9 B2B Email Marketing Mistakes to Avoid in 2023

b2b email marketing mistakes to avoid

Is B2B email marketing still relevant in 2023? 

Absolutely—as long as you do it right. 

In this post, we’ll go deep into what “doing it right” means—and doesn’t mean. Here’s an in-depth look at nine email marketing mistakes you don’t want to make in 2023

But first: Why does B2B email marketing matter in 2023?

Over the last few years, we’ve entered a new era in marketing. But while people scramble to hire the next big influencer or invest in virtual ads (which are still excellent options), ensure you don’t forget the importance of email marketing for your business. 

Consider this: According to HubSpot, email generates $38 for every $1 spent. That’s a 3,800% ROI! And McKinsey reports email marketing is 40 times more effective at acquiring new customers than Facebook and Twitter combined. If that’s not enough to convince you, here are a few more email marketing stats:

  • Using segmented campaigns can increase your revenue by up to 760%. 
  • 87% of B2B marketers name email as their top free organic distribution channel. 
  • This last year, nearly 59% of global website traffic was generated from mobile devices (excluding tablets).

And that’s just a small example of what email marketing is doing for B2B brands.

B2B Email Marketing Mistakes to Avoid:

1. Forget to Welcome Subscribers

Getting a subscriber is tough work, so why wouldn’t you thank them for requesting your newsletter? 

Source: Omnisend

First off, it’s just polite to send a thank you (Take a cue from Emily Post.), but it’s also good business. These potential customers already went through the trouble of finding your site and then signed up to get emails from your brand! Not to mention, purpose-driven welcome emails “generate 4x more opens and 5x more clicks,” according to Dispatch.

Make them count by providing not only a “thanks for showing up” salutation but by following up with added value. That could be a promo code or a special offer. Or you could use the welcome email to collect more information. Bottom line: Skipping the welcome email is a huge miss in marketing.

2. Send Too Many Emails

This is probably consumers’ biggest pet peeve when it comes to B2B email marketing and one that should be avoided at all costs. According to Campaign Monitor, 121 business emails are sent and received each day. That’s a lot of traffic to disrupt. 

So one might think the more emails, the merrier, right? Wrong.

A YouGov study found that 75% of consumers say they resent a brand that sends too many emails, according to Chief Marketer. And resentment does not increase sales. You don’t want people to associate annoyance with your brand. So spare them the feeling by strategically delivering your promotions to a healthy timeline, say once a week. 

Doing this will keep your subscriber list strong and improve loyalty rather than repel potential customers.

3. Omitting a Call to Action

Hopefully, most marketers understand that including a CTA is the bedrock of a successful B2B email marketing campaign. But even more important is to keep that CTA clear and concise so that a subscriber has no trouble understanding the message. 

Fail at clearly stating your CTA and in the midst of scrolling their inbox, a subscriber is likely to delete.

Roughly 60% of all internet searches happen on mobile. That’s a big opportunity for marketers to meet customers on the go. But if your message is difficult to understand, it’s likely to be deleted within three seconds, Campaign Monitor says. 

You read that right—three seconds. No pressure! 

So how can you include a great call to action? 

A few examples:

  • Save today
  • Buy now
  • Shop now for 50% off
  • Claim your coupon
  • Free gift with purchase
  • Act now 
  • Save today
  • Deals just for you 

4. Going overboard with CTAs

Much like bombarding an inbox with too many emails is ill-advised, so is including too many CTAs. 

Remember, once a subscriber opens an email, you have 3 seconds to persuade them to act. Give them too many CTAs, and you’re liable to confuse the reader or, worse, frustrate them. 

Overwhelming the subscriber is not the goal. If you want to improve conversion rates, make sure your B2B marketing emails make it easy for a subscriber to act and give each email its own goal.

For instance, say you want to roll out a promo and invite subscribers to an event. Putting these two CTAs in the same email could result in customers doing neither. They should be sent as separate messages with individual CTAs—one asking subscribers to use a promo code, the other inviting them to RSVP for the event.

5. Use poor design.

Sounds simple right? But you’d be surprised how many email campaigns fail because the email template is poorly designed. 

Here are some key design elements to avoid: 

  • Using more than one font: Too many fonts look messy and confusing. A good design is clean and crisp with one consistent font throughout.
  • Inconsistent font size: Rather than mixing up font size with different sizes, use H2s and H3s to emphasize topics.
  • Low-resolution images: Using images is a great way to get a reader’s attention, but they’ll fail miserably if their resolution is too low. Check and test your image size before sending.
  • Too many images in one email: Equally bad practice is to put too many images in one email. To start, this can push CTAs below the fold or too low in the email, forcing the subscriber to scroll. This can be dangerous because it wastes valuable attention span time when a subscriber may lose interest and leave the email altogether. 
  • Broken links: Woe is the marketer who fails to check links before sending an email newsletter. More often than not, a failure to test a link will result in having to send a mass apology email (not a good look) explaining the error and providing the corrected link. 
  • Poor color palette choices: Believe it or not, color plays a big role in email marketing. Just look at the brand logo colors. For instance, the eye-catching red that signifies Netflix defines its brand identity. Without even reading the email, a color can be a subtle indicator of who the email is from and might persuade a subscriber to open it. 

6. Skip segmenting subscribers.

No two subscribers are the same. 

Having a huge list of subscribers is great, but not separating them into different groups is a missed opportunity. How so?

Well, does a 50-year-old male subscriber want a weekly email about women’s purse sales? Maybe, but likely not. Or how about a 22-year-old woman in California? Does she want to get a weekly email about in-store deals only happening on the East Coast? Nope.

Use the data you’ve collected to segment your audience. This could be by:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Location
  • Browsing history
  • Purchase history
  • Birthday

You can segment by whatever category or demographic best suits your business. The more you dig into the data, the more insights you’ll discover about your subscriber list that you can then use to improve your B2B email marketing campaign. In an era where Millennials and Gen X are demanding more personalization, failing to do so is a big missed opportunity. 

7. Don’t optimize for mobile.

As we mentioned before, nearly half of all searches happen on mobile. So if your emails aren’t opening properly or have a wonky resolution on mobile, you’ll lose subscribers quickly. 

Test, edit, and test again to ensure your email campaign is optimized for mobile.

8. Fail to proofread.

Do you know what B2B company leaders don’t like to see? Sloppy copy. 

This is why it’s so important that one person not work in a vacuum on a brand’s email newsletter. Not only should multiple people read it before it’s sent out, but it should also be checked for the following:

  • Spelling
  • Tone
  • Professionalism
  • Ease of understanding

9. Don’t perform an A/B test

Another way to ensure an email is successful is to deploy an A/B test. Keep the emails the same except for one item you want to test. This could be the CTA button or the subject line. Send them both out and see which one got more clicks to determine the best approach.

Ready to optimize your email marketing in 2023? Contact the Zen team today. 


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