Years into email marketing overload, it’s no wonder we feel overwhelmed, underwhelmed, and think email is kind of a waste. Inbox zero isn’t a thing because we have too few emails. Email is still a smart way to reach and engage with your audience, if it’s intelligently used. You just have to have the right email strategy and create effective email messages that resonate with your target audience. But you? You’re special. You’re about to learn email marketing tips and tricks that actually work. And, abracadabra!
Email less frequently
We suspect this might be a relief to you. We give you permission to give yourself a break. The single best way to email smarter and get better responses, is to do it less. Yes, your name will be in front of your target audience less as well but, when it is in front of them, it will be meaningful, not annoying. Think quality over quantity.
We’ve all ordered a product somewhere along the way, just to get hammered by the company’s marketing emails every day afterward. Even if you love the product, you start to feel like they’re invading your privacy. They’re like the fairy tale villain at every corner. Where’s the value? Strong relationships are built on value, so scale it back. Send a shipping confirmation, sure, and a follow-up to make sure everything was received ok. But then wait. Don’t email again until you have something important to say that the recipient would find truly valuable.
Pay attention to cues
Just like in real life, there are plenty of cues you can learn to pick up on in the world of email. Sinister music cues the bad guy. If we just pay attention, the data from email marketing providers makes these cues more apparent, but we so often fail to make changes. There are a ton of tools and resources that offer you interesting insights, like email trends. You can see how much time has passed between when you sent an email to a prospect, and when they replied. You can also see how this time frame changes over time, whether positively or negatively. This single piece of data can predict whether or not the recipient is interested in becoming a customer. The shorter the passage of time, the more eager they are, and vice versa. This tells you how to approach this person – and when.
You can also review how recipients interact with the emails you send. Are they clicking on links and engaging with your content? Or are they deleting your email before they even open them? This tells you a great deal about how they view you and your brand.
Furthermore, there are often explicit cues we sometimes overlook. A customer may email you directly and say, “I’m too busy to consider this right now but I’ll touch base in Q2.” Instead of forgetting to take them off your general lists, immediately tag them in your email marketing software so they won’t get any email from you until the timeframe they specified. Then make a reminder to follow up at the start of Q2. Simply respecting your prospect’s wishes can make your emails infinitely more effective.
Timing is everything
If you sell magic wands, you wouldn’t hang out at the nail salon. “Hello, I see you have a fresh set of nails, may I interest you in flinging around a wand while they dry?” The timing is clearly all wrong.
The same goes for email. In an effort to feel like you’re engaging in marketing activity, it’s tempting to just get emails out there. So you pull your customer list and send an email with a discount offer. The problem is that half of those customers are in the wrong season, or touchpoint, or industry, to even use that offer. And it’s not a no-harm-no-foul type of deal. Send the wrong emails too many times, and you get unsubscribes or complaints. Or worse, you lose customers.
Personalize beyond merge fields
Finally, your emails must be hyper-personalized if they’re to make an impact. One of the best email strategies is to segment your customer database in your email marketing system in a variety of ways. Then, when you go to share information or discounts or ask for a purchase, you can send the same email to a specific list, but it’ll feel extremely personalized.
Merge fields are a good method to use to include personalization in email, but they’ve become table stakes. You need to go further. The actual content of the email should be relevant to the recipient, and the timing should make sense too.
Need help setting or executing an email strategy that’s smart – and works? Give us a call!