Another classic from Mark...
Return of the email newsletter
If you look at the latest trends and use them to define the successful email of the future, you build a strangely familiar picture.
Is it time to rediscover the email newsletter approach that was so popular in the late 90s? This post says yes and points to a range of resources to help you relearn the basics of a winning e-newsletter.
Subject lines: a fresh look
Linda Bustos has a fascinating read on how your subject line could (or should) tie in with different buyer personas (personi?)
Should you segment recipients in terms of the decision-making approach they use?
Is small always beautiful?
Cynthia Edwards invites us to reject the notion that short is always better. She suggests some situations where long copy might work better in emails.
Discussions of email design often focus on rendering issues, but we'd do well to remember that design is about impressions and emotional connections, too. A point emphasized by Suzie Travers in this brief article on successful email design.
Those looking for more specific design advice might enjoy Vdot Media's 9 best practices or browse through Jon Aizlewood's series of ten posts with design tips (Feb 26th to March 10th in his blog's design category).
Finally, if ideas are proving elusive, try MarketingSherpa's 2008 Email Awards Gallery, full of details and screenshots from this year's winners.
Reputation and deliverability: where to begin
We're told deliverability is in our hands. But that doesn't make it any easier working out exactly how to get your emails through to recipient inboxes. This post tells you what you need to know to start off on the right path.
Tactics & strategy...
Adapt to the mobile email revolution
What should you be doing about the growth of mobile email? If you've no answer, try this outline of ways to cope. And take our poll: does mobile email worry you?
Email recognition: avoid the paper bag
All the benefits of email marketing amount to a big fat nothing if your email isn't recognised. This post covers the different factors that ensure this recognition, with links to detailed practical recommendations.
Email death by association
You build a reputation with your marketing emails. But other people inside and outside your business are building your email reputation, too. Who are they and why should you care? Find out here.
Building a list...
Can email love survive a 3-year gap?
What are the risks when you send an email out three years after the last one? Is there anything you can do to reduce those risks? This post and reader comments have some answers.
Stats, trends, surveys...
Open rate patterns: so what?
It matters whether someone opens your email. But it also matters when they do so. Why should such things interest us? Here are a few reasons.
Metrics from around the world
Big picture industry overviews and benchmarking statistics have long been the domain of the MarketingSherpa report. But the UK now has its own alternative.
The UK's e-consultancy just published their 2008 Email Marketing Industry Census. Its 50 pages cover marketer attitudes and practices, revealing budgetary, strategic and tactical priorities and deficits.
More campaign-oriented data comes from the newly-released MailerMailer Metrics Report covering the second half of 2007.
And those in Australia have their own benchmark metrics, courtesy of Vision 6, who also just released the numbers from H2, 2007.
A successful hunting trip
Fresh results from the big bag of case studies:
The ever-reliable Anna Billstrom subjects the travel industry to scrutiny. How do emails from Orbitz and Hotwire shape up when images are suppressed? Anna has the answers here, as well as suggestions on ensuring branding survives a loss of graphics.
Josh at SendLabs points out all the good things about a one-off campaign by Dunkin' Donuts to promote their "lattes and cappuccinos" day.
Melanie of Blue Sky Factory highlights the value of the subscriber preference center used by Sam's Wines and Spirits to ensure relevancy in the emails they send out.
(My only question is why the sign-up thank you page at the website doesn't take people straight to the preference center, rather than obliging them to click on a link in the welcome email?)
A couple of ESPs ran interviews with famous customers. I'm listing them because they're less self-serving and more insightful than your typical corporate case study:
MailChimp talk with Mozilla on emailing to techies, the role of their newsletter and the relationship to RSS feeds. And Campaign Monitor looks at how 37signals use email (with sample screenshots).