Online reputation is becoming more and more important, and you should be considering measuring sentiment as part of your marketing analysis. What is it and why is it important? That’s what we’re here to tell you.
Email marketers want to share information about their business, products and services, but all too often fail to deliver information in a way that’s engaging and helpful to their recipients. Copy might be one-sided and written in a way that says “this is what we want you to know about us”. Good copy is customer-centric and will consider what the subscribers want to hear. Where are they? What so they care about? What do they want from you?
It is safe to assume your customers want to know more about your products and services, their features and their cost. If they didn’t, they wouldn’t have opted-in to your list. But what’s most important to them is how those products and services help them with their day to day life, and their business, by saving time, money and resources.
What is ‘sentiment’?
Sentiment is the emotional side of customer relations – what does your customer think of your brand? Customer research was traditionally used to understand this. And in the past we know that if someone was unhappy they told 10 people and they told 10 people… Now, if someone is unhappy they tell Twitter and they tell Facebook and even if your customer is relatively unpopular 500 people could hear all about their unsubstantiated complaint. And, if you aren’t listening in the right places you might never know about any of it. Sentiment is powerful.
How can sentiment affect your email marketing?
It makes sense that the more someone likes you the more they want to see you. So sentiment will influence how your customer reacts to your email marketing. If they have a positive sentiment/perception of you and your email marketing program then even if you emailed them every day they would still look forward to every single one. On the other hand, if your subscribers don’t like you, or how you use their email address, then even if you email them once a year it would still be too much.
How do you measure sentiment?
It’s hard. How do you listen to every single one of your customers? And, they use everyday language not a neat survey form to talk about how they feel about you, so it’s even harder to collect and analyse. Many tools are available which can be used to gauge whether sentiment is positive or negative, and to see the keywords that are trending against brands.
Net Promoter (NPS) is popular with some of our clients as a methodology that can be used to gauge the loyalty of your customer relationships. Sending a quick questionnaire is an alternative to the traditional customer satisfaction research. Asking your customer whether or not they would recommend you to others measures your customer’s happiness with you.
Should I measure sentiment?
Email marketers should pay attention to sentiment from all of the channels that are appropriate; from Facebook, Twitter and other social profiles and across the web in general, and respond to it proactively. Whether or not they have opted in to your email, sentiment factors into spam filtering decisions and sender reputation metrics. If the recipient likes the email, and you, they will open and engage. If they don’t they will use the mark as spam or delete buttons, and if that is the case, do not underestimate how important sentiment will be to your deliverability overall.
What does this mean for email marketing?
Email zealots like the ones here at Jericho believe that sentiment matters more than just clicks. Email marketing is consistently the marketing channel known for the best ROI and an outstanding ability to measure. However if your overall goal is to increase engagement and customer service, don’t just count clicks – consider customer relationships, engagement, perception, and sentiment too. Show them the care and respect you have for them with a high quality, personal and relevant communication program, and you can more likely expect it in return.