How many Emails Is Too Many?
Every business approaches email marketing differently. Some just send out a monthly newsletter. Others create funnels, have newsletters, and then blast sales announcements. So what is the right number of emails to send? The answer isn’t one size fits all but instead comes back to YOUR audience, because every audience is different.
Types of Emails
There are a variety of emails that you can send to your audience. Weekly newsletters, drip campaigned that are started with a trigger, and announcements are the top used emails I see. Your newsletter is a place to add value to your community and letting them know what’s going on with the business. It might provide insights or motivation, keep them up to date on happenings with your brand, or highlight new products that just got in. A drip campaign is an automated funnel that starts after a specific action. For example, you might have a drip campaign when someone purchases your product thanking them for their purchase and then recommending something to go along with that product or asking for a review. Finally, announcement emails let your audience know of a special upcoming event like a sale. All three of these emails have their own value.
The purpose of a newsletter is to keep your name in front of your audience. This means that simply showing up in their inbox with a solid subject line and your name in the “from” section is enough. But of course, we’re here to add value, so think about what your audience wants to hear about. Do they want to know about future happenings or does that feel too “Salesy” to them? Would they like insights and encouragement from you, or maybe educational emails that help them in this area. Figure out how you can bring value to your customer’s life and start building your newsletter around that.
No here’s the question of the year… how often do you send this email? Start with 2x a month. If you get great open rates (above 20%) then go ahead and make it weekly. If you’re getting less than 20% after 2-months, then try only doing 1 email a month. Most importantly keep your eye on the unsubscribe rates. These will tell you the most about how much your audience wants to hear from you.
If you have the software that can connect to your POS system, I highly suggest creating a drip campaign. This will allow you to collect testimonials, upsell, and provide more value. If you’re like so many small businesses and don’t have the tech to do this, then start with a drip campaign for your email collections. When someone signs up for your newsletter they should get a welcome email followed by a few educational emails about your business or how you can help them. If you’d like to see one in action, sign up for my newsletter here.
The gift of drip campaigns is that they only go out to people who trigger them, so these campaigns you can have as many as you like for all the different products/services you sell. Keep in mind how many emails are in each campaign though. I’d start with 4 at the most and see how the open and click-through rates perform. Most importantly give at least 7-days between each email because your audience will also be getting any newsletters or announcements you send out too!
This type of email shouldn’t go out more than 1x a month. If you have that many announcements, you’re doing too much. Keep your announcements as focused to one thing as possible so that your email as a clear call to action (CTA). These emails will be short and sweet and can also be targeted to the audience that will find the most value, they don’t need to go to your entire list.
Getting Niche with Your Audience
When it comes to email marketing, there is power in what you have to offer, but it’s also important to think about the audience you’re sending emails to. The more targeted you can get your emails, the better results you’ll get. Organize your audience with tags so that you can choose specific groups to send announcements to that will appeal to them. Email isn’t just a dump zone for everything you’re business is doing. Once again, it’s a place to get intentional and add value to your customer’s lives. So answer the questions–Does this add value? and to whom?
How many Emails To Send
The number of emails isn’t as important as the results you’re getting and the value you’re providing. By checking into your open rates, click-through rates, and unsubscribe rates, you’ll get an understanding of what your audience wants more of and what they don’t care about. Start with a less is more mentality and be sparing with your emails. As you learn more about your audience you can decide if it makes sense to send more. For any brand I’m working for I protect their email list in any way I can. I have hard rules about how many emails go out, we check into the analytics at least 1x a month, and we have conversations about what we think the audience is feeling when it comes to these emails. What’s their perspective when receiving your marketing?
Your job is to be intentional with your marketing. Continue to ask the question “Does this add value, and to whom?” and you’ll figure out your sweet spot of the right number of emails to create.
Katie Leigh is a brand strategist and photographer based out of Denver, Colorado. Her experience as a former graphic designer and former marketing director provide a unique perspective when it comes to your brand. Whether you want to get clear in your message and create a brand strategy that supports your work-life balance or need to update your website with photos that tell your story, Katie Leigh will help you get clear in your marketing and create sustainable practices to build the brand (and life!) of your dreams. Get the guide to work-life balance and more marketing resources here.