Matt Paulson presenting at Trendigital Summit.Last week I took the stage at the Trendigital Summit to share my knowledge on the top 10 ways to improve your email marketing program in just 10 minutes. If you missed out on this event, go ahead and watch the replay here or download the presentation handout. We continue to see great results at MarketBeat by utilizing these strategies, and that’s why I wanted to share them with all of you.

Here are the top 10 tips I have for you:

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1. Replace your opt-in forms with calls to action
Many people have become blind to entry popups, exit intent popups, and opt-in forms on websites. Don’t completely remove all popups but try incorporating calls-to-action within your text – add text links, buttons and native calls to action that can lead to email opt-in pages.

2. Think outside the opt-in form
Don’t rely solely on website opt-in forms, there are other ways to build your email subscriber lists. (Please note to ensure these people know they are opting into an email list.)

3. Cross-pollinate your marketing channels
Don’t work in marketing channel silos. Your email list should promote your social media accounts and your website; your website should promote your email list and your social media accounts; your social media accounts should promote your email list and your website.

4. Email more often
If you don’t email your customers, they will forget about you. At the very least you won’t be top of mind. Don’t think you need to
create a bunch of new content for email either. Repurpose social media posts, blog posts, or podcasts to reach this audience.

5. Send plain text emails
Plain text emails work because they look like real emails that one person would actually send to another person. MarketBeat internal testing showed that sending a plain text email with no template increased engagement by 20-40% depending on the campaign.

6. Send triggered email campaigns to maximize engagement and revenue
Triggered emails happen when someone opens an email, and you trigger another email to be sent. A great way to do this is to send a broader email to your full list, for those who open in, you may want to send a specific promotion or offer that will be most relevant to those subscribers. The great thing about triggered emails is they usually generate 60% open rates. (Note: you have to ensure your email platform has automation functionality enabled.)

7. Make sure your email verification DNS records validate
SPF, DKIM, and DMARC are three different technologies that verify an email is from who it claims to be. Normally your ESP (email service provider) will give you instructions on how to do this when you set up your account, but sometimes it doesn’t always work right. If your emails aren’t validating correctly, they will likely end up in the spam folder or not get delivered at all.

8. Run your emails through mail-tester
Go to to begin, this is a free service that will check your emails for problems that might prevent it from hitting a subscriber’s inbox. With it will provide clear action steps (like words to remove) to help ensure your emails end up in subscribers’ inboxes.

9. Stop emailing inactive subscribers
Most businesses will email everyone on our list because we want to get the maximum reach, but you limit your reach when you email people who haven’t opened your email in over a year because you’re sending negative engagement metrics to ESPs.

10. Ask for the sale
Your email list won’t make money for your business unless you use it as direct sales too.

Email Marketing DemystifiedI dive deeper into these strategies and include more of them in my recent Email Marketing book, Email Marketing Demystified.

You can grab your copy at