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Email Marketing - the power of Permission


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John White of 4T2 explores the in's and out's and the do's and don't of email marketing

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Email Marketing - the power of Permission

  1. 1. Email Marketing The Power of Permission John White
  2. 2. Agenda What is permission? The legal minefield Strategy: the four corners How to win permission Anatomy of an email Testing and measuring
  3. 3. What is permission?
  4. 4. What is permission?
  5. 5. What is permission? Permission is non-transferable Permission is selfish Permission is a process, not a moment Permission can be cancelled at any time Seth Godin Permission Marketing
  6. 6. The legal minefield Outside UK: differing regulations e.g. CAN-SPAM in USA UK: Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 1. Can’t conceal identity 2. Must provide a valid address for opt-out requests 3. Can’t email individual subscribers without prior consent unless: Email collected during negotiations for a sale AND Message relates to similar products and services AND Recipient initially given opportunity to opt-out Individual: residential subscriber, sole trader or unincorporated partnership Business-to-business: no consent restrictions UK details from Information Commissioner’s Office:
  7. 7. The legal minefield Our advice: Opt for opt-in!
  8. 8. Strategy: the four corners 1. Segment your audience – Value to your business – What motivates them? 2. Decide objectives: – Attention, Interest, Desire or Action (AIDA)? – Acquisition or retention? – Budget (time as well as costs)
  9. 9. Strategy: the four corners 3. What’s in it for them? Money Email only offers Nearly money Sweepstakes or points: but does the recipient value them? Information Humour How does this fit your objectives? 4. Plan frequency and personalisation
  10. 10. Strategy: is information powerful? Is your newsletter newsworthy? What do your readers really want to read? What level of content can you afford to create? Can you recycle your content? – Email marketing – RSS – Blog / website resource centre – Marketing literature
  11. 11. How to win permission DO NOT BUY: permission can’t be transferred Website Telesales Face-to-face: – Trade shows, in-store, meetings Advertising Correspondence: – Email signatures, invoices, order confirmations ‘Refer a friend’ schemes
  12. 12. How to win permission Prompt to sign-up on every page of site Minimise fields and clicks required to sign-up Show benefits (sample content) and state frequency Brief explanation & link to privacy policy: XYZ will not use your email address or information for any purpose other than distributing our Industry Review and related special reports. View complete Privacy Policy. Allow them to set preferences Piggy-back sign up: e.g. during online purchase
  13. 13. Anatomy: from/sender 50% of readers delete based on sender or subject line From/sender is the first thing people look at Use a relevant email address: – E.g. Sender description: 16 characters or less No named individual (unless readers know you) Connect ‘sender’ to subscription type chosen: – XYZ Offers
  14. 14. Anatomy: subject line Be intriguing but avoid tricks 50 character maximum - prioritise words Don’t repeat sender details Tips to avoid spam filters: – Don't make “free” the first word – DON’T USE BLOCK CAPS – Or multiple exclamation points!!! Sender & subject line checker:
  15. 15. Anatomy: preview pane pain 69% of readers frequently use the preview pane Hotmail to evolve to ‘Windows Live’ with preview pane. Gmail already uses snippets 45% of readers rarely or never download images within preview pane 75% of preview pane users preview 2–5 inches in horizontal format Source:
  16. 16. Anatomy: preview pane pain Avoid deep image headers Use single column, horizontal layouts ‘In this issue’ teasers in the top section Most popular links first Move non-critical information to footer
  17. 17. Anatomy: HTML v text content No such thing as personal HTML email Images blocked by default by 53% of email software or ISPs Offer plain text option with full functionality ‘View web version’ alternative Validate HTML: Use standard link colours and no Click Here Host images on website
  18. 18. Anatomy: content style Learn from the web: – Read 25% slower on screen – Jakob Nielsen web usability research: Concise: 58% improvement Scannable layout:: 47% improvement Objective language: 27% improvement Combination: 124% improvement Learn from direct mail: – Personalise – Repeat calls to action – Give a deadline – Develop a personality
  19. 19. Anatomy: spread the word Include ‘forward to a friend’ and ‘print options’ Include sign-up for new recipients Cross-promote different email campaigns
  20. 20. Testing & measurement Test on different email software Track click throughs and actions Be sceptical about: – ‘Read’ statistics – Conversion benchmarks: ‘messages sent’ to ‘responses’ Split testing – 100 responses gives 95% predictive accuracy – Testing an option with a likely 5% response requires 2,000 emails Tracking bounce-backs: – 30% of consumers change their email addresses annually – High bounce backs may be regarded as spam
  21. 21. In summary Permission: – Earned not bought – Selfish – Easily squandered Content: – Valuable – Clear – Consistent The tools: – Understand limitations of email software – Use e-marketing tools to automate the process
  22. 22. Email Marketing The Power of Permission John White