Before embarking on your email marketing initiative, make sure you have certain goals in mind. Here are ten questions to help you formulate your email plan of attack:

1.    What are the best days of the week to send an email? Should you send email on a weekend?

2.    What time of day should you send an email?

3.    Are your emails optimized for all major email clients, browsers and mobile devices?

4.    How many links should you included in an email?

5.    Have you checked the email content for spam words?

6.    Which words or phrases have the highest spam rates (“buy now,” “ending soon,” “price,” “discount”)?

7.    What is your desired open, bounce and click-through rate?

8.    How often should you send an email? Does this frequency vary with the type of email?

9.    Do you have a clear and compelling call to action?

10.    Is your email marketing integrated with your social media initiative?

Bonus question: Are you complying with CAN-SPAM and following opt-in best practices?

Taking the time to consider these questions and arrive at workable answers is crucial to the success of your email marketing campaign.

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Alan Blume is an author, and as founder and CEO of StartUpSelling Inc., he works with small businesses on lead generation, sales, marketing, website design and branding. For more information, go to www.StartUpSelling.com.