Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Beginner's Guide for A Better Email Marketing Strategy



By combining data with email marketing, we can power our campaigns with information that can be used to reach our online audiences more effectively. Through personal data, we can target our readers directly and connect with them on a more personalized level.

In our digitally saturated society, the collection of data, big and small, has become a bigger focal point with today’s marketing strategies. With the advent of smartphones, tablets, other handheld devices, we are more connected now than ever before. With this type of connectivity available almost anywhere and seen on multiple devices, we now receive emails in more locations that are less traditional than appearing on a desktop.

Gathering this type of multi-channel, connectivity information gives market researchers a lot of insights into performance data. But what do we do with this data and how do we make it work for our email marketing strategies? With performance data, the information received can instruct us on how to obtain more conversions, leads and prospects.

Here are three methods to better optimize your email marketing strategies enhanced with data:


Method #1: Capturing & Using First Party Data

By definition, first party data is gleaned by website owners, retailers and other businesses from their visitors and customers. Since these companies have a prior, existing relationship with these consumers, they are able to use this type of information which may include email addresses, data about site interaction and details on products purchased, to cater to their specific needs.

It is important to remember to inform your clientele exactly what type of data you’re extracting, why you are collecting it and what it will be used for in order to retain their trust and loyalty. One of the best ways to gather and use first party data is through customer loyalty programs. Read more on how to design your very own customer loyalty program.

One of the best examples are the many grocery chains that are using “club cards” to disseminate their customer's shopping practices utilizing everything from where they are shopping, during what time of day, what they are purchasing, how they are paying and what sales items and clearance purchases they are making. The same type of strategy can be effectively utilized for email marketing.

Method #2: Trial & Error = A/B Testing

As with many marketing and web strategies, A/B testing, where one method is directly pitted against another and measured for success, we can learn where our best avenues are for the types of content shared, placement of images and call to action icons are utilized for conversion. Even subtle things like type font styles, sizes and colors can affect user’s behaviors and purchases.

Tracking these methods of “trial and error,” seeing what works and finding what is ignored, will help ensure our continued success with email marketing. Another example shows us that different verbiage used in the subject line of an email will have better opening rates. For example, those that are personalized or include words like “sale” or “video” greatly increase viewing while the term “newsletter,” shows a decline in these opening figures.

Consider changing subject lines and other parts of your message to see how it will influence reader’s behaviors. Relocate your CTA methods, experiment with content and images, personalize and customize as much as possible to engage with your audience. 


Method #3: Leveraging & Segmentation

Use data to segment your audience by age, gender, income, geographic location and other important factors that will give you more leverage and greater advantages for reaching consumers. By better utilizing customization and personalization, consumers will feel the content delivered to them is more appropriately addressed to them specifically according to their interests and concerns. Therefore, they will be less likely to unsubscribe and look to your organization as a source for thought leadership.

Even in today’s automated world we are still able to individualize our audience members and reach them through the use of their own personal data. Becoming more familiar with the readers of our content will drive them through the sales funnel more efficiently.

What other insights have you learned from figuring out your top performing email marketing strategies? Share with us in the comments section below.



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