If you use email marketing, then you will want to make sure that your results are constantly improving.
So, you probably measure several key performance indicators, for example:
- Delivery Rate - that's the percentage of emails sent that are actually delivered; although this is no guarantee that your reader received the email or was even aware of it
- Open Rate - that's the percentage of people who received the email who went on to open it; although the fact that an email registered as an open does not mean that the person read it, or has even seen it
- Click-to-Open Rate, sometimes referred to incorrectly as Click-Through Rate - that's the percentage of people who opened the email that clicked on a link
- Forwards - that's an estimate of how many people forwarded the email to others
- Unsubscribe Rate - that's the percentage of people who unsubscribed after receiving the email
- Return on investment - that's the amount of money generated by a campaign divided by the cost; not always easy to calculate, but you should at least try, to check that your campaigns are delivering good value
But there is one Key Performance Indicator that I think is really important, and I don't hear people talking about it very often....
I call this metric Active Subscribers. This is the number of people on your list who have actively engaged with your campaigns, either by openeing a campaign or clicking on a link, within a given time period.
As I just mentioned, open rates can be misleading, but keeping an eye on whether the number of Active Subscribers on your list is going up or down is a good indicator of how engaged people are with the emails that you're sending. It is a good idea to measure this over 3 months, 6 months and 12 months so that you can iron out any seasonality, and see the trends.
The level of engagement that you have with your audience is an excellent lead indicator of how much new business your campaigns will generate.
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