Recently, Knak sponsored an Email Benchmark Report. We gained a lot of valuable insight, but one thing that seemed to be a recurring theme throughout the piece was that the email creation process is generally frustrating, time consuming, and inefficient.

In fact, a majority of respondents told us that it takes a week or more to get an email campaign out the door. That’s an eternity in 2019, and we know there’s a better way.

Here’s where the hold up seems to be:

  • Inefficient creation process – campaign guidelines/timelines aren’t clear
  • Slow approval process – deployment is delayed because approval processes are murky (or non-existent)
  • Design updates – templates are inefficient, and even a minor change means the email has to go back to the designer

These things are problematic at organizations of every size, so whether you’re an SMB or an enterprise, there’s a good chance your email creation process could be more efficient.

No matter how big or small your company is, you need to be thinking about scale. But how can you be ready to scale if your existing process is inefficient and labor intensive? And even if it’s going well, how would it work if you suddenly needed to scale up?

A scalable email marketing plan keeps you agile so you can keep delivering knockout campaigns without sacrificing quality and creativity. But you can’t wait until it’s time to scale to put a solid plan in place. Doing the legwork now ensures that you’ll be ready to add on whenever you need to.

Here are some ways to streamline your email creation process so you can be more efficient right now and ready to scale later.

What are you working with?

Take a look at the existing pieces of your Marketing department:

People – Who’s on your team? Do their existing roles optimize their strengths? How is their current workload?
Make sure:

  • Your team can handle an increase in projects without neglecting their current customers
    They have the right skills to reach the new areas you’re targeting
  • Evaluate your current team, identify their strengths, and determine what crucial skills are missing. Once you see what your current team is capable of, you can identify where you need to hire to help you reach your goals.

Processes – Scaling up your marketing can easily turn into one giant headache if you’re not intentional about it. Sometimes the best thing you can do is take a step back, evaluate your current process, and see what’s working.
Can you:

  • Adjust your content without time-consuming re-designs?
  • Get through the approval process quickly?
  • Easily identify where you’re seeing a positive ROI?

If you can’t quickly identify what’s working (and what’s not), go back to the beginning and think through each step in your process. Once you have a clear picture, you’ll be in a better position to scale.

Technology – What’s in your MarTech stack? Do you have a piece of tech that could be making your life easier? Make a list of the pain points you’re experiencing and then take a look at your technology.
Is there:

  • Something you already own with a functionality you’re not using?
  • An area you could automate to help eliminate errors?

The right technology is vital as you scale. Whether you need to leverage a piece of tech you already have or look for something new to help resolve those pain points, a thoughtfully designed tech stack will help reduce human error and free up your team to focus on growth. Better technology = a smoother process, better results, faster time to market.

Time to Streamline

Now that you’ve examined the moving parts of your email process, we’ve got some inside tips to help you turn it into a well-oiled machine.

Here are six things that will keep your campaigns on track and on time:

1. Provide a clear brief

  • Spell it out – all of it. Include your goal for the campaign, who it’s going to, and why you’re sending it. List target dates for each part of the process: copywriting, design, approvals, revisions, and launch.

2. Set a kick off meeting with key team members

  • Even if you’ve done a thousand campaigns together, have a meeting to make sure you’re on the same page.

3. Ensure alignment on goals and timeline

  • Buy-in from your team is crucial. A clear brief and a kickoff meeting will go a long way here, so make sure your team has the info they need to launch the campaign successfully.

4. Leverage your tech stack

  • We love Asana for setting and managing timelines and Knak for handling feedback. Remember: more automation = less human error, greater scalability.

5. Schedule time for revisions

  • Whether you’re using pre-built templates, coding from scratch, or designing from modules, revisions are a given. Build the time into your schedule so they don’t put you behind schedule.

6. Be strategic with your approval order

  • The most senior approver doesn’t need to see the first draft. Design your workflow so they’re not bothered with small edits and only see the (nearly) finished product. *Hint: the Approval Groups feature in Knak makes this simple!

The Right Strategy, The Right Scale

Your email creation process can be simple and ready to scale. It may take a bit to get there, but once you have the right strategy in place, you can eliminate delays and get your campaigns out the door quickly.

And as a bonus? The right strategy and the right technology makes scale simple. Your process will adjust when you need it to, and your team will be free to devote their time to what really matters: more creativity, optimized results, and knockout campaigns.

If you’re ready to talk strategy, we’d love to help. Reach out, and we’ll work with you to develop a plan that grows with your organization.

About author View all posts

Tania Blake

Tania is the Marketing Manager at Knak. She has over 10 years experience working in marketing and communications, a strong attention to detail and a unique ability to balance "process" with "getting stuff done". In her spare time, she loves to cook, travel and hang out with her family.

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