If You’re Not Sending Emails This Way You’re Losing A Lot Of Money

A growing proportion of EDMs are being opened on mobile devices. However, improperly targeted and formatted content will often result in churn — readers lose interest quickly if they cannot find useful and actionable information. This article shares some best practices in optimizing email messaging with a mobile audience in mind.


Mobile is at an uptick, and the trend seems to have no end. According to figures from Emailmonday, mobile email accounts for up to 70% of email opens, depending on target audience – a figure updated as of September 2015. Other statistics also cite that more emails are read on mobile devices than desktop.

Perhaps the more important usage statistic is the impact on conversions. According to email marketing platform GetResponse, 42% of emails will be deleted or blocked due to inappropriate targeting and formatting. Readers lose interest quickly if they don’t find useful or actionable information.

This underscores the importance of properly knowing your audience, and appropriately targeting your messaging to users of the correct segments.

In my years of experience in marketing, segmentation, targeting and optimized landing pages are among the key concepts brought up whenever clients discuss concerns and strategies in email marketing. This means you have a good grasp and coverage of your audience from end-to-end, thus ensuring a better chance of converting customers, reducing potential churn, and also keeping your brand at top-of-mind for potential customers who are not yet ready to make a purchase.


When it comes to email marketing, the one-size-fits-all approach is not an optimal way to reach the audience. While a majority of email readers now access messages through mobile devices, for example, there are those that still prefer desktops, laptops or other devices. Among desktop users, there is a disparity among those who prefer to access email through webmail and those who access through email clients. Even mobile users access their emails from different apps, interfaces and screen sizes.

And then there is the difference across time zones, geographies and markets. You cannot simply send a business-oriented email that will be received in the middle of the night. You will need to find the best times of the day that gets the highest response or conversion rates.


The best way to deal with this is to segment your audience according to different factors, so that you can deliver the best message at the right time. Segmentation involves using analytics to separate your audience depending on their preferences, geographic location, preferred device type, and other factors. This way, your EDMs are not all sent in one go and in one static formatting that does not conform to device size and type. Rather, you can choose which audience to target, depending on the appropriateness of your message. For instance, you can send a different message and call-to-action for repeat customers, and then send a different one for first-time potential buyers.

When dealing with mobile readers, it is also important to consider cultural factors. For example, programmatic ad network platform imonomy has discovered a disparity in weekend mobile usage between the U.S. and other countries like Argentina. In the U.S., there is a lower proportion of mobile traffic during workdays, while the reverse is the case with Argentina. This means it might be better to target EDMs at desktop users in the U.S. during the weekdays, instead of mobile.

It pays to know your audiences!


We are already familiar with responsive design, which is meant to automatically adjust to screen size. In designing an EDM with responsive design, you can be assured that the reader will receive the message with the right formatting, and will not lose out on any details.

However, consider length and positioning, too. Someone reading an email on their desktop will be able to easily skim for important details or highlights. A reader on mobile, however, will have somewhat limited screen real estate. Be direct-to-the-point. Highlight your call-to-action early on in the message.

Another consideration is the overall look and feel of your email. What is the impact you want from your messaging? What feeling and what effect do you want to evoke?

Color can have a very strong appeal to emotion. Take advantage of the different color concepts in designing your EDMs.
Herein also lies the importance of segmentation. To illustrate, pink-colored themes have been found to increase conversion rates among female buyers, thus improving revenues by 86 percent, as per a campaign by Conversioner. Thus, you can send differently-colored EDMs to male and female audiences, for example.

The same effect can be found on buyer type. Impulsive shoppers gravitate toward black, red, orange and royal blue. Budget shoppers are influenced by blue and teal. Thus, the ability to segment your audience properly and thus target your message plays a big part in successful clicks and conversions.

Optimized Landing

Lastly, your landing page will play a big part on whether clicks will result in conversions. According to data from GetResponse, a good mobile landing page is concise, with a visible call-to-action. The landing page should also include your logo or branding above-the-fold, ensuring that your brand is at top-of-mind.

Going back to our discussion on colors, a good landing page will also have enough contrast, with buttons and hyperlinks standing out compared to background text. The importance here is that users should know what exactly they need to do, and what next steps they are being asked of, if any.


To recap, an effective mobile email marketing campaign will involve knowing your audience, targeting your message correctly, and giving them an easy way to act on your message. This is true even for desktop users, but when targeting a mobile audience, you have certain limitations and advantages. You have a potentially bigger audience, with the prevalence of smartphones and tablets in all kinds of settings (school, work, home, commute). However, attention spans are thinner, and device screen sizes are smaller.


Of course, the best way to optimize your mobile email design and landing pages will be to conduct A/B testing on the elements that are most likely to affect the readability and actionability of your EDMs. These include headlines, color schemes, button design, timing, and the like. Even minute changes that seem insignificant will have a certain psychological effect to the reader. Thus, it pays to test, test, and test!

Building Long-Term Value with an Email Subscriber List

Adam mentioned list building as one of the best things you can do to make money online.  I want to talk about that in much greater detail.  Basically I want to talk about why.

When you’re building your internet business, you focus a lot on traffic acquisition.  Without traffic, this whole venture becomes dull very quickly.  The problem with traffic though? It’s fleeting.  Your SERPs are fleeting.  They’ll fluctuate.  Google could change their algorithm…

This traffic is key toward business growth, but lasting growth comes from your list.


You’re standing on a beach and I’m Google.  I shovel a bunch of sand in your face, you squint, and hold a cup in the air.  Some sand lands in your cup.   That’s yours to keep.  It’s the beginning of your sandcastle.  I shovel more sand, you hold the cup in the air and catch some more.  You add that sand to your castle.  Eventually, you’re castle’s going to be HUGE and you don’t have to worry nearly as much about getting sand thrown in your face.  You have a castle!

You can monetize your one-time visitors with ads, or offers, but when they’re gone…they’re gone.  When you’re shooting for the list and building a quality list, you’re investing in your business for the long term.  You can call on that list when you have a new product launch, a new offer, etc.  As your list grows, your opportunities grow right in step with it.  Do you have a related product idea (or affiliate relationship) that your list would want?  Make it and sell it.

There’s quite a bit of this that goes on in the internet marketing industry.  A lot of times it feels like one big inter-linked JV.  You push Guru A’s product to your list and Guru A will push your product on his list…

Your list will soon become your goto resource for ideas, feedback, insight, etc.  If you’re launching a new product, why not ask your list what they would want to know?  Why not ask them what problems they’re facing?  Have them help you betatest a new software product…the opportunities, as I mentioned above, are limitless.

I’ll reiterate:  focus on that list.  Focus on email address acquisition and stay completely above the board with how you get the emails and how you treat the people on your list.  You have their permission, so don’t squander it (read Seth Godin’s book Permission Marketing) if you want more insight into that.

Let’s do a bit of math for kicks.  You first start out and you have 100 people on your list.  You send out a great, relevant, targeted offer and you get 5% to convert.  5 people pay you — for the sake of easy math — $20.  You made $100.  ($1 per person in your list per offer is not out of the question — it actually is eerie how much that appears to be the norm).

Six months down the road your list is now at 6,000 people.  You send out a targeted, relevant, great offer and 300 people pay you $20 each.  You made $6,000.

Six months later you look back and see you’ve busted your butt to build some great tool that’s going to help your list however you’re qualified to help them.  You made quite a push during the pre-launch and added another 10,000 people to your list (this isn’t at all out of the question by the way — gotta have some sand shoveled in your face though for sure!).  You’re up to 16,000 people and you’re likely to make $32,000 (why $2 per person on your list?  Because you made the tool yourself so your margin is a lot higher).

And 16,000 people is not a big list.

But do you see where the long-term value is coming from?  Suddenly you have a bit of leverage.  You can leverage your list for all sorts of cool things that will help you and help your list.  If you do it correctly, it truly is a win-win.

You should always be gathering email addresses.

Traffic Comes and Goes — Building Long-Term Value with Your Internet Business

An internet business, if you’re not careful, will rise and fall based on one variable alone: traffic.

If you follow the Prosperly Way, then a lot of your traffic is likely based on organic rankings, which means you’re depending quite a bit on external forces (read: Google) to continue doing what they’re doing so you can continue doing what you’re doing.

Depending heavily on things ultimately outside your control can be stressful — or worse — for your internet business.

The long-term value of an internet site is not its rankings (though long-tail rankings that are massive cannot be dismissed as you’ve diversified your keyword-sourced traffic significantly) or even its traffic.  The long-term value comes from its ability to reengage potential customers again and again and again.  Preferably without a lot of work on your part.

The asset on which you truly need to focus is your list.

RSS Readership is important, but having a direct route to their inbox is still much more effective (why do blogs with tens of thousands of readers still have an optional newsletter? Exactly).

You’ve got to be getting those email addresses and be engaging your visitors outside their normal surfing activities.  Give them exactly what they want with your communications and you’ll see their loyalty and trust toward you skyrocket.  Your list becomes your most prized possession.  Your list is a representation of all of the traffic you’ve seen since the launch of your site.

So where does your focus lie?  On the sale? On getting the email address?

Both.  Monitor email opt-ins.  Split-test those just as much as you split-test sales conversions.  Incentivize your readers to opt-in.  Make it drop-dead simple.

Eight years down the road, when you have a list of 500,000 people, your possibilities for monetization are endless (and stratospheric).  You could spend all day simply finding ways to help that list and you’d have a very profitable business.