign-up calls to action to ensure that customers want to keep in contact with you. Focus on carefully calibrated landing pages and persuasive calls to action.

Close

Ensure your leads become new business by following lead best practices and targeted sales tactics to close deals and satisfy searching consumers. Focus on informative, gentle follow-up communication and active lead nurturing.

Delight

Once you’ve closed your deals, don’t leave your clients hanging! Continue to give them content that helps them better utilize your products and services and feel pleased with the attention and care they’ve received. Focus on maintaining communication, answering questions, building brand loyalty, and optimizing your products and services according to feedback.

Key channels in your inbound marketing strategy

A lot of inbound marketing, because of its purpose, is focused on the first two steps: attracting and converting. But which channels can you use to do this effectively?

Social media

It’s important to have a clean, focused social media presence for your brand. Impart useful information and initiate quality conversations with potential clients. Form meaningful relationships and understand what a consumer is looking for.

Blog posts

Keep an informative, SEO-optimized blog and other online resources so that, when a consumer finds your website, they know exactly what products and services you provide and why they’re beneficial. Define complex topics and explain how you solve problems.

Landing pages

You can attract and convert consumers to your product or service with strong calls-to-action and optimized landing pages. Consumers aren’t going to know how to utilize you if you provide only information with no pathway to moving forward. Make sure your landing pages are persuasive, detailed, and answer the consumer’s questions and address their needs.

Online videos and webinars

Online videos and webinars are a great way to answer questions and show off your products and services in real time. For many consumers, it’s much easier to see someone complete a process with a visual or explain something via a webinar than it is to retain several pages’ worth of information and step-by-step instructions. Adapt to how your consumers want to receive information and guidance.

Email

Email is a great way to nurture your potential leads and keep up with clients you’ve already converted. Use newsletters, special offers, and general check-ins to get a clearer picture of what each lead or client needs, and initiate or strengthen relationships through helpful, consistent communication.

Using these strategies, you’ll be able to use inbound marketing to entice both casual and serious consumers—and convert them to real, lasting business.

Email inbound marketing with Mailjet

Email is one of the most common ways to utilize inbound marketing. You can communicate with interested consumers in a variety of ways, and use the convenience of email to guide them to your social media profiles, landing pages, and other areas of interest. 
mailjet demo
Mailjet’s collaborative Passport tool helps you and your team build inbound marketing emails quickly and easily, using the elements you want. Include a strong call to action, a funny video, links to essays, and more. Passport lets you design, edit, schedule, and automatically send your emails all in one place. Turn a new marketing campaign idea into a reality and create fantastic messages that will look great on any device and inbox. 
Want to learn more about Passport? Check out Mailjet’s Passport demo to see how you can create great inbound marketing emails that stand out in the crowd.

Key takeaways about inbound marketing

Inbound marketing is an incredibly varied, creative, and easy way to market goods and services to audiences both old and new. It benefits both you and your audience by providing needed information and expanding the avenues for potential relationships, and it allows you to understand which channels you and your customers can best work with.

By utilizing inbound marketing, you’ll be able to refresh your marketing strategy and engage your audience in a meaningful way. And, in our eyes, that’s as heroic as Harry Potter himself.

Force for Change: It’s Time to Speak Out

There are moments when it becomes necessary to speak out and come together as a force for change.

As an email provider, we have a unique responsibility to be a vehicle for diverse opinions, not a vehicle for oppression. We will continue to do our part by identifying and blocking senders that incite hatred or spur violence in violation of our Acceptable Use Policy. We will ensure our policies discern between the freedom of expression and the provocation of unnecessary harmful acts. We will not allow our platform to be utilized as a mechanism to spread violence and hate speech.

As an organization, we will continue to evaluate our employment policies to ensure we are promoting fairness, equality, and diversity. We strive to exemplify our core values of Human, Ownership, and Evolution in our everyday interactions through the way we connect, hold ourselves accountable, and transform with intention. As such, we are giving every employee a day off this week to provide the space and the time to digest, reflect, and take meaningful action toward any cause of their choice.

As individuals, the most important thing we can do is to spark conversation around prejudice, violence, oppression, and privilege with our friends, our family, and our colleagues. We must ask ourselves, how do we not only respond to this individual act but also prevent its recurrence? More than ever, we need to have an open dialogue around social responsibility and, ultimately, what it means to be a good human.

We will not stand by as a silent witness to oppression. We will stand in solidarity. Not just today, but every day.

The Best Anniversary Emails

We all know that anniversaries are important—they mark milestones in relationships both old and new. They are personal and unique, and they give us an opportunity to celebrate. This is why we love anniversary email campaigns. They’re fun, funny and often filled with wit, gifs, and emojis. 😉At the same time, anniversary emails offer a chance to make a deeper, more meaningful connection with your mailing list. Here, we’ll give you some tips on how to create a memorable anniversary email, and offer some inspiration with some of our favorites. 😏

What is an anniversary email?

An anniversary email is pretty much what it sounds like: an email you can send to mark a special occasion. This can be a subscriber’s birthday or membership anniversary, or the anniversary of your product or business. Since you can choose which occasions you want to celebrate (and how to celebrate them), they’re a great way to show off your style and creativity and humanize your brand.

Anniversary emails tend to be more colorful, humorous, and informal than other marketing emails, and they often contain special deals or promotions. You want to get your subscriber’s attention and let them know they’re appreciated. 

These emails provide added value to your subscriber by highlighting them and their potential rewards, and they provide added value to your brand by showing thoughtfulness, generosity, and how you keep it real.

What are some best practices for anniversary emails?

As with any email campaign, there are some best practices to be aware of when creating anniversary emails. There are several ways you can show off some spirit and creativity while maintaining a consistent program. 

Grab attention with a dynamic subject line

To create an eye-catching anniversary email, you want to make sure it catches the recipient’s eye in the first place. That means leading with a strong subject line. Don’t be afraid to promote a free deal or add a joke or emoji. A generic or empty-sounding subject line won’t make your subscriber want to open your email–and that’s a loss for both you and them.

anniversary emails subject

Make your content and design personal and celebratory

You should also focus on engaging, specific content for your email. It should be consistent with your brand, but also fun and celebratory. Does your brand focus on entertainment? Throw in a silly GIF from a popular television show. Travel? Add a great photo from a dream vacation destination.

When it comes to your design, make sure you follow design best practices to ensure your email flows smoothly and is easy to read. Remember the ideal text-to-image ratio (60:40) to avoid being flagged as spam, and try to keep your email to one column–this way, it’s easier to read on mobile devices and doesn’t look disjointed.. Also, use alt-text for your images. That way, if the reader has trouble viewing them, they will still be able to read the text and know the images’ contents. 

Additionally, don’t forget to tailor your content to your recipient—personalization is key. If your anniversary centers around a birthday, include some digital confetti! A membership anniversary? Offer up a gold star or medal. Marry your content and tone to the event, and make your subscriber feel special.

Drive conversions with a strong CTA

Finally, your email should always conclude with a strong call to action. It’s even better if it’s a special promotion or gift—anything from a free streaming trial to a half-off pint of ice cream. 

If you want to drive conversions, don’t forget to place your CTA above the fold and make sure it’s easily clickable on mobile devices. Remind your recipient of what they like about your brand, and they’ll engage even more with your products and services. After all, the only thing better than one pint of ice cream is two pints of ice cream.

What are some examples of great anniversary emails?

Now that you know a little more about crafting anniversary emails, we wanted to spotlight some of our favorites. They utilize our recommended best practices including great subject lines, fun GIFs, and more.

Duolingo: great subject line, engaging content

First on our list is Duolingo, which appropriately starts us off with an eye-catching subject line and an engaging visual.

duolingo anniversary emails

This is a fantastic subject line and message copy–anyone who uses Duolingo would know exactly what the email’s message is just by looking at it. Duolingo anniversary = duoversary. Additionally, Duolingo incorporates its branding with a cute, colorful, celebratory bird. It’s designed to spotlight the recipient, and it does so perfectly.

Dev.to: rewarding, consistent branding

Next is Dev.to, which puts its design–a fun badge–front and center in its membership anniversary email.

dev.to anniversary emails

Dev.to’s email focuses the recipient’s attention on its brightly colored one-year membership badge, which is both fun and consistent with their branding. It inspires a sense of pride and accomplishment for the recipient, and that accomplishment is rewarded at the end of the email with some celebratory community credits (complete with a party emoji). It’s sure to get a member excited about their past and future with the brand.

Subway: big, bold call to action

Next is Subway, which, at even the smallest glance, tells you exactly what this anniversary email’s all about.

This Subway email’s green letters are in line with its famous branding, and its message aims to get the recipient in line at their nearest Subway. The whole email is pretty much a simple call to action: get a free cookie as a special deal. And who doesn’t love a cookie?

Additionally, Subway gets points for positioning this deal as a late birthday treat. It inspires a sense of happy surprise, and it creates an automatic desire for the recipient to engage with the brand (because again, cookies).

Hulu: a short, sweet Seinfeld surprise

Next on our list is Hulu, who pulls out all the stops–and curbs no enthusiasm–with their birthday anniversary email.

 

The digital upcoming birthday confetti immediately catches the recipient’s attention and draws their eye to the text in a fun way. The email pitches its call to action in a concise, informal way, and the recipient is invited to get a free Hulu trial with an easy click of a green, consistently branded button.

Finally, the email makes use of a funny GIF from one of Hulu’s most popular offerings—Seinfeld. This reminds the recipient of Hulu’s movie and TV selections and creates a humorous, nostalgic connection that would excite even George Costanza.

David’s Tea: the power of simplicity and specificity

Last up is David’s Tea’s You’re The Best email. While this isn’t an automated anniversary email focused on a user milestone like the others, we like its clean, simple design, and its personalization and great focus on the recipient.

The email includes some valuable takeaways that made us include it on our list. David’s Tea is celebrating its anniversary, and it takes time to thank the customer and pinpoint the specifics of their relationship with the brand. The complimentary subject line inspires feelings of gratitude and kindness, and the fun facts and drawings create a warm emotional tone and highlight the personalized, unique journey of every customer.

Create anniversary email campaigns with Mailjet

Mailjet’s new anniversary workflow allows you to quickly and easily design, schedule, and automatically send emails for every occasion. You can use the anniversary workflow and Mailjet’s collaborative email editor, Passport, to create fantastic anniversary email campaigns that will look great on any device and inbox. Want to see how you can send these anniversary emails with Mailjet? Read our step-by-step tutorial on the anniversary workflow.  

Haven’t got a Mailjet account and want to try some of Passport’s design features? Play around with our demo to see how easy it is to create the perfect anniversary email with Mailjet’s email editor!

Key takeaways: inspiration for anniversary emails

The examples above showcase some best practices when it comes to anniversary emails. Remember to lead with a strong subject line, keep your branding consistent but informal, personalize your content for your recipient, and of course, have fun with it.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be on your way to creating awesome anniversary emails that create value for your mailing list and strengthen your relationship. And that’s definitely worth a cookie. 🍪

 

Creating a Strong Video Marketing Strategy

Video marketing is one of the most powerful ways to connect to customers online. Especially as the world is shifting towards remote, online video provides a human-to-human lifeline for marketers to engage customers, show value, and drive more business online.

Whether you’re a beginner or looking to level up your video marketing strategy, this article will help you use video effectively across key digital marketing channels.

Benefits of video marketing

Video marketing is extremely effective for building personal relationships, driving purchase behavior and increasing conversion rates. 51% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI.

Maybe this is because 59% of executives agree that if both text and video are available on the same topic, they are more likely to choose video. Or because, according to Invodo, 52% of consumers say that watching product videos makes them feel more confident about going ahead and making a purchase.

use of tiktok video content

It’s no wonder that TikTok has the highest engagement rate of any social media application or that Zoom jumped from 10 million to 200 million daily active users in three month. Video is the favored way to communicate. And especially now, in a time when in-person communication is on hold, video marketing is the best way to connect to customers online.

Creating a video marketing strategy

When creating your video marketing strategy, it’s important to think about how all of your marketing channels work together as an integrated system.

You might want to use the same video across your website, social media, and email campaigns, but need to make tweaks to optimize the video for each channel. Planning ahead will help you create better, more versatile videos that will ultimately save time and resources.

Video landing pages

When a visitor lands on a page, you literally have seconds to capture attention and engage your visitor. It comes as no surprise that video not only increases the length of time viewers stay on a page, but also, video increases landing page conversions by 80% or more.

Whether your landing page is for an advertisement, upcoming event, or feature, video can help capture attention, show value, and inspire action.

Two types of videos are particularly effective on landing pages:

1. Product Videos

A product video shows how your business can solve a problem for customers. In a good product video, you will:

  1. State the problem.
  2. Introduce your solution.
  3. Explain why your product is better than alternatives.
  4. Explicitly state the benefits of your solution.
  5. Let viewers know how to get started.

 

video content on landing pages

To make a strong product video, you don’t need to spend a ton of money. While a high-production value video is great, an explainer video with a polished screen recording can be super effective – and a lot easier to update as time goes on and your product evolves!

2. Customer Testimonial Videos

In a customer testimonial video, your customer can say in their own words what their problem was and how your service helped them. Customer testimonials are great validation that your solution actually works!

A customer testimonial can either be the main focus of the page or off to the side of the page as supporting evidence. If the customer testimonial is the secondary focus, you should aim to keep the video short and concise. 30-45 seconds is perfect for the customer to explain their problem and share how your product helped.

If you’re unable to visit your customer in person to record the video, you can use a service like Sendspark Request Video to request customer testimonials from your users.

Video blogs

When it comes to blog posts, it can be more effective to show than tell. Using video in your content marketing provides the benefit of building a personal connection with your target audience, while also optimizing for SEO.

To make sure you’re capturing the full SEO value of your video and capable of appearing in video featured snippets in search engines, make sure to add the required Schema.org code to your blog post and submit an XML sitemap within Google’s Webmaster Tools.

Just like with written blog posts, there are a ton of types and styles that work well. Here are a few staples to start with, but feel free to be adventurous with your video marketing endeavors!

Product Announcements

Highlight new features with a explainer video showing your product in action. In the video, don’t just show features. Explain:

  1. Why you built the feature (did customers request it? To solve what problem?)
  2. How it works(and when should the customer use it in their workflow?)
  3. How it helps people (are there any tangible benefits you can share?)

 

💡  A pro-tip to creating evergreen marketing videos is to record the video sections individually, and merge them together. This way, you’ll be able to use individual pieces of the video in the future, even if the “just launched!” introduction is out of date.

Customer Case Studies

The blog can be a great place to dive into a customer success story. Unlike the testimonial snippet on the landing page, you will want to go further in depth here to tell the full story here.

When interviewing customers for testimonial videos, ask questions like:

  • What was the original problem?
  • Why did you choose your solution?
  • What success did they have?
  • How do they feel now?

 

Just like with the product video, a great strategy here is to ask each question individually, so it can be a standalone snippet for your video landing page or social media videos.

Mailjet uses customer testimonial videos on its success stories, to show users how they’ve helped brands with different use cases.

Interviews with Influencers

The blog is a great place to share information from industry experts. While “expert roundup” blog posts can be super effective at driving engagement, a video blog post can be even more engaging.

To create the videos, you can either use Zoom or any web conferencing software to record a live video where you interview the influencers, or you can request video snippets from your subjects and embed them in the blog post.

Both strategies have advantages. When you record the video live, you can dive deeper in questions and lead the narrative. When you request video snippets, you can repurpose videos for your content marketing strategy and use it across email and social media too. Ideally, you will do a combination of both!

Video marketing on social media

Video marketing is the most powerful way to engage your target audience on social media. Videos on social media generate 12 times more shares than text and images combined. And when videos go viral, they go viral. The Dollar Shave Club earned 4.75 million views by sharing a hilarious product video – Our Blades Are F***ing Great– on YouTube.

Youtube video content example

When it comes to social media, it’s important to adapt to the style of each platform while maintaining a consistent brand identity. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and TikTok each have a unique flavor. You want to stand out – but also fit in.

On social media, the best way to be relevant is to engage in conversions that are already trending on the platforms. You can also shape your own conversations by sharing snippets from the product videos, customer testimonials, and influencer videos you already created.

Video marketing in email

Email is arguably the most effective way to reach your audience. Nearly every person in the world has an email address, and checks it at least once per day. Video can dramatically increase with email engagement, with…

  • 200% increase in open rates
  • 300% increase in click-through-rate
  • 190%+ increase in revenue from email campaigns

 

There are many ways you can use video to increase email conversions and build personal connections with your audience.

1. Drive engagement to other video marketing campaigns

You can use email marketing to drive traffic to the other video marketing campaigns you have created. Send out an email with a short GIF preview showing people what is in store for them and make sure they are looking at the right video content.

video content in email

2. Enhance newsletters

Make newsletters more personal with videos from the CEO, marketer, or subject matter experts in the organization.These videos are easily recorded with just your webcam or phone, and can increase engagement and revenue nearly 200%.

video interview in email

3. Video event or webinar invitations

Give a taste of what’s in store for an event with a personal video invitation. Whether it’s an in-person event or virtual event, you can introduce guest speakers, alleviate concerns, and get attendees excited for the event.

4. Video drip sequences

Humanize your automated email sequestions for welcome campaigns, on-boarding sequences, or nurture emails with videos that show the product in actual and build human relationships with the people on your team.

This short video email for Userpilot that automatically fires when someone installs the application doubled email open rates from 40% to 80%.

use video content in email

Sending videos in email can be complicated, because not all email clients support it and those that do use different video players. With bulk emails, your best bet is probably to add a GIF or image preview of the video in the email and make sure the call to action links back to a landing page.

You can use a platform like Sendspark to do the heavy lifting for you.With Sendspark do the heavy lifting for you, you can record, request or upload a video online, customize a video landing page and GIF thumbnail,  and send then video through your email platform or choice – including Mailjet!

Sendspark video example

Want to learn more about how to send videos in your email campaigns? Head over to our post ‘How to use video in your email marketing.

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Good luck and happy recording!

A lot of the rules for video marketing are still being written. A massive shift is happening in the ways that people do work and consume content. Great marketers are figuring out new, creative ways to engage their audiences every day. The best way to stay ahead of the curve to keep your true objective in mind: How can you create authentic, valuable experiences for your audience?

Don’t worry if you’re having a bad hair day, or you can hear your dog barking behind you. Be authentic, be vulnerable, and do your best to connect like a human!

Mailjet Launches Analytics Tracking for Email Marketing Campaigns

Data doesn’t lie. Tracking means optimizing and getting better results. 🧑🏻‍🏫
While we encourage you to set up and follow metrics, we also want you to be able to track them easily so you can consistently get great results.

We are excited to announce that we have now launched Analytics Tracking for your marketing campaigns. All you need to do is enable it once on your account, and we’ll keep an eye on each marketing email you send out!

Not sure why you need this? This feature is a must—read more to learn more.

 

What is a UTM tag?

“UTM” stands for “Urchin tracking module”. It was created by Urchin Software Corporation (which was later acquired by Google), and it can now be used with Google Analytics. You can also use any other analytics tool you prefer—just make sure you use the right UTM structure that differs from one tool to the other.

UTMs are small bits of text added at the end of your URLs. They give your analytics tool information about the origin and journey of your customer.
You set action goals, your customers perform actions, and UTMs tell you if your goals were matched (click, purchase, upgrade, etc). Basically, UTMs tell you from where these actions were triggered, helping you understand your best-performing operations.

What does a UTM link look like?

An example of a URL link enriched with utm tags looks like this:

https://www.yourwebsite.com/yourpage/contentofthepage/?utm_source=weeklynewsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=promospring2020&utm_term=skincare&utm_content=logolink

In this URL, some parameters are mandatory and others optional:

  • source (mandatory): this describes where your traffic is coming from. For example, the name of an email campaign, Facebook or Google campaigns, etc.
  • medium (mandatory): this defines the type of medium of your source. For example, email, social media, organic, ads, etc.
  • campaign (mandatory): this helps you know exactly what campaign generated the traffic. Make sure you differentiate them well to track their unique performances.
  • term (optional): in case of paid search and/or referral, add “term” to better identify your performing keywords.
  • content (optional): if you have multiple links, or the same link included multiple times in your campaign, fill in this value to differentiate them. Example: logolink, CTAlink, headerlink, etc.

 

Why is UTM tagging relevant to email?

You are already able to see your audience’s behavioral information thanks to our advanced statistics (sent, opened, clicked, bounced, etc.). Why add an extra layer with Analytics Tracking?

Think about this: Do you know what happens after your customer has opened and clicked your email? Unless you implemented UTM tags (or applied some kind of magic we are not aware of yet), you won’t. Analytics Tracking and Advanced Statistics are different but complementary, helping you grasp the complete vision of your performance.

UTM parameters help you track the effectiveness of your campaigns and observe your customers’ journey. They can be used in any action you can think of: SEA ads, social ads, earned backlinks…and of course, email.
By following the traffic from your links in different platforms and sources, you know where to put your effort, what’s leveraging the best revenue in terms of media and content, and, if you have to make a change to your strategy, where and how to make that change.

How can you use UTM tagging with Mailjet?

To easily start tracking the conversion of your email campaigns in your favorite analytics tool, you just need to follow a few simple steps. Here is how:

Step 1: Make sure you are on a Premium plan and you are logged in with your master account. If you’re not on Premium yet… what are you waiting for? 😏

Step 2: Go to your account by clicking on your initials on the top right corner and then select ‘Account Settings’ then ‘Email tracking settings’. You can easily access that through this link too.
Once there, you’ll find a list of tracking options, including the latest addition: ‘Analytics tags’. Click to enable it.

analytics_tracking_blogpost_mailjet

Step 3: Once it’s enabled, an additional section with parameters will appear.

EN_analytics_tracking_blogpost

We prefill the three first fields with default UTM tags that Google Analytics operates with, but you can change them if you use another system, delete and even add extra fields (up to a total of 10) to have optional parameters as well.

You’ll see two components for each UTM tag per row: “Key” and “Value”. If you want to use an UTM like “utm_campaign”, make sure it’s filled with [[CAMPAIGN_TITLE]] so everything runs automatically.
Feel free to personalize all the parameters depending on your needs and on the analytics tool you are using, so you create the optimal tracking for your streams.

Here is an example in which we have only included the prefilled sections:
url_analytics_tracking_blogpost

Once you complete the fields and shape the structure of your UTM tag, hit “Save”. That’s it, you’re all set. Every link in every campaign sent will be automatically enriched with the UTM tags.

Start using UTM tags with Mailjet

Once enabled and configured, Analytics Tracking will be activated for your master account as well as all your sub-accounts! You’ll be able to follow your audience’s journey and improve your ROI by setting up Analytics Tracking for all your email marketing campaigns.

UTM tagging is only available on Premium plans, and only applicable for email campaigns: marketing campaigns, or transactional emails grouped as a campaign. To use it, you can sign up or upgrade to any Premium plan. :)

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ePrivacy: Everything You Need to Know About The EU Cookie Law

What do you know about the EU Cookie Law? You’ve no doubt taken efforts to comply with GDPR, but you should also be prepared for the new ePrivacy directive that’s about to take effect. How can you do that?

In this article, we have summarized everything you need to know about the new ePrivacy. And now, we will give you all the keys to anticipate and best prepare for this new directive.

What is the difference between GDPR and ePrivacy?

You’ve probably heard about GDPR and the ePrivacy directive, but do you really know the difference between these two terms? At Mailjet, we took a close look at the new ePrivacy directive. In 2018, we commissioned a study to understand the impact that ePrivacy will have on marketing strategies and on companies’ return on investment (a survey of 200 marketing decision-makers in Europe). According to this survey, 85% of marketers say they know the difference between ePrivacy and RGPD.

But 15% do not know, and clarity is key. To put it simply, the ePrivacy regulation is a special law of the GDPR. This means that it complements the GDPR with specific rules that apply to the electronic communications sector. As a special law, it replaces the GDPR in the specific areas it covers.

 

What is ePrivacy, the EU Cookie Law?

The ePrivacy, also known as the European Cookie Law, makes it mandatory to obtain users’ consent before any operation to write or read cookies and other tracers, with a few exceptions. 

Definition of a cookie

A cookie is a sequence of information, generally small and identified by a name, that can be transmitted to your browser by a website to which you connect. Your web browser will keep the cookie for a certain period of time, and will send it back to the web server each time you reconnect to it. 

Cookies have multiple uses. For example, they can be used to remember things like:

  • Your customer ID from a merchant site so that you can log in more easily the next time you visit.
  • The contents of your shopping cart so that you can find the items selected during your previous visit.
  • Your navigation on a website for statistical or advertising purposes.

 

Cookies can be used to memorize your navigation for statistical purposes.

Why should you care about the European Cookie Law?

Although it might seem that European laws only apply in Europe, a globalized world like ours means brands have clients and website visitors all around the world. As with GDPR, the application of ePrivacy applies to all companies who serve citizens of the European Union. That means that if your company has clients in the EU, you’ll be required to comply with the regulation or risk fines.

When will the EU Cookie Law come into force?

Originally, the ePrivacy regulation was to be approved in the European Union at the same time as the implementation of the GDPR on May 25, 2018. However, this date has been pushed back so that the details of the regulation could be finalized. 

So then, where are we today? The regulation is now estimated to take effect at the end of this year, and once the project is adopted, companies will have some time (i.e., a few months) to adapt. Therefore, companies currently have a few months to become compliant with the new change.

Which cookies are affected by the ePrivacy directive?

To understand which cookies are affected by ePrivacy, it’s easier to look at those that are actually exempt.

The consent requirement does not apply to operations whose exclusive purpose is to enable or facilitate communication by electronic means. It also doesn’t apply to operations  that are strictly necessary for the provision of an online communication service at the express request of the user. 

In particular, the following cookies can be considered exempt:  

  • Cookies that retain the choice expressed by the user on the cookie storage or the user’s wish not to express a choice.  
  • Cookies intended for authentication with a service.  
  • Cookies intended to remember the contents of a shopping cart on a merchant site.  
  • Cookies for customizing a user interface (for example, for choosing the language or presentation of a service).
  • Cookies for balancing the load of equipment contributing to a communication service.  
  • Cookies allowing paying sites to limit free access to their content to a predefined quantity and/or over a limited period of time.  
  • In some cases, cookies that enable audience measurement.

 

For example, in the case of a service offered via an app or a website that requires the user to log in, the service publisher may use a cookie to authenticate the user without asking for their consent (as this cookie is necessary for the provision of the online electronic communication service). However, it can only use this same cookie for advertising purposes with the user’s consent.

What are some general recommendations for complying with the new Cookie Law?

As we mentioned before, a globalized world means our clients and website visitors could be anywhere. That’s why, regardless of which country an organization is based in, it’s important that they ensure they are following the general guidelines for compliance with the European Cookie Law.

If a company is not currently in compliance with the directive, some potential changes they can implement are:

  • Know the details of the EU Cookie Law and whether or not they need to be fully or partially compliant with its regulations — some organizations may be fully exempt, or exempt in certain areas of business.
  • If they are not fully exempt, they should ensure that they are asking for users’ clear consent to allow tracers and cookies to collect their information. 
  • Depending on their country, understand who the right authority for ePrivacy regulations is.

 

Who are the authorities on ePrivacy?

The European Commission–the executive branch of the European Union–is responsible for the enforcement of GDPR and ePrivacy regulations. Most countries within the EU–for example, France, Germany, and Spain–are expected to comply with data privacy laws in similar ways, and to follow the guidance and laws of the Commission.

However, countries outside the EU may have differences in their laws, guidances, and expected practices. That’s why it’s important to know who your local authority is and keep an eye on their regulation and guidelines.

  • In the United Kingdom: Following the announced withdrawal of the UK from the European Union, information rights regulations are now handled by the UK-specific Information Commissioner’s Office. Companies that are based within the UK should use the ICO to check for potential updates and changes to the European Commission’s guidelines.
  • In the United States and Canada: The United States and Canada, as separate entities from the EU, do not follow the regulations of the European Commission. Data privacy laws are created, implemented, and revised on a national, state, and provincial level. 

 

As we have mentioned before, compliance with digital privacy laws often applies to where the company is based, but also to where its digital presence is based. The best way to ensure that your business is in full compliance is to check with your country’s data privacy regulation agency and verify what laws might apply.

How will the European Cookie Law impact businesses?

According to the Mailjet study, 93% of marketers today use cookie-based advertising to reach their customers. With the new ePrivacy regulations, companies will have the obligation, with few exceptions, to collect the consent of users before any operation of writing or reading cookies and other tracers.

From a brand perspective, this could mean a drastic reduction in the amount of data held on Internet users. Professionals have understood that they will have to review their marketing strategy, with 30% planning to reduce the number of advertising based on cookies, immediately after the entry into force of the new ePrivacy regulations.

For certain sectors such as the media, the European Cookie Law even threatens their business model on the Internet. 

The European regulation bodies knew that the application of this law is likely to have an economic impact on certain businesses. This is why they have highlighted the fact that some businesses may be completely or partially exempt from the ePrivacy directive.

What changes can marketers make to prepare for ePrivacy?

But then what solutions can be implemented to compensate for this reduction in the number of data retrieved via cookies? Here are some potential changes that marketers can implement:

  • Collect data on their audiences through other means than cookies, for example through surveys or opinion polls. This solution has the advantage of improving the understanding of consumers’ motivations and needs.
  • Review their priorities regarding their acquisition channels. For example, 80% of marketers say they will use email marketing more after the EU Cookie Law comes into being, according to the Mailjet study.
  • Determine new creative advertising formats which are no longer conditioned solely by the collection of personal data. For example, Facebook will test new forms of search advertising along the lines of Google Adwords.

 

Despite the potential consequences of the new ePrivacy directive, a majority of professionals believe that this new regulation will represent a positive change for their business in the long term. The new Cookie Law will encourage brands to be more transparent about the information they follow, which will help customers see them as more trustworthy.

How can Mailjet help you with ePrivacy?

As an emailing solution, data protection is at the heart of Mailjet priorities. Mailjet holds the ISO 27001 certification, the international standard for information systems security, as well as the AFNOR certification guaranteeing compliance with the main principles of the GDPR. Mailjet offers its customers the highest level of data privacy and security.

Email is the marketing channel with the best return on investment, which is why many companies are planning to use email marketing even more after the new EU Cookie Law comes into effect. To learn how Mailjet has helped businesses boost the email program and discover what we could do for you, check out our resources and success stories.

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