It’s that time of the year again where the clocks change and we all get a little bit grumpy and confused. Put it in your diaries – on Sunday March 27th the clocks will spring forward by an hour, losing us all an hour in bed on Monday morning. This got us thinking about the role of time in email marketing and how you can use it to your advantage, it also got the Pure360 team discussing our best time-saving strategies that we can share with you to ensure that lost hour is as painless as possible!

Email timing

Response rates for emails vary based on a range of factors including subject line, offer type, plus the time or day of the week the email was sent. The only way to identify the optimum time to send your emails is by running tests to identify when your subscribers are most likely to engage with your users. Think about when subscribers check their email, if you’re mainly targeting the early-morning commuters, you might find that 9 AM emails get the most engagement. Try an A/B test to see if your hypothesis is correct and then build your campaign from there. Online retailer eBags increased their CTR and conversions by 20% and 65% respectively after they identified the optimum send-time for their emails. That could be you!

We’ve previously looked at the best and worst times to send emails and found that this can vary based on your subscribers, your industry and who you are trying to communicate with. For example B2B promotions are more likely to be opened between 5 and 7 PM, so sending these types of emails at 8 AM are likely to fall into the email abyss. You’ll have wasted your time and investment.

Campaign timing

Of course there’s also the role of time in terms of preparation and when to release your new campaign. If the clock change has caught you by surprise this time, it’s not too early to put a campaign in place ready for when the clocks fall back (FYI, it’s October 30th this year). Rushing to produce a campaign can lead to mistakes and you also won’t be able to test the campaign before it is sent, which could lead to low engagement, low CTR and a low ROI.

Save your time and energy and get yourself set up in advance for your next campaign instead. Start thinking about any upcoming campaigns you want to plan, be it summer holidays, back to school, clock change, Halloween, Christmas… As they say, prior preparation prevents poor performance and by putting these plans in place now you’ll free up time later on in the year.

Time saving strategies

We couldn’t mention time saving without mentioning automation. Most email marketers spend the majority of their time producing content, which helps you grow and connect with your audience, but rather than putting all your eggs into one basket consider expanding this content into an automated sequence of emails. Take the content that you have and turn it into your welcome series or perhaps an automated email course to minimise the amount of new content you need to produce. You’ll save yourself an hour or two at least (now what to do with all that glorious spare time?!)

Time for data

Email marketers often focus solely on email responses and touch points instead of seeing each customer as a single, constantly, and variably connected human. Take the time to analyse your data thoroughly, as being able to connect that data to a single customer and act on it at the right time and through the right channel is what will separate great marketers from the rest. We think we’ve just found a use for all that spare time we freed up for your earlier!

Final thoughts

Timing may be everything, but time is also precious and short. With the upcoming clock change your customers are going to have even less time on their hands and therefore you need to ensure you are managing your own time effectively to produce slick, relevant campaigns that will deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right time (the hallmark of excellent marketing!)