We looked previously at brand alignment and important consideration on your tactical activities. Let's move on to analysis of your email marketing strategy.
An important part of forming your strategy will be to conduct a SWOT analysis. This is a review of the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. It's about looking inward at your readiness for implementing an email program & identifying areas that need to be addressed to be as successful as possible. If you have an email marketing process in place, then the SWOT review can benchmark against best-practice.
This section can be undertaken earlier as part of a review or brainstorming session, if you prefer. The questions below* covers most of the important areas around strategy. You should then attach a "weighting" or other metrics. The maturity level refers to the experience cycle - early phase, transition and then a strategic approach:
A similar set of questions should be devoted to "segmentation", "layout & content", "list growth", "automation" and "analysis capability". What matters is that you define the appropriate metrics for your company and industry. For example, aggressive list growth targets may well be inappropriate in certain industries or segments. The result should deliver you an overall perspective, allowing a rating of 'maturity level'. You could also benchmark yourself against competitors or the industry in which you operate. You should aim to diagram the results for easy understanding for all stakeholders, perhaps similar to this diagram:
By now, you have largely finished the 'strategy phase' of your email program, It's reaching the point where it is time to start working on getting those emails out the door.