With all the excitement over the latest online marketing techniques, email seems to have lost its appeal. Perhaps you’ve seen open- and click-through rates dropping and you’ve moved on to greener pastures, like search engine marketing and social media. Certainly we are all jaded by the incessant, often indecent, random appeals that flood our inboxes. But email is not quite ready to go the way of the broadcast fax. Email is still very effective for an engaged audience that expects and wants to communicate with your brand.
The problem is that most marketers are still just indiscriminately blasting out email to large groups – which today is barely one level above a Viagra offer. If you take even a modest step up from the discount email systems, there is a powerful world of tracking, segmentation and a/b testing available to you. It requires a bit more strategy and campaign management, but when you realize the money you are leaving on the mousepad right now, you’ll be plenty motivated. Here are just a few examples that have proven to produce double-digit increased click-through rates:
Capture shopping cart abandons – Send offers within 24 hours, consider additional incentives.
Welcome series – Craft a progression of emails when people join your list.
Personalize – Not just a name, but based on their profile, browsing activity, recent purchases.
Transactional emails – Cross-sell when you confirm shipment or send a Thank You.
Triggered mail – Engage soon after a visit to your site or a recent purchase (online or in store).
Let me leave you with one simple tip that can double your overall open rate: Simply re-send the exact same email offer to all your “unopens” several days later with a new subject line. Moral? It’s not that they don’t care, they’re busy – and inundated. As always in marketing, we need to cleverly cut through the clutter. With email, it just means a bit of technology added to the strategy and the creative.