Are your email list practices leaving money on the table?

There are a few head-slappingly obvious things that anyone marketing to email lists should do. Shockingly, not everyone does all of them all the time.

CEO and President of Graham List Management Liss Graham sees these mistakes firsthand, over and over, when she audits underperforming accounts. And her list of the most common email list mistakes from our recent Affiliate World event is full of action items that you can use to tighten up your own subscriber base.

6 Common Pitfalls in Email Marketing 🕳️

1. Not Getting Every Subscriber in Your Email List

Most brands and ecommerce sellers are good at adding buyers to their email lists, but not enough are capturing leads and cart abandoners. Every potential subscriber is worth money, and failing to remarket to those audiences leaves a lot of potential revenue on the table.

Cart abandonments in particular are high-value prospects. Liss recommends putting them through an autoresponder series to convert them into customers.

2. Not Sending Any Offers (or Not Sending Enough)

Another easy way to improve email marketing is by simply sending regular offers. Even if you only have a customer list of 1,000, Liss recommends sending at least one offer per week, and scaling up slowly to once or twice per day, to keep that audience engaged with your brand.

Similarly, it’s important to tag each email offer with a unique ID so that you can recognize when it converts. Emails may sit in a user’s inbox for a while before they get opened, so being able to track performance over time is very important for accurate metrics.

3. Poor Offer & Copy Selection

This correlates with the previous pitfall – Liss has taken over email marketing accounts for some brands that are sending others’ offers to their subscribers… but not their own.

Capturing emails and other data points based on purchase history, cart abandonment, and browse history can also make it easy to identify relevant offers and personalize them for prospects. A mix of your own offers, valuable content, and affiliate offers is typically the best way to maximize the value of your lists.

Also, share your offers in social channels, SMS, and other relevant placements to grow your brand awareness and build your community. These connections can lead to additional purchases as well as secondary assets like reviews or UGC that can further inform your testing, content, and results.

4. Maintain Independent Statistics

Keeping separate statistics outside of your platform, even in a simple third-party resource like Google Sheets, is also essential to maintain consistency and maximize results. (Google Sheets is useful in this regard for real-time collaboration and updates.)

When you have a lot of information in multiple places like your email service provider, MaxWeb, ClickBank, etc., it’s crucial to maintain a single source of truth so that you know what is working and what isn’t.

5. Make Changes During Testing

Split-tests and multivariate tests are only as useful as the data they generate, and if the variations you’re testing aren’t different enough, the test results won’t tell you much.

With that in mind, test every component of your emails and sequences, including time sent, images, copy, offer type, length – anything you can think of that could make a notable difference.

6. Poor List Hygiene

Maintaining the quality of your lists is important not only for performance, but also for deliverability. Too many bounce-backs or spam flags will make it more difficult to rebuild your bonafides and reach your audience effectively.

Tracking and segmentation, however, can make this a mostly automated process. You can set up your email service provider to remove email addresses after a certain length of time, for example, or a specific number of unopened emails.