In some ways, email marketing is like farming. You can’t just go along from day to day assuming everything will stay the same. If you’re a farmer, you’re dependent on the weather and you absolutely have to know what’s coming so you can adjust. You might know about what to expect, like hot weather in the summer and cold weather in the winter, but on a day-to-day basis, you can get big, costly surprises so you must be paying attention on a regular basis. You might have such wet weather, you can’t put plant when you normally would because the ground is so wet. You might have a series of warm spring days, then suddenly face a crop-killing frost one morning. The list of things that you must pay attention too, things that can change at a moment’s notice, can be overwhelming for a farmer.
So to for the email marketer. Email marketing can be as unpredictable as the weather if you’re not prepared and don’t keep up with email marketing current events.
Companies can be chugging along just fine—planting, weeding, harvesting—then all of a sudden find out they are blacklisted. That’s the farmer’s equivalent of a hailstorm on acres of seedlings.
Email marketers have an advantage over farmers: We can react, adjust and continue doing what we do without a complete crop failure. But what we have in common with farmers is the need to pay attention. Farmers have to watch the sky and the weather forecast. Email marketers have to watch for case studies, announcements and more about industry changes that will affect them.
That’s what email marketing best practices are all about. They put you in the best possible place so when the equivalent of inclement weather hits, you’re better prepared to weather the storm. You can’t avoid the storm, whether that storm is ISP changes, new regulations or Gmail’s Priority Inbox. But you can get through it better because you’re in a better position already, doing more right than wrong.
And since staying current is one of the email marketing best practices, you shouldn’t be caught by surprise. You should know what’s coming…meaning perhaps you can avoid the storm after all.
Whether you’re raising thousands of acres of wheat or emailing a list of thousands of names, you face adversity. But while the farmer is in many ways at the mercy of the weather, email marketing best practices will often keep you warm and dry…and your email marketing ROI growing.