It seems that each week there is someone arguing that email marketing is dead or that it doesn’t have long before it is. Although email engagement has been in the decline over the past few years, mostly due to the rapid rise of social media, it can still be an effective tool when used correctly and isn’t social media built upon email with each site requesting you to provide an email and then send you notifications?
There are a few simple marketing techniques that can improve your email marketing and so increase customer engagement.
Optimize your emails for smartphones
The number one activity on smartphones is checking personal and work emails. With the percentage of people owning smartphones increasing at an amazing rate it makes sense to accommodate this method of reading emails by making sure that your emails look as good as they do with phone based email clients as they do with desk top. With phones there is no preview plane to help attract viewers to read your email, instead the first line is used and you don’t want your recipients to read “If you are having trouble reading this email click here”. Along with your subject line, a lot of thought is needed for the first line of your email in order to hook people into reading your content.
Segment your database
There is nothing more annoying then receiving an email which has no relevance to you resulting in people immediately flagging it as spam. For this reason it is vital to segment your database into groups so that emails can be sent to some people and not others in order to avoid being thought of as spam and only reach out to those who might potentially perform an action you intend, such as buy a product or click through to read an article.
Take advantage of current event
Email recipients react well to current events.
For this you need to be flexible and quick to react to breaking news or be organised enough to identify potential events/results that you could capitalise upon. For future events that you identify as an opportunity be sure to create multiple different emails depending on the outcome. An example of this could be building an email referring to the winner of the English FA cup final, create an email for each finalist and then send out the one which is relevant as soon as the final result is known.
Some events, such as weather, can’t be forward planned accurately but it is worth creating emails covering potential events. An example of this is Manchester Airport creating snow storm notification emails to send out just in case one occurs.
Complement email marketing with your social media activity
Just before an email is about to be sent out it is becoming a popularity technique of announcing it over various social media channels along with a link to where people are able to sign up to receive it.
An example of this is to send out a Tweet or publishing a Facebook message “Our monthly newsletter full of special offers is about to be sent out, to avoid missing out sign up here…” followed by a shortened url.
Provide exclusive incentives/offers for email receivers
People need to feel rewarded for receiving your emails, from the sender’s point of view the reward is being provided with the information they are sending but this is often not the case for the recipient. By simply offering people chances to win prizes or money off vouchers exclusively through email and making it known that they are receiving it because they are special. An example of this could be a special offer sent to individuals on their birthday.
Email marketing is far from dead, instead it’s down to the marketeers not using it to its full potential. If email does die it will be because it’s used incorrectly and is seen as a nuisance by recipients rather than a great means to find out information.