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Email Marketing Essentials Basics and Best Practices for Planning and Managing Effective Email Communications Programs Joel Book Principal, Marketing Research & Education Group @joelbook / #ExactTarget
Precision Dialogue has Replaced Mass Messaging Email Marketing has shifted from One Size a one-way Fits All broadcast to a data-driven one- to-one dialogue.
• Aids the Buying Process• Keeps Customers Engaged• Accelerates Customer Service
How Online Consumers Begin Their Day58% of OnlineConsumers Beginthe Day With Email.Source: ExactTargetSUBSCRIBERS, FANS, & FOLLOWERSReport #1, Digital Morning Full report available at www.exacttarget.com/sff
“Those who buyproductsmarketed throughemail spend 138%more than non-readers of email.”Source: Forrester Research“E-Mail Marketing Comes of Age.”
75% of social media users say email isthe best way for companies tocommunicate with them. MarketingSherpa, 2010
EmailMarketingInnovatorsReal MarketersReal Solutions Real Results
Belk Uses Email+MobileUpdates to Promote SpecialIn-Store Events and Sales Belk Facebook Page Belk Newspaper Insert Belk Customer Email
Email is the Backbone of Hitachi Data Systems’ Global E-communications Strategy Customer Newsletter Product LaunchWebinar Invite Product News Event Invitation Hitachi Data Systems uses email to: • Nurture leads; Keep existing customers connected to HDS • Support relationship management efforts of HDS field sales managers • Deliver relevant content to IT professionals in 30 regions and in 18 languages
DonorsChoose.org Used Email to Drive Donations of $500Kfor Joplin Classrooms Joel, Irving Elementary School Joplin, MO May 22, 2011
The 2011 Email Marketing Benchmark ReportNew Research and Insights forAccelerating Email Performance• Published September, 2010• Findings based on surveys with 1,115 email marketing professionals• Top email marketing challenges for 2011• Special sections on email tactics, list growth, relevancy, deliverability, and metrics• Testing and optimization methods for 2011 and much morehttp://www.sherpastore.com/2011EmailMarketingBMR1.html
Most Effective Ways to Use EmailMarketing• Aid the purchase decision-making of prospective customers. Provide relevant content that informs and persuades.• Retain existing customers. Deliver information that reinforces the brand relationship.• Fuel Word-of-Mouth! Invite subscribers to “share” email with work colleagues and friendsSales• Nurture leads; Provide information that aids purchase decision• Drive repeat purchase or renewal• Deliver offers triggered by customer behavior or customer insightService• Keep customers informed of product updates and special offers• Invite customers to attend special events• Use email to respond to inquiries, questions and problems
Life Cycle Email Campaigns are Most Effective The Customer Life Cycle Product Product Product Product Repurchase/ Brand Inquiry Evaluation Purchase Usage Renewal Loyalty Business Getting Business Keeping Once a person gives you permission . . .• Email aids the buying process.• Email drives repeat purchase, referrals.• Email keeps customers connected and informed.
Life Cycle Email Campaigns are Most Effective The Customer Life CycleLife Cycle Stage Product Product Product Product Repurchase/ Brand Awareness Evaluation Purchase Usage Renewal LoyaltyMarketing Attract Engage Convert Serve Retain Reward Goal • Send Welcome • Provide information • Provide links to • Invite feedback • Invite customer • Ask for referral to Email; Thank and links to endorsements and and reviews to join user friend or customer for website content to videos from • Send product group on colleague subscribing aid purchase satisfied customers news and service website • Invite customer to Email decision contribute content • Provide link to • Reinforce the value updates • ProvideProgram Preference • Send invitations to they will receive • Send triggered incentive to for blog or Center; Invite webinars and live from becoming a alerts re product renew or newsletter customer to events customer usage / service repurchase • Reward customer identify product • Invite product • Thank customer for reminders • Send purchase- for loyalty. needs and demonstration or purchase; Promote • Provide links to triggered cross- interests trial related product-related sell /upsell offer products/services resources on website
Framework for Planning End-User Email Programs The Customer Life Cycle Product Product Product Product Repurchase/ Brand Awareness Evaluation Purchase Usage Renewal LoyaltyWho Contact Type (User / Non-User) Offer orWhat Information Interest or NeedWhy (Declared / Inferred) Email Email Email Email Email Email Programs Programs Programs Programs Programs ProgramsWhen Timing / Trigger Landing PageWhere for Conversion Metrics forHow Measurement
Relevance and Timing are Keys to Email EffectivenessTriggered Email Communications Produce 10XBetter Conversion than “Batch ‘n Blast Email >10% Conversion Rate 3.9% 1.1% 2.8% Conversion Rate Conversion Rate Conversion Rate Blast Driven Profile Driven Persona Driven Behavior Driven Real-Time Triggered
Effective Email Marketing is Data & Technology EnabledSource: Forrester Research - April 2009 “Campaign Management Needs A Reboot”
Email Works Best When Teamed with Other Media Database Segmentation and Marketing Program Cross-Channel Management Program Planning Development and Execution Marketing Prospective SegmentOffline A Program Performance Measurement Identify Customers Customers & Prospects • Offer/ Message Customers with • Tactic Content Personalization Landing Page / Microsite Customer Specific Needs • Timing Program Development DemographicsProduct /Service Segment BNeeds, Interests Offer Select • Offer/ Message • Tactic Products Information • Timing Online Purchased Offline Analytics Segment Cand Lead Score Determine Timing • Offer/ Message Campaign • TacticResponse History • Timing Channels Data Acquisition / Lead Scoring Response Tracking/ Reporting
Lawn Care Update TeachesConsumers When and How to Use Scotts Products to Get Best Results Scotts Alert: Now is the perfect time to apply Scotts Turf Builder WinterGuard Fall Lawn Fertilizer to your lawn. Reply STOP to end alerts. Other charges apply.
My Scotts Lawn App 2.0 What’s New • Regional advice, not just product recos • More articles, videos, & Scotts products • Ability to contact Scotts (& picture identifier) • Calendar function: create your own lawn care plan • Share on your social networks • Supply List • Synchs with Scotts.com registration • Links to coupons & offers • Content from ATG is pushed via API to synch local advice on the app, bringing the customized lawn advice to consumer’s mobile devices. What’s Coming • Ability to measure your lawn size with GPS • Social badging based on activities • Gaming
Example: Websense Pre and Post Webinar Communication How Email Automation is used: • Prospects are invited to attend a webinar • Webinar registration is confirmed • Webinar reminder is sent • Post webinar survey is sent to attendees • All prospect activity tracked in CRM Email Automation Workflow
Volvo Uses Email to Help Dealers Sell NewConstruction Equipment
Volvo Uses Email to Help Dealers Sell UsedConstruction Equipment
Example: Volvo Construction Equipment Lead Workflow Data cleansingInformation Request (Website) Microsoft Dynamics CRM enables Field Sales Managers to track lead activity Lead report emailed to Field Sales Manager Confirmation email
Guidelines for Effective Email Subscriber AcquisitionAttract• Use SEO to attract potential customers to your website• Leverage social media. Invite “Fans, Followers, & Viewers” to Subscribe• Promote email sharing (Your Brand Fans are Your Best Marketers)Engage• Design your website/landing page to drive opt-in. Keep it simple.• Give visitors a “reason” to subscribe; Provide an incentive• Show example of the email(s) the subscriber will receive.Serve• Send Welcome Email to thank the customer for subscribing• Invite subscribers to identify needs, interests, preferences• Ask “Who else could benefit from this information?”
Websites have become the “Hub” of Marketing Word of Mouth Search Engine Sponsored Marketing Events Webinars Direct Mail Public Relations Website Trade Shows Online Print Advertising Advertising Corporate Broadcast Blogs Advertising Social Networks
Company Websites are Trusted Most by Consumers
Use Search to Attract Subscribers to Your Website The Customer Life Cycle Website Product Product Product Re-Purchase/ Brand Visit Evaluation Purchase Usage Renewal Loyalty Acquisition TacticsSearch (Paid and Organic) 93% business buyers 87% of commercial Online Advertising Lead go online to research website traffic comes Print Advertising Generation Marketing Events products and suppliers.” from organic search. Social Networks Source: Forrester Research MarketingSherpa
Example: HP Technology at Work Articles are personalizedDeals are personalized to to subscriber-definedHP products purchased or interests and preferences.relevant to SMBtechnology needs. Events are personalized based on location, HP products used or defined interests.
HP uses SEO to attract SMB technology buyers to its website and invites them to subscribe to Technology at WorkHP invites subscribersto identify preferencesfor newsletter content
HP explains whythese questions arebeing asked andhow informationwill be used tocustomizeTechnology at Work
93% of internet users turn toEmail to share content.Source: “Content is the Fuel of the Social Web”AOL and Nielsen Online, April 2011
DREAMFIELD’S USESEMAIL TO FUEL WORD OF MOUTH MARKETING Email Subscribers• Consumers: 454,000+• Healthcare Pros: 40,000+In 5 years, Dreamfields hasgrown sales from $5 Millionto $25 Million!
Hitachi Attracts Subscribers through Content Sharing Emails are designed to make it easy for subscribers to share articles, respond to offers and access content on the Hitachi Data Systems’ website. “Share This”
Subscriber AcquisitionGreat ways to build lists• Paid search to drive traffic to a registration form• Incentives – coupons, whitepapers, downloads• Leverage Social Media – Invite subscribers to “share” email with followers and friends on social networks• Ask for permission – even verbal is better than none• Direct Co-Registration (partner directly with a site – have that site ask its users if they want to opt-in)
Subscriber AcquisitionAwful ways to build lists• Buying lists, or appending email addresses• Emailing to trade show attendee lists• Emailing to public association lists• Obtaining addresses from websites (harvesting)• Indirect Co-registration (“targeted” lists where the recipient never was told they’re going to receive email from you specifically)
Email Design Best Practices1. Visually Organize for Eye-Tracking2. Design for the Preview Pane3. Optimize for Image Blocking4. Engage with Eye-Catching Design5. Use Graphics to Guide the Eye
Tip #1Visually organize for eye tracking. Use a wireframe. 1. Content Variety 2. Eye-catching words 3. Break up text & bullets 4. Relevant images 5. Hyperlinks
Tip #2Design for the Preview Pane –The majority of subscribers won’tgo beyond this point.Check List: Images On:• Header depth• Alt tags• Primary message• Pre-headers Images Off:• Image Placement
Tip #3 Don’t ignore image blocking – the majority of subscribers have images blocked by default.• Alt tags aren’t silver bullets• Message is hidden behind grey blocks and red “x”s• A blocked message can’t entice higher opens and clicks.
Tip #4Engage with Eye-CatchingDesign TechniquesWhy this design works• Logo is in upper left• TOC appears in in upper left quadrant• Article descriptions are short with links to full article on website• Shaded backgrounds and color headers designate content areas• Multiple social sharing options via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.• Type font and size are easy to read. Example: B-to-B
Tip #4Engage with Eye-CatchingDesign TechniquesWhy this design works• Emotional, relevant imagery• Clean, uncluttered graphics• Color backgrounds & borders for content areas• Buttons, color links to entice responsive action• Clear call-to-action• Interactive zones invite engagement: “Suggestions” and “Tell us about Yourself” Example: B-to-C
Tip #5Guide the eye with graphicintentionPerformance-driven design guidesthe eye seamlessly and strategicallythrough the message:• from the preview pane to theopened email• capturing the eye at desiredengagement stops• landing at the calls-to-action.
The Email Design ToolkitWhether you’re a savvy designer, amarketer, or an executive, our newDesign Toolkit has everything you needto improve your interactive design.In this three-part kit, we’ll help youmaster three important facets ofinteractive design:1. Design Philosophy. Seven Design Principles That Will Drive Customer Engagement2. Taking Design Beyond Email. 5 Easy Ways to Improve Conversions Across All Interactive Channels3. Designing for Today. Eight Tips on Designing for Outlook 2007 and 2010Download at the RESOURCES section of www.exacttarget.com
Landing Page Best Practices1. Make landing page design, headlines, and content relevant to the email’s offer or call to action.2. Remove any unnecessary distractions including other ads, promotions, navigation, etc.3. Make sure the Landing Page has one specific objective. Don’t force the subscriber to make multiple decisions.4. All content on page should “state” or “support” the value proposition and objective of the landing page (i.e. capture email opt-in, place order, register for event, etc.)
Landing Page (Before)Objective: Drive Signup for Free Email Newsletter Problem The form is lengthy and asks for 11 different pieces of information to subscribe to a “free” publication. These extra fields and steps create friction, making it more time consuming and aggravating to complete the offer form.
Landing Page (After) Solution The form has been reduced from 11 fields to just 3. The flow of the entire page is shortened, thereby substantially reducing friction and increasing conversion. If additional fields are needed to gather necessary subscriber data, do this post- conversion in the “Welcome Email.”.
Landing PageBest Practice Example: Layout Not this But thisThe flow of the two - 53.28% Decrease In Conversion 15.57% Increase In Conversioncolumn design onthe left required thecustomer to “goback” toward thetop of the page tosee the entire offer.This resulted in a53.28% drop inconversion.The simple verticallayout produced a15.57% increasein conversion!
Landing PageBest Practice Example: Creative ContinuityMake sure the email creative and landing page creative areconsistent. If they don’t conversion will suffer. Email Landing Page
Email Marketing Essentials Testing and Measurement Email Marketing Essentials
Email Campaign Elements for Testing100s of Potential “Success Factors” 1. Subject Lines 11. Images 21. Taglines 31. Landing Page 2. Sender Lines 12. Offer / Promotions 22. Creative 32. Polls / Surveys 3. Personalization 13. Response Buttons 23. Press mentions 33. Call to Action 4. List Segmentation 14. Day / Time Sent 24. Store Locations 34. Sound 5. Greeting Text—Content 15. Color 25. Phone Numbers 35. Numbering 6. Greeting Text—Style 16. Coupons 26. Animations 36. Themes 7. Body Text—Content 17. Pricing 27. Charts 37. Discounts 8. Body Text—Style 18. Free Trial 28. Strikeouts 38. Refer a Friend 9. Closing Text—Content 19 HTML vs. Text-Only 29. Signatures 39. Click to Talk 10. Closing Text—Style 20. Unsubscribe 30. Testimonials 40. Email Sign-upNOTE:Insights gained from testing may be applied to ALL MarketingChannels:(TV, Radio, Print, Tradeshows, Websites, Email, Social & Search)
Elements Tested Most for Optimizing Email Performance
Sender and Subject Lines Sender and subject lines are your first impression! • Most important factor in decision to open/delete – 60% read sender name/address first – 54% read subject line second • Have direct impact on open, click, conversion and complaint rates -- your bottom line • Subject Line testing should be mandatory!
To Determine Best Subject Line . . . TEST!Tips for More Effective Subject Lines Get their attention! (You have about 2 seconds!) Good: “A Special Offer Just for You” Better: “Download Your $20 Victoria’s Secret Savings Coupon Now.” Use your company or brand name in subject lines. Use shorter subject lines (35-45 characters). More effective. Check click-through statistics from email campaigns or keyword search results on your website before writing a subject line. Use most popular keywords in your subject line. Test multiple subject lines a day ahead and send the winner.
Don’t Take Deliverability for Granted!FACT: 1 in 5 emails sent never sees the inbox X
What Consumers Consider Spam 56% consider messages from known senders to be spam if they aren’t “interesting” 50% consider messages from known senders that are sent too frequently to be spam 48% are using “report spam” buttons for reasons other than to report unsolicited email SOURCE: Marketing Sherpa & Q Interactive
What is Email Reputation? Why Does it Matter?• Your email reputation is how ISPs view you and your email.• Reputation is driven by complaints; Unclear opt-in practices drive complaints• Email reputation controls access to the inbox: • Bad reputation: Emails trapped in spam folder or are blocked • Good reputation: Emails delivered to the Inbox• Your Sender Reputation is based on: • Spam complaints • Spamtrap hits • Delivery-vs-bounce percentages • Authentication (Sender ID, Domain Keys, SPF) • Third-party blacklistings• ISPs plan on more domain-based measures in future
Using SenderScore.org from Return Path 0-100 Score. Higher is better Check your Reputation! Use Return Path’s free www.SenderScore.org tool.
Building a Good Sender Reputation1. Earn the subscriber’s trust! Use an honest, straightforward opt-in process to start your relationship effectively.2. Serve your subscribers. Deliver relevant content. (If people don’t want your mail, your reputation suffers.)3. Comply with CAN-SPAM (as a starting point, not finish point)4. Honor unsubscribe requests.5. Remove addresses when they bounce.
Building a Good Sender Reputation6. Unsubscribe people who file spam complaints.7. Don’t play games with permission.8. Send people only what they expect.9. Use clear, easy-to-understand processes for opting in and unsubscribing.10. Don’t buy lists, don’t append. Purchased or Rented lists will kill you. It causes reputation and blocking issues that are hard to fix.
Your Reputation is at Stake. Protect it.The Reputation EquationHow to Monitor and Manage YourEmail Sender Reputation.Download from theResources section atwww.exacttarget.com
10 Tips for Effective Email Marketing1. Design your websites(s) to engage visitors. Provide access to useful content; Use SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to attract prospective customers to your website.2. Invite website visitors to subscribe to email. Give them a “reason” to subscribe. Tell them what they will receive.3. Send a Welcome Email to each new subscriber. Thank them for subscribing. (Optional: Provide an incentive (i.e. coupon) to take action.)4. Create a Subscriber Preference Center. Use it to identify needs and interests. Use that data to deliver relevant, timely content.5. Develop email programs specifically for each stage of the customer life cycle.
10 Tips for Effective Email Marketing6. Pre-Sale. Use email to provide information that aids the customer’s decision-making process.7. Post-Sale. Use email to keep customers engaged. Deliver information that enhances the product usage experience.8. Integrate email with mobile. Invite email subscribers to opt-in to receive text alerts about special promotions or events on their smartphones.9. Follow proven design techniques for email and landing pages. Test and refine to optimize performance.10. Integrate email technology with CRM, e-commerce and reservation systems; Automate triggered sending based on customer data, transaction or event.
Thank You!Joel BookExactTarget, Inc. firstname.lastname@example.org EmailMarketingbytheBook.com @JoelBook http://www.linkedin.com/in/joelbook