Posts Tagged ‘welcome email; email examples; email copywriting; email resources;’

When someone receives an email they skim the From Name, and then the Subject Line in quick succession, which makes these two areas the ‘gatekeepers’ for each message.

If you are a marketer relying on email to communicate with your audience you need to get past these ‘gatekeepers’.

Firstly you need a From Name that ticks three boxes: it must be recognised, trusted and relevant to the reader right now.  An email from my mum ticks all three every time.  With a business it’s a little more complex.  Even if I know ‘Air New Zealand’ and I love travelling with them, this year I am on a tight budget and so right now you are not ‘relevant’ to me. I might think ‘I have no intention of being tempted into reading your email offers no matter how good they are, and I will delete every email you send.’

It’s good to bear this in mind when you review your email campaign reporting as there simply will never be 100% of your database read your message – I’m on holiday, the dog died, this report is due – basically life gets in the way.  I suggest a rule of thumb that the ‘top mark’ possible is closer to 75% so if your open rate is 35% then that’s about half of your possible audience – a great result.

From another angle, it’s good to bear this ‘triage’ behaviour pattern in mind when you undertake engagement analysis of your database – Who reads every email? Who has stopped reading?  It’s important to make sure the ‘zombies’ who are effectively dead to your brand are cleaned out on a regular basis for email deliverability, so we do actively encourage this exercise.   But.  Just because I’m not opening your emails right now doesn’t mean I don’t want you to keep sending them.  I may well just be on a tight budget for a few months.  Arrgggh!  Why does email marketing have to be so complicated!

Assuming your email has passed the above gatekeeping/triage process of the From Name, next up your reader is looking to the Subject line for indication of a value exchange that is in his or her favour.  Their time is worth an awful lot to them.  Your email must deliver more value in order for it to be open and read.  And so your subject line needs to hint at that value as clearly and quickly as possible.

To get a Subject Line right, there are many many many possible approaches to take. The subject line is often promoted as a good thing to ‘test’ and see if your readers respond better to a particular set of words, or tone.  The reason testing is good idea is that the answer to the question ‘What works best?’ is almost always ‘It depends’.  I have seen tests show more words work better to get clicks in the email, and I have seen tests show that less words work best.  Similarly I have seen marketers use a set format for every campaign of a similar ‘type’, and I have seen people change the format for every single email they send, to good result.

Focus on clearly describing the value that is within your email, and then make sure you deliver that value in a way that makes sense and is easy and intuitive to action for your reader.  We have written about good subject lines before – read those posts here and an older post about the importance of your From name is here.

Now you are fully equipped to get past the first two hurdles of a successful email campaign, how do you ensure it makes you lots of money?  That’s fodder for the next article or ten.  See you then.

Soul Bar’s emails are always well designed; however this one was particularly great so I wanted to share this one with you.

I am not sure what appealed to me more – the color palette or the lure of wine and Tahiti?

Besides the exclusive luxurious competition offer that immediately appeals, the design is clean and simple, and the copy is brief. Both are standard for a promotional email such as this – so remember these elements when you design your next promo email.

I have just suggestion for improvement. The main image could have served well as a call to action. I actually clicked on it a couple of times however nothing happened and it took me a few seconds to find the tiny ‘book now’ in the bottom right hand corner.

Why does this matter? We generally recommend clients link from images as well, as we find that images are generally links and people know this, and they tend to click on images – so use this fact and take advantage of all possible call to actions you can.

Besides this one thing, this is a fantastic example of a great promotional email.

creating email content is hardWe’ve been talking a lot about content lately (and making tools to help) so we were pleased to find this edgy and actionable resource that deals with a fundamental issue affecting businesses.  How to consistently create high quality content that engages, educates, informs and ideally, entertains?

When we ask clients ‘What’s hard?’ about digital marketing, one consistent pain point comes up:  Creating and curating relevant, sharable, high quality content.  Writing is hard.  When we talk to our peers at other agencies, we hear the same thing.

A way to address this critical issue is a fundamental rethinking, restructuring, and re balancing of company culture, resources, budgets and strategy.

This excellent recent report from Altimeter Group introduces a five-step content maturity model, complete with real-world case examples, to move organisations from zero (“standing”) to hero (“running”) with their content strategy.  It includes a useful Content Marketing Maturity self-audit.  It ends with four actionable recommendations, finishing with ‘Design Recombinant Content’…

The report urges us: “Strive to create content that can be redistributed in multiple formats across numerous platforms and channel to maximise value and minimise the resources dedicated to continually creating content from scratch.  Understand how to redistribute and reuse discrete components of longer form content”.

A new seasons product launch for example might turn into a themed landing page, a video, one or more blog entries, tweets and Facebook posts, and an email opt-in incentive in the form a Welcome email reward ‘Join our Inner Circle now and we’ll send you our exclusive How-to-Wear Guide for the 5 must-have pieces for this seasons new looks’.

I strongly recommend that you read this report and consider a content plan for your own business.  Here at Jericho we already have, and it’s a key strategy for working with our clients and in our own business.

Read the report on SlideShare and please share this post with your networks using the icons below. We’d love to see comments below on how you manage, or struggle with, the growing demands for content.

 

The “welcome” email may be the most important email you send. Why?

Because for many of your subscribers, it’s their first email experience with your brand, and for some it might even be their first interaction with your company. 

We all know first impressions count, so this is your best chance to create a good  first impression with your new subscriber. So don’t treat it like a simple confirmation email and fire back something bland and generic. And the worst thing you can do is send no welcome email at all.

If you don’t send one, it means you have lost an opportunity to engage with a potential customer,  and lost an opportunity to send a really great personalized introduction into your company. Beyond the welcome email, you don’t know what a new subscriber’s first email experience with your brand will be. It could be a notification, or a price hike. And what sort of first impression is that.

Here is how not to do it – the image below shows that more than 20% of the UK’s top retailers send no emails in the first 30 days – that is no way to win over new subscribers!

Instead, create a welcome email, or even a series, that gets new subscribers on board and engaged. This enhances the perception of your brand and the value of your email program. It’s also the best time to inform subscribers of what they can do on your website, who to contact for queries, allow them to update their preferences and details via your preference centre, and you can provides immediate value through content such as free white papers or loyalty incentives.

I have an example of one such welcome email that came into my inbox the other day. I was scouting around Marketing Prof’s website and signed up to their regular emails. Within moments of signing up, I had a welcome email in my inbox. It was well laid out, professional looking, reflected their brand, was welcoming, had informative content, and best of all had a list of quick links to more information and valuable resources, and it had their contact details at the bottom.

I couldn’t have asked for more – so below is a screenshot of the email just for you:

Your welcome email really is the best opportunity to engage subscribers, and there is also research that suggests welcome emails generate the best open rates – when done well – and can leave your subscribers and new customers with a lasting good impression of your company or brand, and sets the stage for any future email communications.

 Here are 4 ways that you may waste the golden opportunity presented by sending a welcome email:

1. Not sending a welcome email message at all
2. Taking longer than 24 hours to send your welcome email message
3. Not setting expectations for future email messages
4. Not having a call to action in your email message

Now, here are 5 ways you can immediately enhance your welcome email:

1. Set the stage for future email communication
2. Have a call to action in your welcome email
3. Have links to useful content, your webpage, etc.
4. Provide added value such as video’s or white papers
5. A welcoming and professional email that reflects your brand or company

So go and give your welcome email (Or the whole series) some love. Compare your email to the best practices mentioned above and look for ways to improve the way you communicate your brand, company and your value to subscribers.

For more on email Welcomes – see our most popular post of all time – 8 Outstanding welcome email examples

Yesterday, bright and early, Rebecca reminded 200 or so ‘Jericho Brainy Breakfast’ attendees that digital was the elephant looming in the rear view mirror. ‘… Look out, it’s behind you’.  You’d better start your engine.
Some of her points:

  • No more whinging about not having any budget for digital.  Just stop doing something else that you are doing now.  Snip.  Chop.  Slice.  Hey presto – there’s some cash.
  • Don’t try to get big permission, take a small bite first – just get enough go-ahead to get something low risk started.
  • Talk it up, set goals, get others excited, and prove your results with hard facts.
  • Package your pitch up for each audience.  You might need to tell your story four different ways when you explain it to IT, sales,  CEO, customer service.  And much more… she’s fantastic.

Here in eDM-land, moving budget from one place to another has been our staple.  For years we’ve been saying things like ‘how about you don’t do a billboard and you can fund your email marketing comms audit and redesigns for the next year’.  Well maybe a couple of billboards, or the entire outdoor budget.  But, the point is we were well aware that many companies didn’t even give email a line item in the budget.

Since the recession it is the reality that budgets are likely to be cut, so money has to be moved, as you can see from this chart.  In this study of 1500 marketers, only two tactics showed increases in budget – email and social media.  The reason is clear  – they make money per dollar spent.  Here is the email chart.  Plan to spend less somewhere to make more everywhere, and have more fun doing it.  Get better reporting that proves your point, and then ask for more budget to do it all over again.  How to spend your money:

  1. Audit every email that leaves your company and stop making excuses – if it’s ugly get it redesigned.  It costs the same to send an ugly email as it does a beautiful one, and it’s far less effective guranteeing less pass-along, lower responses and even less deliverability.   See great emails here and scroll and tick to choose to download a whole look-book here.
  2. Automate where you can – life cycle, lead massaging, date and event triggers, tranactional.  Some cost up front in planning and set up, for ultra cheap perfectly timed ongoing communications.
  3. Outsource. If you dont have the resourcing you need, get it from a supplier (like us) who can collaborate letting you either hand the lot over, or just the bits that are in the to-do list but are not getting done.
  4. Audit and improve data capture process and the forms themselves.  I’m going to post on this process again soon.
  5. Review activity, benchmarks and trends at least quarterly and make sure they, and your goals align with eveything else you are doing.
  6. Test and measure – sometimes best outsourced if it’s in your too hard basket.
  7. Get the best software tools. I know I’m biased as heck but if you don’t have the right toolkit a lot of the stuff that can be automated isn’t and it costs you dearly in time and money.

I received this a while ago and it’s just a stand out winner, so to balance the ‘bad’s’ in the Hall of Shame/Fame I thought I’d pop it in here.  These guys are a little shop in Orewa, Auckland, and are using basic design (so basic it’s not worth a screen shot so I’ve just copied the copy), basic tools, but they get the copy SO right that it doesn’t matter.  Since I’ve been on the list I have also seen an INCREDIBLE acquisition campaign by this guy too, he played it so well, and I’m going to post that campaign next.  But first – the welcome.  For more about the importance of Welcome’s see the Welcome category.

————————————————————————————————————————

Company: Underground Skate (Us)
Subject Line: There’s alot of them but this is Us. Welcome to the crew

Hey roanne,

This is more than just a confirmation that you’ve successfully subscribed, its a WELCOME TO THE Us CREW.

Underground Skate (Us) is more than just a store and you are about to find that out.  We are just like you.  We’re the board riders shredding the the pow pow of winter, we’re out the back charging the long peeling waves of summer, we’re the guys and girls having fun with our mates at the local skatepark on a warm summers night and we are the crew who love to party, travel and meet new friends.

Since you have already signed up on our website I would assume your just like Us.  (Or maybe you’re our competition just trying to keep up with Us ;)

Like you, we like the best quality brands, latest fashion and best deals.  We also like to give you the BEST experience possible when you enter our store or shop online.  We run a tight ship and idiots don’t last long in our staff, we can’t afford it, we’re not a mall store we are a core store and we expect our staff to be 100% on their game and ready to help you with any need.

Established in 1997 we have been around long enough to know what YOU want and bring you the best deals on skate, surf and snow equipment plus the latest street / skate inspired fashion.  We are based right next to the Beach in Sunny Orewa beach so make sure you come by next time your in the area.

Please take some time to look over our online store www.usonline.co.nz but remember this is only a sample of our stock, so please contact me with your enquiry. I would love your feedback on everything we do so please don’t hesitate to give me a call or email.

GO ON GIVE Us A GO – IF YOU GET BAD SERVICE I WILL PERSONALLY GIVE YOU A $50 GIFT VOUCHER.

Thanks again, Nick Humphreys, Owner.

———————————————————————————————————————-

What’s right about this? Just about everything.  The tone, the collegiality, the inclusiveness, the exclusiveness, it sets some expectations, it’s genuine, it offers a personal promise.  The website delivers to the message too with great content, tone and even a Girls stuff section..

What could improve? Well, for a start, preferences. Us does surf, skate and snow.  I’m not that cool, so I’d like to be able to tell him I only want snowboarding stuff. Secondly, an idea of frequency, content and value of what he’s going to deliver me now.  I already like him, and now  want to know how often he’s coming into my inbox and what he’s going to bring with him.

I know you’re busy but I’d love to hear your comments… what do you think?


This year we are 10 years old, and we have been asking… How has the email environment shifted over the last decade? This article shares, very clearly, the 10 valuable lessons we have learned that affect the success of email marketing.  Keys points:

Acquisition is important, but retention is where the money is
Email is all about the conversation again.
The ISPs are not the enemy
An email message is its own creation, not a repurposed web page
Email has broken free from the desktop
“What’s in it for me?” still rule
One size does not fit all
A marketer can’t claim success until it’s measured the right way.
Email can go social.
It’s time to blow up the silo
Read the article at iMedia, here.