Top 7 email marketing mistakes to avoid

You’re excited about all the new business that you will receive from your first email shot but a little planning first will pay big dividends.

Over excitable language, personal reply email addresses, badly written text, these are mistakes which can ensure your emails end up as spam.

You have at your disposal a database system which you can use anytime, again and again, at no ongoing cost to you, so why alienate your prospects with a crass ‘smash and grab’ email which has nothing interesting to say. Don’t shoot the fish in the bucket; they’ll still be there next week. Tease them out with targeted, time or event related messages.  Hint at things to come. Get them hooked into your message. Send them some tips and advice. When they reply, listen to what they say.

2. Avoid: buy now!!! SALE NOW ON!!

Not only will this be obvious to your prospects, their email programs and spam filters are very sophisticated and the logic they use (‘heuristics’) will rank your email as spam by analysing the email for such exclamations and ‘excitable’ language. Also avoid using large images as they also upset these filters. If you use images try and ensure that they are subtle and aren’t critical to the message because some email programs like Outlook may block them or at least not show them until the recipient clicks to allow them. Keep it simple. Keep it subtle. You’ve plenty of time now you have the system.

3. Avoid: being clingy

You must include a way for the recipient to unsubscribe from any future emails from your company. Our Emailer software, which comes free with our databases, has a very simple way of including this option. At the click of a button, automatic unsubscribe text is included in the email and a recipient can just click on a link on your email and they will never receive an email again. Simple but important.

4. Avoid: sending it now

Don’t send the email this second! Send it to yourself first. Leave it a day so you can see the wood from the trees and then read the email again. You’ll be glad you did. This is a good tip for any important email, no matter how many recipients. Once you have the database and you’ve written your email, ensure that everything is written well, spelling is checked and at least one other person has read it, from their point of view. Then, if you really can’t wait, send it to a few hundred recipients. Wait for feedback, adjust the email and send to the next few hundred. Once you are happy it’s as good as it can be, send it to all.

5. Avoid: using

If you receive an email from a Hotmail or Yahoo account what is your initial perception? Someone running a business from home, right? There’s nothing wrong with running a business from home but why not sound as though it’s a big business and use a professional email address, using your website domain. If you don’t have a website then let us know and we’ll direct you somewhere to get you started.

6. Timed to perfection…

A question we are often asked is ‘what is the best day of the week and best time to send email campaigns?

You want the best response from your message so it’s important to have the recipient of your email in the best frame of mind when the email alert pops up on his or her screen.

I don’t like Mondays!

Who does? And what’s the first thing you do on Monday morning? You wade though the emails in your account deleting everything in a mad frenzy and have very little time for any new messages. Don’t be a victim of the Monday email carnage.

TGI Friday!

We all love Fridays and may be in a receptive mood. If the decision can be made quickly it may be that your message will be acted on in ‘end of the week emotional abandon’. However, if the decision takes longer it may be forgotten by Monday. Not quite cut & dried this one.

7. Don’t be too Pernickety

pernickety [pəˈnɪkɪtɪ] US, persnickety

excessively precise and attentive to detail; fussy

(of a task) requiring close attention; exacting

The time of the day that your email is received can make some differences in how well the campaign goes but it’s impossible to gauge exactly how or when the email will be viewed. If anything, try to avoid first thing in the morning when your recipient is in a less receptive mood.


See how it goes. Send your campaign, see how it goes, and adjust for the next time. Do not rush. You can send part of the campaign and sit back and see what happens. Try again next week on a different day.

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Rahul Sharma Rahul is a content writer at ESG. He has continuously worked in areas of content marketing since last 6 years. He regularly writes about topics on outsourcing and business growth. Rahul has particular interest in the areas of marketing and management. In his spare time, he likes to travel.