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Dreamforce 2013 11 Secrets to Writing Emails That Get Opened, Read, and Clicked

Marketo
Marketo
MarketoField Marketing Manager EMEA at Marketo

At this Dreamforce 2013 session, Andrew Kordek of Trendline Interactive and DJ Waldow of Marketo detail the secrets and strategies for improving the impact of your email marketing efforts.

Dreamforce 2013 11 Secrets to Writing Emails That Get Opened, Read, and Clicked

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11 Secrets to Writing Emails that Get
Opened, Read, and Clicked

© 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
This slide intentionally left blank.

© 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
Andrew Kordek (@andrewkordek)
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Co-Founded Trendline Interactive, a strategic full service email
marketing agency.
Lead all strategy for Trendline clients
Past: Groupon. Sears. Quest Software (now Dell)
Inbox Zero Hero: 750,000 emails across 15 inboxes
Right thing vs. Easy thing.
Coffee. Football. Family. Smart A$$. Practical jokes. Thrifty.
Clean. Brave.

Page 3
© 2013 Marketo, Inc.
DJ Waldow (@djwaldow)
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Bronto. Blue Sky Factory. Waldow Social. Marketo.
8th grade
Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing.
The Definitive Guide to Engaging Email Marketing.
“Best practices are those that are best for YOUR audience.”
Lover of beer, coffee, and people.
#GOBLUE
Eva, Cal, K-Dawg

Page 4
© 2013 Marketo, Inc.
Look Familiar?

Page 5
© 2013 Marketo, Inc.
Don’t suck at your own party
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It starts with trust.
Make it intuitive and fun. Treat them like gold.
Set expectations.
Ask yourself if you really need that data.
Don’t assume and don’t expect.
Audit every quarter.
Find out what works.

Page 6
© 2013 Marketo, Inc.

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Dreamforce 2013 11 Secrets to Writing Emails That Get Opened, Read, and Clicked

  • 1. 11 Secrets to Writing Emails that Get Opened, Read, and Clicked © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
  • 2. This slide intentionally left blank. © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
  • 3. Andrew Kordek (@andrewkordek) • • • • • • Co-Founded Trendline Interactive, a strategic full service email marketing agency. Lead all strategy for Trendline clients Past: Groupon. Sears. Quest Software (now Dell) Inbox Zero Hero: 750,000 emails across 15 inboxes Right thing vs. Easy thing. Coffee. Football. Family. Smart A$$. Practical jokes. Thrifty. Clean. Brave. Page 3 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 4. DJ Waldow (@djwaldow) • • • • • • • • Bronto. Blue Sky Factory. Waldow Social. Marketo. 8th grade Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing. The Definitive Guide to Engaging Email Marketing. “Best practices are those that are best for YOUR audience.” Lover of beer, coffee, and people. #GOBLUE Eva, Cal, K-Dawg Page 4 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 5. Look Familiar? Page 5 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 6. Don’t suck at your own party • • • • • • • It starts with trust. Make it intuitive and fun. Treat them like gold. Set expectations. Ask yourself if you really need that data. Don’t assume and don’t expect. Audit every quarter. Find out what works. Page 6 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 7. Welcome To The Upworthiest. Turn On Your Images And Buckle Your Seatbelt: Page 7 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 8. Who are you again? Flickr: smoovey
  • 9. Can you name the following people? Page 9 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
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  • 11. How many of the following do you recognize? Page 11 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
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  • 13. Do you trust the following brands? Page 13 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
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  • 15. If I don’t recognize you, if I don’t trust you, I’m less likely to open your email. Page 15 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 16. Big. Bold. Obvious calls to action. © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
  • 17. What’s the call to action? Page 17 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 25. Are you HUMAN? © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
  • 31. The Welcome Email Is Dead • Welcome emails or series tend to be forced content by organizations • Most. Some. Hardly. • Time to let subscriber behavior drive the next email • Behavior = email, site & offline • Subscriber drives relevancy • Investment in technology, people and testing to achieve optimal results Page 31 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
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  • 34. Nurture Crawl •Up to 30 day nurture program •First 96 hours are the most critical •Engagement drives subscriber into tailored program in first 4 days •A solid messaging and conditional content strategy must be in place prior to execution •Responses are tracked in SFDC and reps are notified to determine “hotness” of lead •Content must be educational and offer driven, but with a clear CTA •Designed with the flexibility for testing and modifications •Localization is a key aspect to tailored content •Any purchases removes subscriber from nurture No response. Next email in cadence Response tracked in XXX/SFDC. Rep notified of interaction/date and content viewed Page 34 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 35. Do your subject lines have C.U.R.V.E. Page 35 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 36. 2 of 5 Build subject lines that possess at least 2 of the 5 C.U.R.V.E. elements for the best chance to connect with today’s subscriber and get them to open an email. This will help you build sustainable workflows you can learn from and test over time. Page 36 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 37. R or V 1 of the 2 elements almost always is the R. (relevance) or the V. (value). You constantly need to test the right subject line/content mix to connect with today’s busy email subscriber. Page 37 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 38. Relevancy Page 38 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 39. Revealing Relevancy Relevancy According To Audience Sentiment Step 1: Identify Current Quality of Emails • Ask audience/prospects to rate the CURRENT Quality of the information contained in the emails they receive Step 2: Identify Perceived Importance of Topics • Ask audience/prospects to rank the same list in order of the LEVEL OF IMPORTANCE (i.e. Relevance and interest) they ascribe to each Step 3: Assess The Difference • Step 1: Reflects perceived importance (i.e. relevancy) to COMPANY • Step 2: Reflects perceived importance (i.e. relevancy) to AUDIENCE • Step 3: Are there any differences between what the COMPANY delivers (i.e. quality) and what the AUDIENCE ranks as important Page 39 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 40. Where Are The Gaps? Perceived Importance vs. Current Quality Topic Topic 1 Topic 2 Topic 3 Topic 4 Topic 5 Topic 6 Topic 7 Topic 8 Topic 9 Topic 10 Topic 11 Perceived Importance 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Quality Rank 2 10 6 7 11 4 8 5 9 1 3 Difference -1 -8 -3 -3 -6 2 -1 3 0 9 8 1. Negative Difference (in red) • Audience identifies these topics as significant, but believe company is delivering lower quality relative to the ascribed importance (i.e. Topic 2 &5) 2. Positive Difference • Page 40 © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Audience ranks topics lower in importance, but believe company is delivering higher quality relative to the topics perceived importance (i.e. Topics 10 &11)
  • 41. Relevancy Confirmed Analyzing the historic performance of these emails reinforces research findings Page 41 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 42. Timely. Targeted. Valuable. © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
  • 46. 101 Things You Could Be testing 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. Sender Names From Address Name Personalization Gender Segmentation Geographic Segmentation Other Demographic Segmentation (Income, Marital Status, Children, etc.) Occupation Prospect vs. Customer Loyal vs. One-Time Customer Last Open / Click Date Last Store Visit Date Intro Text—Content Intro Text—Copy Style Body Text—Content Body Text—Copy Style Closing Text—Content Closing Text—Style Header Image—Present / Not Present Header Image—Style Home City / State / Airport / Etc. Page 46 © 2013 Marketo, Inc. 21. Maps 22. Store / Branch / Office Location 23. Sales Representative 24. Travel Destination 25. Travel Time 26. Recent Transactions / History 27. Overt Recommendations (i.e., “You may also like…”) 28. Subtle Recommendations (i.e., personalized, but not overtly) 29. Weather 30. Price Brackets 31. Whitepapers 32. Organized vs. Unorganized Product / Article / Content Categories 33. Ad Unit Placement / Configuration 34. Ad Unit Sizes 35. Referral Offers 36. HTML vs. Text-Only 37. Mobile-First Layout 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53. 54. 55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60. Responsive Layout Animated GIFs Embedded Video Ratings and Reviews Price Points Price Strikeouts Font Type Font Colors Headlines Sub-headlines Signatures Personalities (e.g., Editor, Author, Sales Rep, Executive) Location Shots Lifestyle Shots Product Shots Links vs. Buttons Link / Button Placement Link / Button Copy / Call-to-Action Icons Bullet-Proof Buttons Postcard Layouts Newsletter Layouts Horizontal Scrolling 61. 62. 63. 64. 65. 66. 67. 68. 69. 70. 71. 72. 73. 74. 75. 76. 77. 78. 79. 80. Event Focus Polls Privacy Policy Language Unsubscribe Copy Opt-Down Heavy vs. Light Imagery Long Copy vs. Short Copy Phone Numbers (e.g., Click-to-Call) Social Media Buttons Facebook “Like” Teaser Copy Facebook Comments / Testimonials Facebook Friends that “Like” Something Follower Tweets / Testimonials Pins Local Foursquare Mayor Taglines Press Mentions Limited Time Last Chance Social Proof (e.g., Number of Likes, Tweets, Views, Comments, Etc.) 81. Exclusive Email Offers 82. Editors Pick 83. Number of Products / Articles / Etc. 84. Teaser Copy Length 85. Staff Favorites 86. Customer Favorites 87. Background Color 88. Background Images 89. Landing Pages 90. Preheader Text 91. Navigation Bars 92. Search Forms 93. Free Shipping 94. Percent Off vs. Money Off 95. Print Options 96. Versioning by ISP 97. Add to Address Book 98. Time of Day 99. Day of Week 100. Delivery by Timezone 101. Subject Lines
  • 47. Primary Testing Options Split Testing Simple Multivariate D.O.E. (Taguchi) 1 Factor | 2-X Options X Factors | Y Options 6-15 Factors | 2-6 Options < 10 Ads Tested 4-100+ Ads Tested 2K-32K Ads Tested Strengths: Strengths: Strengths: • Simple design & execute • Easy to understand Weaknesses: • One thing at a time • “Wrong path” potential Sample uses: • Subject lines • Simple creative testing Page 47 © 2013 Marketo, Inc. • Simple to design • Interactions measured Weaknesses: • Production capacity • Complex analysis Sample uses: • Offer/ price point testing • Copy / image testing • Best “recipe” delivered • Test lots all at once Weaknesses: • Complex setup & execution • Voodoo factor Sample uses: • Newsletter redesign • Template optimization
  • 48. Case Study Page 48 © 2013 Marketo, Inc. • Challenges – Declining response rates to a key revenue driving email – Any creative changes subject to comprehensive legal and medical review across multiple companies – enhancements needed to be limited to what was already approved • Solution – Designed and executed a Taguchi test using approved creative elements – 10 key factors – 18 creative versions – 10,368 theoretical permutations • Results – 8 weeks start to finish – Click through increased 445%!
  • 49. Where do you start? “We need to have a comprehensive and cohesive integration strategy between our social and email marketing ecosystem” - Someone Page 49 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 50. Be Social In Email, rather than how email integrates with social. • • Moving beyond the button Social Email • • • • • Page 50 © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Humanization of the corporate identity Spirit of social Social graphs Social proof Social icons
  • 51. Social Graph Page 51 © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Spirit of Social
  • 52. Social Proof Page 52 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 53. Key Takeaways • Move beyond the button and bring in the spirit of YOUR social. • Sharing and liking is emotional. Give them something really good to share and like. • Strategy first. Tactics second. • Accept that channels must work together on content, timing and execution for a common goal; the customer. Page 53 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.
  • 55. What does YOUR order confirmation email look like? © 2013 Marketo, Inc. Marketo Proprietary and Confidential
  • 58. All 11 Secrets on one slide. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. Focus on the experience Build and earn trust Move beyond the welcome email Create subject lines with CURVE Ensure calls to action are big, bold, and obvious Send HUMAN emails Achieve relevancy using research Send timely, targeted, and valuable emails Move beyond simple A/B testing Be social in email rather than focus on how email integrates with social Be AWESOME Page 58 © 2013 Marketo, Inc.