Email automation is emerging as a strategic approach for businesses of all sizes to dramatically improve the targeting, relevance and the timeliness of their email marketing campaigns.
Marketers still undecided or uncertain about how to begin should follow these best practices to take their email marketing programs to the next level of true relevance:
- Build more detailed customer profiles: Take advantage of every opportunity to gather additional profile information from your customers. A data-rich email list that includes demographic, behavioral and transactional information can be used for segmentation and trigger campaigns, ensuring that your email messages are tailored to suit each contact.
- Get to know your customers' buying habits: Customer sales information holds insights to what your customers want and when they want it. Get to know your customers by their purchasing behavior so you can implement triggered campaigns for cross-sell or up-sell opportunities.
- Synch email and CRM: In addition to proactively gathering customer data, synchronize your CRM and email marketing systems. Tools and technologies are available today that should make this a simple, painless process without having to involve your IT department or software developer resources. Taking this step will enrich your email list all the more with detailed behavioral and transactional data.
- Nurture to close: Feed your sales team automated updates on email campaign activity. Sales associates can use information such as opens, links clicked and forwards to help them prioritize leads and nudge prospects toward making a purchase. Sales can also use this information to facilitate initial contact with a prospect and begin a dialogue, helping them begin "warm" instead of taking on the dreaded "cold call."
- Keep it personal: Putting a face to a name builds relationships and closes sales, and the same principles apply to email automation. Top email automation systems make it easy for you to give your automated messages personality by sending them "from" a person (on behalf of), including a personal signature and sometimes even a photo to build the relationship.