Email marketing is the wondurkid in this years recessionary climate. More marketers are investing in their lists, while driving up the volume of messages landing in subscriber in-boxes. Despite getting hit with more messages, people are not overwhelmed by the amount of email in their in-boxes; they are underwhelmed by the irrelevant emails they’re receiving.
With email competition increasing, it’s time to rethink your tactics. Those marketers who optimize their email strategies to create an engaged audience, and relevant communications can increase their net profits on average 18 times more than broadcast mailings.
The Evolution Of Email Marketing
1) Batch & Blast
This is email marketing in it’s infancy. Everyone gets the same message about your new beach ball, including Sally, who lives in the Nevada desert, and has a phobia of water. As your list grows it’ll get harder to keep messages relevant, which will likely be reflected in a higher than average unsubscribe rate.
2) Profile Driven
In this stage messages are segmented based on information subscribers provided when they signed up, or by demographic information in your customer relationship software. An example might include sorting your business customers by sic code, and sending off a Valentines themed email offer just for Jewelers.
3) Persona Driven
It’s time to kick relevancy up a notch. In this phase persona’s are developed for your customer segments, describing who they are, and answering questions about their behavior. For instance, what keeps these Jewelers awake at night? Finding new customers to grow their businesses. If that’s the case, that Valentines day email might include tips for marketing their business on the holiday along with one of your products that will help.
4) Behavior Driven
Customers actions are the best predictors of future behavior. In these scenario it’s important to document normal customer behavior, and set set up trip wires for customers who deviate from the norm. For example, your data may show that the Jewelers segment on average, repeat purchasing your product every 60 days. So at 60 days you mail out a discount offer to customers who haven’t purchased again by this point. Now you’re beginning to manage customer defection.
5) Predictive Messages
Predictive messaging also relies on behavior while also combining other inputs like personas and demographic information to further segment customers. Instead of blanketing all Jewelers at 60 days with a discount message, you might find accounts with higher order sizes tend to space their orders out over longer periods. So instead you send a discount offer to these different customers at 60 and 90 days. At this point you’re not just managing, but maximizing your email program for maximum profit.
How Evolved In Your Email Program?
Companies fall all across the email marketing evolutionary spectrum. Level of sophistication depends on a lot of factors, like technological aptitude, industry, etc. This post illustrates the power of one-to-one messages, and that the potential for exponentially increasing profits are worth the time and financial commitment to improving your email marketing.