Consider what is currently in your personal email inbox. We can guarantee that for most people, not only are there lots of spam emails, but also plenty of emails that you can’t really be bothered unsubscribing from or you don’t interact with. If anything, you’re actively ignoring them.
This is what drives the love/hate relationship with emails, they have a valid place in marketing and communications, but often we just end up sending emails that clutter inboxes.
Now we’re not saying that we should just stop sending promotional emails, what we’re saying is that more thought should be put into email strategies and how we handle customers that aren’t engaging with our content.
What Makes a Bad Email?
Bad emails are a common source of frustration for recipients. They flood our inboxes, lacking personalisation and purpose.
These emails fail to consider our individual preferences, needs, and journey with the company. They often come across as generic and impersonal, making us feel like just another name on a mailing list. Whether they bombard us with excessive frequency or fail to address our specific interests, bad emails result in a disconnected and frustrating experience.
What Makes a Good Email?
A good email, on the other hand, catches our eye in amongst our cluttered inboxes. It understands and addresses the recipient's unique requirements, making us feel valued and engaged. A good email is personalised, relevant, and takes into account our preferences, interests, and previous interactions with the company.
This could either be capitalising on an immediate need like actively researching products to purchase, or rekindling the fire to encourage the customer to purchase again.
Understanding your Subscriber base
The first step to sending better emails is better understanding of your customers behaviour.
Depending on your business and offerings this can come across in many different forms. It will likely tie in with your customers buying journey and your sales cycle.
Some questions to ask yourself might be:
Do your customers have a long research period before making a purchase or is the need more immediate and you need to capitalise on that to get the sale through?
Are they likely to be making repeat purchases or is it generally a one off purchase?
If they purchase one item from you, are they likely to need complementary items in the near or distant future?
Does the service you provide fit an immediate need that you should keep front of mind for or are you trying to generate a need?
Another way to gain more insight into your customer base is to start collating all the customer data together.
This could be website interactions, in-store data via a loyalty card, app data, purchase history and patterns, and logging what and how customers are interacting with you.
All of this starts to build a profile that you can use to categorise and segment your customers so that not only are you sending more targeted emails, but also share insights to stop overcommunicating when they aren’t ready to purchase, or have stopped engaging with your content.
How to Identify What You Are Sending to Your Customers Currently
To improve your email communication, it is vital to assess your current practices and gain insights into your email sends.
Start by examining the number of emails you send to each customer, identifying any outliers who may be receiving an excessive number of emails without your knowledge. We’ve seen examples of customers receiving upwards of 30 or 40 emails in a month due to fitting a large range of criteria for either nurture journeys or one off email blasts.
Additionally, review the open and click rates of your different email campaigns to gauge their effectiveness. Take note of the patterns and trends that emerge from these observations. If you can break this down to the subscriber level, you’ll be better placed to improve your engagement rates by excluding customers that have resigned your emails to the actively ignored purgatory.
This analysis will help you understand the impact of your current email strategy and identify areas for improvement.
Tips to Improve Your Email Sends
Consider adding unengaged subscribers to a suppression list for non-essential communications, this means that you are delivering your message to those more likely to engage with the content and delivering better metrics across the board for your emails. It also means that unengaged customers will not be inundated with messages that they’re not going to interact with.
Using your understanding of your Subscriber base, plan out different journeys and touch points along the purchase path to interact with them. This can include dynamic content that is relevant to them based on their purchase, or choosing to only send emails at impactful times. If the customer finishes the journey and hasn’t interacted with your brand any further and it’s past the time frame for a likely purchase, you can either stop communicating to them or add them to a slow lead nurture journey.
If you’re sending regular communications outside of a purchase journey, give your customers the option of choosing the frequency that they receive emails. Using Preference Centre functionality, give the customer the option to determine how often and what kind of content you communicate to them with.
Continuously test different elements of your email campaigns to optimise performance. Experiment with different subject lines, email layouts, call-to-action (CTA) buttons, and content variations. Monitor metrics such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates to identify what resonates best with your audience. Use these insights to refine and improve your email sends over time.
By implementing these tips, marketers can enhance the effectiveness of their email strategy, delivering better-targeted content, reducing email clutter, and improving engagement rates.
Ultimately, understanding and catering to the unique needs of recipients will lead to more meaningful and fruitful email interactions, benefiting both the sender and the recipient.