Creating perfect emails and getting them delivered error-free takes a lot of work. Most spend weeks producing an email, and the bigger the team, the longer the production cycle. So, what goes into getting an email ready to send? What we call the “pre” pillar of your email marketing program includes:
- Email conception and planning
- Graphics + design
- Coding and development
- Data logic and setting up in an ESP
- Reviews and approvals
- Testing and troubleshooting
- “Hitting” send
If you’ve worked on an email team with no real pre-send process, you know just how maddening it can be. Scattered feedback, copying and pasting, and last-minute changes lead to frustration and mistakes. A great pre-send process, though, makes your job easier. Having an organized and automated workflow keeps your mind clear and errors to a minimum.
What a strong pre-send process can do for you
Curb content chaos
Keeping up a content plan has plenty of perks for your performance and your sanity. Content planning also helps you identify gaps in your strategy and quickly brings new team members up to speed. 58% of marketers maintain a content calendar year-round, which prevents the holidays from sneaking up on you.
Take the guesswork out of design
Email rendering is complex, and accessibility is essential. Brand guidelines and templates prevent your designers from having to reinvent the wheel every time. Also, who doesn’t want to send out consistently beautiful emails? Marketers who describe their email programs as successful are 27% more likely than less successful programs to have brand guidelines.
Reduce manual steps
Repetitive tasks like copying and pasting from your code editor to your ESP is dull work that increases the chance of human error. Using integrations that connect your coding and testing solutions with your ESP or other tools your team relies on saves valuable time.
Set the stage for insights
A/B testing connects your pre-send work to your post-send insights. 37% of marketers never test their broadcast and segmented emails, and even less A/B test transactional emails. By freeing up time in other areas of your production workflow, you can make space for experiments that will generate valuable insights. Brands that always include an A/B test in their emails generate an ROI of 48:1, compared to an ROI of 35:1 for those who never A/B test their emails.
Automate pre-send testing
Quality assurance is a non-negotiable for a reliable email program. Luckily, there are ways to automate testing to catch more issues with less effort. Brands that invest the time in extensive pre-send testing see a 26% increase in ROI.
Streamline the feedback process
The review and edit process can either be a valuable time to put finishing touches on an email, or a mess of scattered feedback and missed mistakes. Consolidating all input within a centralized, collaborative tool streamlines edits so that you can get more emails out the door.
This is just a glimpse into what focus on the pre-send process can help your team achieve. Get more tips, resources, and ways to make your pre-send process stronger in part 1 of our ebook, The 3 Pillars of a Successful Email Marketing Program: Set Your Email Campaigns Up for Success.