Here comes the time of the year when all inboxes will be filled up with promotions, offers and coupons. In the months leading up to Christmas, most companies know pretty well how to talk and promote to their customers. But once January arrives even the the smartest of companies hit this email marketing vacuum where none of the holiday messages appear to work anymore.
Here are some tips of mine to improve your post-holiday email marketing strategy.
Do a “Best of 2014” list with your most popular services and products.
The post holiday period is the time when most people will look back in order to analyze and evaluate their favourite moments of the year. Your “Best of” will not push them to buy, but just associate their life activities with your company journey. You will be surprised how many people will visit your website driven by this nostalgic feeling.
And you gonna be waiting there for them with all sorts of “add-ons” to the products or services they’ve bought from you during the past year. Remember: no pushing, no up-selling but just a quiet showcase (reminder) of your best products.
Everybody loves a good bargain nowadays, so emails with “limited offer”, “must have” and “huge discount” do good in the pre holiday period.
By the end of December people are so tired and bored by those words that it is so hard to make your business stand out when your subject lines mirror those of your competitors.
Instead of just “Save 50% throughout our stores this January” why don’t you consider something like this: “You have earned it last year. This January is on us”. Or even “Lets us help you with this New Year’s Resolution. Talk to (join) us today.”
The post holiday period is all about emotions. People don’t have to buy. But they will if you hit the right emotional note. Which leads me to my next tip.
Build brand loyalty.
The post holiday season is the best time of the year to make people know that you appreciate their support throughout the year. Creating brand loyalty is one of the main reasons behind using email marketing (and social media for that matter) in the first place.
Start by personalising your email messaging. Your customers are not all the same even if you are selling/offering only one product or service. Say you are owner of a electrical company and you work with big landlords and individual home owners. Well sending the same broad message to those two completely different types of customers may not be (and probably is not) as effective as sending each distinct/specific email that address their individual needs and worries.
Segmenting your list is a critical part of email marketing success. The more you know about your list members, from their likes and dislikes to where they live, the easier it will be to target them and gain their trust.
When you are happy with your segmentation just send a warm branded goodwill message simply thanking your clients for their support. No selling, promotions or coupons of any sort please.
Why is saying “Thank you” good for your branding? While there are a lot of qualities that you should strive to attach to you brand, one of the best qualities you can be known for is being gracious. Saying “Thank you” to all people or brands that impact your professional (or personal for that matter) life can do wonders for your reputation. Make sure you say thank you to customers who didn’t even buy from you last year – what a good and polite way to remind them of your brand.
Include social share buttons in all your emails.
If you didn’t do it last year now is the time. From my own experience enabling your clients (email recipients) to share your emails (newsletters) can generate a 50% higher CTR (click-through-rate). According to research on marketing strategies in 2014 conducted by the digital asset management firm WebDAM this increase in click through rate can go all the way up to 150%.
And if the numbers cannot convince you I will give you a simple explanation.
If you send out 1000 emails, you have 1000 potential ambassadors – or shall we call them campaigners – of your brand that can help to create awareness for you and your products or services.
Again if you didn’t do it last year now is the time to start thinking responsive email design in order to deliver the same viewing experience regardless of the device used. According to the statistics 53% of total email opens occurred on a mobile phone or tablet in Q3 2014.
Or in other words if you don’t think mobile when it comes to email marketing you are ignoring 50% of your customers.
I would even go a little bit further and say that responsive email design is no longer even optional. It’s a hardcore requirement since reading emails became one of the most common online activities for mobile device owners.
Recently I read somewhere that “87% of C-level executives check the majority of their email via mobile. This means that both B2B and B2C marketers must make their emails mobile friendly if they want to succeed”.
Nowadays people use all sorts of devices: you need to respond to this trend by ensuring your email marketing campaign looks great on all of them.
And last but not least: “Because open rates increase when emails are responsive.”
The post-holiday period is not the time to expect a high ROI, but rather paving the road to higher performance result later on in the year. Nevertheless it is not supposed to be taken lightly as increasing brand awareness, improving the look and the feel of your email marketing campaigns will make your subscribers more likely to read and act upon your content. The road to your shopping basket starts when the client opens your email. Make this journey nice and smooth.