Shopping cart abandonment emails—aka cart recovery campaigns—have long been a mainstay in the campaign arsenal of retailers and e-tailers, but what about the rest of us? Can we benefit from abandonment recovery campaigns, and should they be an essential in email marketing programs? Brands, companies and products that don’t normally lend themselves to e-commerce or naturally have longer and more winding customer journeys than retail also have engagement and conversion points along the way. If abandoned, these missed conversion opportunities represent lost revenue. So even though “the rest of us” may not have online shopping carts on our websites or an e-commerce business model, it absolutely makes sense to be listening for abandonment signals and responding with recovery email campaigns. Let’s consider a few scenarios and—with insight from those early-adopter retailers— lay down best practices for abandonment recovery that are widely adaptable to nearly any email marketer (click to continue)
I was recently interviewed by Doug Morneau for his Real Marketing Real Fast Podcast and invite you to give it a listen. Here are some of the highlights we hit upon:
- Email is going through a massive renaissance
- Let behavior drive what you send. Track subscriber engagement with and response to your email, then follow up with messaging relevant to their content, offer and/or product interests
- Think in terms of normal human dialog vs. "blasting": talk to your subscribers, not at them!
- Have realistic expectations of what email can do. Use it to nurture and build relationships over time vs. expecting single messages to accomplish conversion in one fell swoop
- Understand your customer's journey and align email messaging to key points on it
Science Fiction or Reality?"Machine learning" has moved out of science fiction and into real-life applications, like powering Tesla cars that run on autopilot and robots that can beat humans at the Japanese game of Go. For marketers, it gets them closer to their email nirvana: true 1:1 personalization on a mass scale. Machine learning, at its simplest, is a method of data analysis that allows computers to learn – to analyze, predict and act – without explicit instructions or programming. That last phrase – "without explicit instructions or programming" – highlights the difference between today's rule-based marketing automation and systems that use machine learning.
Inspiration from the 2015 Email "To-Do" Lists of Leading BrandsI'm just back from the MediaPost Email Insider’s Summit at Deer Valley in Utah ski country. Boasting record attendance and the active participation of big brands, the event is always a nexus for email marketing growth, expansion and innovation ideas. With attendees from Wendy’s, Office Depot, Amazon, Bank of the West, Angie’s List, American Airlines and countless other marquee brands, this time didn't disappoint. In short: everyone’s excited (and in some cases a little daunted by) the email marketing goals they aim to accomplish in the coming year. Here’s what’s on the 2015 “to-do” list of top marketers and should be on yours as well:
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.
The Up-Sell/Cross-Sell: Are You Leaving Money on the Table?Too many marketers think about email campaigns as singular blasts rather than as a progression of offers and information interwoven into a conversation – a conversation designed to maximize customer lifetime value. There are plenty of great tips for building ongoing engagement and loyalty with your list members here. Still, if you’re thinking in terms of “one and done” campaigns, it’s time to develop an up-sell/cross-sell trigger program. Here are three types of up-sell/cross-sell triggered email campaigns to implement during or after the conversion process.
When I teach email marketing, I always explain that there are two main “flavors” of messages: broadcast email – a uniform message sent to everyone on the list, and triggered email – a message triggered by an event, time or action sent to a specific person for a specific reason. Although you can segment your list and version your broadcast campaigns to specified groups with different offers and creative for say, men vs. women, the real power of personalization and relevance lies in trigger-based email. Jupiter Research* found that behaviorally-targeted trigger email campaigns get 30% higher open and click-through rates and three times the conversion rates of broadcast email (this is even higher response than tightly-segmented broadcast campaigns receive). And if that’s not enough reason to get on board, eMarketer just reported that