2 December 2016
“Email marketing today is all about sending well timed and relevant emails to the right people at the right time.”
This is an area we get asked about repetitively, what’s the secret formula for email marketing campaigns, particularly within the B2B market? And, how can you maximise the effectiveness of email communications?
Well from our standpoint (and the standpoint of most reputable marketers) the number one thing that internal marketing teams need to remember is to consider any email (eDM) as a direct dialogue piece. This dialogue with your customers forms part of their journey with your brand and must always have a clear purpose. This concept is also known as ‘life cycle marketing’.
Tailoring your eDMs with the right content and language provides a greater chance of getting customers to engage at each stage by meeting them where they are on their journey. Clearly articulated messaging, well presented and engaging content which address the business issues/pain points proof statements which map to the prospects or customer needs will always be more effective than generic e-blasts to an entire database of often ‘cold’ contacts.
Let’s break down 4 key touch-points and target audiences in a customer journey.
1. New Subscribers
Getting visitors to your website is a great achievement, now they have found you it’s vital that you give prospects visiting your site an opportunity to subscribe.
Once signed up, its best practice to automate a Thank You eDM confirming their subscription to your brand. Don’t waste this valuable opportunity to make an even bigger impact…they are already interested in your business! First impressions do count, and while this email doesn’t need to be lengthy, it’s always great to let your new subscriber know what they are in for i.e. monthly newsletters, the latest articles and updates on industry information, special offers. Better yet, what can you offer your new friend to entice them back to your website/get involved with a NFP campaign? Give them the opportunity to connect further via your social media channels.
2. E-commerce – mid-cart, donation pledge or sign-up
Real-time data tracking is a standard offering from most of the marketing automation software and marketing intelligence providers. Providing your customers/donors with a log-in when they are visiting your website allows their activity to become identifiable. One of your prospects gets sidetracked ahead of purchasing a product? That’s no problem… some platforms offer software that can be set up to automate, and send a follow-up email prompting them to complete the action or transaction. This is a great opportunity to get clever with compelling copy, as well as to visually remind them what items they were interested in. The objective here is to get them to act, you are making their lives easier by double-checking everything they need. It’s also a good opportunity to highlight security features and a means to entice with special offers such as ‘Free Shipping’.
3. Win-Back Customer
There are lots of reasons why previously engaged customers, prospects or donors are missing in action. Your opportunity to get them re-engaged should focus on activity to re-target customers and non-profit campaign donors who are already warm to your cause. It’s an opportunity to let them know that you know they are missing, that you value them and you want them to come back. You may need to offer them something special – an invitation to participate in a special promotion, a new piece of valuable content like a whitepaper, or industry updates via newsletter. Before you rush to get something out you need to ensure that the offer is of value to your market? Remind your customer what your business is about, and how they will benefit from by visiting your website or e-commerce site.
4. Loyals, VIPs and Individual Segments of your Database
You know that generic spray and pray marketing i.e. one message to everyone, is ineffective and lazy. To increase the effectiveness of your email marketing campaign break down your database into smaller target audiences. Depending on how detailed your database is you could use things like industry, job functions, location, and degree of previous engagement as data attributes.
Identify specific reasons why this audience would benefit from engaging with you and develop the campaign accordingly. Target specific segments of your customers using special offers and language that talks to them. For instance, if you are providing products and services to the education sector talk their pain points in their language.
Your loyal customers deserve acknowledgement and reward through incentives and special offers. If they are your VIPs let your email marketing campaign make them feel valued and special with exclusive offers.
To increase the ROI of the campaign you could consider following up with telemarketing or other lead generation strategies, targeting one group at a time.
If you’re thinking about how you can engage your clients with creative and clever email marketing campaigns, get in touch with the team at MIH.