Clint Kaiser

Clint Kaiser
It’s Gmail, Not AOL: Grading Your Email Program Using ‘This, Not That’

By understanding what it's like when you're at your best versus when things are more ho-hum, you can focus more on the attributes in play when you're living up to your potential. Let's take a look at this in the context of an email program. I audit email programs on a regular basis and wonder what clients’ reactions would be to this approach rather than a Likert scale, Harvey Ball or other more traditional rating mechanism. 

A Return Trip Through 80 Retailers’ Email Sign-Up Experiences

Are inbox welcome experiences getting any better? That's what I wanted to find out by revisiting the retailers whose welcome programs I evaluated here approximately one year ago. Readers can scan that article for the methodology I used in evaluating the programs. At a high level, this is an assessment of the retail vertical welcome experience. 

Which 5% Are You Overlooking?

Marketers are paying a lot of attention to 95 percent of their email program, but detract from all that work by ignoring the last 5 percent. Here are a few spots where some of that "trash" may be lurking in your email program:

Are You an Email Sommelier?

The job title "sommelier" is hot. A recent Los Angeles Times article described the latest incarnation of this role being fulfilled by companies that serve as "music sommeliers" — that is, they're interior designers of the aural kind. Similar to the traditional sommelier, whose job is to serve as the in-house wine expert, these individuals curate playlists that map to a restaurant's menu, clientele, setting and even time of day. Sounds a lot like what a good email marketer does.

Preparing for the Age of Mobile

The last thing email marketers’ need is another to-do added to an already bursting task list. The mobile train has left the station though and you need to not just deal with it but take advantage of it. Here's what you should be looking to do right now to prepare for (or catch up with) the inevitable:

Shopping in Margaritaville

The amount of mainstream press email and related digital marketing topics garner is rather remarkable. Let's run through three recent examples and highlight insights to apply them to your email program.

The Easiest Ways to Improve Your Email Marketing (And Why it's So Hard)

Some things in life sound so simple, like burning more calories than you consume. But in reality it's quite difficult to reach the end goal, in this example losing weight. The same can be said of elements of an email program. Some efforts sound really easy to execute, but are quite difficult to pull off.

The Good, Bad and Ugly of the Welcome Process

The sooner a subscriber is engaged, the longer and deeper they remain engaged with an email program over time. The welcome email is a critical phase in every life cycle; maximizing it pays big dividends. I decided to dive deep into the email welcome experience, studying an array of businesses with a focus on driving conversions. Opting into a brand's email program sets the stage for a follow-up strategy.

Debunking Email Deliverability Myths

Because of the pace of change, best practices in email deliverability quickly grow stale. It’s time to purge ourselves of these outdated myths regarding inbox deliverability optimization:

Confessions of an Email List Renter

It’s true. Companies still rent and buy email lists. And yes, I’ve done some of the buying recently. Now, there are numerous caveats that need to be stated as to how it came to this. Email list rental as a lead generation tactic certainly isn't right for every circumstance. In fact, I’ve found there are far better options for most companies from an online lead generation perspective. But there are circumstances I’ve seen when the planets aligned and email list rental generated sales or high-quality leads.

5 New Sources to Mine Email Content

Let's face it, finding content that subscribers absolutely love is difficult. After publishing a newsletter for years, the well feels tapped and ideas start to dry up. Pushing something out to readers that you know isn’t the most engaging content leaves a bad feeling behind. But the calendar says an issue is due — out it must go!

New Metrics to Track Your Email Program’s Performance

The usual email marketing metrics have long been benchmarked and trended — delivery, open and click rates in particular. Clearly, other metrics make the short list on a lot of marketing managers’ dashboards, too, including conversion rate, unsubscribe rate and click-to-open rate. However, there are three additional metrics that can help further inform the performance of your program on an even more granular level.

How is Your Email’s Elevator Pitch?

You’ve probably heard the request in one setting or another before: “Give me the elevator pitch." Whether you're an entrepreneur pitching a business idea, a job seeker in an interview or a salesperson cold calling a prospect, honing in on the must-have elements within the 30 seconds to two minutes you have to catch the person’s attention and get your point across is critical to achieving your goal.

Use the 3 R’s to Improve Your Email Program

Remember the original tenets of education: reading, riting and rithmetic? Long ago, they served as the fundamental structure for an educational framework in this country. Other practices — most notably environmentalism with reduce, reuse, recycle — have adopted their own versions of the 3 R’s. A lesser known, but equally valuable, 3 R’s structure exists for email marketing. It can be employed as an approach for organizing marketing efforts to drive increased program performance. Those 3 R’s? Reach, relevance and rhythm.

The 4 Most Overlooked Touchpoints to Grow Your Email Database

From a marketer’s point of view, every customer or prospect interaction is an opportunity. It’s a chance to generate revenue, foster loyalty, win back a former customer or gather data. For an email marketer, capturing the email address is crucial.