Mastering the art of creating effective marketing emails in today’s hyperconnected world remains a complex challenge all marketers need to face. Customers are inundated with emails on a daily basis, and only pay attention to the ones that truly stand out. Digital-savvy shoppers who temporarily subscribe to email lists to receive promotions are not rare these days, making it even more difficult for retailers to grab their attention. When crafting the perfect marketing email strategy, marketers should focus on adding value to the customer experience and cutting through the clutter. Providing highly relevant information at an opportune time can both significantly increase conversions and build customer loyalty. Investing in integrated omni-channel software solutions that will help you build smarter campaigns is the first step towards greater success; the second is making the most out of the features these tools offer. This article explores the different strategies retailers can implement to ensure that customers attentively read your emails, and most importantly decide to trust your brand over many others.
Highly Relevant Content at the Right Time
Have you ever made an online purchase for a friend with dramatically different tastes than yours, and ended up receiving irrelevant product recommendations as a result? While this may amuse customers at first, it is a sure sign that the retailer who sent these types of emails isn’t using technology tools to their full potential. An e-commerce D2C platform combined with best-in-class analytics are the tools you need to make wise data-driven decisions based on a customer’s purchase history, and ensure that the days of sending irrelevant emails are long gone. Store associates should also nurture customers’ relationships by storing relevant data in their device-agnostic point of sale solutions, and make every interaction count. What’s more, sending emails at inappropriate times can make your customers ignore it, or worse, annoy them.
Email automation is an art that can be mastered by combining high-quality content based on specific metrics with perfect timing. In fact, the middle of the week is actually the ideal time to send retail emails. Specifically, Tuesday at 10 am is considered to be the best moment to send emails, while second-best is Thursday at 8 pm (CoSchedule).
Segmenting your email list based on criteria such as age, gender, geo location, preferences, and shopping habits is essential to sending emails that answer customers’ specific needs. While young shoppers may be amused by emojis in an email, older generations will likely find them confusing or distracting. Email automation is a great way to ensure that the time your teams spent working on marketing campaigns was well worth it and will deliver superior results. According to DMA, “77% of ROI comes from segmented, targeted and triggered campaigns”, making it even more crucial for companies to invest in effective CRM tools (DMA). Equally important, a CRM solution can track the effectiveness of a marketing campaign, to ensure that you make the adjustments needed to constantly improve upon them.
Your customers know that they’re not the only ones, but they still expect you to make them feel special and appreciated. After they’ve signed up to your email list, sending them a personalized “welcome email” including their name or sending them an exclusive promo code can go a long way. By analyzing the different products that have drawn your customers’ attention the most, you can increase cross-sell and up-sell opportunities by recommending the right products at the right time.
Be Present, Not Intrusive
While sending well-thought out emails twice a week is fine, harassing customers most certainly is not. Marketers need to find just the right balance between too little and too much contact. What’s more, sending duplicate emails is probably one of the biggest “don’ts” of marketing emails, since customers can’t help but notice how impersonal their emails have become. “54% of the average person’s inbox is taken up by promotional emails” (Marketing Land).
It should come as no surprise that customers do notice the brands that persistently fill up their inbox, and might respond by unsubscribing. Marketers should also avoid sending incredibly long emails or capitalizing too many words, as their strategy could be perceived as aggressive. Worse, some of them could even report their email as spam, which may, in the long run, hurt your business. Thus, taking into account an email’s frequency – and not bombarding customers with email – is another way of ensuring they will come back for more.
Effective Unsubscribe Page
Even though customers have arrived on your unsubscribe page, it does not necessarily mean you’ve lost them forever. At this point, there are still a few techniques you can try, to change their minds or to perhaps encourage them to re-subscribe one day (Email Monks). Unsubscribing to your site should be as simple as a click on a button. Once customers have decided to unsubscribe, they most likely will do so – and making the whole process laborious will only convince them that they’ve made the right decision to abandon your brand. Instead, you can propose to adjust the email frequency or include an exit survey to receive useful feedback that you can then turn into analytics, so you don’t repeat the same mistakes with other customers (eConsultancy). The unsubscribe page should also be mobile-optimized, as customers use multiple devices throughout the day and may not want to use a laptop to unsubscribe. By sending highly personalized and relevant emails at the right time, you will not only make customers want to do business with you, but you will also build more meaningful relationships with them.