Testing: Your Most Valuable Email
Marketing Tool — Part One
Here’s the process for thoroughly
checking a marketing email before it
reaches your association’s stakeholders.
You already know the importance of testing an email campaign
before you send it to your members or potential members. To maximize your
chance of achieving the desired goal of your campaign, you want to make sure
that the email looks as you intended and has no mistakes.
Testing is somewhat of a granular process. Test one element
at a time, and don’t give up too early. Start with internal testing, which
essentially means reviewing your email in the following ways:
1. Proofing. Review
your email for spelling and grammar mistakes. Surprisingly enough, a simple
comma in the right place can make a difference. Ginger Software is one of my favorite freebie tools to use for this. "She”
is a better thinker than most average spell-checking applications.
2. Testing links. When
you send yourself a test email, be sure to click on all the links and ensure
they are working properly. Replace or fix any broken links. Also, when using a
link to direct the action you want the reader to do, remember to use a call-to-action
such as READ MORE, CLICK HERE, etc.
3. How it looks when shared on social media sites. Test your message on social media sites by using the Social
Share options yourself. Better to check it now than be embarrassed later.
4. Mobile versus webpage. Over
50 percent of all email gets opened first on a mobile device, so send yourself
a test on your mobile device, or see number seven below.
5. Text vs HTML. Text
versions of email are probably the most forgotten version. And although the
majority of emails are viewed in HTML format, there are still a number of folks
who prefer to receive text-only emails. Send yourself a text version as well.
And, if you make changes to your html version, be sure to update your text
version too — especially if you’re using the "create as new” option.
6. PC vs Mac. Email
can display differently on different platforms, just as it can in different
email clients. If you work on a PC and don’t have a Mac, find a friend that
does and ask them to help you test.
7. Email clients. Use
the email preview feature to view how your email will render in various email
clients. It’s a much easier tool than having a test email for each client and
having to manually go in and look at each one.
8. Test yourself, then test to your coworkers. Once you’ve tested the email and have ensured all is working
properly, send a test to your coworkers. Proofing your own work can be
problematic; getting the assistance of others can be invaluable.
Ready to send, right? Nope, not quite yet. See Part Two on
the benefits of A/B Testing in next week’s Sidebar.
is a 25-year marketing and advertising
veteran specializing in B2B, publishing, and nonprofit industries. She’s spent
the past decade at Knowledge Marketingassisting publishing clients in
email marketing best practices.