The Only Influencers Blog

The top thought leaders in email marketing share their insights and thoughts.

I have the pleasure of working with some truly talented people. But just because you’re good at designing crisp logos or iconic product packaging or gorgeous posters doesn’t mean you know a thing about designing for direct marketing. It’s completely different. And lately, I’ve had the dubious pleasure of having to tell some of my most talented colleagues that they stink at email design.

Designing direct marketing emails as if they are magazine inserts will give you lovely emails that depress response by 45% or more. At least, that was one of my more dramatic test results, your experience may be different. Before you fall into a pit of despair upon seeing the latest glossy-but-useless design, here are 7 rules to share with your colleagues.

The Rules for Driving Email Results

1. The offer must be clear and visible, above the fold.

You’re selling something, so you need to be blatant about what you’re selling, and maybe pushy too. Brand voice is important, but shy brands don’t drive revenue. So use your voice and make sure that offer is loud and crystal clear.

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Tagged in: Email Design

If email isn’t your number one priority, it’s time to shift gears and focus solely on email.

I’m only halfway kidding. Obviously, any good marketing mix consists of a variety of different programs, channels, and strategies. That being said, I really want to focus on explaining why I think email is the digital glue that holds all other communication together, and why email is very far from “dead.” In fact, if anything, it is probably the most alive and well it has been. I see great strides in the email space happening now and the future is bright.

It is truly remarkable how often I hear some variation of the statement: “Email is dead.” Whether it is because someone has jumped on the social bandwagon or because they heard some sort of statistic that says people prefer checking social to email, it’s always something. It’s almost like people want to come up with just about any reason they want to ditch their email marketing program and put all their efforts into something else, which is bizarre to me, because it produces more ROI than any other channel. Follow the money!

So, I want to use this opportunity to briefly touch on why I think email is probably the most critical communications tool out there right now, especially in the digital space and why it can be seen as the backbone to your social, content, and other efforts.

Let’s begin by addressing social media. Email supports your social strategy from inception. When you first go to create your brand-spanking-new Twitter account, the way you activate it is through your email. Without a valid email address, you can’t even begin to Tweet. Once you’ve gotten your handle secured, and you send out some tweets, how will you know people are tweeting at you? If you’re not logged in to your account at the time then you can see you’ve been tweeted via, wait for it, your email.

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I have just completed compiling the data for the 2014 Only Influencers Salary Guide for 2014. Below are some of the highlights and OI Members can download the full 25 page report HERE.

This year I decided to break out the findings by sex, in order to see if there was a discrepancy between what Female email marketers make versus their Male counterparts, and boy, what a discrepancy it is, almost completely across the board. 

This blog post will be available to the general public for a few weeks and then taken down. OI Members can download the full report at any time. 

First, the top line results: 

We had a 103 respondents to the survey, 61% Male and 39% Female. The salary ranges for all respondents was $32,900 to $290,000. The Median Salary was $95,000. And the Average Number of years in the business was approximately 8.5 years.

Email Marketing Salaries Broken Down by Title

Email Marketing Manager/Director: 

Salary Range $35,000 to $240,000 

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Tagged in: Salary Guide

Posted by on in Meet The Influencers

tinktaylorTink Taylor is Founder and COO of dotDigital Group PLC.

How did you get started in Email Marketing?

 Via being a windsurfing instructor! I’ll explain… I started my career as a computer programmer working for an organisation in the UK called Sequent Computer systems that were later acquired by IBM.

 During my time at Sequent I worked in team who experimented with new technologies. As the company was growing fast our brief was to look at emerging technologies and how they could improve internal commutations. One of the first projects I was involved with was to understand how the concept of a new entity call the ‘World Wide Web’ could possibly help! I am showing true my age here! A big part of the work we carried out was focused on electronic messaging, we built and rolled out numerous intranets globally that were powered by some of the first Content Management systems to be built. We of course looked at email and other forms of communication.

Having left Sequent I worked for a few web companies at the back end of the first dotcom crash. I was interested to see that many of projects carried huge price tickets for what I thought was relatively clunky and difficult to use systems. So before long I had with a group of friends set up my a web agency called Ellipsis Media with the intention of building quality easy to use software with a much lower entry price point. Or as we coined it ‘We will build Nasa technology with Fisher Price interfaces’ and make the difficult things easy.

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Tagged in: Interviews Tink Taylor

Posted by on in Insights from the Influencers

Spamtraps are considered by many as the gold standard in proving that someone is a spammer. Secret emails/honeypots/blackholes are the canary in the email coal mine- heretofore absolute proof that you’re a bad actor in the war against spam. We’ve all been taught to believe that spam traps can only end up on your list if you’re mailing old/dead addresses and/or purchasing lists.

The problem is…what happens if neither of those is true? What’s the explanation for hitting a spamtrap when you’re NOT buying a list and NOT bringing back old names? According to some, this is impossible - there’s no way a spam trap address can end up on your list unless you’re engaging in bad practices.

Here’s a quote from an article I recently read talking about spam trap list operators- “For example, often a blacklisted marketer will claim their list is 100 percent opted in when the DNSBL operator has irrefutable evidence in the form of spam traps that it’s not.”

But guess what…”spam traps” can actually open. And even click. How do I know this?

  1. I looked at the results of our own data.

We run a site that is fortunate enough to get between 20,000 and 50,000 new users per day. They sign up, we validate the address as best we can using a third party. We keep non-responding sign ups on our list for up to 5 days, then stop if they haven’t opened or clicked. We only mail opens/click inside of a 45 day time window. Once a month we send to our full 12 month file because, hey, people actually did sign up for our emails.

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