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E-newsletter consolidation for greater engagement and results

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The National Association of Realtors combined data, collaboration, and empathy to streamline its enewsletters and produce better results. Case study delivered at the 2017 Association Media & Publishing annual conference.

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E-newsletter consolidation for greater engagement and results

  1. 1. consolidating eMail communications for greater engagement and results 06.28.17
  2. 2. Hilary Marsh Chief Strategist & President Content Company, Inc. Julie Fournier Creative Director National Association of Realtors® fournier@realtors.org Welcome.
  3. 3. consolidating eMail communications for greater engagement and results 06.28.17
  4. 4. getting to “less is more” 06.28.17
  5. 5. More is better.
  6. 6. More.
  7. 7. http://www.technologist.eu/the-mindfulness-movement-connecting-body-and-mind/ consolidating email communications for greater engagement and results
  8. 8. http://www.technologist.eu/the-mindfulness-movement-connecting-body-and-mind/ do less, but better.
  9. 9. Anyone could make one! Instant, delivery! Direct access to individuals! Low (or no)overhead! Easy to use!
  10. 10. eMail became sexy
  11. 11. You’ve got mail! lots and lots of mail
  12. 12. audience
  13. 13. content Industry and association news Information & data Marketing messages Registration details Committee communications “association-to-association” communications
  14. 14. 35 newsletters
  15. 15. Is there duplication, overlap? Are they branded appropriately? Are they being measured accurately, if at all? Are they coordinated and cost-effective? Do they work well together?
  16. 16. 100 million 2008 87 million 2007 50 million 29% 20% 19% As volume went up, open rates dropped 2009 2009 2010 2008
  17. 17. Senior management: Didn’t see the problem Marketing: Programs and products Publications: Trends and news Divisions: We know our niche, we know our people All inwardly focused and set in our ways. competing mindsets
  18. 18. Photo by Maarten van den Heuvel on Unsplash
  19. 19. we surveyed members What do they want? What kind of communications? What topics are most important?
  20. 20. •  Simplified format & frequency •  Less variety, consolidate where it makes sense •  More concise, clearer headlines, subject lines •  Communicate less, but do it better what kind of communications
  21. 21. •  Court decisions •  Education •  Programs •  Member benefits •  Technology trends •  Legislation & regulation •  Code of Ethics •  Professionalism •  Housing stats •  Economic data •  Selling & marketing •  Niches most important topics
  22. 22. 23 http://www.slideshare.net/est3ban/empathybased-personas-gaining-a-deeper-understanding-of-your-audience-presen empathy personas customer journey & strategy work done by staff
  23. 23. Anthony SusanAllen Maggie personas
  24. 24. •  An advantage – in my business, in the marketplace •  “Help me earn, learn, and be empowered.” •  Help taking control of my business and making it thrive •  Stay in touch with the pulse of the day-to-day business •  A conversation about my future what members wanted
  25. 25. personas
  26. 26. •  Planned by staff from a cross-section of departments •  Involved staff from a cross-section of departments •  Two full days away from regular work, flew DC staff to Chicago àmanagement buy-in •  Each department sent examples of their communications in advance Two-day communications summit
  27. 27. 1.  Know each other, know what we all do – what communications, what frequency, what purpose 2.  Identify opportunities to create efficiency, reduce duplication, coordinate/leverage each other’s vehicles 3.  Help department communicators be aware of the tools out there to modernize/streamline production 4.  Why do our e-newsletters look different? Why do they mention certain programs and not others? The goals we set:
  28. 28. 5.  V-8 moments I could have reached an entirely different and relevant audience 6.  It might be that the audience is NOT relevant, but we want the decision to be a conscious one. 7.  At some point, we look unprofessional to our audiences: typos, conflicting or repeating information communications summit goals
  29. 29. Where we landed
  30. 30. •  Do less, and do it well à Less = More •  Focus on member needs and wants •  Make data-driven decisions à research, measure, analyze, adjust •  Make communications clear, concise, and easily identified as from NAR •  Unify messaging under a compelling theme a communications strategy
  31. 31. “NAR is your business edge.” •  Supports the Strategic Plan •  Supports all of NAR’s programs & services •  Creates the lens through which we focus our messages a unifying statement
  32. 32. HOW DO WE DELIVER THAT? WHAT DOES THAT LOOK LIKE? IS IT EVEN POSSIBLE??
  33. 33. a first step One, weekly, all-member e-newsletter •  Reduced NAR e-newsletters by 50% •  Reduced email volume to each audience Editorial oversight •  Ensured clear, consistent, concise content & messaging
  34. 34. what’s NOT folded In •  AE communications •  Governance emails •  Emails to conference registrants •  Emails based on geography or past purchases •  Emails from affiliated organizations that the member has joined
  35. 35. a weekly newsletter •  Balance between universal elements and customizations that each member can choose •  Universal elements: –  The association’s most important issue of the week – written “from the president” by the speechwriter –  Association benefits – displayed as ads, visual
  36. 36. NAR: Working for You Information from NAR’s leadership, high-priority issues Your Information Picks Customizable by each member More from NAR Recommendations about NAR programs and offerings the weekly report
  37. 37. Customization options •  Topics – matched the legacy newsletter •  Integrated with our legacy database •  What if someone didn’t choose any topics? •  How to de-dupe, so no one got the same item in more than one category
  38. 38. 18 categories to choose from 1.  Special Offers 2.  Industry News 3.  Sales & Marketing 4.  Research & Statistics 5.  Working with Buyers 6.  Legal Issues 7.  Educational Opportunities 8.  Technology 9.  REALTOR.com 10.  Land 11.  Resort & Second Home 12.  Legislative & Regulatory Issues 13.  Commercial 14.  Meetings & Events 15.  Professional Standards 16.  Appraisal 17.  Community Programs 18.  Global
  39. 39. Step 1: Enter Content Headline (enter 5 - 7 words) (required) URL for the item (required) Synopsis (enter up to 50 words) (optional) Add photo (optional): Browse Step 2: Choose Distribution Suggest up to three categories for this content item: Industry News from REALTOR® Magazine Top real estate news and trends from around the country Who should the newsletter editor contact if there’s a question? Phone extension Photos must be 80 x 80 pixels Headline and synopsis writing tips: Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud .Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud . Sales & Marketing Tips, tools, and trends in selling, marketing, and branding Research & Statistics Housing data from NAR, and other research relevant to REALTORS® Working with Buyers Tips for REALTORS® specializing in buyer representation as well as information about NAR’s Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation Special Offers for REALTORS® Discounts and other benefits available only to NAR members from the REALTOR Benefits® program, as well as other NAR offers Legal Issues NAR analysis of recent real estate-related court cases and information about compliance with real estate laws Land News and events relevant to REALTORS® who engage in land sales Resort & Second Home Updates about resort/second-home markets and information about NAR’s Resort & Second Home certification program Legislative & Regulatory Issues Congressional and federal agency activities affecting REALTORS® Commercial News about commercial real estate issues and information about NAR Commercial’s offerings Meetings & Events News and Notes about upcoming major NAR meetings, includingREALTORS® Conference & Expo, Midyear Meetings, RPAC Conference, and Leadership Summit Professional Standards Policy changes and new resources, such as updates to the Code of Ethics Arbitration Manual or changes in model MLS rules
  40. 40. Step 3: Add Notes or Comments Request a publish date: Submit this request Reset form | Cancel request This item is critical to all members; please consider for the all-member section. Representative (ABR®) designation Special Offers for REALTORS® Discounts and other benefits available only to NAR members from the REALTOR Benefits® program, as well as other NAR offers Legal Issues NAR analysis of recent real estate-related court cases and information about compliance with real estate laws Educational Opportunities Upcoming webinars, online classes, other educational offerings for REALTORS®, and sessions at NAR meetings Technology Tips, tools, and trends in technology for real estate professionals REALTOR.com News and offers from REALTOR.com, NAR’s property- listings Web site NAR Commercial’s offerings Meetings & Events News and Notes about upcoming major NAR meetings, includingREALTORS® Conference & Expo, Midyear Meetings, RPAC Conference, and Leadership Summit Professional Standards Policy changes and new resources, such as updates to the Code of Ethics Arbitration Manual or changes in model MLS rules Appraisal Updates about NAR’s appraisal offerings and information of interest to appraisers Community Programs Updates about NAR’s Housing Opportunity, Smart Growth, and Diversity programs, as well as the HOPE Awards and Good Neighbor Awards programs Global Information about NAR’s Global Business & Alliances program and other resources to help REALTORS® attract and serve global buyers in local markets
  41. 41. strategy & governance •  What goes in the all-member section? Who decides? •  How many categories can an item be tagged with? Who decides? •  How many times can an item be included? Who decides? •  What should the headline say? Who decides? •  What should the copy say? Who decides?
  42. 42. someone’s job! •  Collect all submitted items (send out regular reminders) •  Edit à after-hours task •  Review •  Proofread samples
  43. 43. How has it worked out?
  44. 44. What’s next?
  45. 45. Hilary Marsh Chief Strategist & President Content Company, Inc. @hilarymarsh hilary@contentcompany.biz Julie Fournier Creative Director National Association of Realtors® fournier@realtors.org Thank you.

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