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Measuring and Monitoring Email Campaign and List Growth Metrics

 


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The use of email in sales and marketing efforts is now a given. It's clear to most marketers that the impact of email is increasing-despite the also increasing problem of deliverability. What isn't clear, however, is what that impact actually is to your bottom line. Measuring and monitoring email campaign return on investment (ROI) and list growth metrics is still an ad hoc process. . . at best.

YET, keeping your email campaigns producing for you heavily relies on knowing and understanding your email metrics. Tweaks can be made quickly when you understand what each metric is and what it indicates about your email format, subscription process, email content, frequency, landing page design, and list size and segmentation.

Whether your email purpose is lead generation or revenue generation, here are the 6 metrics that you should be tracking (and what they mean):

  • List Size: BENCHMARK-4-6% growth
    The number of email addresses you send emails to. What you want to track here is your list growth and attrition month over month. Are you adding more email addresses each month than you lose through unsubscribes and hard bounces? Remember. . . open and click through rates decrease as list size increases so when benchmarking use rates from similar size lists. This fact demonstrates the importance of segmenting your lists. Also, if list growth is off, you may want to examine your sign-up opportunities. Are you collecting e-mails at every reasonable point of influence? Do you have an e-mail capture method on every page of your site?
  • Hard Bounces: BENCHMARK-2-5%
    The number of email addresses not delivered due to a bounce back from the target server. This could be due to invalid email addresses either from email changes or typos in the email address itself. Monitoring your hard bounces, and removing them, is critical to both deliverability of your overall list (ISP's monitor the number of hard bounces your list has hitting their servers and may block you for high volumes), as well as the monitoring of your list growth percentages.
  • Unsubscribes: BENCHMARK: .25-.5%
    The number of email addresses who request removal from your list. Your unsubscribe rate is another indicator of interest in your email content. Still, if your unsubscribe rate increases drastically, your email frequency may be too high.
  • Open Rate: BENCHMARK: 10-30%
    The total number of clicks each email receives, based on the total number of emails sent. Click through rate is a good indicator of interest in your content. A better metric for content quality is the click-to-open rate, which is the total number of clicks, based on the total emails opened. A low click-to-open rate or steadily declining click-to-open rate means an overhaul on your content should be considered. Also, low conversion rates with high click through rates might tell you that the challenge is in your choice of landing page or some disconnect between the offer in the e-mail and the actual offer on your website or landing page.
  • Click Through Rate: BENCHMARK: 2-6%
    The total number of clicks each email receives, based on the total number of emails sent. Click through rate is a good indicator of interest in your content. But, a better metric for content quality is the click-to-open rate, which is the total number of clicks, based on the total emails opened. A low click-to-open rate or steadily declining click-to-open rate means an overhaul on your content should be considered. Also, low conversion rates with high click through rates might tell you that the challenge is in your choice of landing page or some disconnect between the offer in the e-mail and the actual offer on your website or landing page.
  • Conversion Rate: BENCHMARK: <4%
    Conversion rate is the number of click throughs that either ordered or acted upon the “offer" such as downloads, demo requests, etc. Conversion rates dropping but bounces and unsubscribes staying low-could be list decay or subscribers waiting for a strong discount or offer. Segmenting these e-mail addresses and sending an aggressive offer to just those who have clicked through in the past may boost return.

Saying you should measure these items and DOING it are two very different things. However, it is worth the effort to track your campaign ROI and email list growth. . . you just may be surprised at the numbers!

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