Big brands fail with their email marketing campaign too, but what is important is to implement the right risk management techniques and continue testing and improving.
My Christmas Story About an Email Marketing Fail
Everyone I know has gone frantic about their Christmas shopping. Luckily, I’ve done my planning well enough to have finished it all in November. I still get bombarded by newsletters about crazy sales and full of ‘last chance’ and ‘arrives by 24th Dec’ subject lines. Not that I mind, long live the online shopping and its courier network, as they have helped me preserve my sanity (arguably) and save me time, the one most valuable resource I’ve got.
And despite the fact I’ve dashed through this season’s shopping frenzy as quickly as I could, I still occasionally throw a quick glance at the newsletters I receive. Out of professional interest, at the very minimum. The last example was SportDirect.com’s from 18th December 2017 with the sound subject line ‘Big Brand Sale Is Here’.
I felt tempted to click on the Big Brand Sale call-to-action-message and check out what was on sale (again, out of pure professional curiosity only).
To my surprise the link that opened another tab in my browser promped an error message. I couldn’t believe my eyes, so I tried again. And the same message reappeared. The link from the email campaign was not working! It was a tracking link that would have showed great analytics information to the team behind Sports Direct’s email marketing campaigns, but only if it worked. The link was separating the email campaign users only, thus allowing you to monitor their activity and goal completion on the site only, without mixing the traffic generated from other channels/ sources.
Thinking about the scale of their email marketing, it is safe to assume that SportsDirect.com’s email list comprises of hundreds of thousands of emails if not millions, which potentially meant a huge loss in income foregone and one really unsuccessful marketing campaign. And then it hit me… BIG BRANDS GET IT WRONG TOO… sometimes.
If Big Brands Make Email Marketing Mistakes, How Can We Make Sure We Don't?
This event got me thinking - how do we then make sure that we don’t get it wrong too? If someone as big as Sports Direct can make errors of such scale, how do we guarantee our clients that we won’t make a similar mistake with their email marketing campaigns? The answer didn’t come to me straight away.
The next morning, I walked in the office and since the back of my mind had been preoccupied with the question, I decided to check the newsletter again. This time the email tracking link led me straight to Sports Direct’s homepage. Only then did I have my mini-revelation- mistakes do happen, despite multiple tests, contingency planning and so forth. What is important once you make a mistake, however, is to rectify it straight away and make sure it never ever happens again. After all, it’s a learning curve. But an agency is expected to be way better.
As an email marketing agency in London, here at Local Fame, we believe that ‘two heads are better than one’ and there are a few dozens of heads over here, thinking, testing, making sure that we do not make that mistake, helping your business generate more revenue from online channels and utilise that email list you have gathering dust with the years. We set up email campaigns and send newsletters in scalable chunks, testing A, B, C and often D versions of the same newsletter, to ensure that we manage the risk of similar mistakes, but also to understand what works best for your industry, your business and target audience in order to boost your email marketing effectiveness.
Merry Christmas and Happy Shopping!