5 Biggest Marketing Mistakes You Can Make

Picture this: You have a list of clients and prospects that you send email and print communications out to religiously, but you aren’t getting any responses. Why not? Well, make sure you aren’t making one of the mistakes we’ve outlined in this post that could be costing you responses.

We all make mistakes, but when it comes to email and print marketing, there are a few simple steps you can take so you can make the biggest splash with your marketing efforts. We’ll start with email marketing tips and you can also scroll down to learn more about print marketing mistakes too.

Follow these tips to avoid top email marketing mistakes

Concise over creative.

Never underestimate the power of a good subject line. But that doesn’t mean you need to have a master’s in creative writing to achieve this. The less creative and more precise you can be, the better.

A study conducted by AWeber Communications found that there were 541% more clicks on clear subject lines than clever ones. Here are some examples of clever subject lines to avoid:

“You’re Not Alone…”

“It’s finally here!”

“…this failed miserably”

“Still doing it the old way?”

“My Gift to You”

Instead, pick clear subject lines that avoid being gimmicky and, instead, actually tell the reader what the email is about:

“9 Must-Try Email Subject Lines”

“5 Things Your Landing Pages Are Missing”

“Your Winning Personalization Strategy”

“3 Steps to Winning Customer Loyalty”

Although the enticing subject line seems like the way to go, the goal is not just to have your readers open the email but to get them to read and click on the email. 

Why is this important? It helps you with your deliverability! Keep these reminders in the back of your mind when thinking up a subject line:

Tell your recipients exactly what they’ll get by opening the email.

Front-load the most important words (or numbers), such as “Tips” or “Tricks.”

Focus on all metrics, not just open rate.

It’s all about that list.

Believe it or not, but good list hygiene is a thing. Having a clean list is essential for deliverability. What does this mean, and how can you achieve that?

For example, if you aim to hit Gmail’s primary inbox (a model followed by most email providers), you will need to pass specific criteria. Before hitting send, first look at these metrics from past email campaign reports:

    Continuously opened emails

    Unique clicks within an email

    Multiple clicks within an email

    Engagement type: Do recipients open and click? Do they open and reply to you? Do they open at all?

Most reporting features allow you to view where people clicked so you can get an idea for what they are interested in. Also, by viewing the bounces, you can determine who is a hard bounce versus a soft bounce.

Soft bounces are those experiencing a temporary technical problem like unavailable servers or full inbox (so probably a one time bounce). Whereas a hard bounce is a permanent failure that is the result of an email address that no longer exists, is invalid, or blocked.

By monitoring your bounces each email, you can remove the hard bounces (repeat offenders) that will help improve your sender reputation. Many email marketing providers, like ActiveCampaign will automatically remove hard bounces from your future email sending.

Another way to ensure list hygiene is to remove role emails such as support@, info@ admin@, etc. from larger companies. There are two significant reasons for this:

    You can’t prove these are opted in recipients

    These could be harvested email addresses that were scooped off of websites

Follow these basic rules for your email marketing campaigns to reduce your potential spam complaints and to increase your open rates.

Aim for higher engagement.

There are a couple of ways to help engage your audience and prompt click-throughs – one way is with a clear and concise subject line. Another is to include a call to action and links that can be clicked on.

Now that we’ve covered some of the biggest email marketing mistakes, let’s move on to print marketing tips you can benefit from.

Follow these tips to avoid top email marketing mistakes.

You may be surprised by this, but response rates from direct mail marketing are on the rise, and many brands are finding success by diving in. Learn more interesting stats about the rise of direct mail during the time of COVID in this blog post Shocking Statistics about Marketing During COVID-19.

These steps and guidelines below can be applied to any type of print marketing from postcards to brochures to newsletters, magnets, calendars, and more.

Headlines + Image = True Love.

A good headline should be concise and evoke the emotion you are aiming for. Using honest, clear, to the point language will do the job.

Because you only have a few seconds to grab someone’s attention, make sure to include a bold, bright, eye-catching image. The point is that you want it to stand out from other items that may be arriving in your reader’s mailbox. 

You want your image to relate to your message or to your reader. Otherwise, it may come across as abstract or confusing and you don’t want that.

Consider these concise headline examples to help you get the inspiration flowing:

– Sell Your Home and Get 20% More

– Join the community run BY and FOR Busy Mums

– Spend less time gardening and let us make your garden beautiful

Focus on the benefits, not on selling.

It’s natural to want to highlight everything you or your product or service can do. Why wouldn’t people want to know how great you and your product or service is, right?

Well, too much information can easily overwhelm and deter your reader.

Keep it simple. Focus on one benefit and make sure you are guiding the reader to take one specific action. 

For example, if you are offering a free home valuation, make sure that point is the focus of your print mail instead of also including mortgage rates and a featured listing. With too much detail and lack of a focused action for the reader to take, they’ll take no action at all.

When you’re regularly mailing, you will be able to keep one focused benefit per mailer and you’ll get to share your other resources or benefits on another mailer.

Here is an excellent example of a focused benefit idea from an accounting service:

Stop worrying about your annual returns, we’ll help free up more time so you can focus on what’s really important in growing your business.

What action do you want your reader to take?

What is the point of spending your hard-earned marketing dollars on direct mail, but you forget to include an urgent reason for your reader to contact you? This mistake is made often and we don’t want you to make the same one.

A piece of print marketing is falling short if a prompting reason for your reader to reach out to you is not included. In marketing jargon, this is called a call-to-action or CTA.

What action do you want them to take when they receive your postcard?

Do you want them to email you, call or visit your website?

Redeem a promotion?

Sign up for your market report?

Schedule a free consultation?

Take the time to build in a CTA and think about the things that would make you (as a consumer) take action.

Here are some useful examples of call to actions:

– Book your free consultation now at www.example.com/booking

– Reserve your spot before October 12th

– Call 555-555-1234 to request your free guide

– Download the app at www.yourwebsite.com/download to start saving today

If you need more inspiration, check out our 7 Call-To-Action Phrases That Get Visitors Clicking post.

Print and email marketing are our thing so if you need any help or simply want it done for you, please schedule a free consultation here: