Wow, what a day we had at the Adestra Spring Email Summit last week! We were thrilled to see how many people turned up and participated in what we consider to be one of our best events yet.
The breakout sessions have had some great feedback, so I thought I’d take a moment to share the main take-aways from the sessions I headed up:
As marketers, we are all faced with huge time constraints, so why not look at ways to make things that little bit easier and free up your time for other things? Automating your campaign processes is key here. But what can we automate?
Sign up forms, trigger emails and the customer journey – Why not add some code behind your website sign-up forms that will automatically trigger an email to welcome new customers? Sending the welcome email at the point of engagement is vital in promoting your brand and striking whilst the iron is hot. You could add a preference centre as well, to ask your contact what they really want to hear about. This first email is also a great opportunity to tell people how often they can expect to hear from you.
Engaging your contacts on a customer journey is a great way to remove the manual processes that often underpin our campaigns. It also means your contacts can rely on regular mails that are relevant to them, and they are more likely to be engaged with.
XML feeds – Do you find yourself replicating copy from your website for your email? If so, why not take a load off and include some crafty XML feeds in your email that will pull in real time, up to date information from your site? Including a Twitter feed in your email is also a great way of creating a buzz around your brand and encourages people to engage with you.
Personalised content – Telling people what they want to hear is intrinsic to having them read your email and therefore engage with your content. Take a look at this shining example of using conditional content to personalise your email per contact.
More and more emails are being delivered into the inbox. So how can you make yours stand out for all the right reasons?
Keep it above the fold – You have approximately 200px at the top of your email to impress the recipient, so make it count. Think about your key information and call to action and make sure it’s the first thing people see. If you’re a MessageFocus client, this is a great place to use the heat-map functionality, to see where people are clicking in your email and test link placement.
Image Vs Text - Think about which email clients your mail is being opened in, and use client detection reporting to test and optimise for your most relevant email clients. It’s also important to consider ‘images off’ in clients such as Outlook; how can you ensure your message comes across before images are downloaded? Text! Make sure your content can be read easily and is not hidden within images by using text for the most important bits. Make sure you’re using Alt tags behind images to encourage people to download them. Also, make sure you’re not just using stock images – make them relevant!
Make sure your email is legal – Including your company information and a working unsubscribe is a legal requirement so make sure that these are included somewhere in your content. Why not set up a boilerplate within your workspace so that this information is pulled into your email automatically?
The swift rise of mobile usage has Marketers chomping at the bit to take advantage of this new ‘email on the go’ phase, but how’s best to go about it? Design is key to the success of your mobile email. Here are a few hints and tips to get you started.
Media queries – The ultimate way to make your email responsive for mobile. Using some clever coding, your email template can ‘rearrange itself’ dependent on the device that it is being opened on. So, your email will render for desktops when opened in that way but will shrink and re-jig when opened on a mobile. Genius! This is important technology that definitely warrants an update to your template.
Mobile responsive website – The best mobile emails are those that are backed up by a mobile responsive website. After all, what’s the point in maximising your email to encourage click through if the contact is lost after they reach your site?
Enhancing links – When viewing an email on your mobile, you don’t get the opportunity to scan over links as you do on a desktop, nor do you have the pinpoint accuracy of using a mouse. So what can we do? We can make our links more obvious and think about fat fingers! Ensuring links look like links is important here, and ensuring that they are not hidden within heaps of text is also a good place to start.
Scrolling – Research suggests that people are more inclined to view your email content if they don’t have to scroll from left to right but can view all the info using an up and down motion. Think about enhancing your email to facilitate this with a single column design.
I think that’s about it for now. Thanks again to all our clients who joined me at my breakout sessions. And if you’re an Adestra client, please do let myself or your Account Manager know should you have any queries at all.
As the official email partner, on June 26th and 27th we’ll be at Marketing Week Live 2013, on stand A133, ready to show you why our enterprise email platform, MessageFocus is the perfect tool for delivering results from your email marketing.
Adestra are proud to be the official email partner for Marketing Week Live 2013 and we’ve got some exciting things planned for the show.
Your ammunition to write killer subject lines
Our 2013 subject line report analyses the keywords that directly influence the results on email performance across more metrics and sectors than ever before. And we’re giving all visitors to our stand access to the report where you’ll learn the results from 95k email campaigns.
Plus Parry Malm, Account Director at Adestra and author of the report, will present the key findings from the report on both days at the show.
Where: Email & Direct Marketing Theatre
When: Wednesday 26 June: 16:00 – 16:30 and Thursday 17 June: 12:40 – 13:10
What: What keywords work in subject lines – according to 2.2bn emails
“The 2013 subject study is truly ground-breaking. You’ll find out the effect your keywords have on your response rates. Having looked at 2.2bn emails over 95,000 campaigns, you’ll walk away with insights you can put into action as soon as you’re back in the office. You’ll find out things like how “newsletter” can increase unsubscribes, “alert” spikes opens, and “sex” continues to sell, even in subject lines.” Parry Malm, Adestra
We’re proud to be a respected, UK based Email Service Provider with clients all over the world.
We do this with award nominated, 24/7 customer service and advanced technology which is UK hosted and managed.
To celebrate our UK heritage, we’ll be serving afternoon tea ‘on the lawn’ on our stand A137 at 3pm each day. So if you love tea and delicious cakes, then pop along and see us.
Choose Adestra and you’ll enjoy technology and customer service that’s second to none, giving you the resources you need to deliver successful email marketing that delivers results.
Since forming in 2004, we’ve worked hard to become one of the email marketing industry’s most respected names. We’re proud of our enterprise email platform, MessageFocus and our fantastic support services.
For more information on what Adestra are doing at Marketing Week Live, contact us on email@example.com
Last week Adestra sponsored the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) annual conference. We have a number of publishing clients and it’s a great opportunity to talk with some of them, and see what’s buzzing in their world.
Turns out that, as far as marketing goes, publishers are working on the same issues as most other industries: how to adapt to changing technologies and more sophisticated customers.
There were three big trends that I noticed, and I think they’re all applicable far beyond publishing:
The UK publishing industry is leading the way when it comes to mobile apps: British-produced apps account for upwards of 25% of the market. But that doesn’t mean all their websites or email communications are entirely mobile-friendly. Working on implementing responsive design, and tailoring content to platforms is still very much a work in progress.
One of the key quotes I took away from the sessions was that, “retailers have become very good at being publishers, now it’s time for publishers to work on becoming better retailers.” Affiliate marketing programs, curated content, and the ability to deliver premium offers to premium customers are all top of mind. Also big was ensuring you’re partnering with the right vendors to implement systems and analytics to execute and measure these new programs.
Customers are engaging with publishers on a variety of platforms, sometimes many at the same time. So it’s important to deliver a consistent, tailored experience that defies hardware and location. This means a rock-solid brand image across media, and the ability to track customer behaviour and personalise content, no matter how they may access it.
It means ensuring you’re designing for a multi-screen reality, with responsive design, and clear ways to complete a call to action on whichever device your reader happens to have picked up.
It means ensuring promotions align tightly with brand, and all your communications, (including emails, landing pages, website, and apps, as well as offline ads and products) offer a consistent experience.
It means collecting and maintaining a clean, robust database of your customer and contact data, testing what resonates, and using those results to deliver relevant, personalised, and timely content.
And above all, it means collaborating with your marketing technology vendors to ensure this can be your reality, too.
Unlocking the true value of your precious data is high on every marketers agenda. With phrases like “Big Data”, “modern marketing” and the steady stream of new ways to get your message out there, this may seem like a momentous task.
In his presentation at DataIQNOW! last week, Parry debunked the myths of “Big Data”, in favour of focusing on “Little Data”. This is the data that you can proactively use straight away.
In an email marketing context, there are three simple examples:
Open rates: If you increase your open rate, you’re giving yourself a chance. The main thing here is to have an effective subject line strategy – don’t view each email as a one-off, view them as part of a long-term branding campaign and ensure your subject lines build your brand on a sustainable basis.
Click through rates: Action speaks louder than words – structure your emails so they drive action. Consider the psychological state of your customers and create your emails so they drive people to take action.
Conversion rates: These days there’s no excuse to not be able to attribute revenue to email. Start tracking your conversions now. This way, you can see what variables within your control make you more money.