Electronic marketing is very close to our heart, it’s what we love to do – to us there is nothing more satisfying than seeing the results of an effective eMarketing strategy. So it frustrates us when we receive an electronic direct mail (eDM) that is not up to scratch.
On Sunday evening, I was going through my email and sorting through what I consider junk – when I came across the above. The first thing that came to my mind was – why on earth would an organisation send out a DL via email without personalizing it or making it relevant to my needs?
Instead, Contours sent out an email with the DL attached, with text saying ‘dl landscape new’ – as soon as I saw this, I quickly sent a reply that said ‘OPT OUT’. Now, Contours can never contact me again and if they do they will be liable for breaching privacy legislation!
So if you are tempted to ever send out an electronic email that is not personalised – DON’T DO IT! You only get one shot with customers and if they are unhappy they can opt out and you lose that communication with this consumer for ever (or until they re-register, which is often unlikely). Organisations, often say to us – ‘we can’t personalise the email because we don’t have an up-to-date database’. Well, if that’s the case there are tricks you can use to still demonstrate you value the consumer, such as addressing the email to ‘Dear VIP Customer’ .
The reason why eDMs often fail, is because organisations think that as they are a cost effective solution there is little that can go wrong – well the truth is a lot can go wrong. So as a result, we have decided to put together five tips for an effective eDM strategy.
1. KNOW YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE:
We know it sounds simple, right?! Wrong! You will be surprised by how often an eDM is sent to the wrong consumer. To be effective, you should segment your eDMs based on customer loyalty (are they regular purchasers or only purchase once a year?), demographics (age, sex and lifestyle) and preferences. This strategy allows you to only send out communication that is specifically targeted to the right consumer. As this strategy can be quite timely, you may wonder whether it’s worth the time to do so, but we can assure you that it is, because a customer who buys regularly has different needs and wants than a customer who only buys a product once a year. So don’t alienate your loyal customers by offering discounts to those who don’t purchase regularly in the same email!
A successful eDM is always about timing, do not send eDMs too often, but also don’t send them out at irregular times. Have a systematic approach to eDMs and stick to them. Are they sent quarterly, weekly or monthly? The key here is to aim for consistency.
All eDMs should have an offer or call to action attached to them. The answer is simplicity and you need to make it clear what you want the consumer to do. The offer doesn’t have to be a major prize, it just needs to be something that demonstrates value.
4. READ THE RESULTS:
The great thing about eMarketing is the number of results you can through an eDM. If you use your standard email client to send out eDMs, you can still get results that can help improve your eDM strategy over time. Things you should look at include:
*Opt out rate (the number of people who opt out from the email)
*Bouncebacks (the number of email addresses that are wrong- this is a key sign that your database is out of date)
*Click throughs (look at your Google analytical data to see what links were popular and what people clicked on to)
*The number of replies sent (how many wrote back to you as a result of the eDM)
If you have a more sophisticated eDM system, you should also consider the following:
*Number of opens (the number of people who opened the email)
*Time spent (the time spent reading the email)
*Day/time read (the most popular day and time the eDM is read can reveal interesting results)
By reading the results of each eDM campaign you can receive interesting insights regarding your consumers, which is very important for future marketing activities.
5. THE MESSAGE, TONE AND STRUCTURE:
Each eDM should have a concise message attached to it; the message should always links to relevant sections of your website and must include your contact details. As it’s a personal medium, your tone should be personal (as if you are talking to the consumer directly). To ensure a consistent approach it is worth developing a template that ensures your eDMs are branded and consistent with your brand persona.
There you go! You now know the basics of how to devise an effective eDM strategy. If you require further assistance, feel free to contact Vent2Me, we have proven experience in eMarketing and electronic mediums and can assist you in this endeavor!
Until next time,
Cents and Sensibility
Julia Taine, Executive Director of Vent2Me, is a marketing problem solver and mentor. A mover and a shaker, Julia sees a niche in an industry, and takes it, by making it her own. Julia started Vent2Me, because people she knew were struggling with their online presence and their digital strategies. Julia knew she could help these people, and so here she is today.