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Email marketing isn’t dead – 4 tips to increase open rates and drive engagement
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Email marketing isn’t dead – 4 tips to increase open rates and drive engagement 

 And for marketers, email marketing continues to be a great way for businesses to both attract and retain customers — if it’s done correctly, of course.  Last year, Econsultancy released its 2015 Email Marketing Industry Census which discovered that email continues to be among a leading channel for delivering ROI for businesses.

Here are four ways to ensure that your email marketing efforts are hitting the mark in 2016:

Optimize your deliverability 

First things first — make sure you’re compliant with Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL). If you’re not, it can be a very costly mistake. Now that we have that out of the way, don’t purchase email lists from a third party.

Chances are you’re not the only company that has purchased this list, so you can only imagine the massive quantity and the questionable quality of materials the end users on these lists are receiving. Take the time to curate your own list. It may be a bit more labour intensive, but it will pay massive dividends in the end. Also, internet service providers have started to keep a close watch on the engagement levels of your subscribers, which can impact your sender reputation.

 Dave Borrelli 2016 Profile Pic 200x300You need to keep a very watchful eye on your Hotmail, MSN, and Gmail clients. You’ll gain a good understanding of why your emails aren’t being opened/engaged with and can adjust accordingly.

Make sure your copy is clean and your offer is relevant 

Your email subject line is the first thing your customer will see. Therefore, it’s the most important piece of copy you will write. Read the subject line with a critical eye — does it feel like spam to you? Perhaps most importantly, would you open this email if it arrived your inbox? Also, it’s no secret that consumers respond positively to personalization. Accenture found that 95 per cent of millennials say they want their brands to court them actively, and customization is just the way to do this. Have you put their name at the top of the email or in the subject line? Have you analyzed the customer data available to you and are you offering the promotions/coupons/special offers that will interest your target?

Automate your Marketing 

The best way to ensure your sales and marketing teams are connected, and to provide a personalized and seamless experience to your prospects and customers is by using marketing automation. Solutions like Pardot enable businesses to blur the lines between marketing and sales and streamline both sales and marketing funnels. Not only does marketing automation effectively engage with your customers, it helps you generate and identify leads, and can increase your sales revenue.

Keep a Pulse on Your Data 

Keep a close eye on your engagement rates to determine whether or not you’re sending communication that your audience wants to receive. By using a CRM tool and using the information it collects on these contacts, you’ll always be able to send them communications/information that will resonate best and pivot quickly if you’re not hitting the mark. Additionally, a CRM tool can also boost your email marketing efforts, helping you efficiently manage all the customer data you collect.

Email marketing still has a place in 2016 — however, you can’t just “set it and forget it.” Marketers have to be just as engaged as they hope their targets will be.

 David Borrelli is the general manager commercial sales for CRM platform company Salesforce Canada

 

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