Tags: email

How to Move Your Emails From Gmail’s Promotions tab to Primary

How to Move Your Emails From Gmail’s Promotions tab to Primary

Beyond • September 17, 2017

Last year, in an attempt to make your email life easier, Gmail introduced the tabbed inbox. Its goal being to make sure you only see important emails in your Primary tab. Not very long after, marketers started complaining about decreased email open rates. Are you one of those worried your email campaigns are not performing as well? Then read on and discover how to successfully land your emails in the primary tab of Gmail’s inbox. There are several methods that have been tested, such as changing header format, using no more than one link or not including images, but none proved to be a a solution. One workaround is to tell your subscribers to do it manually in their Gmail account. How do you do that? It’s possible your email request to do so fails to reach the primary tab as well. Then, the best way out is to educate your customers on how to do this through your blog or through personal engagement. There are three ways to do it manually: Drag & Drop Method This is done by dragging the email from Promotion tab to Primary. It will then ask whether you want to make this change for future messages too. Click on yes to ensure that all message from that email address will make it to your primary tab. Right-Click Method (Control + Click on Mac) The second option is to right-click (Control + click on Mac) on the email you want to move and select the option Move to Tab and then select Primary. The same message shows up again, asking whether you want to make the change permanent. Be sure to click yes. Create a Filter Search for an address in the search box and click on the down arrow at the right corner of the search bar. Click on Create Filter with this search option. From this window you can select which tab you want your emails in. Using this advanced method, you can get your message in the tab you select. A few other suggestions: Address your reader by name. Keep the balance of HTML and text similar, increase interaction. Don\'t include more than one link in an email. Avoid RSS campaigns, as it gives a hint that it\'s not sent by a real person. You will also notice that the brands with which you are interacting always make it to your primary tab. ESPs can only make sure that your email doesn\'t go to spam by taking care of your email infrastructure, while the best way to reach the Primary tab is to make your subscribers set them manually. This move also ensures that they value your brand and are happy doing business with you.


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Using Email Autoresponders to Maximize Productivity

Using Email Autoresponders to Maximize Productivity

Beyond • March 16, 2016

An estimated 108.7 billion emails get sent daily. About 40 man hours are lost each year to email overload. Add to this that email overload is one of the biggest workplace hindrances when it comes to managing our day to day. It’s possible to push through the email grind and come up on top by actually hacking emails to boost productivity. Here’s how you can do that. The Three Things You’re Doing Wrong There’s absolutely no reason you should be checking every email that comes through in your inbox. Yet, most employees say they feel pressured to respond to emails quickly – particularly those in fast-paced office environments like tech, new media and start-ups. It doesn’t have to be this way and in fact it shouldn’t be this way and it causes several problems if that’s how you’re going about your day. First, if you’re checking every email that comes, you’re distracting yourself from that’s ahead of you and letting someone else dictate what the priority is. Second, checking everything at once means you’re also more likely to let an email slip through the cracks. Just because you’ve checked it, doesn’t mean you’ve handled it. Third, you’re setting clients and colleagues up for very high and unrealistic expectations. You’re training them for instant gratification and acting in servitude, coming running to them whenever they ring the proverbial bell. It’s ridiculous. Stop doing it. Two Things You can do if Your Workplace is Email Obsessed If you’re in an environment where email response time is crucial or you’re always on the look- out for emails from certain senders, there’s a couple things you can do to manage your time better. First, set up email pop-up notifications on your desktop or phone. I prefer having the pop up on my phones so they’re appearing on a clean uninterrupted slate. Personally, I have too much going on on my monitor and so pop ups there are still likely to get lost. You’ll be able to see streamlined messages popping up on your phone, allowing you to ignore what you don’t need for a later time and respond to what is more urgent. If everything tends to be urgent in that company culture demands a faster response, then shoot out a little response that lets people know you’ve seen the email but will follow through later including asking any questions you might have. This way, you’ve done your due diligence but you also haven’t wasted brain cells trying to jump on this task right now. Shelve it for later in your project management tool such as Wrike. You can have a task each day just for email requests and have a bullet list or checkbox of what needs to get responded to. Once you’ve checked it off and better understood the task, you can project plan for that task accordingly in a master calendar. There’s a lot of pressure to not only reply immediately but to also get it done immediately. Stop that too. You can’t get it all done as soon as you or anyone else would look. Learn to always look to your project management big picture before committing yourself. That said, there’s still a better third option. Use Email Autoresponders to Segment Your Day Set up a daily autoresponder to trigger from 6am till about 2pm. Have that responder message say that you’ll be checking emails from about 2pm-4pm (or whatever time works for you). Add that for anything urgent, you can be called at a certain number or reached out to in some other preferred way. You can also add that you’re doing this for the sake of productivity so you’re able to take advantage of as much working time as possible. This solution makes everyone happy: senders know what’s going on, you’ve responded immediately, and you’re not interrupted by emails until you choose to be interrupted.


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How to Humanize Your Email Responder

How to Humanize Your Email Responder

Beyond • March 2, 2016

In a workplace culture obsessed with authenticity and culture, why is it that our email autoresponder messages still sound like an android from a low budget 1950’s sci-fi film? Even marketing agencies are guilty of this. They host some of the most eccentric personalities but when it comes time to say you’re stepping away from email, everyone loses all sense of self and instead comes across as some pod person. This doesn’t need to be this way. You can step. We can help you. First, infuse your authentic self into your messages. What makes you, you? Is there a way you speak on emails that’s accepted and liked by clients? Chances are, yes. Everyone has a unique personality that comes across in day to day email exchanges and it’s what helps us distinguish your email from the barrage of emails that flood into our inbox each day. So step one is be you. Second, be honest about what you’re actually doing? Are you heading off on a much-needed holiday? Say so. Maybe you can even give us a hint of where you’re going so we can be totally green with envy. On a self-interested business development note, these details further humanize you so that your clients feel like they actually know you. It’s much easier to dislike, be frustrated with, or even walk away from someone you know and have cultivated a bond with. So bond. Third, don’t be afraid to use humor. A person who can wield humor is a powerful agent in any work place. They bring levity and relief to the everyday humdrum. If this is you, integrate your sense of humor into your email responder. Here are some example of the classic auto responder line that screams “I’m really dull.” “Thank you for your email. I’m out of the office and will be back Monday. During this period, I will have limited access to my email. For immediate assistance, please contact me on my cell phone.” While this shares all the necessary info – such as when you’ll be back, whether you still have access to email, and alternate point of communication – it’s ultimately really boring. Here’s some bold alternatives inspired by Hubspot. “I am currently out at a job interview and will reply to you if I fail to get the position.” You have to admit, it’s cheeky. However, not advisable unless your colleagues have a strong sense of humor. “I’m not in the office right now, but if it’s important, feel free to tweet me @shireenqudosi with #YouAreInterruptingMyVacation This is perfect, especially for in-house colleagues that don’t seem to get you’re on holiday. It’s also ideal because if you are on holiday you’re more likely to check Twitter than email – and it ensures only the important messages get to you in a punctuated, limited character, capacity. People use email responders for a number of reasons – it’s not just always about vacations. You could be on maternity leave – if so, tell us about what you’ve decided to name your little one. You could be off to a seminar – if so, tell us where you’re headed and how that improves your ability to be of further service to clients. Perhaps you’re doing something really amazing like taking on a new project – if so, mention it and give people an insight into what cool things your business is up to. You could even just be stepping away in order to segment your day and be more productive by not succumbing to email overload.


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Getting More Mileage Out of Your Email Content

Getting More Mileage Out of Your Email Content

Beyond • January 11, 2016

Even a thriving enterprise can hit a content wall once in a while. While you’ve got all the right software, getting custom branded content that meets your goals can be difficult to source from time to time. Yet, there’s a way around this and it’s right in your email marketing campaign archive. If you’ve written original email content, you can turn that content into blog posts. Since your content was initially delivered via email, it’s still going to be seen as original in the eyes of Google – which means you’ve upped your SEO game. At the same time, you’re providing another content piece to an audience that might not yet be subscribed to the blog. To complete the rotation, you can also include an email sign up link within the content at the end of the post, mentioning that this post first appeared in your email campaign. On that note, anything that you’ve produced for email only can make it to a blog: podcasts, videos, and infographics can all be converted to blog content. Once you have it on your blog or perhaps even as a landing page, the next step is to weave it through social media channels to get both audience venues funneled in. There are a lot of benefits to repurposing content. First, it’s economically feasible. Instead of spending man hours or dollars creating new content, and making sure it meets standards, you can go back to something you already have. It can cost, for example, $700-1500 to create an infographic. So first, you should repurpose that infographic at every opportunity. Second, create an article out of it and share it as an op-ed, a guest article, your own blog, part of a campaign, or in another email campaign down the road. You can even create spin off content series from that infographic, with the goal being that you get as much as you can out of that content piece. Why You Should Repurpose Content Repurposing also helps you stay focused on a message by underscoring something that’s important to your organization or company. Any audience needs repeat exposure to a message at least three times before it becomes something they can remember, and seven times before they associate it with your brand. It’s a good rule of thumb to start getting in the habit of repurposing content, which means beginning to create an inventory of your content. This inventory should include the file name, the file, where it’s been published and have some keyword tags to make future searches a lot easier. Evernote is a great way to archive content quickly and easily, though I recommend just one account for all your content inventory needs, rather than having a notebook or a folder for content in another account. You can also create a content goal in order to measure where you’re at and what you’re producing, versus where it’s getting published and how it’s getting received. This elevates your content from just production to performance. It also helps you determine which content needs more mileage or which ones people might want to see converted into another form, such as a video presentation or an infographic, because it was a highly popular subject.


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Inbox Placement Rates 2015: Detailed Analysis

Inbox Placement Rates 2015: Detailed Analysis

Beyond • December 31, 2015

A common point of failure for most of the marketers is why their campaigns didn’t succeed. Lack of awareness often costs email marketers in the form of lower open rates and reduced ROI. Every year Return Path does the analysis of inbox placement rate. Inbox placement rate measures the percentage of emails landing in your subscribers’ inbox and not in spam folders or otherwise undelivered. According to “Deliverability Benchmark Report 2015” published by Return Path, one of the five messages sent failed to reach the inbox. Email volume has gone up by 7% from last year, but only 79% of commercial emails lands in the inbox. Moreover, the global inbox placement rate has gone down by 4% compared to 2014. In other words, there are more and more emails but fewer of them reaches the inbox. Inbox placement rate by country The largest drop in deliverability is for the U.S., where inbox placement rate has gone down to 76% compared to 87% in 2014. Not reaching the inbox means one in four emails either go to spam or blocked by mailbox provider. Brazil has shown significant improvement as their inbox placement rate is up by 74% compared to 60% in 2014. Among European countries, only Italy has shown 2% increase from last year. Significant downfall in inbox placement rate was seen for Germany, France and the UK. However, for Spain rate remains unchanged. Australian marketers enjoyed higher inbox placement rate of 88% in 2015. Inbox Placement rate by industry  The report also provided stats by industry and most industries show declined or flat inbox placement rates. However, relationship-based industries such as health & apparel, food and beverage as well as insurance have maintained good inbox placement rates of about 90%. While manufacturing, software and the internet industry have also gained some improvement. Based on mailbox provider Interestingly, the report also revealed that deliverability is particularly worse with Yahoo Mail. Inbox placement rates have dropped by 13% this year and marketers find it tough to reach their subscribers. Gmail has maintained the same rate as emails were routed to the promotion tab. Campaigns that tried to bypass the promotion tab in order to reach the primary tab have often landed to spam folder. Marketers should stop this approach as open rates for the promotion tab have increased up to 20% this year. Why marketers are not making into the inbox? Analysis has shown that most marketers are not aware of the new metrics being considered by mailbox providers. For better inbox placement rates, they must consider these new deliverability rules. Low read rate by the mailbox receiver (26% of campaigns affected) – ISPs have indicated that their filtering decision depends on the percentage of mailboxes reading your email. Sending to subscribers that don’t engage can cause delivery issues. Spam Complaints (21%) – This is the oldest metric used for years and still hasn’t changed. A complaint is recorded every time a user marks an email as spam. In particular, mailbox providers look at complaints from live mailboxes and some feedback methods like Microsoft’s sender reputation data (SRD). Mailing to abandoned inboxes – According to the report, about 19% of campaign face this problem. If you mail to inactive accounts it gives a negative signal to the mailbox providers and tends to fall under into their spam filtering algorithms. Inbox placement rates fell in 2015 from 2014. Possibly because marketers have overlooked the recent evolution. The first step in conducting any analysis of campaign performance is to know how many emails never reach the inbox. By monitoring your inbox placement rate, you get a better understanding of your email campaigns and it gives a reliable platform to optimize your email program.


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Inspirational Feeds for Your 2016 Email Campaigns

Inspirational Feeds for Your 2016 Email Campaigns

Beyond • December 30, 2015

The hardest thing is to put pen to paper. Even marketing managers, who aren’t necessarily creative types or content curators, have a hard time with what to actually draft up in an email marketing campaign. This becomes a special type of challenge when you’re on an aggressive schedule, sharing campaigns weekly or sometimes even more than that. To ease your pain, I’ve created a list of my favorite go-to destinations for inspirational content. Here’s the best of the best from a content curator. For the Cultural Beat   VICE – They cover news, culture and trend. What make Vice stand out though is the super cool millennial attitude that likes to have fun in everything they do. So even if they’re talking about war, they’re doing it with style and a tone that easily engages and gets to the point. If millennials are your target, this is your publication. Recent titles include: What It’s Like to Be a Teenager and Homeless This Is What It Looks Like When an Instagram Photographer Switches to Film Miyazaki-Inspired Short Follows an AI’s Coming of Age Searching for Refugee Housing in Berlin Quartz – A relative new-comer, Quarts is a great publication that is more cultural and less news focused. The audience is more sophisticated but still interested in great content that’s delivered in a snap. Recent titles include: Here’s an “extraordinarily rare” peek inside Apple’s secretive design lab A floating school in Lagos has helped bring solar power to one of the city’s oldest slums How to get more done – and in less time Parents are buying their kids all the wrong toys For the Heart and Soul   Brain-Pickings – The incredibly thoughtful and exquisitely curated brain child of writer/editor Maria Popova, Brain Pickings offers daily reads that reads easily, captures the imagination, and inspires the heart and mind. With posts ranging from art, literature, science, productivity, and history, there’s absolutely no way you won’t find something to pull from or get inspired by. Recent posts include: Kandinsky on the Spiritual Element in Art and the Three Responsibilities of Artists Susan Sontag on Storytelling, What it Means to be a Moral Human Being, and Her Advice to Writers An Antidote to the Age of Anxiety: Alan Watts on Happiness and How to Live with Presence Leisure, the Basis of Culture: An Obscure German Philosopher’s Timely 1948 Manifesto for Reclaiming Our Human Dignity in a Culture of Workaholism Fixed vs. Growth: The Two Basic Mindsets that Shape Our Lives The Science of Stress and How Emotions Affect Our Susceptibility to Burnout and Disease. On Being – Spiritual without being religious, On Being ponders the questions of the heart and soul without being preachy. It’s the modern day equivalent of Chicken Soup for the Soul – but catering to a more cultivated crowd. Recent titles include: When Words Become Flesh: Risking Vulnerability in a Violent World Reflections and Opening Questions for the New Year Inheriting the Kingdom of Motherhood and Homemaking The Capacity to Connect with Others A cultural beat and heart + soul are the two most overlooked aspects of content curation. They’re also the hardest to find since it requires a blend of content types that are curious, informative, and yet not too confrontational. Is there another type of content you’re looking to source? Ask me below!


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Forecast: Top 4 Email Challenges Your Enterprise Will Face in 2016

Forecast: Top 4 Email Challenges Your Enterprise Will Face in 2016

Beyond • December 24, 2015

Be prepared to up your email marketing game as we head into 2016. This last year also showed an incredible leap in email evolution, with the biggest game changer being the advent of wearable technology. In 2016, the challenges include (1) growing your list, (2) retaining your list, (3) understanding the psychology of mobile, (3) video, and (4) turning the tables by focusing on marketer needs. Starting from the bottom up, the common ground challenge faced by all enterprise level marketers is to grow their email marketing list. The solution is lightboxes, but even lightboxes come with their own challenge. You’ve probably seen a lightbox before. They’re the sometimes annoying boxes that pop up before you’re able to access a page fully. It asks you to take some action, which is usually signing up to the email list. However, not all lightboxes are the same. The best was – the ones that don’t annoy or frustrate but do trigger enthusiastic conversions – are the ones that are well designed and creatively presented. So the 2016 challenge isn’t just making sure you have a lightbox, but making sure you’re has a strong visual and branding element that acts as an invitation rather than promo or spam. The next challenge is going to be making sure people don’t opt out your subscriber list. Ensuring you’re retaining your list means you’re going to need to think like them. Your audience is always on the go and that is only going to change in 2016 and there’s an increased demand on attention with less and less time to give out. Understanding this means creating content that is mobile friendly and (more over) why mobile is so hugely popular; it means understanding the psychology of mobile. Accessing emails on mobile is huge, and partly because it’s also something you can quickly rifle through while in line or waiting for a meeting to start. But mobile messaging is about more than just punctuated communication or mobile-optimized communication. It’s about giving people something to engage in during that short window of time. The answer here is video. Videos are huge on Vine and now even on Instagram. So why not take it to your email marketing campaigns. Not only is video more engaging by cultivating a more intimate connection with the reader, but it’s also a lot easier than writing out copy. Save the copy for the content that matters and toss in videos into your campaign. That said, mobile is about more than just what your readers are doing. The supreme 2016 trend turns the attention to the sender and not just the receiver. 2016 is going to be about how you the marketer engages in an email campaign. So when it comes to mobile, mobile is going to be just as much about how you can send out email campaigns on the go and how easy it is to do that. So as you venture in to 2016, consider your email marketing goals and your email marketing frustrations as a marketer. Your game plan should include benchmarks for each quarter that meet both goals and make the process easier for your team.


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2016 Holiday Email Marketing Calendar

Beyond • December 22, 2015

It\'s almost always a holiday season for email marketers. From Black Friday and Cyber Monday through to New Years, Valentines Day, Independence Day and more … we\'re always finding a way to spread some cheer with our subscribers. Benchmark Email has put a holiday email marketing calendar together for all of you to put to use in 2016. Each holiday has a page with some tips and ideas for email campaigns … and even a few for events too. Remember, promotions and sales will always be appreciated by your subscribers. However, sometimes simply spreading some holiday cheer is enough. Pick your places and be genuine. Check out the calendar below and subscribe (click the + at the bottom of the calendar) so you never miss a holiday marketing opportunity!


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New Feature: Custom Footer

New Feature: Custom Footer

Beyond • December 21, 2015

Benchmark Email continually strives to develop new features and tools to make the email marketing lives of our users as easy as can be. The launch of our Email Designer in 2014 marked a shift in the customization and ease of design for every email marketer creating an email campaign with Benchmark Email. We\'ve continued to add as many new bells and whistles as we can to our beloved drag-and-drop email editor. The latest addition, is the ability to customize the footer in your email campaigns. You can now customize which links appear and the content of the footer in your email campaigns. You can also select which Trusted Email by Benchmark badge appears. Also included in the footer feature blog is the ability to change the color. Really, you now have complete control over the way your footers look. What\'s your favorite Email Designer feature block?


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The Most Epic Holiday Email Campaigns

The Most Epic Holiday Email Campaigns

Beyond • December 17, 2015

Now that we’re well-versed with holiday marketing hacks, it’s time to level up and get inspired by some of the most epic holiday email campaigns. The best time to start your holiday email campaign is right in advance of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. You can create a holiday “preview” sale and include a coupon that’s only available through your email marketing campaign. A lot of people will do this. What makes your company stand out is in how creative your email design is going to be. Is it going to be a run of the mill graphic design or will it be inspired to think differently. Think differently by creating a photo spread or using more modern design elements. If you have the capability, have an interactive email marketing campaign that links to an interactive landing page. This works brilliantly for retail industries. The landing page could be a photo of a real family living room with a Christmas tree and fireplace. The styling you go with will depend on your audience: contemporary modern or classic. You can have gifts under the tree and visitors can click on the gifts to see what’s inside, each one being a product. An interactive landing page stirs the imagination and gets people virtually engaged with your products. If they can imagine it under your tree, they can imagine it under their tree. You can also play on the “12 Days of Christmas” Theme and have a 12 day email campaign that features one product at a time. If you’re featuring one product, you’re going to really need to engage readers with that product. Include a video if you can, get a popular guest blogger involved if possible. It also helps create buzz if you offer an email integrated giveaway for reach product. If you’re going to do a giveaway, make sure you’re taking advantage of the opportunity by creating FOMO (fear of missing out) ahead of time, through social media, prior email campaigns and your website. Also make sure you’re making it easier for people to subscribe to your email campaigns since this type of campaign will increase subscribers. Creative holiday campaigns don’t just need to be about the email campaign itself. You can use the email campaign to draw attention to a creative holiday “gift” or service. Consider what Netflix did. They offered a video of a warm fireplace called “Your Home – Official Trailer.” The idea was that you could use Netflix to turn your TV into a live video of a cozy fireplace. You’re still using Netflix, and you’re getting something personalized out of it. It’s genius. How you use your email marketing campaigns can – and should – vary. Do what works for you and your growing organization. If it’s strictly about content, great. If it’s to draw users to a landing page, even better. The goal is to move beyond just promotional content during the holidays and find a way to personalize your company and what it has to offer an audience base. As a rule, it’s always better to send more holiday email campaigns that are varied in style and content, rather than just the one-off creative holiday campaign. This is the time of year for you to get noticed and a creative email campaign has the potential to do just that.


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