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Email Marketing Heat Maps (Infographic)

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There is a lot of controversies regarding the use of heat map analysis on websites. However there is relatively little about using it to analyse marketing emails.

Many companies spend a good chunk of their marketing budget on email marketing only to be underwhelmed by the results. There is often little to none actionable data that gives insights into what went wrong with the email marketing campaign. One way to get around this problem is by using heat map software to understand what people find engaging. Using this information you can then design your emails according to that knowledge to create more effective emails.

The following infographic took a number of different campaigns and rated them based on three different factors. It also offered a series of takeaways based on what they learned from their heat map analysis. Some of the more interesting takeaways:

  • Using white space is important to steer the eye toward your desired target.
  • By narrowing the options available to the user, you are able to focus your message.
  • Use a simple design with contrasting call to actions.
  • If you have technical content, focus on a clean display.
  • It is important to be mindful of colors and secondary elements in images.

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Infographic credit: Easy SMTP and EyeQuant

Becoming A Skillful Gmail User (Infographic)

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If you use webmail for your daily working needs, chances are you’ve done the wise thing and opted for Gmail – arguably the most useful email service on the internet.

Aside from combining your inbox and sent mail into a narrative thread, Gmail’s integration with many of Google’s other handy services make it a can’t-live-without organizing tool for hundreds of millions of users. From enabling offline use of the email service (Gmail Offline) to giving you insight into your correspondents’ very souls (well, their personalities at least – try Crystal Knows), Add-ons fill the Gmail gaps you hardly knew were there. To find out about a few more such apps – and for the low-down on those handy power tips and more – be sure to check out this new infographic and boost up your Gmail use today.

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Infographic credit: Neomam Studios

The Complete 2016 Email Marketing Trends (Infographic)

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With 77 percent of preferring communication through email, it looks like email marketing is still going to endure and improve its effectiveness.

With the rise of mobile, it might be a good idea to think about ‘responsive email’ and your overall email’s design. With a lot of enhanced technology such as animation can be an effective tool to set your campaign apart from the pack. Animated GIFs can be viewed in almost all email clients. This helps showcase products an entice readers by attracting their attention. Take a look at the following infographic for more detailed information concerning email marketing big trends in 2016.

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Infographic credit: Inquest Marketing

The State of Email Marketing 2015 (Infographic)

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2015 is almost over and what is more rewarding to wrap up this year than learning a new insight about email marketing?

Today’s infographic shows this year’s state of email marketing. To build the data, SmartInsights and GetResponse surveyed more than 1,800 email marketers from a lot of business sizes and sectors around the world. The result is most of them agree about the hidden potential and true power of email marketing. When sorted by effectiveness ratings of Good and Very Good, email marketing is the clear winner with 64 percent rating email marketing positively.

Take a careful look at the infographic below for more insights on why optimizing email marketing matters in 2015, why do marketers rate email marketing so highly, how are marketers measuring success, and more.

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Infographic credit: SmartInsight and GetResponse

Gmail is Going To Warn You Over Unencrypted Connection

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Soon, you may see a warning in Gmail that tells you that an email has arrived over an insecure connection.

Gmail already defaults to using HTTPS for the connections between your browser and its servers. However, for the longest time, the standard practice for sending email between providers was to leave them unencrypted. If somebody managed to intercept those messages, it was pretty trivial to snoop on them.

Over the last few years (especially after the Snowden leaks), Google and other email providers started to change this and today, 57 percent of messages that users on other email providers send to Gmail are encrypted. Moreover, 81 percent of outgoing messages from Gmail are, too. Gmail-to-Gmail traffic is always encrypted.

Why does all of this matter? Well, unencrypted email makes for a great target. The good news is that email security is getting better. A joint research project between Google, the University of Michigan, and the University of Illinois found that 94 percent of inbound messages to Gmail can now be authenticated, which makes life harder for phishers. But at the same time, these researchers also found that there are “regions of the Internet actively preventing message encryption by tampering with requests to initiate SSL connections.

The team also saw a number of malicious DNS servers that tried to intercept traffic. “These nefarious servers are like telephone directories that intentionally list misleading phone numbers for a given name,” the researchers write. “While this type of attack is rare, it’s very concerning as it could allow attackers to censor or alter messages before they are relayed to the email recipient.”

Given that there are still plenty of email servers that don’t support encryption, chances are you’ll see one or two of these warning labels in the next few months.

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Smart Reply: A Handy Replying Option For Gmail’s Inbox

Most professionals will know how frustrating (and overflowing) their inboxes can be. They are going to get excessive emails as the holidays approach.

Fortunately, Gmail is making it easier to respond to emails on the go with its new “Smart Reply” feature for its Inbox Android and iOS apps. With Smart Reply, Inbox suggests up to three responses based on the emails received. By leveraging the feature, users can save time on replying to messages that need just a quick response, and can also get a jump start on messages that require a bit more thought.

To make Smart Reply work, Inbox uses machine learning to recognize messages that need responses and to generate the natural language responses. What’s more, the responses that are chosen (and not chosen) help improve the feature’s future suggestions.

Smart Reply is going to be released this week to both Gmail’s Android and iOS apps.

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How Timing Strategy Can Increase Your Email Open Rates

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All holidays always lend themselves to one thing: an increase openings in promotional emails.

Though some marketers may assume consumers disregard a large volume of holiday emails, consumers’ behavior suggests otherwise. In fact, a survey conducted internally found that open rates for holiday-themed email actually increased in 2014 and consistently exceeded those of non-themed campaigns.

One of the most important factors in achieving an optimal open rate is the timing of these emails. For some holidays, it’s more effective to send promotional emails closer to the actual date, while for others, earlier emails perform better. As we approach Halloween, a major consumer holiday in the U.S., brands can learn a lot from looking at the 2014 holiday season open rates. Overall, it’s important to remember that themed campaigns generally do well when it comes to deliverability, but the timing can make a big difference when it comes to engagement.

Creating A Themed Campaign

Holiday-themed emails continue to increase year-over-year with 83 percent of retailers sent general “holiday” or winter-themed campaigns, making it the most popular ‘theme’ in 2014. Black Friday saw the second highest volume of emails at 80 percent, followed by Thanksgiving at 63 percent. Both of these themes also saw a significant increase from 2013.

While many within the industry may fear that an increase in marketing email volume could irritate consumers and drive response rates down, this doesn’t seem to be the case. Retailers during the last two quarters of 2014 actually saw consistent open rates (14.7 percent and 14.6 percent respectively), and these rates were also higher than they were during the same quarters of 2013 despite a significant increase in volume. This trend is likely due to marketers making a greater effort to provide better mobile experience, improve inboxing strategies and create more personalized email content.

So not only are marketers deploying more holiday-themed campaigns, but consumers are responding in a positive way. While it’s important to note that themed campaigns are crucial for many B2C brands during the holidays, it’s also worth paying attention to the timing of these campaigns. For some holidays, themed emails see lower open rates as the holiday approaches. Here’s a look at the most ideal email marketing timing for each holiday.

Early Deployment

Latest study revealed that consumers open Halloween-themed emails at a higher rate when they are sent within the first two weeks of October (15.2 percent) and at a lower rate when they are sent in the two weeks leading up to October 31st (12.5 percent). Like Halloween, Cyber Monday and Christmas campaigns benefited from earlier deployment in 2014.

If any retailers are just starting to send their Halloween-themed emails, they may have missed the boat. As most Halloween enthusiasts have long been prepared by the time October 31st arrives, it makes sense that earlier campaigns yield better results. This logic also applies to Christmas. It’s likely that as Christmas approaches, consumers become preoccupied with other life events and are less likely to pay attention to email. What’s more, consumers begin Christmas shopping earlier and earlier each year. Cyber Monday is no different. It’s the first day back to work or school after a long weekend. Additionally, many may have become numb to email marketing after a weekend full. So, deploy these campaigns early or risk being lost in the shuffle.

Late Deployment

While it makes sense that consumers are more likely to engage early for holidays like Christmas and Halloween, some holidays lend themselves well to later campaign deployment. Back-to-school, Black Friday, and Thanksgiving campaigns saw higher open rates when deployed closer to the holiday. These events require very little advanced planning (no more than a day or two), so it is likely that consumers are simply not thinking about them until they are fast approaching.

For example, back-to school campaigns that ran closer to the start of school saw open rates 32 percent higher than those deployed earlier in August or July. Parents and students are simply not shopping for school supplies until the days leading up to the start of the year. Similarly, Thanksgiving and Black Friday campaigns deployed in the two weeks leading up to the holiday saw higher open rates compared to those deployed further in advance, most likely due to the lack of advanced planning or gift-giving required. To get the most engagement from back-to-school, Thanksgiving, and Black Friday email campaigns, marketers should wait to deploy until a few days before the event.

So as the holidays approach, brands and retailers should pay close attention to the timing of themed campaigns. It’s important to understand how consumers operate at this time of the year and adjust campaigns accordingly. Consumers can ‘plan’ for some holidays on the day of, while they require advanced preparation for others. While all holiday-themed campaigns can drive revenue for brands and retailers, in order to ensure maximum engagement, timing is everything.

Want To Boost Email Open Rates? Start Personalising Your Prospects Now!

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If you want to boost your email marketing open rates more, you need to really pay attention to recepient’s personalisation.

According to a recent study of more than 100 billion emails sent in 2014 and 2015, sending more personalised email campaigns can result in open rates being lifted by nearly 150 percent.

What’s more, the study implies that segmentation is a great way to customise email campaigns, with the data showing that campaigns sent to 35 subscribers or less saw the best average open rates of 55 percent. Conversely, campaigns sent to more than 7,500 subscribers, which suggests little personalisation, averaged a 14 percent open rate. For the sake of comparison, the average open rate is 22 percent.

This study provides conclusive proof that personalising the emails you send, so that you’re speaking directly to specific interests and wants of a subscriber, not only strengthens the relationship with subscribers, it results in better campaign performance. Small businesses tend to be great at developing authentic customer relationships and this data underscores the marketing value of those relationships.

Additional data shows that subscriber domain can also influence open rates. For instance, campaigns set to Comcast Cable, Verizon Wireless and Cox Communications email addresses saw the highest open rates, while AOL, Hotmail and Yahoo saw the lowest open rates. It is also important to note that nonprofits averaged higher open rates at 29 percent than both their business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) counterparts.

Mixing Email Campaign and Social Media Marketing (Infographic)

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Email and social media are two major marketing tools that will increase in investment by business owners in 2015.

Many business owners employ either email marketing OR social media campaign. Still, companies are rarely integrating these two superb tools together.

Do you often think that email and social media marketing are not belong together? Think again! In today’s post, we share a great infographic that covers various benefits of integrating your social and email strategies together. It also covers both how to grow your email list through social media and vice versa. There is a bunch of cool data and useful statistics that back up the importance of integrating the two together. You’ll also find two really cool case studies that are highlighted in the graphic as well, reminding that integrating social and email is a win-win situation.

Keep in mind that both channels have a specific purpose but by integrating your email and social strategies together you can improve your brand’s reach while adding leads to your sales funnel.

For more detailed information, please take a look at the infographic below.

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Infographic credit: Reach Mail.

Email Marketing Best Practices From 15 Top Professionals (Infographic)

Mobile Email

Although it is considered as a “old” tool in marketing world, email is definitely one of the classic and dependable instrument when used properly.

If you have already managed your own newsletter, you might probably wondered:

  • When should I send it?
  • At what time?
  • What should I include on it?
  • What value should I provide?

and more.

To answer these, you can:

  1. Read about it on the internet. You’ll find hundreds of posts and studies that talk about this.
  2. Testing and testing and testing…
  3. See what others who have much more experience are doing.

Note that in the option number three, we said that you are ‘seeing’ what they are doing, not what they say you should do since that’s a completely different story. The following infographic provides the option number three plus more. It compared the email marketing tactics of 15 smart marketers, giving an in-depth analysis at your convenience. Take a look at it and start doing the correct email marketing strategy like a pro.

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Infographic credit: NewsletterBreeze.com