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E-Mail Direct Marketing - A Comprehensive Presentation


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A comprehensive presentation on E-Mail Direct Marketing that was part of 2-day lecture for Media & Communications students (Symbiosis Institute of Media & Communication) conducted by Arun N. Nair, a renowned consultant & veteran on digital marketing.

Published in: Marketing, Business, Technology
  • We calculate the number of clients you can get for your sector with google at: Calculamos el número de clientes que puedes conseguir para tu sector a través de google en: Acceda a hacer el cálculo.
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  • Good insight into Digital marketing !!! Appreciate Arun you have shared.
    I like to add few points from a user perspective (as a consumer of these marketing emails ).

    1. If there is an RSVP expected -- Its should be easy for the user to reply to the mail directly , Instead of screening thru the email to find the rsvp email id and type.

    2. So marketing mails are delivered as a large JPG / image file where even the email id / location cannot be copy paste .. Needs to be retyped.

    3. Emails with an option to add to outlook/gmail calender is better. Particularly when most of the users today read mails from mobile , it should be easy for the user to add to calenders.

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E-Mail Direct Marketing - A Comprehensive Presentation

  1. 1. Symbiosis Institute of Media & Communication, March 2014 E-Mail Direct Marketing
  2. 2. ARUN N. NAIR  Arun is the founder of Strata, a venture he started in 2012. He is also principal consultant for all assignments, drawing from his wealth of experience to guide businesses on their digital strategy.  He was Head – Digital with Mahindra Holidays and was one of the pioneers of introducing digital marketing within the entire Mahindra group.  In 2008, he was recipient of the prestigious best practice award from the Mahindra group, the jury was headed by Anand Mahindra.  Recently, he was conferred the Top 20 Digital Marketers citation by the world brand congress (WBC) and the CMO council.  Arun is a regular speaker at digital marketing and social media conferences across the country. He is also passionate about teaching and conducts workshops, guest lectures on digital. About the Trainer
  3. 3. Implications of Direct Marketing in the Digital Era
  4. 4. Digital has not only changed marketing, but changed the way we live for good.
  5. 5. We live in an era of instant gratification. Marketers certainly understand that.
  6. 6. Responding to conventional direct marketing is passé. Even traditional direct marketing is becoming hybrid#
  7. 7. The 3Ds of Digital Direct Marketing
  8. 8. Deliverability: Instant and follows the consumer.
  9. 9. Dynamic: Message tailored based on immediate purchase and behaviour patterns.
  10. 10. Decisive: Helps you take decisions quickly and effectively.
  11. 11. E-Mail Marketing is Digital Direct Marketing
  12. 12. Though other means and mediums exist in digital direct marketing, e-mail marketing remains the most popular.
  13. 13. Statistics & Observations on E-Mail Marketing
  14. 14. Did you know, companies view e-mail marketing as a better return on investment than PPC, content marketing, social media, offline direct marketing, affiliate marketing, online display advertising and mobile marketing! Source: Adestra
  15. 15. The average click-through rate for B2B marketing emails in Q2 2013 was 1.7% Source: Epsilon
  16. 16. 60% of marketers believe email marketing produces positive ROI. Source: Marketing Sherpa
  17. 17. 54% of emails sent by businesses are marketing messages. Source: Epsilon
  18. 18. 838 billion marketing messages have been sent in 2013. Source: Forrester
  19. 19. 91% of consumers check their email daily. Source: ExactTarget
  20. 20. 74% of consumers prefer to receive commercial communications via email. Source: Merkle
  21. 21. 66% of consumers have made a purchase online as a result of an email marketing message. Source: Direct Marketing Association
  22. 22. Structure of an E-Mailer
  23. 23. Body Footer
  24. 24. The Subject Line
  25. 25. Email subject lines are a form of headline. They perform the same function as a headline by attracting attention and getting your email content a chance to be read.
  26. 26. She’s likely to make a snap judgment based on that line about whether to open, ignore, delete or mark as spam!
  27. 27. Subject Lines Typically Perform One of the Following Actions …
  28. 28.  Educate “7 things content marketers can learn from fiction writers”  Ask a question “Did you miss this?”  Announce a sales or new product “Save up to 50%: Our annual sale starts now.”  Offer a solution to a problem “Pay down your loan”.  Jump on a popular topic “The state of Facebook newsfeed: What’s working now?”
  29. 29. Avoid generic subject lines; always choose clarity over creativity. “Humming Summer of Innovation” “Summer Internship Opportunities”
  30. 30. Keep it short (16-39 characters) where the first 10 characters make sense if viewed on a mobile device.
  31. 31.
  32. 32. When it comes to email marketing, the best subject lines tell what’s inside, and the worst subject lines sell what’s inside.
  33. 33. The Pre-header
  34. 34. The short summary text that follows the subject line when an email is viewed in the inbox.
  35. 35. The Pre-Header also referred as a Johnson Box or Super Subject Line, is seeing a resurgence in email marketing circles.
  36. 36.
  37. 37. It gets the key offer into the preview pane. The chances are that at least some of your recipients don’t have much time and want to go straight to your key offering
  38. 38. It reduces Spam complaints and helps deliverability, since it gives your users a clean and concise overview of your e- mailer.
  39. 39.  Provide an offer or coupon “Spring Sale Offer | Use coupon SPRING14”  Free shipping “Free Shipping for a Limited Period”  Summary of the email message “Includes an ultimate social media guide for marketers”  Thank the customer “Thank you for your interest, here’s something special for you” How are companies using pre-headers?
  40. 40. Under Armour, 5/21/13 — Built To Tackle The Sun & Sand It's Always Sunny Somewhere — Shop Now | View Online. Urban Outfitters, 5/20/13 — Are you ready to get the party started? Shop Summer Party Essentials GOOD
  41. 41. Victoria’s Secret, 4/16/13 — This one's for you, Angels... You have asked to receive emails from Victoria's Secret. If you have received this email in error, please unsubscribe here. Monterey Bay Aquarium, 5/21/13 — Bid Now for the Oceans: Last Chance! Having trouble reading this message? View it online. Ann Taylor, 5/20/13 — FINAL HOURS! EXTRA 50% Off Sale Final Hours: Take An Extra 50% Off All Sale Styles! BAD
  42. 42. West Elm, 2/18/13 — Today only: free shipping (plus a Presidents Day surprise) Use promo code FREE4PRES at checkout, some exclusions apply Threadless, 4/24/13 — Aerosoiled and 9 more new goofy designs by MADE artist Aaron Jay! Plus, hang out while we interview Aaron Jay at 11:30AM CST. BEST
  43. 43. The From Name
  44. 44. The "From" line is just as important as the subject line, if at times even more so.
  45. 45. The “From” name is critical, however, given that most recipients look at the "From" name first and will discard or mark as spam messages from senders they don't recognize.
  46. 46. Keep it consistent. Do not change “From” names repeatedly on the same publication. Many people sort their inboxes or filter based on name.
  47. 47. Do not use just an email address as your From line. This does not look good because most subscribers are use to seeing a name in that column.
  48. 48.  Company or Brand Name Vodafone, Flipkart, ShoppersStop  Product or Service “Mileage Plus” is sometimes used by United Airlines as a From Name  Personal Name Use the name of a specific employee at your company (e.g. a sales executive that manages the account)  With a Phone Number Include an office or mobile number so your customers can contact you easily after reading email: “Amit Joshi | 90011 12345”  Campaign Based Flipkart Sale, Marketo Events The Different Ways to Set-up From Name
  49. 49. The Body
  50. 50. The body is the meat of the email marketing message. The body is where the magic should happen. Taking the reader from initial interest to reading and action.
  51. 51. It’s overwhelming to have to digest an email that is trying to get across too many points. Instead, direct recipients to reply, call, or take another action to learn more.
  52. 52.
  53. 53.
  54. 54. GOOD
  55. 55.
  56. 56. BAD!
  57. 57.
  58. 58. BEST!
  59. 59. Mobile Friendly Designs
  60. 60.
  61. 61. Yet even with all this explosive growth in mobile email, 58% of email marketers are still not designing for it. Source: Marketing Land
  62. 62. Even worse, 31% of marketers don’t even know their mobile e-mail open rate! Source: MarketingSherpa
  63. 63. Responsive: The layout of a page responds based on the proportions of the screen on which it’s presented.
  64. 64. GOOD
  65. 65. GOOD
  66. 66. BAD!
  67. 67. BEST
  68. 68. BEST
  69. 69. Testing
  70. 70. One of the most powerful aspects of email marketing is that it can be tested (and thereby optimized).
  71. 71. There are no golden rules because what works for one audience won’t necessarily work for another. Testing is your biggest ally.
  72. 72.  Start Simple Test subject lines and headers first. It doesn’t take a lot of time or creative work to come up with a few simple variants, and the returns can be significant.  Test One Element at a Time If you test more than one element, you won’t be able to tell which variant drove the success.  Control for Time of Day and Day of the Week If you’re testing other variants, then send on the same day and at the same time to eliminate the timing variant.  Keep a Log of All Your Tests Record your findings so you can refer back to the specific variables tested and, more importantly, learn from them 6 Tips for Pro Testing
  73. 73.  Run on a Sample that is Representative Run tests on groups that are small, but large enough to determine a clear winner. The winning variables should then be incorporated into your larger mailing.  Nothing is Obvious Even the most insignificant of variables might have the most damming impact on a campaign. In the words of Sherlock Holmes “… when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth” 6 Tips for Pro Testing
  74. 74. What to Test?
  75. 75.  Subject line  From name  Day of the week  Time of day  Frequency  Copy length  Links vs. buttons  Number of links 15 Elements to be Considered for Testing
  76. 76.  First name personalization — in the subject line  First name personalization — in the email body  Font colors  Font styles  Call to action  Call to action — placement  Tone — human vs. corporate 15 Elements to be Considered for Testing
  77. 77. A/B Testing or split testing is a method of optimization in which the conversion rates of two versions of an e-mailer — version A and version B — are compared to one another using live results.
  78. 78. A/B testing takes the guesswork out of e-mailer optimization and enables data-backed decisions that shift business conversations from “we think” to “we know.”
  79. 79. Variant A Variant B
  80. 80.
  81. 81. Multivariate testing uses the same core mechanism as A/B testing, but compares a higher number of variables, and reveals more information about how these variables interact with one another.
  82. 82.
  83. 83. Campaign & Delivery
  84. 84. Building the Database
  85. 85. Purchased lists have a low quality rate and so using them will have a negative effect on your bounce, unsubscribe, spam and delivery rates which will all hurt your email reputation and future deliverability.
  86. 86. Building an opt-in database takes time and effort, but the rewards will be worth it as you should experience better KPIs like higher response and conversion rates at a lower cost.
  87. 87.
  88. 88.
  89. 89.
  90. 90. GOOD
  91. 91. BAD!
  92. 92. BEST
  93. 93. Double Opt-in Confirmation
  94. 94.
  95. 95. When a person “doubly opts in” they can be sent any email and it will appear directly in their email’s Inbox and not in the spam folder.
  96. 96. The Welcome E-Mail
  97. 97. A welcome e-mail show your new subscribers you appreciate having them as part of your subscriber community.
  98. 98. Welcome emails are also great for reminding subscribers exactly what they signed up for.
  99. 99. Welcome emails also give you, the marketer, a chance to promote other things like offers, upcoming events, etc.
  100. 100. Anatomy of a Welcome E-Mail
  101. 101.
  102. 102. GOOD
  103. 103. GOOD
  104. 104. BAD!
  105. 105. BEST
  106. 106. Segmentation & Targeting
  107. 107. Consumers are becoming more and more comfortable with targeted advertising and personalized content.
  108. 108. They expect marketers to know almost everything about them, and to use that information to create customized experiences.
  109. 109. Segmented email campaigns produce 30% more opens than undifferentiated messages. Source: Monetate’s Intelligent Email Marketing that Drives Conversions
  110. 110. Small, segmented sends are more engaging than large, untargeted sends. Source: Marketo Benchmark on Email Marketing Study
  111. 111.
  112. 112.  Multiple E-Mails To pull targeted lists, and send different emails to each segment.  Single E-Mail with Dynamic Content To customize a single email for different segments using dynamic content. Dynamic content allows you to create one email template with content that varies based on the recipient. Segments are used in two ways
  113. 113.  Who They Are Demographic attributes, such as income, title, age, and location.  What they’ve done Past behaviors and transactions. Types of Segmentation
  114. 114. Segmentation Based on Demographics
  115. 115.  Gender  Age  Job title  Company size  Industry  Interests  Geography  Birthday month Segmentation based on demographics
  116. 116.
  117. 117. Personas are research-based profiles of archetypal customers that represent the needs of many.
  118. 118. Creating personas brings a human element to your campaigns by allowing you to focus on your customers as real people, and then communicate with them on a more natural level.
  119. 119.  “Samir the Shopper” Is partial to impulse purchases and likes to “add to cart,” provided that each additional item is under Rs. 1000 and relevant to his needs.  “Chetan the CEO” Is an information-hungry whitepaper hoarder, who is looking to league up with thought leaders in his field.  “Vandana the White White Enthusiast” Will buy any white wine that isn’t a heavily-oaked Chardonnay, and that happens to be offered in bulk at a discount greater than 20%. Personas
  120. 120.  The Page Two Experience Capture basic contact information on the first page of your site, and then ask for more information on subsequent pages.  Preference Center Once customers have subscribed to your email marketing, invite them to your email preference center, where they can customize their profiles and help you help them.  Clicks Paths and Transactions By paying attention to a user’s click path and transaction activity, you can make inferences about his demographics. For example, marketers at can infer gender based on whether a shopper visits the women’s section of the site or the men’s section. How do you mine this demographic data?
  121. 121. Segmentation Based on Behaviors
  122. 122. Knowing who your customers are is great, but knowing how they behave is even better.
  123. 123. Learn to Read Buyers’ Online Body Language
  124. 124. When you combine online body language with transactional and purchase data (products purchased or owned, usage data etc.) you have solid and very powerful information to go on.
  125. 125. But when behavioral data is not used, your emails could be considered dissonant interruptions.
  126. 126. Triggered emails and segmenting campaigns based on behaviors are the top tactics to improve email engagement.
  127. 127. Source: MarketingSherpa Email Marketing Benchmark Survey
  128. 128. Source: MarketingSherpa Email Marketing Benchmark Survey
  129. 129.  Content Interactions The content a consumer views tells you a lot about his interests. For example, if a consumer uses the loan calculator on a financial services company’s website, he is likely interested in loan products.  Revenue Stage Use different messages for prospects that have never bought and are not currently evaluating solutions, prospects who are actively evaluating solutions, and active customers.  Transactional Data Using actual transactional data can be one of the most powerful forms of behavioral targeting. For a financial services company, this can include deposit and withdrawal transactions. For telecom, it can include data usage and add-on purchase. Examples of behavioral targeting
  130. 130.  Non-activity Targeting emails based on “missing” behavior can be just as powerful as targeting specific behaviors. For example, you can target consumers that do not respond to a campaign (no open; no click; no conversion) or that have not visited your website in a specific amount of time.  Campaign Response Target new campaigns based on how buyers have responded to prior campaigns. If a consumer always responds to content downloads but never to event invitations, stop targeting her for events. Instead, give her more content to download.  Cart Abandonment Cart abandonment is a good reason to use a behavioral targeted campaign to nudge your subscribers to finish their order. Send one personalized email reminder, or even a series of reminders to follow up. Examples of behavioral targeting
  131. 131. Best Times to Send E-Mail
  132. 132.
  133. 133.
  134. 134. Deliverability
  135. 135. Without a strong focus on deliverability, sometimes even quality, permission-based emails can get filtered out of your subscriber’s inboxes
  136. 136. Email deliverability is more and more about your reputation as a sender and less about the actual content of your emails.
  137. 137. Many ISPs and independent organizations use the blacklists as a reference filter applied to their inbound mail servers to aid in preventing spam, and to encourage internet security.
  138. 138. If you are a low-volume sender, a shared IP address might suffice, but if you are a high volume sender, a dedicated IP is usually best.
  139. 139. Your email provider should be able to handle relationships with ISPs and receivers, especially if your legitimate emails are getting marked as false-positive spam.
  140. 140.  Follow the Trust and Engagement Mantra Give your subscribers a good reason to opt in and set clear expectations about what’s to come. Then, follow through on your promises with timely, targeted, valuable emails.  Use Responsible Methods to Build your Lists Verify all new email addresses before sending your messages, and regularly scrub your contact lists to remove inactive addresses.  Choose a Solid E-mail Marketing Service Provider Make sure the vendor you choose is sophisticated enough to handle bounces, uptime, robust list-management.  Create Engaging Content If your content is boring or irrelevant, people won’t engage with it or, worse, will mark your emails as spam. 6 Best practices for deliverability
  141. 141.  Manage your Complaint Rate If your email marketing service warns you that complaints made against you are high, take the warning seriously. Set up an email address — — that a representative of your email marketing service or an anti-spam organization can use to contact you with any complaints.  Be Proactive About Closely Monitoring your Reputation Metrics Get your email reputation score to learn what you need to change about your program in order to improve your reputation and your inbox placement rates. 6 Best practices for deliverability
  142. 142. Measurement & Analytics
  143. 143. Engaging email is strategic email, and to achieve strategic value, email marketers need better metrics.
  144. 144.  Sent  Delivered  Bounced  Opens/ Open Rate  Clicks / Click Rate / Click to Open Rate  Unsubscribe Rate  Marked as Spam The Seven Most Common E-mail Metrics
  145. 145.  Sent Your sent metric is the number of emails that actually moved through the sending mail server (your ESP). It depends upon how your ESP tracks what’s been sent (whether or not it includes “bad” email addresses in the final count). Remember, while some of your emails are sent to bad addresses, they certainly don’t get received.  Delivered Delivered refers to the number of emails that were sent and not rejected by a receiving server. It’s important to understand that Delivered does not mean it landed in the recipient’s inbox. Common E-mail Metrics
  146. 146.  Bounced Bounced email is the opposite of Delivered email. There are two types of bounces: Hard bounces are messages that are permanently rejected (emails denied due to an invalid email address or because the recipient’s server has blocked the sender’s server). Soft bounces are messages that are temporarily rejected because the recipient’s mailbox is full, the server is down, or the message exceeds the size limit set by the recipient or ESP. Tip: Scan your list(s) and check for obvious typos, like a missing period or mistyped domain name (myemail@aol, myemail@aolcom, etc.). These errors can be fixed on the spot. Common E-mail Metrics
  147. 147.  Opens / Open Rate The number of contacts who opened the email at least once, and the Open Rate as the number of opens / number of mails delivered. Opens are tracked by adding a small, personalized image (“pixel”) to the email. As soon as the image renders, the ESP will register that the email has been opened. Note that this means Opens is a difficult metric to track, and there is also no guarantee that an email opened was an email read. Note: The bottom line is, the Open Rate is not 100% accurate, but it does serve as a good proxy for whether emails are being read, and as a relative measure to compare emails against each other. Common E-mail Metrics
  148. 148.  Clicks / Click Rate / Click-to-Open Rate When a subscriber clicks on a link, button, or image within your message, a Click is recorded. The Click-to-Open (CTO) Rate is the total number of Clicks (per subscriber) divided by the total number of Opens. Marketers often pay more attention to the CTO than the Click Rate, since the CTO helps to separate the reasons for opening from the reasons for clicking. Tip: Your CTA should be obviously placed (not hidden on the page) and include plain, clear language. Don’t make your audience work to find or interpret it. Common E-mail Metrics
  149. 149.  Unsubscribe Rate The number of contacts who click the “unsubscribe” link in an email and then follow through to successfully opt out.  Marked-as-Spam Rate The number of subscribers who reported your email as spam, divided by the number sent or delivered. Common E-mail Metrics
  150. 150. E-Mail Spam & Regulations
  151. 151. Email spam, also known as junk email or unsolicited bulk email (UBE), is a subset of electronic spam involving nearly identical messages sent to numerous recipients by email.
  152. 152. Image spam is an obfuscating method in which the text of the message is stored as an image and displayed in the email. This prevents text based spam filters from detecting and blocking spam messages.
  153. 153.
  154. 154.
  155. 155. Blank spam is spam lacking a payload advertisement. Often the message body is missing altogether, as well as the subject line. Blank spam can have been sent in a directory harvest attack, for gathering valid addresses from an email service provider.
  156. 156. Anti-Spam Regulations
  157. 157. CAN-SPAM (Controlling the Assault of Non- Solicited Pornography And Marketing) is an act that was passed in 2003.
  158. 158. That act is a law that establishes the rules for commercial email and commercial messages, gives recipients the right to have a business stop emailing them, and outlines the penalties incurred for those who violate the law.
  159. 159.  DO • Do include your valid physical postal address in every email you send out. • Do provide a clear and obvious way to opt out of every email you send out, and honor the unsubscribe within 10 business days. • Do use clear "From," "To," and "Reply to" language that accurately reflects who you are. This applies to the person or business sending the message, as well as the domain name and email address. Rules to Follow for CAN-SPAM Compliance
  160. 160.
  161. 161.  DON’T • Don't sell or transfer any email addresses to another list. • Don't make it hard to unsubscribe from emails. You cannot 1) charge a fee 2) make recipients take extensive steps other than simply replying to an email or visiting a single page on a website to unsubscribe themselves from your emails. • Don't use deceptive subject lines in your emails that misrepresent the contents of your message. Rules to Follow for CAN-SPAM Compliance
  162. 162. ARUN N. NAIR  Arun is the founder of Strata, a venture he started in 2012. He is also principal consultant for all assignments, drawing from his wealth of experience to guide businesses on their digital strategy.  He was Head – Digital with Mahindra Holidays and was one of the pioneers of introducing digital marketing within the entire Mahindra group.  In 2008, he was recipient of the prestigious best practice award from the Mahindra group, the jury was headed by Anand Mahindra.  Recently, he was conferred the Top 20 Digital Marketers citation by the world brand congress (WBC) and the CMO council.  Arun is a regular speaker at digital marketing and social media conferences across the country. He is also passionate about teaching and conducts workshops, guest lectures on digital. About the Trainer
  163. 163. e: m: +91 91670.86664 w: THANK YOU!