What Lucy Taught Me about Email Marketing

Until recently, I’ve always been on the client-side of email marketing, the one on the corporate end of the business who could ask for things and have other people do it. Now, I’m on the service-side of email and what a change it is! A whole new perspective has presented itself and I now see both sides of the email coin.

Luckily, because of my varied perspective, I can empathize with my clients and understand the corporate hoops they need to volley between. I get it, which makes the service-side easier in one respect as I know to anticipate certain constraints on timelines or potential hang ups with corporate legal, etc.  The flipside is that despite this empathy, I don’t get why it’s so hard for a corporate entity of any size to make a decision.

This conundrum brings me to the need for a new way of thinking. service providers have their issues, as all business entities do, but the thinking I’m referring to is specific to decision making in email marketing. The digital world changes fast and corporations need to be more nimble to accommodate those shifts in focus.

This is why I propose that everyone should just go a little Lucy, see past the goal and make it happen.  No, no – not the Peanuts Lucy, though she is bossy and gets things done. The one I’m thinking of is Lucy Ricardo.

What’s that, you say? She had hair-brained schemes that went awry half the time, you say? Yup, that’s right – they did. Lucy didn’t always think past her goals to the results… and often, consequences, she only saw making her goal happen. But, the important part – deciding to actuate her goal – Lucy got right:

  1. Lucy acknowledged her goal
  2. She planned her strategy, often utilizing her team’s best assets
  3. She implemented her campaign and achieved her goal

What she missed are a few key steps:

  1. Goal Development
  2. Strategic Planning
  3. Contingency Planning
  4. Implementation
  5. ROI Measurements & Analysis – don’t throw knives at the data to guess, use the data to provide educated insights and analysis.

Sure, this seems simple, right? Well, it takes work, like everything worth doing does. But, most importantly, it takes FOCUS and DETERMINATION.  Two characteristics that were undeniable with Lucy.  Get buy-in from leaders by demonstrating the Why’s, How’s and What’s of the campaign being proposed – DO YOUR HOMEWORK!  #5 and #2 work together to develop thorough Strategic Planning.  Corporate types and head-honchos like numbers – make it quantifiable and speak their language.

Furthermore, if you’re lucky enough to have vendor partners, such as a strategic agency or ESP – tap their knowledge and trusted resources. Pack a wallop when proposing new campaigns, ideas, tests and don’t give superiors a reason to doubt the sound thinking and planning behind it.  No one wants work to be like this:

Being innovative isn’t always about a new idea, it’s also about bringing old ideas to life in a new place or method. Chances are pretty good that if you’re at a company who doesn’t understand the full potential of an email program, most new email strategies will take you further; however, why stop there? If you’re starting from scratch, or nearly, build out a complete lifecycle plan for a Welcome Series, Re-Activation Series and Engagement Series. Develop a phased approach and impress your superiors with your forethought and big picture approach.

About the Author: Samantha Iodice is an Email Strategist & Best Practice Maven for a global marketing services agency. Samantha tripped into the online marketing world via direct mail and has never looked back. She works like mad to convert outdated thinking and strategy for her clients no matter how hard they attempt to resist her super-powers. Samantha is proud to be a bit nuts, a sci-fi fan and an all-around geek. Follow her on Twitter @e_Maven or drop a line at samantha.iodice@gmail.com

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