When to Send an Email Marketing Campaign?
Every day people receive lots of emails with different content and purposes. They can be work emails, personal messages, or emails sent within marketing campaigns.
An average office worker receives nearly 121 emails per day, and only about 40 messages are sent for business purposes (according to Review 42). These statistics clearly show that people don’t read every email in their inbox. Otherwise, that would take their whole time. Usually, a person prioritizes important work messages or emails from relatives and friends.
However, what makes the receiver open and read the email, if it’s advertising or comes from an unknown person? There are several crucial points:
- subject line;
- email body structure and text quality/length;
- time of receiving.
In this article, we will review in detail the last point. Our goal is to define when it’s better to send an email marketing campaign to reach the most significant results.
Email Marketing Campaign Definition
Let’s start with what an email marketing campaign is.
Have you ever received an email from Netflix with an overview of what’s popular on the channel or a presentation of the new app for your call center work? Or maybe you have got a weekly report from Grammarly with data about your spell check the previous week? These are only several prime email marketing examples.
Generally, we can define an email marketing campaign as a marketing strategy that works via sending email to the list of subscribers. The main benefit is that message sending can bring great results with minimum expenses.
The email marketing campaign has multiple goals:
- to provide information to subscribers on new products or services, their usage tips and specificities, sales, etc.;
- to build brand awareness within your audience;
- to keep subscribers’ engagement;
- to drive more traffic to your webpage;
- to increase sales;
- to facilitate the lead generation process, etc.
However, you should distinguish marketing emails from transactional ones. The first is emails sent within an email marketing campaign. Their main features are:
- contain promotional message;
- are sent to a list of subscribers (or to some part of it);
- the time of sending is defined by the marketer or marketing team.
Transactional emails are orders, shipping or delivering confirmations, password reset, etc. They have the following characteristics:
- the purpose is transaction confirmation (registration on the site, order, or other);
- is usually sent to one person at a time;
- the time of sending is defined by the time of action.
You should remember that transactional emails are the most effective if they’re sent directly after the transaction. For instance, if the user has forgotten the password and requested its change, they need to receive it within a few minutes. Otherwise, they can abandon your site and purchase on the other one. So, emails received in two hours won’t probably be relevant.
Emails triggered by subscribers’ actions are crucial for the success of marketing strategies because of one-to-one interaction with potential clients. For instance, receiving customer reactivation messages makes people feel desired and boost further cooperation.
The same concerns welcome and abandoned cart emails. Their purpose is to establish communication and drive sales.
Send behavior-triggered campaigns via multiple channels
When to send an email: general recommendations
It’s clear when to send transactional emails. Besides, we also know the time for delivering welcome emails. They should be sent directly after registration on the website or subscription. Several hours or days later they’ll not be relevant.
But what about marketing emails, for which marketers or marketing teams define the time of sending? There is no user action required to trigger those emails. So, when is that perfect moment in this case? Are there any marketing frameworks to follow?
Here we have three indicators: days of the week, time of the day, and days of the month.
Days of the week
Many experts consider the middle of the working week the best time for email marketing campaigns. The statistics show that Friday has the highest open and click-through rates. Wednesday is also a good day as, together with Friday, it has the best click-to-open rate. From Tuesday to Thursday, people are more likely to decide to purchase.
We also see that the lowest open and click-through rates are on Saturday. According to the data, it’s better not to plan your campaign on this day. And we highly recommend avoiding sending your emails on Monday. This day usually is the craziest time of the week. After the weekend, inboxes are flooded with different emails. People don’t have enough time to read them all, even if you send high-quality content.
Time of the day
Not only does the day of the week matter for email marketing strategy but also time. Ask yourself when you usually read emails. For many people, it’s time free of important work. It could be morning coffee, office coffee breaks, lunch, or directly after work.
According to open and click-through rates, the best hours to deliver your email marketing campaign are 8 AM, 1 PM, and from 4 PM to 5 PM. However, many resources like Hubspot consider 10 AM and 6 PM as a good option as well. So, you have a variety of hours to deliver emailsб and can send emails at different times.
The worst time to send an email campaign is night hours between 8 PM and 8 AM. During this time, people usually want to distract from everything and have rest, go out with friends or have a team building.
Period of the month
Not every brand sends marketing emails often. Some campaigns are sent several times per month. In this case, you may also want to learn about the effective days of the month. Statistics show that the 5th, 7th, and 12th are the most successful days for the email marketing campaign.
We also can analyze the tendency within the month. At the end of the month, open and click rates are significantly lower than at the beginning.
However, these practices are applicable not only for marketing but for business emails overall, e. g. outreach emails, work requests, etc. Especially it concerns the cases when you write to strangers and want to make a positive first impression.
Finding the best time for your audience
It's nice to have a general analysis of the perfect time for an email marketing campaign. However, it may differ for each audience, and you have to find an ideal time for your specific list of subscribers. To segment them, you need to take into account the following points:
- audience age;
- audience profession;
- audience lifestyle;
- the niche you work in;
- email frequency.
Analyze the data you have, and thanks to it, try to define the perfect time. For instance, marketing emails for office workers will be the most beneficial during their breaks. And if you send messages to moms on maternity leave, do it when their babies are probably sleeping, like in the middle of the day.
Your list of subscribers can be diverse, so segment and send campaigns separately at the perfect time for each group.
And the best advice here is to test! According to Databox research, 35% of marketers run A/B tests to achieve better email campaign results. Try how the recommended time works for your audience. If you see that the results are not what you expected, test another one. Divide a segment into several groups and send emails at different times. Then analyze the data and check when the campaign is the most effective. Performing this A/B testing, you can find your best time. There is no problem even if it is night hours or Mondays. The most important is that it suits your audience and your email marketing is successful.
However, you can also use artificial intelligence solutions. For instance, eSputnik has a solution for sending time optimization.
Learn more on how eSputnik's AI can improve your marketing
Automation of email sending
Sending all these emails at different times for several segments sounds complex and is incredibly hard to do without mistakes. Amateur bloggers and marketers may try to send each email manually. But just imagine that you have to wait for 2 AM to send emails to people in another time zone, or you need to deliver birthday campaigns almost every day.
However, the professionals embrace email marketing automation. If previously it was primarily utility for enterprises, now medium and small businesses can gain advantages as well.
It’s the process of simplifying email sending to different people or the list of subscribers using special tools. The main benefits of email marketing automation are:
- time efficiency;
- wide range of possibilities to communicate with your audience;
- deep automatic personalization of emails;
- reducing the number of mistakes;
- easy measurement of results.
The modern software provides a wide range of email marketing automation possibilities. There are plenty of tools created to make email sending perfect and more effortless for you. They all have common features:
- options for email personalization;
- scheduling the specific time of sending;
- subscribers’ list management;
- integrations with CRM, CMS, etc.
Below you can see an example of the eSputnik workflows for different campaigns, which are user-friendly.
Automation tools definitely simplify the work of marketers and release the time for more intellectual and creative activities. With that being said, automation doesn’t mean lifeless. Be sure to personalize the messages you’re sending by including conditional logic based on the information you know about the recipient.
The email marketing campaign is a powerful strategy within your overall marketing. If it’s sent correctly, you can get a lot of benefits with minimum spending.
Now you know one of the most important things to make your email marketing successful. Sending messages at the proper time will help you to reach great results.
Feel free to use the tips mentioned in the article, but don’t forget that you should focus on your audience and find the time best for it.