You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience and security.

Getting Personal: Improving your email marketing

Renowned for its capability to deliver undeniably impressive returns on investment, email has been a firm marketing communication favourite for businesses of all shapes and sizes. And in my view, still should be.

Whilst audiences may not be receiving the same high volume of emails (since GDPR came into play), standing out in the inbox is still a key factor to any campaign. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way to help improve engagement rates and message receptivity? Well, personalised communication could be the key to just that.

Introducing Dynamic Content

Of course, the ability to personalise emails isn’t something new, especially the traditional ‘personalisation’ using [insert first name] functionality. However, basic levels of personalisation can actually have a detrimental impact of campaign performance. In fact, 92% of consumers are unlikely to engage with emails that feature basic, traditional personalisation which address them by name*.

When compared with the fact that 78% of marketers say they only use first name personalisation to customise messages**, rather bizarrely, we’re in a situation where most emails campaigns are doing exactly what recipients don’t engage with.

Welcome to dynamic content: technology which enables email campaigns to be delivered with completely custom content based on the criteria of the recipient.

In its simplest form, dynamic content can be used with demographic data. For example, a fashion retailer could send a single campaign which shows male clothing to male subscribers and female clothing to female subscribers. But it’s when combined with customer preferences or previous customer interactions that dynamic content really starts to become effective.

If a customer has disclosed that they are interested in a product, you can send them information surrounding that particular product. You can marry your email campaigns up with previous purchase history, allowing you to put forward product recommendations, or integrate with loyalty schemes, to enable the inclusion of special offers for those who have reached a threshold.

The Importance of Data

Of course, to be able to personalise, you need to have the relevant data about your recipients to form the basis of that personalisation.

“But what about GDPR?” Yes, those four letters which the majority of us became all too familiar with throughout May 2018 – largely as a result of the abundance of “We’ve updated our privacy policy” notifications, and the influx of “subscribe to continue hearing from us” emails!

Well, GDPR forces companies to be completely transparent with the individuals (data subjects) who they hold information on. Not only must a data subject be made aware of what data of theirs is being collected and what that data is being used for, they must also consent to their data being used for those purposes.

So, the question goes from not only being “What about GDPR?” to “How do I get my audience to agree to giving me their data?” Well…

Customers Want More Relevancy

What GDPR has done is given customers/recipients more power to decide who they hear from and what they hear about.

Ahead of GDPR’s implementation, Managing and Creative Director here at Thrive, Dave (aka Mystic Dave), predicted in an article that GDPR would result in:

  1. Brands working harder to encourage audiences to subscribe – by telling them, clearly, why they should.
  2. Content improving, with less quantity, more quality meaning brands focus on what’s important for consumers to know.
  3. Less noise, less click-bait, less meaningless drivel in your inbox

All good stuff, right?

So, the answer to; “How do I get my audience to agree to giving me their data?” is quite simple – tell them how they will benefit from doing so!

E.g. Exclusive discounts, useful information based on your preferences, the latest products which we know you’ll love, personalised hints and tips

It’s one thing complying with GDPR by informing customers about what data you would like to collect from them, what you would like to use it for, and why you would like to use it, but, if you don’t give them a reason to give you their data, you’ll have no data is the first place.

The Facts and Figures

In a survey of 7000 consumers and business buyers****:

Evidence that, not only does offering personalised communication results in customers giving you their data, but the personalised communication which you are then able to send can assist with engagement.

* https://www.pure360.com/webinar/beyond-the-basics-why-customers-are-demanding-next-level-personalisation/
** https://econsultancy.com/blog/70189-12-stats-that-prove-why-personalisation-is-so-important/#comments
*** https://www.pure360.com/webinar/retail-email-subscribe-forms-2018/
**** https://www.salesforce.com/blog/2016/11/swap-data-for-personalized-marketing.html

Enjoyed that? There’s more below

Let's Go

Keep me informed

What we do with your info.

This is a test message