Many Email Marketers Not Tracking Campaigns

    April 7, 2009
    Chris Crum

A recent study from eROI shows that 18% of email marketers in the US are not tracking their campaigns. The research comes from a survey of over 500 email marketers with the intention of gaining insight into trends and use of analytics in email.

Not Tracking Campaigns - eROI

"The savvy email marketer knows that developing a truly targeted email campaign goes beyond simply segmenting by demographic and focuses on behavioral segmentation, which enables delivery of the most relevant, targeted messages to your recipients," says eROI.

The agency lists the following as metrics that should be paid attention to by email marketers:

– Delivery rate
– Open rate
– Click-Through rate
– Unsubscribe rate
– Conversion rate

Delivery rate is the total number of messages that bounce over the ones that are delivered. Spam filters and reputation can seriously effect this, eROI notes. Bounced messages are also not always reported, so this can present a challenge in acquiring accurate data.

To improve your deliverability, you can request that users white list your email address and frequently scrub your lists and look into spam complaints.

Delivery is the easy part though compared to getting your messages opened. "Emails are encoded with a tracking pixel. So when a recipient opens an email, the tracking pixel is called from the server, and an "open" is registered," explains eROI. This is ineffective, however, if images are blocked.

Open rates can be improved via the from line and the subject line. Make sure recipients know who they’re getting the message from, and use subjects that inspire enough interest to make people want to open it.

Click-through rate is the number of unique clicks in an email divided by the total number of delivered emails. "Links are tracked the same by default in email marketing platforms," says eROI. "An ESP converts the destination link into a "trackable link" where the URL is redirected through the ESP’s server and recorded."

Getting a better click-through rate is something all email marketers strive for. eROI suggests simple, direct, and targeted content that is relevant and personalized toward the recipient. They recommend addressing the recipients by name. Clear and prominent calls to action are also encouraged.

Your unsubscribe rate is the number of unsubscribes divided by the number of delivered messages. To improve this, keep your content relevant to the audience, because if unsubs go up, there is a good chance it is because the content is not keeping their interest.

"Allow recipients to select the content they will be receiving," says eROI. "This can include frequency of emails and updates, and choices of topics or product offerings."

Finally, conversions, which can be sales, downloads, views, etc., are divided by the number of delivered messages to come up with conversion rate. Again, relevancy and calls to action are the biggest factors in this metric, which is really the most important one.

eROI’s report is somewhat eye-opening and very informative. If you are looking to improve your email marketing campaigns, it’s worth a look (it’s free to download).

Clearly there are many people engaging in email marketing blindly. These people are most likely getting themselves frustrated with a lack of results. It is only once metrics are tracked that action can be taken to make improvements.