There are five common methods that email marketers use to get edits and approvals for email marketing campaigns. The question is which method is the best? Keep reading to see the comparison and get the answers you need to choose the best method for you, your stakeholders, and your results.
Why Your Email Marketing Campaign Proofing Method Matters
Ineffective and inefficient processes of any kind lead to delays, mistakes, and even lost revenue. The same is true for your email marketing campaign proofing process.
To deliver error-free campaigns on time, you need to streamline proofing workflows, improve collaboration, and open the doors to 360-degree communication.
For example, if it takes days to receive edits from stakeholders, look for a method that eliminates those delays by ensuring stakeholders always know exactly what they have to review and when. You need a method with clear communication and accountability features.
If you find yourself constantly doing double-work because stakeholders are reviewing the wrong campaign versions or commenting on things that have already been decided by the team, then you need to improve the collaboration aspects of your proofing process.
Email Marketing Campaign Proofing Methods Comparison
Fortunately, you can fix the problems discussed above and more by using the right proofing method to match your needs and goals. Let’s compare the five most common proofing methods.
1. Sending Email Campaign Tests to Stakeholders’ Inboxes
It’s quick and easy to use your email marketing platform’s testing feature to send an email campaign to reviewers. With this method, each stakeholder should receive the test email campaign in their email inbox. However, it doesn’t always work that way, and proofing emails in inboxes is actually a bad idea.
The problem is if you’re sending email campaign test messages via your email marketing platform from the same domain that your recipients use in their email addresses, then your test messages are likely going to end up in reviewers’ spam or junk folders. That’s because the IP address from your email marketing platform is different from the IP address your domain is typically associated with, and that’s suspicious to email service providers like Gmail, Outlook, and so on.
To get around this problem, you’ll need to warn all of the stakeholders to look for the test message, check their spam or junk folder if they don’t find it in their inbox, move it to the inbox, and mark it as not spam or junk. It leads to a lot of steps that cause confusion and delays.
You’ll also need to make sure reviewers have clear instructions about what to review and how. If you’re sending multiple versions of a campaign or using dynamic content in your marketing messages, then things can get even more confusing. Once the edits start coming in, you’ll need to track and compile all of them in order to send out the next test message. Be prepared for a lot of back-and-forth and frustration, and don’t be surprised if your campaigns end up going out late and even with errors.
2. Using an Email Marketing Campaign Proofing and Approvals Solution
The best method to choose is an email marketing campaign proofing and approvals solution that was built specifically for the job. ProofJump is an example.
ProofJump increases your productivity and results by making the entire email campaign proofreading and review process more efficient. Rather than sending a bunch of separate test campaigns to reviewers, you can send a single link. Using that one link, all reviewers can edit, communicate, and approve email messages in the same place – even multiple versions and dynamic content!
Using a single solution like ProofJump, you’ll save time, reduce errors, eliminate confusion, and get the best possible results from every email marketing campaign you send. Collaboration, communication, and every other part of the review process is easier when you’re using the right solution for the job.
3. Sharing Spreadsheets and Documents
Have you tried managing the email campaign review process using spreadsheets, documents, Google Drive, Dropbox, or other similar tools? While this solution likely enabled you to keep comments centralized, undoubtedly, the process wasn’t optimal.
When you take snapshots of your campaign and paste them into Google Docs or spreadsheets, everything will be structured, but far from perfect. Reviewers can collaborate within the documents by adding comments and making edits, but it’s like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. It’s just not good enough. And you’ll still need to track and compile all of the edits from each stakeholder to create and share the next version of the campaign!
Using spreadsheets and documents combined with copy and paste is an old-school proofreading method that is out of date today. It’s not only confusing and cumbersome, but it doesn’t give stakeholders the ability to test all message functionality, responsiveness, dynamic content, and more. Bottom-line, there are so many better ways to streamline the entire proofing process today without relying on clunky spreadsheets and documents.
4. Providing PDFs to Stakeholders
Creating a PDF of your email marketing campaign and sending it to stakeholders for review is another old-school method of obtaining edits and approvals. It’s an easy method to fall back on because people are familiar with viewing PDFs. These days, you can create PDFs that keep all images, formatting, and links intact. This allows stakeholders to review most of the email message and some of the functionality.
In addition, you can teach stakeholders how to add comments and edits directly within the PDF document (if they have a version of Adobe Acrobat of another compatible software that provides the necessary features to do so). However, you’ll still need to manually track and transfer all of the edits and comments into the next version of the campaign that you send for review.
Similar to using spreadsheets and documents for collecting edits and feedback from stakeholders, using PDFs doesn’t allow reviewers to test all functionality, dynamic content, and responsiveness. In other words, sending PDFs might be an easy solution, but it’s not the best solution – not even close.
5. Using Tools Developed for Team Collaboration
Stakeholders need to collaborate to effectively review email campaigns, so you’d think that a collaboration tool like Asana, Slack, or Trello would be a great option for your proofing process. The truth is a tool that was built for team collaboration will leave you wishing you’d chosen a tool built for email QA and approvals instead.
The reason is simple. The email review process requires a lot more than collaboration. It requires full email functionality testing, dynamic content testing, real-time updates, annotations, active links, threaded comments, version control, and more.
Tools built for collaboration allow you to share documents and discuss them in one place, but they don’t give you all of the features you need to ensure you’re sending high-performing email campaigns out on time and without errors.
Key Takeaways about Email Marketing Campaign Proofing Methods
Getting feedback and approvals from reviewers is essential for your email marketing campaigns to deliver on your goals, but if your proofing process is flawed, you’ll waste time and money. You could even damage your brand reputation.
Instead, use the email marketing campaign proofing method that will help you succeed. A solution like ProofJump that was built for the job is the best choice. Contact us to schedule a demo and see how ProofJump can improve your email campaign proofing process.