N3wmedia email marketing


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N3wmedia email marketing

  1. 1. Hitting the mark with email marketing.
  2. 2. In brief Deploying effective email marketing is not a trivial exercise. With increasing volumes of Email marketing remains a cost effective and have concerns regarding email deliverability. measurable marketing tool. To benefit it must With ever more email arriving at our PC’s and be deployed correctly. Some simple steps will mobile devices will your marketing messages ensure you avoid common pitfalls: arrive, be read, and crucially acted upon? What steps do marketers and business owners need to take in order to ensure that they permission optimise return on investment? Good email marketing wins over consumers: Is email marketing still relevant? commentary that marketing has therefore been redefined, some may perceive that email marketing has been superseded. Email marketing’s effectiveness and ROI have been proven consistently over time. It continues Source: Emarketer to deliver good results for those deploying it carefully, and remains a highly relevant marketing tool. Ask for permission not forgiveness Permission marketing is an established concept and is of paramount importance online. Conducting permission-based campaigns will have a dramatic impact on the deliverability and response rates. From our own research, n3w has found that the same design and message can achieve an average 40% response rate when sent to an opted in (permission) list, compared to typically 1% or less when sent to a list who had not specifically opted in. In addition to the call to action being ignored, the sending email address / IP address is vulnerable to being blacklisted, leading to online reputation damage. For these reasons most ESPs (Email
  3. 3. Service Providers) will not allow the use of email is a generally accepted request. A recent non-permission based list to be used on their study by Pontiflex found that only 12% of adults servers. information to marketers. However 96% of those surveyed had knowingly and willingly provided their email address to an organisation in order to receive special promotions or additional information. Harris corroborates the Pontiflex study. Harris surveyed 2,064 adults regarding their willingness to share Social Networking information with organisations. They learned that whilst 17% of 18 – 34 year olds would, this diminished to 8% of 35 – 44 year olds and 7% of 45 – 54. There is a clear message for marketers and Obtaining permission can be problematic, business owners. Online users are willing to especially for organisations seeking to prospect receive valuable communications via email from for new clients via email campaigns. A list of brands, but not through social media channels email addresses purchased from a list broker at this time. Despite the popularity of real time does not constitute an opted in list. The email addresses supplied to you have not specifically to offer a much more controllable and less given their consent to receive marketing disruptive environment in which to receive brand material from you’re your organisation. related marketing messages. Therefore such lists will probably deliver a low response rate and will potentially contravene the terms and conditions set out by your ESPs. How does an organisation create an opted in list? There are several solutions: Telephone or contact in order to explicitly obtain permission Offer a very compelling reason for sign-up via the web others to subscribe Specifically obtain permission when meeting new business contacts By comparison to obtaining permission to
  4. 4. Permission does not 4. Avoid overloading subscribers with too many communications. Consider age well frequency, length and easy of reading when planning email campaigns. Having given permission, subscribers do appear to forget they took this action over time. It is 5. On occasion subscribers will important for organisations to implement action email an unsubscribe request. Despite the in order to remind subscribers of their consent, availability of a self-service unsubscribe but also to maintain their interest. Some simple process. These requests should be deal steps to achieve this: with efficiently. In the event of receiving a complaint, the organisation requires a robust 1. Remind subscribers in process and should utilise the opportunity to a direct and honest manner why they are demonstrate exemplary customer service. receiving email from you. N3W would suggest that you do this at the very start of your 6. Substantial statistical information email. This will also add credibility to your regarding campaign performance is available. communication. Interpret this data enables organisations 2. Segment your lists and make it to improve future campaigns. From this simple for people to select specifically which performance insight organisations are able to topics they would like to hear about. List identify waning user interest and take action selection should be part of the subscription prior to losing subscribers. process but also user maintainable at any time. Your message, delivered. 3. Highlighting an organisation’s privacy policy will add to your perceived professionalism. Such a policy will typically organisations and consumers implement be available on an organisation’s website, therefore signposting it from email filters and other technology. It is important to communications is straightforward. understand the causes that lead to email being The origin of your email and its certification will have a significant effect on how your email will The Aberdeen Group surveyed 517 companies that use email marketing. 70% of those surveyed said that one of the main reasons they choose to use an Email Service Provider (ESP) is to ensure deliverability. ESP’s typically provide services such as email certification and deliverability monitoring as well as white listed IP addresses. In addition the Aberdeen study also looked into the specific practices of best in class marketers who are achieving high deliverability rates.
  5. 5. Organisations that tightly segment campaigns, based on customer behavior / interest achieve an average email deliverability rate of 90.2%. In addition to list segmentation; personalization, list hygiene and opt-in strategies were sighted as very important to ensuring high deliverability. Attempting to send email campaigns from personal email accounts or generic web servers may work satisfactorily for small numbers of recipients in the short term, but is likely to become problematic as the volumes grow. In addition, facilitate segmentation, personalization and list management, specific tools are required which are not found in consumer email client software (such as Outlook). N3W media provide and enterprise quality email marketing tool http://www.simplemailer.co.uk, which helps organisations address many of the issues around deliverability. Watch your P’s & Q’s Certain aspects of the campaign, which will affect deliverability, remain under the control of the campaign creator. Emails with a poor text- to-graphics ratio or which use a From name that address and From name for the campaign. is not recognized are less likely to be delivered. Encourage recipients to white list the email When designing email campaigns the following address. guidelines should be considered: 4. Ensure that DomainKeys, SenderID and SPF 1. Request pre-tested templates from the ESP. for set appropriately for your campaign. These Such templates should provide an appropriate technical services are typically available from balance of text–to-graphics. For more an ESP. bespoke requirements an ESP will be able to translate your requirements into appropriate email designs. The design of email marketing is a specialist task. make it a good one. 2. Test the design before sending the full campaign. Third party solutions are available Ensuring the integrity of your online reputation in order to assist with this. However many is vitally important. Reputation will be adversely ESPs include such tools as an integrated part of their service. reflect upon the ESP, therefore possibly leading to an account being terminated by the ESP. Adopting the points previously outlined with
  6. 6. regard to maintaining permission will also assist Organisations should take independent professional advice on these matters. ESPs organization should: should operate best practice policies that will, at minimum, comply with the their clients legal Relevant email is requirements. The following points constitute significantly less likely it is to be reported some of the minimum requirements to be considered, but do not constitute legal advice: technology in order to provide the most timely and relevant content to the recipient. Identify yourself correctly and clearly in the From field. Ensure content is clean and Include the organisations physical contact professional. details If in decline, revisit the Ensure there is a clear and obvious relevancy of your campaigns and adjust unsubscribe option. content and subject lines to be more relevant. Ensure the unsubscribe process works Early action will stop recipients flagging correctly. Adopt a Strategy of Know the rules, Persistence it’s the law Building client relationships takes time across all mediums and email marketing is no exception. It is quite feasible that no response will be seen from early mailings. From N3W’s there are Federal laws but also State specific experience we suggest that organisations plan regulations. It is increasingly important to eleven mailings before expecting a strong response. This little known rule typically organisations campaign. means that many organisations abandon email marketing too early. Develop a content plan. Ensure it starts with a solid foundation message. Each subsequent email should reveal more of the campaign story. Have the entire campaign gradually unfold for your subscribers. However ensure clear value is demonstrated in each individual email, to avoid unsubscribes. The campaign requires an entrance strategy to greet new prospects and set their expectations. Finally ensure the campaign remains on-topic. marketing at OgilvyOne Worldwide points out “After the customer has registered for future emails, downloaded your whitepaper, or entered
  7. 7. your sweepstakes, there often is nothing to campaign. Certainly avoid being caught in the enhance that relationship. Companies need to think about what should happen next,” Remember that time is relative to the Ogilvy’s research shows the first three geographical location of the recipient. Another reason to segment carefully and in multiple there should be an introductory message in dimensions. Such segmentation will enable the which customers accept an invitation and scheduling of emails for different geographic give permission for future communications, regions to be managed appropriately. followed by a second that sets up customers’ expectations by explaining future benefits Transmitting emails to a consistent schedule (discounts, coupons, or high-value informational has a surprising effect on response rates. newsletters). The third should begin to deliver Decide on a frequency for a campaign, but also a on their expectations by sending the promised fixed local transmit time. newsletter, whitepaper, or discount offering. There are many different strategies that can be adopted. It is crucially important that content strategy is given due attention whilst formulating the campaign. There are many different strategies that you could adopt. What is most important is to have a strategy in the first place. Timing is everything message at the right time is fundamental to success. Segmentation and careful analysis of statistics are two methods for achieving timing and relevance in email campaigns. The physical time of transmitting a campaign should be considered. There are many schools of thought regarding the optimum time. Consensus tends to be that approximately late morning or early afternoon, Tuesday through to Thursday is the better times to send a