Email Checklist: 13 Steps Before You Click Send!

We publish a heck of an email every week and our readership has exploded to over 4,700 subscribers! I wanted to share our tips and the checklist we go through each week before clicking that send button.

  • Is your content worthy, relevant, expected, and valuable to the subscriber? If it’s not – then don’t send it!
  • Once you send the email, there are typically only two elements that the person receiving it sees… the first is who the email is from. Is your from name consistent with each send? Is your email address recognizeable?
  • The second element is your subject line. Is it kick ass? Is it a subject line that draws their attention in and makes them want to open the email to read the great content within? If it’s not, folks will simply delete it at this point.
  • If you have images, are you utilizing alt tags to write alternative text that will drive the reader to download the images or be able to take action without images?
  • Is your layout easy to read on a mobile device? As much as 40% of all emails are read now on a mobile device and the number is continuing to grow each year. If you have a wide email with long trailing text, the reader is going to get frustrated moving back and forth. Hitting delete is much easier.
  • If you’re sending an email in HTML format, is there a nice link in the header for folks to click and view the email in a browser?
  • Did you check the email for spelling, grammar and avoiding terms that could get you filtered right into a Junk Email folder?
  • What do you want the reader to do after they read the email? Did you provide a great call-to-action for them to take that action?
  • Is there any additional information you can ask the reader for that will help you target and segment the content you’re sending out? Why don’t you ask for one piece of information in each email?
  • Did you test the email on a list with and without data to see how personalization strings and dynamic content displays? Did all the links work?
  • Do you immediately get to the point or languish through paragraphs of annoying marketing speak? People are busy – stop wasting their time!
  • Are you providing folks with a means of opting out of your email communications? If not – you really need to go with a great permission-based email provider.
  • Are you providing folks with a way of sharing the content either through a send to a friend button or social sharing buttons? And if they do share – does your landing page have a subscribe option on it?

I subscribe and unsubscribe from emails all the time. I always give a company the benefit of the doubt when I subscribe but as soon as I find myself deleting more and more emails from them because they’re of no value… I unsubscribe and I’m typically never going to do business again with the company. If you’re going to push a message to someone – be courteous and respectful of their time and publish a great email!

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