Whenever you deploy a new email campaign, there are several steps you need to pay attention to for everything to work as planned. To help you achieve all your goals and to support your digital marketing efforts, we have put together an email marketing checklist that you can use before sending out a new deployment.
Email Marketing Checklist
This article is the last part of the Email Marketing Essentials series. We have already gone over the basic functions of an email campaign, the essential steps for generating a successful email strategy, the steps for creating, growing and maintaining email lists, what to do and what to avoid doing when sending out newsletters, what regulations emails must comply with, as well as everything you need to know about email metrics and A/B testing. Reviewing our published articles will give you all the necessary information for running a perfect email marketing campaign.
- Decide on date and time
Sending out regular email campaigns is an important step in establishing a great schedule that subscribers can get used to. Doing so will guarantee that you pick the best day and time for getting the most out of your deployment.
- Schedule it on content or campaign calendar
This step will help you avoid any other potential conflicting campaigns or content pieces. Planning marketing efforts on a calendar is a must-have for respecting a clear schedule and conforming to your existing marketing strategy.
- Make sure it doesn’t conflict with other emails
Timing is an important aspect because you want to be consistent, not just when it comes to email, but to all other marketing channels. But the most critical part has to do with avoiding conflicts. Whenever that happens, following a checklist will ensure that you can take the appropriate measures.
- Optional: If there is a conflict, reschedule the email campaign
This is not something that will happen regularly, but it might occur at times, especially when you have a lot of communications going out. Just make sure you properly reschedule everything, by prioritizing time-sensitive information.
- Check for typos and grammar mistakes in the subject line
Save yourself the trouble of sending out the wrong copy by constantly checking the text included in the email body and email subject. Correct any typos or mistakes before moving forward.
- Update the preheader and check it for typos
The preheader needs to reflect the information contained in your current email, so make sure you update it and check for misspelling or typos.
- Update the footer, if necessary
You won’t have to redo the footer every time, but it is wise to check that the information there is up-to-date. Also, be sure to include the unsubscribe link here, to stay compliant with email regulations.
- Make sure the sending address is correct and appropriate for that campaign
The sender address needs to be a valid one and related to the business you are sending the email for. Double-check this before deployment.
- Always include the permission text (where you have the email from and why you have their permission to contact them)
According to email regulations, you have to specify why each subscriber is included in your campaign. Having a small text that clarifies in every newsletter will do the trick.
- Always include an unsubscribe link
As mentioned above, don’t forget to allow subscribers to opt-out from receiving emails by placing an unsubscribe or subscription preferences link in each email.
- Include Social Media icons, if necessary and make sure they are linked to correct social networks
Most businesses want to highlight their social media channels in their emails, so check that they are included, visible and functional. Each link must redirect recipients to the appropriate social media profile.
- What are people visiting our assets doing?
Have you made the message easily understandable and clear? Ensure that each email has a clear purpose.
- Check the body text for readability, grammar mistakes and typos
Pay close attention to the content of each email. Use short sentences, avoid misspelling and typos and keep everything short and simple.
- Make sure that any image is linked correctly and has added ALT text
Use links for any image you include in the newsletter. Also, consider how your email will look like is images are not rendered and include ALT text for each image to avoid issues.
- If the campaign includes background images, add a fallback color
This is similar to the previous rule. If you include background images, take into account the possibility that the image will not be displayed and set a fallback color for that part of the email. That way, the overlay text will be readable and won’t confuse subscribers.
- Add links to all appropriate headlines
Always check that all necessary links are updated, trackable (you can use Campaign URL builder for creating links) and functional.
- Add links to all CTA buttons
Whenever you include call to action buttons, make sure that you also include links for each CTA.
- If the campaign includes a personalization, add fallback text
Have a default version of the email for subscribers that are missing the information you are relying on for creating personalized content.
- If the campaign includes dynamic content, make sure to define the audiences correctly
When working with dynamic content for your email marketing campaigns, check closely that all settings work as planned and that all recipients in your email lists are accounted for.
- If necessary, make sure to include a suppression list to the campaign
Try to exclude previous bounces or spam complaints from current campaigns.
- If necessary, make sure to exclude segments of a list from the campaign
Double-check that you are including and/or excluding the appropriate lists/segments before scheduling your deployment.
- Make sure that the subscribers from the list have all the necessary fields
Prior to saving your campaign, verify that subscribers have all the fields/tags updated to be included in your campaign.
- Send yourself a test email and preview the email in your inbox on Desktop and Mobile
Always verify the look of your email on both desktop and mobile. Additionally, you can use a tool like Litmus Email Preview to check on the appearance on multiple devices and sizes.
- Notify all concerned team members with a link to the campaign
Allow all involved stakeholders to review and give feedback on your work by sharing a link to your current email.
- Schedule the campaign or send it immediately
Pay attention to your calendar when sending out or scheduling an email.
- Compare results against benchmarks and campaign goals
Review your campaign’s results and compare them with your KPIs and with benchmarks you have set out before deployment.
- Create a stakeholders report
Keep your stakeholders in the loop and inform them about the results of your campaigns on a regular basis.
Being in control of everything related to an email marketing campaign might sound like a complicated thing. But the checklist we have created for you will help you every step of the way. Here is what you need to verify:
- Timing: make sure you schedule the campaign and stick to that plan. If another campaign conflicts with your current deployment, reschedule the email campaign to avoid sending out multiple newsletters at the same time
- Content: check for any misspelling and typos, keep the text short, include CTAs and make sure that all links are updated
- Lists: use exclusion rules and double-check the list or segments you include. Learn to use suppression lists for excluding bounces or spam complaints
- Test: use manual or automating testing for checking how the email is rendered on both desktop and mobile devices
- Notify stakeholders: request approval from all concerned stakeholders before scheduling your newsletter
- Send: check the day and time before setting the deployment date
- Analytics: Review the results and, when necessary, create a report for stakeholders