You’ve done all the work. You’ve planned and plotted to optimize open rates, clicks, and performance. In about 2 hours, you’re going to be sitting around the table going over the data and trying to see how well it did.
This is where it’s going to get hard.
It’s a lot easier to plan, than it is to look at the results, know what you’re looking for, and re-plan. To help you sound brilliant in your meeting, I’ve whipped together a field guide for key things you should be looking for during your data review.
Delivery Issues Affect 20% of All Emails in Any Given Campaign
Ideally this should be done before you start reviewing email marketing data, but it’s never too late. Reach out to your subscribers to see if they’re even getting your email campaigns. ISP tends to be an issue for some subscribers, and others have your campaign auto-dumped into their junk bin without even being aware of it. Work with subscribers to guide them on what to look out for and how to undo it. Make it dead simple for them to fix any issues since many people aren’t going to bother otherwise.
So how exactly do you check for this? Mark Brownlow at Smart Insights has this technical advice:
“Segment subscribers by address domain and check response rates across each domain. An unusually low response rate from, for example, gmail.com addresses alerts you to a potential delivery issue at Google’s webmail service.”
Poor Content is the Number One Trigger for Unsubscribes
Don’t be disheartened by an unsubscriber. In fact, an unsubscriber is arguably easier to deal with than that email not even being seen by the recipient.
Unsubscribes are attributed to one thing and one thing only: relevance. This is one hundred percent to do with content – and that’s something you can fix. Look at what that specific email campaign said. Was it diverging from other campaigns? What was the past behavior of that user versus the behavior now? Was it just that the user now saw the email? Can you reach out to that user to have a personal conversation? I always recommend fostering a conversation with an unsubscriber. At one point they were invested and now they’re not. Since they at one point opted in, there’s a good chance they’ll tell you why they left.
If you have multiple unsubscribers, or some sort of pattern consistency in unsubscribers, then you know it’s an overall content strategy. That can still be worked out. Start by looking at where your content is diverging from what you’ve promised or accomplished on the website and on social media – particularly whichever you’re most successful on. Then reach out to subscribers (and unsubscribers alike) asking them to take a small 3-5 question survey on Survey Monkey to help you get direct feedback on how you’ve missed the mark.
The second and third installment of this field guide will follow in the next week. Till then, segment your data analysis and make it easier to look into where you went wrong and how you can improve upon the results. Going over data, forming a strategy and looking into the results is time consuming and can become an extensive project most companies simply don’t have time for. By breaking the task up into smaller tasks – such as the two tips per each field guide post we’re sharing – you’ll be able to conquer the first and toughest stage of email marketing data analysis.