Despite the rumors that email is dead, as of 2018, email marketing is still a reliable and versatile marketing tool. Recent statistics show that emails are generating over £30bn of retail sales in the UK. The average proportion of total sales that client-side marketers can attribute to their email marketing is 22%. Marketing is all about conversation, and your email newsletter can get the conversation started. It can help you engage with your customers and open the door to a deeper, more meaningful interaction.
An email newsletter is similar to a community newspaper for your business. It keeps your customers informed about your latest news, products, and updates. It reflects your company's personality. Newsletters come in all kinds of designs and formats, and they are an important tool in your digital marketing toolbox. Why should you have an email newsletter?
• Email newsletters drive traffic to your website. Instead of hoping people will wander around the internet and eventually land on your website, your email newsletter will bring people to you. You may be offering educational content, answers to their questions, or incentives to visit your site.
• People love to share on social media. Including social sharing buttons on your email newsletter will bring a surge in social media followers. The buttons also remind your subscribers that you are part of an active social media community.
• Email connects you to your customers. You know them by name and provide content tailored to their needs. As with any relationship, the more your customers get to know you, the more they trust you and are likely to become repeat customers.
You probably have a great deal of information about your customers. You know their first name, where they live, what the buy, and how many times they log onto your app. Email marketing personalisation is a way to use this valuable information to tailor your marketing efforts for a particular subscriber. Personalisation is becoming increasingly sophisticated. Basic tactics include using a subscriber's name in the subject line, while more advanced tactics involve changing the content based on information you have about the subscriber.
It is easy to get stuck in a marketing routine. However, to succeed in email marketing, you must use every means available to you. Personalized emails work because they are relevant to your email subscribers. Instead of a generic offer, a personalised email newsletter speaks directly to a subscriber’s preferences and needs. Studies show that emails with personalised subject lines were 26% more likely to be opened compared to those without, but 70% of brands do not use them. Personalisation also increases the open and click-through rates, leading to an increased ROI.
If you are considering using personalisation techniques in your email newsletter, start by asking yourself some questions.
• What goals do I want to achieve through personalisation? You may want specific increased open or conversion rates.
• How can I make my emails more relevant to the individual needs of the recipients? Look at information such as occupation, interests, or browsing history.
• What customer data is available to me? These may include name, age, gender, location and browsing history.
• How can I segment my email list? Break your list into groups, using factors such as age demographics or purchase history, then adjust the newsletter for each group. Segmented lists will improve customer engagement.
• How can I measure the effectiveness of my personalised marketing efforts? There are many marketing tools available, such as open rate, click-through rate, conversion rate, sharing rate and unsubscribing.
Names are powerful. Receiving an email addressed to you by name is like getting a personal letter. It sets a friendly tone for the conversation. It is a simple technique, but amazingly effective.
Another winning technique is to personalise the images you use. If you know where your subscribers live, you can use different images based on location. You can also do this with age, or other customer profile information. Images speak to us and help a subscriber relate to the brand.
What products interest your subscribers? What have they purchased in the past? Give them what they want. You can group them and create different content offers accordingly. Depending on your product or service, you may want to group your subscribers by gender or age. Personalised offers will generate a substantial increase in click-through rates and conversions.
By using your customer data such as browsing history or recent purchases to hone in on personal preferences, you can make effective recommendations for future purchases. Over time, your data will become more relevant, and you will be able to increase your rate of cross-selling and up-selling.
This is more advanced than just using a customer's name, but it is worth the effort. Knowledgeable email marketers are able to collect data from social properties. Behavior data can include just about anything, but commonly used data include banner clicking, shopping behavior, pages visited, recently read articles, and content downloaded. There are various ways to segment lists and personalise the content based on behavior. How it is used depends on the company and the available data. However, behavior personalisation is intended to provide content based on the user's behavior, rather than their context.
A staggering amount of revenue is lost through simple cart abandonment. However, emails sent within an hour have a 40% open rate and 65% of abandoned carts can be recovered within 24 hours. You can improve cart abandonment by sending personalised emails, perhaps with a picture of the items in the shopping bag. Make it easy for a customer to finish the purchase. This may also be a good opportunity to offer product recommendations, using customer preferences data.
• Use carefully crafted welcome emails to create stronger relationships
• Use split testing to increase the number of your opens and clicks.
• Tell stories. We all need and want stories. Connecting with subscribers on an emotional level will result in higher click-through.
• Experiment with using both hard and soft CTAs in different marketing emails. Sometimes a soft CTA can be used in a footer.
There is no one best email marketing campaign for all businesses. To learn what works for your company, continue trying and testing new tactics to improve your email newsletter engagements. For more information, contact us.