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Building a B2B email marketing campaign, 4 steps.

Follow these four simple steps to create effective B2B email marketing campaigns.

87% of B2B marketers say email is one of their top free organic distribution channels.

(Content Marketing Institute, 2020) 

The role of email marketing in your inbound strategy, when done effectively, is a major relationship-building tool. Email marketing campaigns are a series of emails that you can use to have real conversations with your current and potential customers. You can inspire engagement, nurture leads, and boost conversions with cleverly written goal-based email campaigns. 

Let’s get into the 4 steps it takes to build an effective B2B email marketing campaign. 

1. Establish Marketing Goals 

Email marketing campaigns are easy to get up and running, so long as you have clear and trackable goals. If you don’t know the goal of your email campaign, how do you expect your contacts to understand the purpose when it lands in their inbox? You and your organization will have to decide together what the goals of your email campaign are. Will it be... 

  • driving website traffic? 
  • increasing awareness? 
  • promoting a product or event? 
  • downloadable resources? 

Each of these examples will have a different set of processes, results, and success metrics. Many organizations implement SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timely) goals throughout their campaigns. Doing so creates well-executed, strategized email marketing campaigns that help you connect, engage and communicate with customers.  

In this step, it’s a good idea to pull together an estimated timeline for your email marketing campaign. It doesn't have to be locked in but organizing a sending-frequency guideline will prevent you from bombarding your contacts. Email is all about creating real connections, and nobody likes a one-sided conversation.  

Now that you’ve established goals for your email marketing campaigns, you need to understand and determine who your audience is. 

2. Target YOUR Buyer Personas 

Whether you have an email marketing provider (ESP) or robust CRM tool, you need to utilize contact data, lifecycle stages, and buyer personas to inform effective B2B email marketing campaigns. If you’re just getting started, talk with your sales team leaders to get a clear picture of your organization’s ideal customers. This will allow you to craft highly relevant, engaging content that resonates with and converts your targeted audiences.  

An email marketing provider (ESP) or comprehensive CRM tool can help you send data-driven emails. Their features allow you to easily track, and segment groups based on unique data points like: 

  • industry and job function 
  • pain points 
  • website behavior
  • personas
  • and so much more! 

Targeting the right people with the right message at the right time is fundamental to any successful email marketing campaign. Go ahead and give it a try! Take your email campaign goal and build the audience list you want to target. Stumped on how to start? Check out this blog from HubSpot where they share 30 different ways to break up your email database for better segmentation. 

3. Craft Value-Based Content 

You’ve got the foundation of your email marketing campaign. You know whom you’re emailing, why you’re emailing them, and you have SMART goals to achieve. With all of this in place, you can begin crafting high-performing email content.  

Start with the goal of your email and design it in a way that naturally, visually, and clearly communicates that goal to the reader. If the purpose of the email is to increase webinar sign-ups - don’t just ask for the sign-up. Show them how valuable and beneficial it will be to attend. An aesthetically pleasing, personalized email won’t mean much to the reader without digestible value-based content.  

Email layout and copy will change depending on your targeted audience and goals, but the focus remains the same. A well-designed email will share key information, engage your contacts, and effortlessly guide them towards a desired goal or action. It is highly recommended to utilize an ESP or CRM platform to create and send personalized B2B email marketing campaigns. Each has something different to offer although most have features for creation, optimization, personalization. Here are some of the major providers: 

Email nurture campaigns have proven to be an easy and effective way to create valuable customer-centric content. It’s an automated way to get relevant information to the contacts who need it most. Read further about making the most of your email nurture campaigns here. 

4. Analyzing & Adapting  

A comprehensive email marketing tool is something that B2B marketers simply can’t go without. Once you’ve completed the first three steps in building an effective email marketing campaign, you’ll need the ability to analyze and track email performance metrics. Monitoring the performance of your campaign will allow you to track trends and make critical pivots that improve your business’s bottom line. Through consistent analysis, your email marketing campaigns will become more effective, relevant, and valuable. 

A/B testing email is an essential part of understanding your email list. They’re always changing, and your emails need to change with them. Testing subject lines, email copy, CTA buttons, personalization, sending time & more will give insight into the types of email that perform well with your contacts. To build your test, follow the same steps as your campaign. Set a goal, know whom you’re sending to, create your test, and review.  

 

It’s important to analyze both individual and overall email metrics during this step. Individual KPIs include: 

  • Open rate 
    • The percentage of people who opened your email in their inbox. Did your subject line, sender name, preview text, and email address convey the value of content inside the email? 
  • Clickthrough rate 
    • The percentage of people who clicked on your CTAs. Have you tested to see what CTA buttons convert best with your audience? 
  • Unsubscribes/bounces/spam 
    • People who opt-out of your email marketing list. The email did not make it to the inbox or was signaled as spam. This is a negative metric that helps you monitor the health of your database. You can create email marketing suppression lists based on this data. 
  • Email deliverability
    • The percentage of emails that reach your desired recipients inbox. Keeping your database clean, acquiring consent, and setting email frequency expectations will help improve your email deliverability. 

The final part of this critical email-building step is tracking the channel’s overall performance and ROI. With regular testing and routine review, you’ll be able to gauge trends and see how email performs in parallel with the other marketing channels you’re using. 

There you have it. Building an email marketing campaign only takes 4 simple steps. Define the campaign goals, target a specific audience, craft value-based content, and measure measure measure!  

Your contacts want to have a conversation with someone relatable and intuitive, so craft your email marketing campaigns to be their invaluable resource.