Tip 1: Retire Basic Personalization
It’s time to stop throwing “Hey [name]” into the copy of every robustly designed email that goes out the door.
Try adding a personal touch with something more thoughtful or creative, such as regionalization: “We’ve been working with people in %%region%% for more than 30 years” or “Thank you for being a loyal customer since %%firsttransactiondate%%!” Look at the additional data points you have on hand and get creative!
Tip 2: Segment Your Customers by Behavior
Personalization is no longer just about mail merging.
Take advantage of the tracking you (probably) already have in place by developing behavioral segmentation. Some examples include:
Develop product of interests by monitoring link clicks & browsing habits and then dispatch content accordingly.
Send out custom offers based on individual buying patterns such as time or size of typical orders.
Tip 3: Automate Processes
Don’t forget about the holy grail of Marketing: Automation.
Take advantage of drip campaigns, triggered emails and auto-responders to handle repeatable communications. Schedule FTP’s, syncs and other data migration to keep your lists up to date and avoid lugging around CSVs.
If you find yourself doing the same thing more than once, find a way to automate it!
Tip 4: Deploy Your Double Opt-In Program
Everyone has been thinking about it and planning for the inevitable requirement, so get started with a double opt-in process.
A double opt-in program ensures better data and more engaged recipients. It’s also simple to rollout; just create an automated “confirm your email” communication for new subscribers.
This doesn’t mean you have to stop prospecting to net new contacts, just make sure you keep their lists and messaging separate from emails that have been opted in.
Tip 5: Send Emails “From the Sales Desk of…”
If salespeople play a role in your sales process, consider rolling out personalized, text-only emails on their behalf. You can place these into drip campaigns or other outbound efforts, but make sure it sounds like real human communication!
Keep it to a sentence or two, and close with a question that promotes a continuation of the email conversation. Many marketers who go this route attempt to pack too much information or HTML design into these emails, making it clear that they’re not personal messages.
Tip 6: Integrate
Too many companies allow their marketing automation platform to live on an island.
Make sure you’re taking advantage of out of the box connectors and don’t be intimidated by API.
Connect to your CRM, data warehouses, CMS, eCommerce engine, and any other platform where sharing data could be beneficial. In a data driven world, these connections are bound to benefit multiple teams within your company.
Tip 7: Enable
Integrations will allow you to get critical information to your sales and customer support teams.
Any marketing data that you can share will help enable various colleagues to prioritize and personalize their efforts. Here are some examples:
Engagement details and product of interest scores can support sales efforts and even get “next best offer” information to customer service.
Your purchasing and operations personnel can benefit from data that might help them prepare for the next wave of orders.
Tip 8: Partner
While this may be the self-serving tip you were expecting, it doesn’t make it any less valuable.
Working with a partner allows you to leverage an exponential amount of experience and experts who tend to be on the cutting-edge of trends and technology. Be sure to find a partner who has experience with your platform and industry like Theorem.
Tip 9: Build a Recency & Frequency Suppression List
With all of the avenues marketing automation creates for communication, it’s important to be conscious of email fatigue.
If you have multiple drip campaigns and auto responders coupled with ad hoc emails and monthly newsletters, you may be brewing up a perfect storm for unsubcribes.
Build a dynamic recency and frequency suppression list that can be applied to low-priority emails to keep from burning through your subscriber lists. Some email platforms will even pause sends based on this list, so make sure you consider all your options.
Tip 10: Investigate Artificial Intelligence
AI, machine learning, and predictive intelligence are hitting their functional stride, so now is the time to investigate your options.
I say “investigate” because it’s still not a solution for everyone. It requires a great deal of clean data in order to “learn” trends within your sales and marketing process.
Not ready for AI? Stick with multivariate testing and work to identify trends and stories that your data is trying to tell you.