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Posts Tagged ‘email relevance’

Tiger Woods. How many column inches have been devoted to the famed golfer and his alleged infidelities?  It’s been several weeks since the news first broke, and yet we’re still reading about his decline in popularity.  Tiger has spent his entire professional career building up an image of himself being a straight, honest family man with integrity and values, but thanks to several alleged errors of judgment with – apparently – a multitude of young women, this image has been smashed to smithereens and his poor family has been blown apart.  Whilst these reported affair(s) have probably not affected his pocket (yet), his brand influence and standing with the general public has taken a massive nose dive and the general public’s memory is long.  Basically he’s going to have to do a hell of a lot to make himself popular again.

Don’t make Tiger’s alleged mistake.  This very public slide from grace by Mr Woods highlighted to me the importance of getting things absolutely right from the outset.  You invest valuable time and money marketing and promoting your brand / product so it’s absolutely imperative that you set customer expectations from the start and ensure that you always deliver what you promise you’re going to, sticking as closely to your brand values as possible and only send targeted, relevant content.  All of the time. 

Avoid the Spam Button

As email marketing has grown in prominence, consumers are receiving more and more emails and subsequently their patience is being tested and they are getting fed up with receiving irrelevant content.  The way they behave when receiving unwanted emails can vary dramatically from simply deleting your message outright, unsubscribing from your newsletter, or, at worst, clicking on the ‘report as spam’ button. 

Data Capture

Consumers expect content to be tailored to them but in order to this, they need to be willing to give you some information about themselves and in turn, you need to capture this information and use it intelligently, remembering that relevant messages can lead to just as many sales as offers or discounts.  Having a simple data capture form on your website on subscription can help you gather important quantifiable customer characteristics including age, income, location, number of children etc.  Alternatively think about sending a ‘welcome’ email after the initial basic subscription taking them to an incentive-based preference centre where they can indicate further information and interests which you can then use for more sophisticated segmentation.         

Segmentation

An understanding of different customer segments allows you to tailor your offer to individuals making your email stand out and capture the attention of your customers. According to Forrester  those who test, integrate web analytics and humanise content are four to six times more effective than those who blast out the same content to their entire database.  MarketingSherpa’s benchmark guide shows that segmented campaigns produce at least 30% more opens and 50% higher CTR than undifferentiated campaigns. (Source: MarketingSherpa Email Marketing Benchmark Guide, 2009).

Personalisation

Think about intelligent personalisation.  This isn’t simply a case of saying ‘Dear Joe’. Try personalising your subject line, content blocks within the text or even images. Test the extent of how the performance of your newsletter can be increased with an individual customer approach.

Testing

To make your email campaign as relevant as possible, don’t be afraid to look at all potential areas including subject lines, from address, content, images, landing pages and design  and repeat the age-old mantra TEST, TEST, TEST!

In short, get to know your customer.  If you listen to them and only deliver targeted, relevant content, you won’t go far wrong and will hopefully avoid being found by the paparazzi quivering underneath a windscreen shattered by a golf club brandished by a woman scorned. Sound advice I feel!

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