32 posts categorized "Targeting" Feed

Recipe for a Successful Email Campaign

In this article, Lisa Finfer outlines a four-step process to make sure your email campaign is as successful as it can be. To summarize:

1. Know your audience. What's important to the recipient? What profile characteristics do they have? What are their purchase tendencies or demographics? Obtaining solid recipient data yields long-term benefits and is worth the investment.

2. Be relevant! Spend some time trying to understand how the message can be segmented to different target audiences. Don't send generic email offers to everyone!

3. Create a strong wire frame template. Make sure your brand and offer is recognizable. Make sure the call to action is highlighted correctly (don't hide it at the bottom of the email). Keep your message short and make sure that the top 2-4 inches are used to convince the reader to keep on reading.

4. Manage your frequency. Set expectations by telling your readers about your mailing frequency or find out what the right frequency is by testing it.

Read the full article here.

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Targeting Tips For the Retail World

Kevin Hillstrom is offering some targeting tips in his blog post "E-mail Campaign Management and Data". In this post he talks about how you can improve the performance of your retail email campaign by creating many targeted versions of an email to different customers during one campaign.

To do this you can use attributes such as lifetime purchase history, most recent purchase, clickstream data, user preferences and demographics and lifestyle.

He explains how to do this and which people in your organization you can leverage to do it.

However, he says, "don't expect miracles from targeted email versions. In reality, you have limited data for eighty percent of your e-mail file, so you won't do a great job of targeting to these folks. Among the top twenty percent of your e-mail file, these folks are so productive that many different versions of an e-mail campaign can work. If you can get a fifteen to thirty-five percent improvement in total campaign performance by targeting, you're well on your way to success."

Source: The MineThatData Blog

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How Can You Use Purchase Behavior Data in Your Emails?

The foundation for creating more relevant communications is data.   Understanding the overall behavior of your customers across retailers and channels is the basis of an effective communications strategy.

Examples of purchase behavior data and how it can be used include:

RFM. When was the last time you heard from your customer?  Are your consumers actively purchasing in the market? A consumer who buys from you multiple times a year will be motivated to purchase differently from someone who has not bought from you in the last 13 months. By using RFM (recency, frequency, monetary value) in segmentation strategy you can develop campaigns that acknowledge the loyalty of your most frequent shoppers. You also can develop separate campaigns designed to re-engage a consumer who is actively purchasing in the market but who has not bought from you.

Past product purchases. If you have a broad product offering, you may have customers who consistently only purchase from one or two of your product categories. Tailoring your messages based on the types of products that consumers have a demonstrated interest is one of the most powerful ways to create relevance.

Behavioral. Multichannel consumers have a variety of options when making a purchase. They may see an item that they like in a catalog and then go online to purchase. They may see an item in an email that they like but then go to a store to purchase.  When analyzing purchase data to create a segmentation strategy, looking at behavior in a single channel may only give you a piece of the overall picture for a specific consumer. Marketers can achieve the segmentation discussed above by using both housefile and outside data.  For example, catalogers who are members of a cooperative database can get an overall picture of a consumer’s behavior among other participating members.  This insight is invaluable in creating a segmentation strategy.

Using all of the data that is available to you to segment buyers and send the most relevant offers increases both customer satisfaction in the communication they receive from you as well as your revenue.

Source: DMNews

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Goodwill Messages Retain Customers, Build Loyalty Increase Sales

Savvy marketers regularly send non-promotional messages as part of a deliberate strategy to retain customers, build loyalty, and, yes, increase sales over the long term.

For the marketer focused completely on immediate promotions, such non-promotional mailings often are not even on their radar screens. Welcome messages, thank-yous, informational updates, reminders and more --what we call goodwill messages-- are simple to send, easy to automate, and once set-up cost next to nothing. Yet they can sail through the mailbox clutter and generate increased revenue for years to come through repeat purchases by now loyal customers.

The key is the phrase for years to come. This is a long-term success strategy. A welcome message or thank you for your purchase won't likely bring customers racing back to buy more that day, but it will reinforce the idea that they made the right decision to shop with you and increase the likelihood they will make that same decision the next time.

Remember every marketer out there has them in their sights, trying to win them away from you. Only by establishing ongoing goodwill with them, even when they are not buying, can you increase the likelihood they will return as customers.

And the beauty of such goodwill messages is that they are quick and easy. These are basic messages. You don't need elaborate, costly creative. You don't have to build a fancy promotion. You can set it up so the messages to go out with no human involvement, triggered automatically by a purchase or an event or simply the change of the calendar. Out of all the promotional shouting your customers are subjected to, these simple, personal messages indeed stand out.

Goodwill messages follow one rule: send communications your customers want to receive at key times in their engagement cycles. When they have made a purchase, when they have joined your mailing list or frequent shoppers club, when seasonal cycles repeat as well as when events merit an announcement.

The hardest part of goodwill messaging is not only abandoning the temptation of what makes money, but without that immediate return, measuring the results. Unlike promotional messages where you can easily count how many widgets move in a given timeframe, with goodwill messaging you will have to take a long view. You will need to test them and track how many become repeat customers, how often they return, for how many years. Ultimately, we're talking about increasing the lifetime value of a customer.

Source: DMNews

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Lifecycle Marketing: A Simplified Approach

Despite the fact that JupiterResearch data indicates lifecycle email marketing campaigns generate as much as nine times greater results than other types, few email marketers are taking advantage of this customer-oriented strategy based on the idea of delivering the right message at the right time.

Many marketers are confused about where to begin and are concerned about the additional work required to implement this truly one-to-one strategy. But during a recent presentation to Atlanta-area marketers, Silverpop CEO Bill Nussey detailed a simplified approach to a developing lifecycle marketing program.

He recommended marketers begin by thinking about recipients in three distinct ways - Interested Prospects, Engaged Customers and Lapsed Customers. Interested Prospects are those email recipients who have expressed some desire for communication; Engaged Customers are actively involved with the brand and expect to receive communications and, potentially, promotions from you. Lapsed Customers are those who have stopped opening and clicking your emails or who no longer make purchases.

"Understanding the mindset and needs of these three groups and acting on them with tailored campaigns can dramatically strengthen returns on investment," Nussey said.

"Unsophisticated email campaigns treat every person the same, regardless of their interest level and lifecycle stage. Dividing your list into three simple lists like this can be a good first step to creating more targeted and relevant messages," Nussey explained.

Nussey added that marketers should have unique goals that align with the customers' mindsets for each lifecycle stage. For example, goals for Interested Prospects might include moving them to opt-in to receive regular messages from you, visit your Web site, make an online purchase or visit a retail location.

Goals for Engaged Customers could include maintaining or increasing purchase levels, strengthening loyalty, encouraging recommendations to friends and the delivery of efficient customer service. For Lapsed Customers, appropriate goals would include gaining an understanding of their concerns, attempts to re-engage them with the brand and prevent them from switching allegiance to another company.

"By approaching your list in these fairly straight-forward segments, you can create specific campaigns that target each group more effectively and with better results than would be the case if you communicated to all with the same messages," Nussey said.

Campaign elements appropriate for Interested Recipients might include:

  • Welcome messages
  • An educational campaign
  • Lead warming activities
  • Promotions for first purchase

Messaging elements to Engaged Customers can encompass:

  • Renewal notices
  • Shopping cart abandon notices
  • Service alerts
  • Receipts
  • Reminders of upcoming events
  • Special promotions for top customers
  • Targeting based on Web site page visits

Tactics to re-engage Lapsed Customers include:

  • Sending surveys to identify reasons for lack of engagement
  • Offering incentives to re-visit the Web site
  • Delivering promotions to encourage purchases

Nussey recognized that many marketers think time-based, one-to-one marketing is difficult because only a few email service providers fully support these types of sophisticated email marketing programs without the need for custom programming. Additionally, new metrics are required to measure the types of ongoing campaigns that are part of a lifecycle program. He urged marketers to begin today to implement basic lifecycle data into email marketing campaigns.

"The point is to begin the effort," Nussey said. "The more you deliver relevant, targeted messages to prospects and customers, the better your results will be."

Source: Silverpop

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How To Segment Your Email Audience

Not all customers are alike. What appeals to one may not interest another. It's important that you connect your customers' different interests and needs to your message. It's about relevance. Relevant emails are opened, irrelevant emails are unopened or deleted, resulting in a lost connection and a lost sale.

Every small business can segment their customer base at some basic level. Think about what makes sense for your business. When you approach new customers, what are the qualifying questions you ask them? For retailers, it may be as simple as which consumer buys what product line. For B2B, it may be more about where that potential business customer goes to get their services. Segments are the things you keep track of when you're qualifying leads and identifying prospects. It's up to you to identify them. Trust your instincts, then divide your list into two major groups.

Segments should be based on your overall email marketing plans and what you want to communicate about your business. By tapping the right customer's passion and need at the right time--with a targeted subject line and targeted content--and you're much more likely to create a sale.

Source: Constant Contact

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Fine-Tuning Your Customer Lifecycle Program

In this week's issue of BtoB's Email Marketer Insight, Karen J. Bannan provides these suggestions to maximize your e-mail customer lifecycle program:

1) Welcome prospects. By now, you are probably using triggered e-mails to welcome new prospects to your marketing or newsletter program, and if you’re not, you should be. “The whole concept is to send prospects a welcome message that tells them in detail what they’ve signed up for, and what they should expect to receive,” Price said.

Your next step should be feeding prospects a curriculum of information, training and special offers tailored to someone who has stepped forward and raised their hand as a potential customer. Never throw new prospects into your existing customer e-mail list, Price said.

“They haven’t been explained the value proposition,” he said. “They don’t know how to interpret your business. Send a welcome letter first. Your next message should be an attempt to explain why they should be your customer in bite-sized pieces, and how they can do so.” 

Continue reading "Fine-Tuning Your Customer Lifecycle Program" »

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Incorporating Web Analytics Into E-mail Marketing

How to begin incorporating Web analytics into your e-mail campaigns?

Elaine O'Gorman suggests you take it one simple step at a time. Consider approaching your e-mail/Web analytics integration by reviewing "The Five Ws" (Who, What, When, Where and Why) to gain a more complete understanding of customer behavior.

Using Web analytics data to answer these questions about your e-mail customers can help you better understand their needs and more effectively market to them.

1. Who hasn't completed a transaction?
2. What pages do they visit?
3. When do they visit?
4. Where are they coming from?
5. Why do they do what they do?

Read the full article here.

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Unsubscribing Is Perceived As More Of a Hassle Than Just Deleting Email

A recent Return Path consumer study found that nearly 70% of people reported that they delete unread "interesting" e-mail. Worse yet, many people can just click their ISP's this-is-spam button. So don't think that everyone on your list still wants your e-mail just because you have low unsubscribe rates.

In today's issue of BtoB's E-Mail Marketer Insight the following question is answered by Stephanie Miller, VP-strategic services at Return Path: "What can I do to re-engage inactive subscribers on my e-mail list?".

In her answer she explains how to improve customer response and interactivity by paying attention to your inactive rate. Her tips include pulling these inactives into a separate database, looking for clues in the data to find out more about these inactives, developing other content choices, testing new subject lines and incentives, changing "from" addresses and targetting campaigns specifically to this segment.

Read the full story here.

I wonder if anyone has experience with this in a B2B environment?

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Using Click-through Data as a Segmentation Attribute for Targeting (part 2)

I'd like to add a few things to Thursday's post about "using click-through data as a segmentation attribute for targeting".

Not many people are aware of how email tracking is done. So being subtle is the keyword when you use click-through data as a segmentation attribute for targeting. Be careful not to give the recipient that "big brother is watching you"-feeling because you will scare him of for sure!

Instead you could refer to the fact that you sent them an email "last week" and refer to the fact that they might have read it.

It's the same when you would do telemarketing follow up of your email campaign. If you were to call someone that had clicked-through on an offer, you shouldn't say "we saw that you clicked on our offer", but you should just refer to the fact that you sent them an email on the subject of XYZ and ask them if they had received it/read it.

At what point do people get upset? That really depends on the type of message and on your target audience. Concerning the type of message I would say that resending the same message to those recipients that didn't open the original email (Keep in mind to always use a new subject line when you do this!), is less of an issue than resending the same offer to those that already opened the email but didn't click through.

My personal feeling is that if someone didn't click on the offer after the 2nd or 3rd time, they're just not interested and you should try another offer. One of the tricks you could use, is to include an alternate offer in the follow up email next to the primary offer.

About the exact frequency, the best advice I can give anyone is to test it and monitor your unsubscribe rates very closely. Personally I think that you should leave 1-2 weeks in between each follow up email that you send to the same recipients.

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Using Click-through Data as a Segmentation Attribute for Targeting (part 1)

A JupiterResearch report released in January, based on a November 2004 survey of 680 companies, showed that just 35 percent of email marketers used click-through data when deciding which customers to send promotions to.

Click-through data, however, can be a very effective segmentation attribute for targeting. Let me try to explain with an example:

Company XYZ sends out an email campaign to a targeted list of recipients promoting a white paper. A week later they send out a couple of follow-up messages to various subsets of the original list:

  • the same message is sent to all recipients that didn't open the first email (using a different subject line)

  • a new message is sent to all recipients that opened the first email but didn't click-through to download/order the white paper (using a different subject line, a different message, but repeating the same offer)

  • a new message is sent to all recipients that clicked-through but didn't download/order the white paper (using a different subject line, a different message, and a different offer - maybe they didn't find the first offer attractive enough)

  • a new message is sent to all recipients that downloaded/ordered the white paper (the subject line refers to the white paper, the message refers to the download and invites recipients to a new offer, eg. attend a seminar)

You can even go one step further and segment your list based on click-through data from multiple past email campaigns: eg. those that downloaded the white paper, but didn't register for the seminar.

You can either use you imagination to predict whether a recipient will respond to certain email offer or you can base your prediction on the recipient's past "click behavior".

Give it a try. You may find the results are impressive.

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