Sending out an email campaign can be one of the most effective ways to reach potential customers and generate interest in the products and services you provide. Email campaigns are also a great way to build customer loyalty and bring in more business, as long as they’re executed correctly. If you launched your first campaign and didn’t get the results you wanted, there are several ways you can re-haul your email campaigns to effectively drive new business.

If you had a less-than-successful email campaign or you were disappointed by the results, don’t get discouraged. Most of the time, there are simple solutions to your email marketing woes, and you’ll start noticing major improvements once you refocus your email marketing efforts.  Although email campaigns can be sent out quickly, they will most likely take some time when it comes to planning and putting together an email creative. Whether you’re re-thinking your existing email campaign strategies or want to avoid common email marketing pitfalls the first time around, here are some common email campaign problems and solutions to steer you in the right direction.

1)  Your emails weren’t opened.

Getting your email recipients to open your email is the first and most important step when it comes to engagement with your emails. However, your recipients won’t do this if you don’t have an engaging or informative subject line. The subject line might not seem like an important thing to focus on, but it’s the first thing your recipients will see. If they aren’t intrigued by it, they will delete your email without reading it.

In order to create a more effective subject line, keep it short and sweet. A short subject line will quickly get the message of your email across without overselling. Try to entice your readers to open your email by hinting at the interesting content inside. If you’re stuck, pay attention to hot topics, get inspired by other email marketing campaigns in your inbox, and get creative. Don’t be afraid to play around with different ideas. Always ensure that your subject lines are straight-forward and honest; deceiving subject lines usually generate ill-will towards your brand.

2)  Recipients aren’t clicking through.

If people are opening your emails, but they’re not clicking through to your website, or viewing your offers, there might be a problem with your content, or your recipients are unclear about what to do next. You need to make sure you have an effective and prominently placed call-to-action. Explaining clearly what your customers need to do to redeem offers and/or promotions will lead them to the right place and avoid confusion. Make sure people can easily access your links, so that you will get more click-throughs, and lead potential customers in the right direction.

In regards to content, get straight to the point. Tell your recipients right away about your offers or promotions and don’t over-complicate. Most people don’t have time to read long emails, or they just don’t want to. Your content also needs to be interesting and relevant, so your potential customers are intrigued by it. Last but not least, make sure you proofread the content of your email. Simple grammar mistakes could turn off customers and make them less interested in your products and services.

Your email creative is also extremely important when it comes to driving engagement, and your creative will also offer many variables you can experiment with.  A beautifully designed creative will draw people in and generate more interest in your company’s products or services. Striking a good balance between text and images will ensure that your email campaigns are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Think about your color scheme; is it consistent with your brand, or tied in some way to the offer you’re sending recipients? Do you actually have a color scheme, or did you throw in colors randomly? Another good aspect to think about is the layout. Does your email’s layout present information in a logical manner? If you are using a multi-column layout, is it displaying correctly across different email clients and mobile devices? These are all small but important details that can vastly affect your readers’ experience with your email campaign, so don’t let them slide.

3) You’re experiencing high unsubscribe rates and spam complaints.

If people are unsubscribing from your emails in high numbers or marking your emails as spam, this can be an indication that you’re not reaching your desired audience, or you’re not thinking about their needs. This could be the result of not having a properly-targeted; it could also mean that the content in your emails is no longer relevant to your existing email list.

If you feel like your email campaigns aren’t reaching the right people, it might be in your best interest to leave your list targeting up to the experts. Purchasing or renting an email list from a professional data company will ensure that you have the right target audience and you’re not wasting your time with people who aren’t interested in your products or services. If you contact a data company, your sales representative should work with you to find the right list for your company and they should be able to help you narrow down your target demographic and recommend lists based on the products and/or services your company focuses on.

If you think your email content is not relevant to your current list of subscribers, you might need to refocus your content. Try to figure out why your content is no longer relevant to your subscribers, and what they really want from your company. Oftentimes, what you want to focus on and what your customers want to focus on are not the same thing. Always make sure you’re prioritizing the needs of your target audience; otherwise, your content will not be relevant to them, and your spam complaints and unsubscribes may skyrocket as a result.

4) You didn’t send out your emails consistently.

A successful email campaign is the result of frequent and consistent emails. The more people see your message and your offers, the more likely they will be to purchase from you. In order to do this, your emails need to be sent out more than once, and above all, you need to maintain consistency. Sending out emails at completely random times can cause people to get confused about the purpose of your email, so set a consistent schedule and stick to it. Make sure your emails are also branded consistently, and that you use the same sender name. If you don’t stay consistent, your recipients may not recognize you or your company out of context, and may think your email campaign is spam instead.

However, sending out your emails too often might cause people to unsubscribe. Don’t go crazy and send out your email twice a day. Give your recipients enough time to process the email and your offers, and then give them a gentle reminder of your promotion.

5)  You’re sending out emails without testing them.

A/B testing, or split testing, will help you figure out which email strategies are engaging your recipients the most. In order to do this, you will have to create two different versions of the same email and send each one to a portion of your email list. With A/B testing you can test two different subject lines, color schemes, different email content, or pretty much any other variable, so you can see which content gets the most engagement. Keep in mind that you should test only one variable at a time, or else you won’t be able to track what causes the difference in engagement. A/B testing will help you refocus your email campaign and send out the best email to your remaining subscribers; otherwise, you can simply apply the lessons you’ve learned in future email campaigns.

Solving these common email campaign problems can help elevate your marketing campaign to a higher level of success. Taking the time to do a bit more planning and carefully evaluating how you want your email campaign to run can make all the difference. If you do your best to address these potential issues before your next email campaign, you’ll be bringing in more business in no time.