Success Metrics to Help You to Improve Email Performance
Arun Pillai, December 4, 2018
Your emails can be the source of several useful pointers regarding how effective they are. Read on to find out more about four such hidden metrics which can be very useful.
Every activity that we do for any kind of gain must be measurable if we are to understand whether we actually gain from it. Unless we have some discrete numbers to go by, we would only be able to use generalities to describe the success, or otherwise, of our email campaign.
There are some metrics which are very commonly used by email marketers. The most commonly used are the metrics that the email service provider makes available. These include the open rates (percentage of people who opened your emails), click rates (percentage of people who clicked on links inside your emails) etc.
Many marketers also use the direct business figures to understand how effective their campaign was. For example, the number of people who registered for their product demo, or the number of people who actually bought their products after the email was sent.
Many marketers simply use any kind of engagement activity in a certain email, and based on the people who actually respond to those as a way to gauge the effectiveness. But apart from these basic metrics, there are several hidden metrics that can also be used.
Some marketers have a fortnightly newsletter, while some other use a weekly mailer. There are some companies which also send 2-3 mails in a week. Depending on the purpose of your email campaign, you can look at the read rate of your emails in the context of how many mails you send in a week or a month. This would help you understand what frequency is optimal for your subscriber list.
Your emails shouldn’t be too distant from each other to take you off the recall horizon of your subscriber. Neither should your emails be so frequent that they are looked upon as spam.
Depending on how long a particular subscriber has been with you, the frequency and content of your emails to that subscriber need to evolve. For example, if you are sending emails regarding a new product, then the frequency will obviously be higher before purchase, and the content will also be mostly centred on the product features etc. But once the subscriber has become your customer, then the content should be more about latest news and developments about that product category, news about upgrades, user satisfaction queries etc. Again, if you see that a particular subscriber has become inactive, then the emails to that subscriber must be directed towards re-engaging that subscriber.
Word-of-mouth has always been a very potent marketing tool. For your emails too, the same principle holds true as well. While the number of people who open and act on your emails is an important metric, you can also judge their engagement by seeing how many of your subscribers are forwarding your emails to others on their own mailing lists. That is a clear sign that what you are saying in your emails is striking a chord with them, and they are keen to share that information with others.
Instead of only checking the rate at which subscribers are engaging with and responding to your emails, it is also useful to look at metrics of how many are doing nothing about your emails. One way to check this is to see how many of your recipients are providing instructions to move your mails directly to their spam folders. The proportion of your subscribers who are directly deleting your emails before even opening them are another measure of how much your emails are being ignored. You need to put in extra efforts on these email ids which are active but whose owners are choosing to ignore your communications.