Sending an email campaign might be common knowledge to some of you, but even if you send regular news and promotions to your customers you may be able to benefit from this simple method I utilized recently.

Email marketing can be a simple matter of writing a newsletter update but when your goal is increased engagement and sales, it can become complex. There's a lot to consider including the psychology of your written copy, the time and day of sending, customer segmentation, and much more.

Whether or not your campaign is successful depends on many variables, including the goal you've defined for each email you send. Below you'll find a simple two-step method that my company just used along with stats on how it performed.

Your results will vary depending on your product or service.

Email Campaign #1

We released a new plugin named "FooNav" and as luck would have it, the final version was done about a month after the actual target date. This happened be late on a Friday afternoon.

As you might know, logic usually dictates that engagement for email campaigns isn't very good on the weekend but we didn't want to wait any longer and decided to send anyway as an experiment to see what would happen. This campaign was only to our existing customer list, not our lead list (or potential customers).

This email was framed as a Customer Loyalty promotion and included a 40% discount to any of the three price levels available. I was very clear that this discount was only for existing customers with the intent being to convey how much we appreciated their previous purchases and support of our business.

I also made sure to let them know that this was not yet publicly available and they were the first to get their hands on this new product. The goal was to ensure that our customers were treated special and that they knew it.

The Results

Email Campaign Open and Click Rates

To my surprise, we had 34.4% open rate and 10.3% click rate. The interesting part to me is that nearly all of that 10.3% made a purchase, which translated nicely in actual revenue.

The catch here is that, while making customers feel special along with a heavy discount helped, a large segment of our customers are typically freelancers and DIY builders who probably work on the weekend.

Email Campaign #2

On Monday I replicated that same campaign with a message that the loyalty discount was ending in 48 hours. This is also known as the scarcity method. It's not meant to trick anyone, but rather to let people know there is limited time which helps to prompt action.

I also used MailChimp's segmentation feature for this second campaign. This allowed me to only send this second email  to "people who did NOT purchase FooNav". This is another easy way to respect your existing customers by not sending them something they've already taken action on.


The Results

Email Campaign Results

I was also satisfied with the 27.7% open rate and 3.6% click rate of this second campaign. Sending this second email on a Monday served as a reminder to those customers who weren't glued to their inboxes over the weekend and may have missed (or forgot about) the first one.

Another Variable to Consider

Emojis have been around for several years but seemed to have gained new life now that they are supported in almost every web service. They can be used in a lot of different ways. Here's an interesting Emoji experiment by GE. This was the first time I've considered Emojis and decided to include them in the subject line of our emails since MailChimp makes it super easy:)

I can't say for sure whether including these affected the open rates, but my personal feeling is that they certainly could have. When I see an email with an Emoji in the subject line, it immediately draws my attention and if the Emoji is representative of the content, then I'm more likely to click and view.

The first campaign subject line included a heart to signify the appreciation we feel for our customers.

Heart Emoji in MailChimp Email Subject

The second campaign was a reminder that the discount was ending, so I included a clock to convey that time was limited.

Do Emojis Work in Email Campaigns?

What Email Marketing Methods Work For You?

As I said above this was a bit of an experiment mixed with standard email marketing practices. Overall I'm happy with the response and engagement but will keep testing, researching and implementing additional methods.

I'd love to hear from your own experience on what works (or doesn't work) for your email marketing campaigns. Please let me know in the comments.