Since the dawn of email marketing, its core purpose has remained the same – to send the right kind of content, to the right people and at the right time. Thanks to all the many years of tech developments and sophistications, most notably the smart data mining technologies, we have managed to map the ‘right people’ and the ‘right time’ for all our marketing communications, including email marketing.
Seemingly enough, we are still struggling with the ‘right content’ bit. Although one can argue that the overarching context of any marketing communication is to be relevant and useful to the consumer, email marketing paces on a broader track.
When it comes to communicating with emails, the experience of the message, in totality, is as much of importance as the quality of the message itself. It’s as much about the intensity of incentive-push as it is about the incentive itself. It’s about finding the most seamless way to close the loop that starts with the opening of an email and ends with an action that leads to an event, and a positive one, too.
This is where the whole idea of holistic email marketing comes from. Its premise is that the best kinds of email marketing strategies today are those that are more than just about the design, the content, the optimization, and the actual sending of the emails. Good email strategies are about bettering the interactions between the brand and its subscriber right from Day 0. About understanding and improving what happens from the moment a subscriber receives that first email to what happens after they’ve left it. Good email strategies are not limited to creation, targeting, and broadcasting.
The best email marketing campaigns look at optimizing the entirety of the customer journey and not just the emails that are sent to them.”
Success starts and ends with optimization
Email marketing, give or take, is largely about driving traffic to the point of conversion. Very rarely does it help seal the deal, so to speak. All too often, campaign managers fail to direct attention to optimization of the landing pages when creating their email communications. And to be fair, most marketers don’t have it easy, especially if they are working with a basic email marketing tool and the tech support for designing and optimizing landing pages is minimal.
Even though conversion is the only metric held relevant in this role – the ability to get x% of subscribers to click on the button that calls out a purchase, a link to register or download a pdf – landing page optimizations are, surprisingly, only discussed in hushed tones. Simple things, like, if there’s a disconnect between what is being promoted in the email and what’s being shown (or not shown) on the landing page, are easy to ignore when you are busy stressing over the actuals of the email itself. And this neglect in seeing the broader impact makes all the difference to your conversion rates.
A click-through is hardly a measure of success. The moment someone clicks through a link, the landing page becomes in charge of closing the loop. And here, it doesn’t matter how attractively designed, written, tested, and optimized the email is. If the email directs traffic to a poor-performing landing page, then your subscribers will bounce out of it.
If you are trying to ensure that a big chunk of the traffic emerging from the email gets converted (if not all), then it’s worth looking at the whole customer journey while putting together a communication-targeting strategy. This, fundamentally, means involving yourself into activities pertaining to designing in-email engagements, incentive push, and landing page optimizations, among other things.
4 Essentials for holistic email marketing campaigns
Onboarding and before the start of the trigger emails
1. Fight for prime real estate on the brand’s homepage to capture emails
Unless someone finds themselves completely head-over-heels for your brand, it’s unlikely they will take the effort to hunt for the sign-up section. And yes, most execs will argue that giving a prime spot to ‘subscribe actions’ could lead to lesser conversions, but it could also do the exact opposite.
Figuring out which part of the home page helps capture the most number of new subscribers is worth the time and effort.
2. Make use of push notifications to attract potential subscribers
How many times have you encountered a ‘pop-up’ right in the middle of a browsing session prompting you to subscribe or buy an item on the page for a discount? In fact, it’s likely that 1 out of 5 times you have actually done what the push-notification prompted you to.
If on a daily basis you have close to 10,000 new website visitors, with more than 500 spending 2 minutes or more on your site, that’s a minimum of 100 new subscribers you stand to gain every single day by way of targeted push notifications. And these are the most basic averages for any product/service provider on the internet today.
Map out the landing pages where the traffic is most engaged and drive push notifications that tap into their current sentiments.
During the drip campaigns
1. Optimize every landing page that is a part of the campaign
There are many ways to optimize landing pages for greater conversions. Something as simple as re-stating the offer promoted in the email on the landing page, placing a CTA upfront or simplifying the registration process with bullet points, are just a few of the tweaks. Just sticking to the fundamentals of great performing landing pages can take you from having a terrible landing page to having one that people ﬁnd hard to ignore.
Optimize landing pages to be relevant, crisp, clear and looking effortless.
2. Experiment with interactive emails
If there was a way to include interactions that would normally take place on a landing page into the email itself, that would lessen a lot of the burden on the landing pages. Plus, it’s good sense to reduce the barriers to conversion as much as possible.
Start by testing out a couple of simple interactive emails, such as the ones that ask a customer to rate their purchase/experience. If your email client or tech supports more, carousels, quizzes and sliders are novel assets to drive interactions. However, keep in mind that interactions within an email will reduce the number of actions on your landing page. Which means an essential part of doing interactive emails will be tweaking your tracking and attribution metrics to account for in-email actions.
Take the edge off landing pages and improve your subscriber’s experience with interactive emails that invite actions with the emails.”
Tell us how you’ve you improved your brand’s email marketing strategies and all the smart tricks and tools that have helped you get there.