What are the best email marketing techniques to deliver results? The debate goes on as to how to gain maximum effectiveness from email marketing. There is evidence to show that email marketing works best in both pre-sales and after sales strategies. The key to the most effective email marketing is the timing and the content.
Today’s world is very much about service and content on demand. Personalisation is also high on the agenda for many marketing managers (although this may be misunderstood). I did read recently that subscribers and consumers have become very accustomed to personalisation and are starting to question the safety of their data.
So how do personalised email marketing strategies work most effectively?
How can you maximise engagement and return on investment without spooking your subscribers?
It’s no secret that most email systems will enable you to embed subscriber information into the body of the emails you wish to send out. The trick here is not to overuse client information. Use it once but then only use it when it’s relevant to the content of the message. So what are the real secrets?
What is the best timing for email marketing?
Most organisations use email marketing. The level of sophistication is where the most difference is found.
Ok, in order to get timing and content perfect, you need your subscribers to tell you what they want and when. The problem is with thousands of subscribers, this may seem like an impossible issue to resolve. Not so!
Once you appreciate the triggers that you can use to automate communication processes and database updates, the value of automation becomes more obvious. Let’s explain this in two parts; firstly, triggers and secondly, actions.
Email marketing techniques #1 – Automation
Not only are there obvious triggers within your business such as a customer placing an order but there are a multitude of other triggers which you may not even be aware you can track and utilise. Sophisticated email systems (forget the free ones) have the capability to covertly track subtle interactions, and for that matter lack of interactions with your emails. You may be familiar with the standard information such as open rates and bounces but this takes that email marketing technique a step further. The smarter systems can monitor click throughs. As a report, this information may be useful BUT there’s a better way to use it.
The question now comes as to what SHOULD happen when a subscriber interacts with your information? Dependent on the trigger you may want a number of different actions. Whether you simply want the database to capture the subscriber’s preference information, you wish to send a follow up email, you’d like your sales team to be notified or even a whole new set of emails is triggered, all of this is possible.
How you set your actions need not be overly sophisticated , although it can be.
The client’s automation was set up to deliver instant notifications to the sales team. The notifications were pre-populated with the subscriber’s information, also detailing their specific interaction.
232 red hot leads were generated within the space of 2 hours for a total investment of less than £1000.
With an average sales value of £3000, a conversion rate of 1% would generate revenue of over £11,000.
These figures become even more attractive as you increase the broadcast volumes. If, for example, the subscriber database was increased to a number of 400,000, the set up and distribution costs would be less than £20,000 but the returns would be in the region of £104M.
In a recent email broadcast.
4000 contacts delivered an open rate of 29% (1160)
and a click through rate of 20% (232).
The real beauty of email is its low distribution cost and instantaneous nature. Scalable email communications need automation and with all the triggers available, delivering comprehensive automated email communication has never been more straight forward. The real key is knowing where email marketing will deliver you best value.
Conditional marketing is the use of preference information to determine the content presented to the subscriber.
Email marketing techniques #2 – Conditional content
This email marketing technique needs a little explanation. If, for example, a travel company’s database showed a subscriber to have a preference for city breaks, the system could use that information to populate the content of that particular subscribers message to be specific to city breaks.
Conversely, a subscriber showing preference toward long haul breaks could have their message content determined to suit them. To use this to best effect, you need to rely on automation and let your subscribers determine the information they want.
Email marketing techniques are used by many organisations but by using the above 2 secrets, the more advanced organisations are gaining business critical edge over their competitors. The examples used are very basic are purely illustrative of the types of functions an organisation may wish to emulate.
To really capitalise on these secrets, an organisation should embrace the technology and apply it in all relevant places.
Find out more about how you can take advantage of these email marketing techniques.
By Ryan Mullins