Even as one of the oldest and most mature digital marketing disciplines, email marketing continues to change and evolve quickly. Brands that are able to change along with it will continue to be able to take advantage of one of the most ROI-providing channels, while those that can’t will increasingly find themselves in the spam folders of their audience.
A recent article from VentureBeat highlighted the “growing ecosystem of marketing automation platforms” and their cloud-based threat to traditional email service providers. According to a recent report, 77% of marketing automation users use their automation platform in place of an email marketing tool. Only 13% use marketing automation in tandem with an email marketing tool.
The reason for this trend is clear: across all industries, the average email open rate is less than 23%, and the average click-through rate is a mere 3.26%. That means almost 97% of marketing emails fail to convince their recipients to act!
A Rundown of Email Marketing Best Practices for This Year
video from Jimmy Kim
Email marketing must become more adaptive and better-tailored to the persona of their audience and their place in the buyer’s journey. Not surprisingly, full-scale marketing automation of email personalization and distribution produces on average an 80% increase in leads and a 77% lift in conversions.
If you want to survive in the world of email marketing, you’ll have to invest heavily in the talent and tech needed to take advantage of three email marketing trends that are proving to be effective.
1. More Elaborate List Segmenting
Segmentation means dividing an email list into sections based on demographic information, buying stage, and past interactions.
At its most basic level, segmentation can be based on age, gender, or business size. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Modern automation platforms offer email marketing staffing a host of advanced segmentation options, most notably characteristics like purchase history, acquisition channel, geolocation, and engagement level (i.e., open and click-through rates).
Because every list contains people in different stages of the buying cycle, a one-size-fits-all approach is incredibly inefficient for both nurturing leads and generating sales. Each recipient’s stage in the buying cycle calls for different levels of interaction and especially different offers and calls-to-action.
The proof is in the numbers. In one success story, Totes Isotoner Corp. segmented their email marketing campaigns based on the product categories each subscriber visited. The result? An impressive 7,000% lift in sales over a 14-month period.
2. Granular Personalization
Personalization is the act of sending emails that reflect the unique traits and interests of the person receiving them.
The easiest way to start personalizing emails is by including each customer’s name. But again, that’s just a start; elaborately developed personas can also greatly enhance sophisticated personalization tactics.
Personas are archetypal models of ideal customers. One of the simplest (and most effective) approaches is to divide a list into two broad categories: prospects and customers. By personalizing each email based on whether someone has actually made a purchase, you’re able to target current customers with upsells and prospects with special deals or entry-level offers.
Personalization also means keeping an eye on the clock–in other words, timing your emails. Your mailing list may include people in different countries and time zones. It’s important that emails are sent when they are most likely to be opened. Simply put, don’t schedule emails at 9 a.m. EST for everyone in a list. Schedule those emails for 9 a.m. in the recipient’s time zone. Again, this is where advanced marketing automation staffing and tools are essential.
3. Growing Customization Capabilities
The growing customization capabilities of emails allows you to tailor them specially to align with your brand. Distinct color schemes, high-quality and highly relevant images, and a unique brand voice all help to separate your emails from the competition.
For example, high-end clothing manufacturer Ralph Lauren customizes its brand by focusing on a clean, classic style. Contrast that with the more casual, personable Jack Threads, which focuses on a much younger, more price-conscious audience. In close collaboration with your creative staffing, your email marketers should be able to integrate your email messages effectively with the rest of your digital messaging.
Along with design attributes, your business can also customize emails by sending discount coupons based on recipient buying history or send automated reminders to people who have abandoned their carts prior to completing a purchase.
Today, effective email marketing means more than merely sending one mass email to your entire list. The key is to understand that real people, unique individuals, make up that list. Segmenting, personalizing, and customizing are all proven methods that will ensure your brand evolves instead of dies. Step up your marketing automation recruitment game and start acquiring the emails tools and talent you need to remain relevant.
Article Source: VentureBeat
Additional Read on Effective Email Marketing Staffing
3 Ways Email Is Embracing the Trends That Were Supposed to Make It Obsolete
The eulogy for email has been in slow-clap mode for a while. With social app after app after app promising to make communication faster than it already is, it’s become a common theory that email is, if not dead, well on its way.
Of course, not everyone agrees (there’s even a whole website devoted to proving email is alive and well).
But there’s no doubt email has evolved, from the original snail-mail killer to a data-driven, customer-focused fox of a form. In fact, some say email is the leader of the pack. More
Email Marketers Move to Cross-Channel, Real-Time Communication
The enduring quest to be as pertinent and timely as possible is one of the top trends affecting email marketing. 2015 will be an important year for brands looking to shift toward a next-generation approach to real-time email marketing, which most will find involves more than just email, according to a new eMarketer report, “Email Marketing Benchmarks 2015: Are Performance Metrics Revealing Signs of Consumer Fatigue?” More