Things you should know before outsourcing your email marketing!
There are things you should know before before outsourcing your email marketing to someone outside of your company. I’ve learned this first hand, through the company I’m currently working at. At first the company was using Mad Mimi, an email service provider, for those with the most basic email marketing needs. This service doesn’t provide you with any automations or drip campaigns, however, it was cheap and if the only thing you need is to send blast campaigns, it’s the most cost-effective option. So, after using it for just a few weeks I kept pushing the CEO to stop paying for Mad MIMI and move to a better service. They were reluctant to make the change for a few months.
Who can play them? B2B wholesalers don’t often utilize marketing as their margins are slim. Still, I pushed and pushed because as a die-hard marketer, I know the undustry of wholesale itself is changing. All kinds of businesses are becoming more focused on their marketing efforts. Why? Because it brings in bank, if done RIGHT!
Finally, after a few months the CEO decided to outsource an email marketing company based in Mexico. They only asked $5,000 in set-up fees and 5% of email attributed sales. This was reasonable, until I noticed how poorly their service was! I provided them with our brand colors, fonts, and target audience data so they could create more compelling and relevant emails based off of our customer base. Not only did they use our brand colors but they also neglected to use our fonts. As a result, we witnessed emails being sent to thousands of subscribers and they looked dreadful. They looked like emails from the time emails first came out.
To sum it up they put out work that was off-brand, looked tacky, and drove our emails to the spam inbox with poorly written subject lines and copy. And they were only able to get $3,000 in sales in 2 months. The best part was when I told them that Klaviyo sent me an email regarding poor deliverability, they claimed “It seems the issue is that you’re emails are going to the SPAM folder. It was going there before we started.”
I managed our email marketing prior to their hire (their claims were false), and I was openly against the decision to hire them from the start. So, after a brief discussion with the CEO they were gone and I took over our email marketing once again, but now I using Klaviyo — a much better Email Marketing Platform!
Within the first month I quadrupled their measley $3000 in sales, and the month after I doubled my previous month. So now, we’re where we want to be with our email marketing contributing 20% of sales revenue every month. This should be the same for you. Now that you’ve heard my story of how things can go wrong; here’s how you can make sure things can go right for you.
Don’t Outsource your email marketing
That’s right, my first tip to you is you don’t necessarily need to outsource your email marketing. No one outside of your business will understand your customers as well as the people already working there. You may not know it, but one of your employees may be your savior when it comes to your company’s email marketing. There are a ton of drag and drop email solutions out there (Klaviyo being my favorite so far).
What you should ask
However, if you absolutely need to oursource your email marketing here are the questions you should be asking your potential contractors.
1) Ask for samples. ALWAYS.
This one is an absolute must. You want to get an idea of what kind of work these people are pushing out to the public. You want to know if it fits your standards. You need to see an email that looks like something you’d like to put out there with your company’s name on it. If they can’t provide a hard sample of something they’ve published due to privacy ask them to create one for you. That’s right. Provide them with your brand guide, and give them a make believe campaign to create an email for. Like what you see? Great! you’re ready for the next questions.
2) Set a goal. Get a Strategy.
You need all of this. What’s there goal with working with your company? It’s hard to ask for numbers since they don’t know until they actually get in their and start digging around, creating, and campaigning. However, based off their previous work they should have benchmarks that they aim for in terms of open rates, CTR, and engagement. Ask about their strategy. How do they plan to onboard your current subscribers to the new emails they’ll be receiving? What automations and drip campaigns do they plan on utilizing in order to capture the most sales and/or affinity?If they plan on setting up drip campaigns you should know how many drip campaigns, and the purpose of each one.
3) Know what they need from you and your team.
Your contractor is going to need a lot of things from you. Branding guidelines, logos, and image assets. Ask your contractor what other things they might need from you to get started. This way once the ball is rolling, the ball really rolling. It could really be a distraction and result in poor ROI is your contractor is constantly delaying email send because they don’t have the right assets they need to send the best email they can.
4) Know who will be handling your account
This is a big one. Smaller businesses may not always have an account manager. Still, that shouldn’t affect you. There should be someone who is ready to take your calls and schedule meetings to plan for holiday campaigns, product promotions, etc. Since the two of you will be discussing performance amongst other things be sure their a good fit for your business.
5) Get Opinions.
Have one of your employees sit in on you meetings with you. Get their ideas and feelings about the potential contractor. Email marketing is exciting and your employees will feel a sense of pride when they know their employer does things the right way. Someone close to marketing can give you some valid insights on relavent decisions.
After skimming through this you should know what to look for when opting to outsource your email marketing. In fact, you can use the same questions here and apply them to most outsourced projects.
Random Fact: Our contractor was a referral from the same team we do our Google Ads with. We still work with our Google Ads contractor, because they are amazing at what they do. This just goes to show, you should always ask the right questions and get the right answers no matter where your referral came from!
Stay Up to Date