With 2018 well under way, the astute marketer will be looking at the calendar and working out what their year will entail.  What offers will they create?  When will they create them? When a new year begins, many of us are considering how we are going to improve upon our sales from the previous year.

We think – as you’d perhaps guess – that it should all start with your email marketing strategy.

Depending on how successful this medium has been for you this year, you’ll either be revving to go again or wondering what you need to do to raise engagement levels and start seeing some positive subscriber metrics.

The good news is there’s just four things you need to do to make 2018 a successful year for email marketing, and we’d like to share them with you today:

1. Write a mission statement

Mission statements are far too often well-meaning pieces of paper that are written during the birth of a business and subsequently left to gather dust.

Your email marketing mission statement should be the opposite. It should be a working document that is always by your side and which informs each and every campaign.

What do you want to do with email during 2018? Nurture new leads? Retain customers? Spread thought leadership? Generate more revenue? Whichever one of those rings true, expand on your desire in your mission statement and allow everyone to contribute.

2. Set objectives you can meet

Otherwise known as ‘SMART’ (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely) objectives, these are goals that your business can realistically achieve via email marketing.

With your mission statement in hand, think about what it is you need your subscribers to do in order to meet its goals.

Don’t get lost in metrics and numbers at this stage, just measurable objectives that you can map out across the year.

3. Create a content plan

Surprisingly, this is often one of the most common things marketers forget to create when working on their email marketing strategy.

For email to work effectively, it needs content, both in the form of the messages themselves and the supporting landing pages.

Those landing pages might be blogs, ebook downloads or product pages, but whatever they are, they need planning and aligning with your email marketing mission statement.

Map it all out on a white board and then start planning out the content month-by-month. Before you know it, you’ll have an exciting road ahead for the stuff you’ll be sending out via email.

4. Get buy-in (from everyone)

The best email marketing strategies in the world aren’t of much use if they don’t achieve buy-in company wide.

Everyone from the members of the board to the people on ground level will need visibility of the strategy and to feel they’re a part of it. Hold an open forum where people can comment on and critique the plan, and be ready to make changes if someone spots a problem.

Once you have buy-in, putting the strategy into action will be far more enjoyable (and successful).

Wrap up

2018 looks set to be another stellar year for email marketing, and if you follow our tips above, you’ll join countless businesses that continue to use one of the web’s oldest and most trusted forms of communication to their advantage.