How’s Your Email Marketing?

Email marketing success statistics abound, so we’ll leave the “email is dead” argument for another time. But with so, so many distractions hitting us up while we check our email, it’s great to know exactly which kinds of emails make it through, which the recipients find useful, and which kind we may as well send directly to our spam file.

When we talk email marketing, we really mean three distinct types:

1) mass email sent to a list either created or bought
2) direct email sent to a specific group, with a customized call to action
3) triggered email, which is sent after the eventual recipient completes a pre-determined action.

And, according to HubSpot and Epsilon, “the average clickthrough rate for triggered emails is more than double the rate for mass emails.”


We can make a few guesses as to why this is, but surely relevance, timeliness, and specificity all play a huge role in making triggered emails so very clickable. Let’s talk about what those three things mean.

Every holiday we’re inundated with product catalogs, special offers, and items ‘selected just for you’. Problem is, many of those selections are based on items we’ve bought ourselves, rather than gifts we’d like to buy for others. While ThinkGeek sure does a bunch of great holiday gifts for your geeky and nerdy family and friends, the almost-daily emails don’t help much if your family only uses computers when they have to.

Lesson: solve problems, don’t just advertise your products.

Triggered emails work well because the action or service I was doing likely just happened. Whether I signed up for something new, reached a milestone in tasks completed or made the next step in LoopLogic’s video analytic process, an email waiting in my inbox a few seconds or minutes later is likely going to be seen as helpful, not spammy. While the numbers aren’t broken down for emails sent via a time trigger, we bet an action trigger worked better.

Lesson: the less time between an action and email, the better.

Arizona’s own Infusionsoft lists deliverability as the highest concern among email marketers, but they’re quick to point out it doesn’t stop there. Their own top 10 list has “Send Highly Relevant and Valuable Emails” as the top suggestion, which goes right along with our idea of specificity. Simply put, don’t send general info out, all you’ll get is ignored or worse, labeled as spam. Content with clear expectations, pricing, instructions, and motive make for easy interaction, so why not make that your top issue? We sure would.

Lesson: give them information they can’t find anywhere else about an issue unique to them.