Six Early-Warning Signs That Your B2B Email Marketing Campaign is Doomed from the Start

Why do some B2B email marketing campaigns seem to unexplainably fail? There are a lot of possible answers to this question – poor planning/execution, misuse of direct email contact lists, bad timing, dull content, etc. However, the most striking reason would be that some email campaigns weren’t meant to succeed long before they even begin, and this isn’t due to bad luck or external forces but a consequence of the email marketers’ own doing.


Here are six signs to look for during planning and shortly before implementation to determine whether an email marketing campaign is bound to blow up sooner or later:

1. Without a valid underlying product/service

No matter how highly experienced the email marketer or how thorough the marketing plan is, if the campaign isn’t centered on a valid product or service, the email campaign is doomed to produce unfavorable results. A “valid” product/service is one that really offers a solution to a real problem encountered by the prospective buyers in the email contacts list. Check and understand your product/service carefully and determine whether there’s a viable demand or demand potential for it.

2. Lacking a precise target audience.

Defining a “precise” target audience in the B2B setting is becoming increasingly more complex due to the addition of more participants in the buying decision-making process. But this doesn’t give email marketers an excuse for targeting sloppiness. The campaign planners should take into account all the potential recipients and segment in its targeted contacts list accordingly.

3. Absence of lead nurturing efforts.

While recent research has shown that B2B marketers look to email marketing as a primary source of quantity leads, other studies show that lead nurturing emails have higher click-through rates and better conversion rates than generic ones. Quality content is at the heart of lead nurturing which is further enhanced by mapping content to specific audiences or segments from the email contacts list.

4. Having no strategic perspective.

A campaign plan which fails to view how it fits the bigger marketing picture or overall business strategy is bound to fail in the long-run. Today’s marketing efforts are typically multi-channeled and geared toward longer buying/sales cycles due to lead nurturing requirements. An Email marketing project plan that doesn’t consider its place in such a scheme is worth revising.

5. Sets no clear goals or limitations.

A plan without a set of definite goals and objectives is like an unsharpened pencil – utterly pointless. Equivalently, an email marketing plan that doesn’t set or acknowledge limitations or constraints isn’t worth implementing at all. In relation to these points, an email marketer in the process of defining goals and limitations should always consider the most conservative assumptions in his or her estimates.

6. No specific tracking/monitoring provisions.

If an email marketing plan doesn’t provide for how success or failure is measured in terms of metrics or outcomes, then it’s a fundamentally-flawed blueprint. In addition, the plan should also cover how testing and tracking are to be conducted throughout the campaign before actually being set into motion.

Either one of the above-mentioned qualities should set off alarm bells in an email marketer’s head before proceeding with a campaign. That’s why you need to thoroughly check your campaign plan and strategies for these loopholes and make sure to have them fixed before it’s too late.

Do you have some other early-warning signs you typically look for before implementing a campaign plan?