I believe that everyone in the email marketing industry certainly agrees on one thing: creating email templates is a time-consuming and intricate task. Can we make it go faster and easier? Experts say outsourcing email marketing can shorten the production cycle, save time for your in-house resources, and control email marketing pricing and overall management costs. This is a considerable set of benefits when we are discussing an outreach channel with 4400% ROI. Outsourcing your email campaigns can also produce higher outcomes than in-house teams, according to research.
While it looks extremely appealing on the face value, outsourcing email marketing operations is easier said than done. You need to be careful when choosing the email marketing agency as everything depends on how well they understand your requirements and the subsequent execution. Hence, I came up with a quick and simple list of five factors that you should keep in mind when considering to outsource your email marketing efforts:
Understanding The Basics Of Email Marketing To Outsource Better
Email marketing uses email as a platform to advertise a company’s products and services while also incentivizing client loyalty and engagement. Email marketing is used for informing people on your email list about new products, promotions, and other services. You can also use it to educate your audience about your brand’s worth or keep them engaged in between transactions. Thus, it is a holistic, process-driven communication channel with a two-way exchange of insights and actions. Your email marketing agency should understand all the touchpoints and the dynamics to provide you with a tailored solution.
What To Inquire About When Outsourcing Email Marketing
If you really must outsource your email marketing, here are some quintessential factors to consider!
#1 Request samples. ALWAYS.
A must-have item. You need to understand the type of work these folks promote to the general public. You want to see if it meets your requirements. You must see an email that appears to be something you would want to send out with your company’s name on it. This includes the design language, interactive features, and analytics since email marketing requires you to have a gigantic skill set. If you’re good with their samples, you can go on to give them your brand guide and a fictitious campaign for which they must design a couple of emails. Like what you’ve seen so far? Great! You’re all set to move to the next round of email-related aspects.
#2 Have A Goal For Your Business
While you always have a set of email marketing targets in mind before you think of outsourcing, the agencies you approach will have their specialties. Based on what they are offering, you should develop a refined set of goals that you want to achieve when working with them.
It’s difficult to ask for figures because they don’t know until they go in there and start exploring, developing, and campaigning. However, they should set standards for open rates, click-through rates, and engagement based on their previous work. Inquire about their approach. What kind of automation tools and drip marketing approach will they plan to use to get the greatest sales and/or affinity? The answers may not give you a definitive idea. Instead, this will give you an insight into how your work will be handled and what you can expect.
#3 Recognize What They Require Of You And Your Team
Your agency will want a number of details from you – logos, branding guidelines, and image assets. Inquire if they need any additional brand-related materials to get started, especially during the sample acquisition process. This ensures that once the ball starts rolling, it stays rolling. You can probe different media agencies during this phase but understand that you should not deal with too many of them. This will only clutter your decision-making process while adding no value to your business. Depending on your requirements, you are likely to find three or four agencies that conform to your standards at most.
#4 Determine Who Will Be In Charge Of Communications On Both Sides
When outsourcing email marketing, it is necessary to appoint a PIC (person in charge of communications) as you have to focus on ongoing efforts within your organization apart from the outsourcing process. You should also consider the fact that it is in your best interest to continue with the same PIC once the hiring process is over. On the agency end, generally, the client servicing managers are allocated for each client to smoothen communications. But you should also interview the email developers, QA engineers, and the team leads that will work on your project. This will give you much-needed clarity on how the operations will appear once you are onboarded.
#5 Collect Feedback From Your Stakeholders
Allow one of your staff to accompany you to meetings. Find out what they think and feel about the possible contractor. You should not let them feel like they are left out or that the agency is a threat to their job security. Instead, make them feel that they are an important link in the value chain and that their role is being upgraded into a senior profile that looks after the communication and results.
Email marketing is thought to be more personal than other forms of digital marketing. Your subscribers are putting their trust in your company when they provide their email addresses. They expect you to send them emails that are relevant to their problems or requirements relating to their subjects since they trust your brand. Having your team on the same page as your management and a composed consideration of the above-mentioned aspects will surely help you control your email marketing pricing, quality, metrics, and beyond.
Author: Kevin George is the head of marketing at Email Uplers, that specializes in crafting Professional Email Templates, PSD to Email conversion, and Mailchimp Templates. Kevin loves gadgets, bikes & jazz, and he breathes email marketing. He enjoys sharing his insights and thoughts on email marketing best practices on email marketing blog.