Email automation, the ability to program email campaigns based on behavioral, date or other triggers, is a known revenue-producing powerhouse often generating three to ten-times the ROI of broadcast email. However, it's almost always easier imagined than done. In the following interview, I share several thoughts on email automation with Skip Fidura, Client Services Director of ESP dotMailer, on the challenges and conversations faced by email marketers when it comes to making triggered email programs a reality.
Last month we looked at three email marketing improvement challenges for 2014. This month I want to give you three more that can maximize email’s contribution to your bottom line. Although improving email open and click-through rates seems an ever-present task, I encourage you to expand your focus beyond mere campaign-by-campaign process metrics and try these program-level objectives on for size instead: 1) Increase Subscriber Engagement Truly increasing subscriber engagement with your email campaigns means much more than merely boosting open and click-through rates, although both are important measures of engagement. It means analyzing open and click-through reach – that is, the proportion of your subscriber base, among all subscribers, who have opened or clicked at least one message over a period of time.
In my ongoing series of email marketing conundrums, I couldn’t possibly overlook this one: declining email marketing open rates. Although much has been written on the subject, my goal is to provide you with not just a diagnostic checklist for investigating why open rates are falling nor to hand you a “best practices” list of what to do to reverse the decline, but to go beyond that by (most of all) giving you a “reality check” on the subject and presenting a new, more constructive way to see this situation, as well as a new mindset on email marketing performance measurement altogether. In short: while we do need to pay attention to declining open rates, there’s too much focus on them at the expense of more meaningful email marketing performance measures.
Over the next several posts I’ll be addressing a series of email marketing conundrums. A “conundrum” is defined as a puzzling question or problem, and in email there are a few persistent ones I have been asked about on a regular basis since the channel’s earliest days. In fact, these challenges seem to keep so many people up at night that I believe they’re always worthy of discussion and a fresh perspective. So let’s begin with a classic: How do I prevent or minimize unsubscribes from my email list? First, make no mistake about it: over the course of their life cycle with you a certain percentage of subscribers will choose to leave your email list despite your best attempts to keep them and believe it or not, this is good. It’s the nature of any permission-marketing channel for the ultimate choice and control over receiving messages to rest in the hands of subscribers. Plus, we know from the channel’s nearly 15 years in existence that commercial email works best when it is deeply rooted in permission. So, your first step is to
There’s an ongoing debate over the role of permission in sending marketing email to customers you have a pre-existing business relationship with. Although in recent years opt-in list building practices have clearly been on the rise, there is still no clear legal mandate for opt-in as a standard email marketing practice in the US and many countries.