Email Marketing | Interview With Teresa, Social Media Manager at SMTP2GO

Despite the rise of many digital advertising platforms over the last decade, Email Marketing continues to be one of the most effective ways to reach and communicate with your audience.

In this article, we will talk about Email Marketing and what makes it such a great channel for engagement and conversion with Teresa Anne Smith, Social Media Manager at SMTP2GO.

So, without further ado, let’s dive right into it:

Hello Teresa! Can you tell us a little bit more about you?

My name is Teresa. Hello! Alongside being one of the Customer Success Engineers, here at SMTP2GO, I am also the Social Media Manager. I have been working for SMTP2GO for five years.

I’m British but have been living in Madrid, Spain, for almost eight years. I spent most of my 20s traveling and discovering the right path for me and, I think it’s safe to say, I found it! I have a Master’s degree in International Business Management, which I gained from Madrid’s Carlos III University.

Outside of work, I love to travel (still!). Italy is currently one of my favorite destinations, as there’s so much to explore and I actually hope to live there one day soon.

How would you define Email Marketing?

Email marketing is the use of email to reach and communicate with your subscribers/community (that’s right, subscribers! Marketing emails to a non-opt-in list would be classified as spamming).

Whether it be company updates or new features/products, email marketing has proven a constant over the years in reaching a segmented audience at a larger scale (of course, depending on the size of your list).  

Is Email Marketing still effective for businesses?

Absolutely! Email is far from dead, and it’s actually stronger than it has ever been! The recent pandemic has actually led to a rise in companies opting to include email marketing alongside their social media efforts, in a bid to strengthen their overall reach and ROI. ROI is growing each year for email marketing and is currently at a $36 return for each $1 investment.

It’s really worth implementing if you are not already…

What advice would you give our audience when it comes to Email?

Educate yourself constantly on what makes a good email and move with the industry/go with what works for your product or service. Some companies may have it easier than others as they may have a lot more product releases or just a genuinely fun/cool brand.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t bring a little life into your emails as well. Some growing trends are user-generated content. AMP for email is pretty impressive, too. 

How often should companies send Marketing emails?

This would definitely depend on your product/service, budget, and end-goal.

If anything, stick with the rule: ‘if you haven’t got anything interesting to say, it’s best not to say anything at all’. It’s also a good idea to ask your subscribers how often they want to hear from you, or if they only want to hear about certain types of notifications, such as discounts and promotions.

Finding this out beforehand can help avoid those unnecessary unsubscribes and keep your sender’s reputation strong. 

What’s the biggest challenge in Email Marketing?

Apart from finding the right tone, message and content type, email marketers need to focus on deliverability, as it can be more challenging than initially thought. I’ll be sharing some tips below that will hopefully help with this. 

What are some of the most important metrics to look at when it comes to email?

There is quite a lot of discussion surrounding this topic at the moment, as recent security changes (Apple iOS 15) have made tracking the previous go-to “open” metric a little unreliable.

For example, anyone now opening their email on the Apple Mail app has the option to choose not to show the sender if they have opened their email. This was a metric that a lot of marketers relied on and it has caused quite a stir. 

There are other things that you can look out for, however, to measure your email’s success and they’re actually a lot more valuable, such as clicks and conversion.

Beyond this, get your magnifying glass out and set some time aside to monitor other clues that may determine your email’s performance. Bounce, unsubscribes and spam complaints are great starting points.

You may also want to test if your email is actually reaching the inbox: lack of engagement might not be because they don’t want to receive your email, they might literally not see it!   

How can I make sure my emails don’t end up in the spam folder?

Apart from making sure your content is up to scratch, the email has been formatted correctly and the body of the email/subject line is free of trigger words, there are many things you can do to improve inbox placement. 

  1. Send from your own business domain and ensure it has the correct authentication records in place, SPF, DKIM, and DMARC. 
  2. Ensure your domain and outbound IP address are warm. If your domain or IP is new, you’re best to stagger sending
  3. Sign up for Google PostMaster! Gmail is one of the most widely used email clients, so if you have a lot of Gmail recipients, you are going to want to take advantage of this fantastic tool. It will give you insight into your domain’s deliverability to Gmail inboxes. 
  4. Regularly check your domain for blocklists
  5. Don’t include full links in your email or shortened links. It’s best to just hyperlink your keyword with the official URL. Again, if your domain is new, you probably want to avoid adding links (or at least not too many) in your email until you have built up a bit of a domain reputation. 
  6. If you send more than just marketing emails, such as transactional emails, split up sending. Using IP pools is a great way to do this and it’s something we offer at SMTP2GO. 
  7. Take advantage of the free email-checking tools available to you. You can run your email content via a service, such as mail-tester which will let you know if there is something spammy about your email. And don’t take the results lightly! A score less than 9/10 needs improving. 
  8. Test email deliverability amongst popular email clients. Just because your email lands in the inbox for Gmail, doesn’t mean it will for Outlook. I’d recommend making test accounts where you can monitor deliverability to these domains. 
  9. And last, but by no means least, keep on top of list-hygiene as you go along. Removing hard bounces, unsubscribes, and spam complaints immediately from your list is a must! 

Can you tell us more about SMTP2GO?

SMTP2GO was founded in 2006 and is a New Zealand-based company. We are an external email host that many email marketers use to remove ISP sending limits and improve inbox placement. We are growing faster than ever and 2022 is going to prove an exciting year for us! 

What makes SMTP2GO great for businesses?

SMTP2GO makes email easy! Dealing with SPF, DKIM, IP throttling, and IP block listings can be a headache at the best of times, which is why we handle those for you. We’re also experts in email delivery and deliverability, which proves beneficial to businesses who have less time or who are less knowledgeable about email. 

Our fantastic support team is available 24 hours a day to clear up any doubts and troubleshoot any issues. We actually won an award in 2021 for our fantastic customer service and I think the winning element was that we are always reachable.

Alongside this, our service includes real-time reporting that helps our users keep on top of bounces, spam complaints, and unsubscribes, making their life just a little bit easier. 

If you could give us only one advice on Email Marketing, what would it be?

Work on building a list of valuable subscribers. 

Thanks for the interview Teresa! You can add Teresa Anne Smith on LinkedIn.

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