Marketing Operations No-Nos

What is communication governance in marketing operations (MOps)? Communication governance exercises authority, control and/or management of the outbound communications your organization sends. This typically falls into the hands of marketing operations, but what if you’re a marketing team of one or just a few and there is little to no oversight into making sure that all outbound one-to-many communications meet the “OK to launch” criteria?

Communication Governance Launch Criteria:

  1. Going only to those who have given you express consent to send them messages
  2. Going to the appropriate segments/list
  3. Has messaging that speaks to the segment/list
  4. Is suppressing any unengaged records and/or previous bounces
  5. Is suppressing previous unsubscribes
  6. Adding new unsubscribes to the appropriate unsubscribe list
  7. Creative/template is responsive/adaptive
  8. Creative/template is Accessibility compliant.
  9. Subject lines accurately reflect the content of the email body

As discussed recently on MarTech from a LinkedIn conversation, someone inside your organization has to play traffic cop. Just because marketers technically can send any email to collected email addresses doesn’t mean they should. Unintended consequences can result, which is when it becomes a future deliverability issue. Still, many marketers prefer to proceed and ask forgiveness instead of permission. If you don’t currently have someone in your organization who owns communication governance, there’s no time like the present to appoint one.

Whoever is appointed to own communication governance should be more on the technical side of the marketing technology (MarTech) spectrum. The person appointed to own communication governance should check all the boxes:

  • Have admin access to your email service provider (ESP), customer relationship management (CRM) or marketing automation (MA) platforms
  • Understand your data environment, sources, lists and/or segmentation
  • Know how to review draft campaigns to check the content, what list/segment the campaign is being sent to
  • Have a working knowledge of responsive HTML or is able to test the email in a rendering test tool like Litmus or Email on Acid

The measurement of properly following communication governance guidelines is a combination of:

  • Steady open rates
  • Steady click-through rates
  • Steady click-to-open rates
  • Low unsubscribe rates
  • Staying off a real-time blacklist (RBL)

There is a cost of marketing and cost per lead associated with each email address you collect. It’s always good to know what that number is so you understand and can quantify the loss of a subscriber. Following best practices and not taking shortcuts will help you prevent an unsubscribe that results from not exercising communication governance.

Jenny Lassi • February 8, 2022

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