As an inbound professional, you might be sending emails on a daily or evenly hourly basis. But regardless of how many emails you send, you want to know how they’re performing, right? Sending emails takes time, money, and effort from you and your company. Not knowing how those emails performed won’t help you grow and could potentially cost you.
As you build the foundation of your email marketing strategy you'll find what works well and what doesn’t work when creating conversations through your emails. To collect data on these email outcomes, you'll need to analyze and test your marketing emails.
Analyzing and testing is part of every aspect of your inbound strategy. Using this data, you can continue creating human and helpful conversations with your contacts.
What Is the Foundation of Analyzing and Testing?
In life and in inbound, you don’t know what you don’t know. Analysis and testing help you gain insight so you can better connect with your contacts.
If you don’t prioritize analysis then you won’t be able to answer the key question, “Why are you successful, and what actions are leading to that success?”
Data provides the fuel for change by showing you trends that will help you determine where to pivot your strategy to provide the most value. It gives you insight into how your actions are delivering impact. Armed with this knowledge, you can measure the direct business value of each channel you’re using, even beyond email.
As you're analyzing and testing, ask yourself:
“Why am I running this test, and what am I hoping to get out of it?”
Understanding what leads to success will help you plan for the future. Analysis can also be your education tool. Good analysis will provide actionable insights so you can develop a solution if there’s a problem, and work with your team to solve it.
Your inbound strategy is there to help you tell stories to your prospects, leads, and customers to help them grow with you and your business. By consistently analyzing what's going well and what isn't, you'll be on the right path to help tell these stories together.
How Do Analysis and Testing Connect?
Analysis and testing are closely aligned. They're similar to the core of inbound marketing: the marriage between content and context. To make your marketing emails more personal and contextual, you'll use this alignment between analysis and testing.
In the HubSpot email tool, these two are linked to give you the full picture of how your emails are performing.
Let’s take a look at how you can analyze and then test a marketing email in HubSpot. There are two main parts of your analysis and testing inside the HubSpot tool: the post-sent details screen and A/B testing.
1. Post-send details
The post-send details screen of the email tool puts the important metrics right at your fingertips. This page will display the overall email performance and engagement as well as individual recipient information.
By analyzing this screen consistently, you'll see what occurred on each send. This provides insight into your full email channel. Use this data to analyze these three key metrics of your email performance: individual email metrics, whole email marketing channel metrics, and return on investment. Structure your tests around any trends you notice in these metrics.
Your analysis here will help tell you the full story of what happened with your email.
2. A/B testing
This is where A/B testing comes in. Once you've analyzed what's happening in your emails you can run tests to optimize and improve those sends.
Using A/B testing, you can create two slightly different emails to send to a segment of your list. Then the tool determines which triggered the most engagement and automatically sends the most effective version of the email to the rest of your list.
The tool also helps guide your purpose for testing. You might be testing your subject line, preview text, or even the body of your email.
In your Marketing Hub Professional or Enterprise account, you'll see the ability to create A/B tests under Marketing > Email. It will look something like this:
Use the data from these tests to make future decisions on your email sends.
When you’re A/B testing an email, focus on the one element that you're testing: the subject line, the body content, or CTA. Think of the tests as experiments, where you want a control and a variable.
Want to learn more about A/B testing? Check it out here.
So how can you take the tools you have in HubSpot and start analyzing and testing your marketing emails?
What to Expect in These Academy Email Lessons
In these two new lessons, you'll be introduced to the foundations of analyzing and testing your marketing emails and how to get started with continuous improvement.
In the first lesson, you'll learn that analysis is essential to everything you do as an inbound professional. On every channel you're using, analyzing and improving consistently will help you keep growing. You'll not only learn about the importance of data, but also the steps involved in gathering and analyzing it.
Want to explore the lesson? Check it out here.
In the second lesson, you’ll look at the type of planning, preparing, and crafting that goes into the emails you send. You'll also learn:
- The importance of email testing in your overall marketing strategy.
- The types of tests you can run on your marketing emails.
- The role these tests play in developing future emails.
Want to explore the lesson? Check it out here.
These lessons will help you get started building a foundation for growth with consistent analysis and testing.
Want to check them out? Head into the learning center today!
Originally published Jul 3, 2018 11:00:00 AM, updated July 12 2019