What Happens When You Spam Your Contact List

What happens when you send spam to your contact list?

Email marketing is a powerful sales tool. But, like with all marketing and sales tools, there’s an element of the numbers game; the more marketing you send, the more sales you’ll achieve.  Therefore, there are those organisations who are willing to ignore laws and email etiquette and send copious amounts of emails to subscribers or to email addresses they’ve had no contact with.

This is called spamming.

While this might sound like a good way to grow your customer base, it’s not. There are significant ramifications associated with this practice. Here’s what could happen if you spam your contact list.

1. You Get Fined

If your contact list didn’t give you permission to contact them, then you could be fined. Many nations have laws against unsolicited marketing emails, and the fines can be high. While most people ignore spam, the more you send out, the greater the chance you will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Never buy an email contact list and always seek permission of any website user, consumer, etc. before you send an email.

2. Higher Unsubscribe Rate

The more people you have on your list, the more profitable your email marketing campaigns are going to be. That is why this loss can be so devastating, but 53% of consumers say they get too many emails from the brands they subscribed to and this has led them to discontinue their subscription.

However, don’t send too few emails, as this can also be a reason for unsubscribing. According to research, once every two weeks seems to be a good frequency.

3. Poor Open And Click Through Rates

If you continually email your contacts, they are going to get bored of your marketing messages, especially if you are sending the same message all the time. This often results in your marketing messages being ignored, binned and forgotten. Statistically speaking this can mean that your business’ open and click through rates plummet against industry standards.

There are two ways to solve this. Firstly, reduce the amount you are sending emails to your contact list. Secondly, change the message of your email marketing campaigns, so they become more useful.

4. Your Server Gets Reported

If you are using your own mail server, then that can be reported, and this can make it difficult for future campaigns. A black-listed mail server can sometimes be prevented from sending emails to other servers altogether, so future campaigns will never reach their intended audience.

There is only one way to solve a blacklisted server, and that is to start again with a new server. This is an expensive, time-consuming task.

5. Your Reputation Is Ruined

Organisations that spam their contacts are often remembered, especially if they are known to the audience. This can have a devastating impact on a brand’s reputation both online and offline. One example could be the damage it can do to the referrals your brand gets from subscribers. Many people won’t recommend a brand that spams them. So, you’ll lose a sales avenue.

You’ll also find that you will have to manage your reputation more carefully if you send spam – dealing with negative comments all the time on social media, in your inbox and other marketing avenues. Customers you contact for a follow-up phone call will also be more hostile to your approaches. Therefore, your sales team will find it harder to sell.

Conclusion

Email marketing is a powerful tool for any business to use to collect information and sell to a specific audience. It is also a tool that can be abused with spam. However, this will always end badly for the company sending spam emails.

Be mindful of the number of emails you are sending to potential customers to ensure you aren’t spamming your audience. It could help you make more sales.

How often do you send emails to your marketing list? Have you tried reducing the number?

Let us know in the comments below.

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7 Powerful Email Marketing Strategies That Convert Readers Into Buyers

emails on phone

How can you make more money from your emails?

Email marketing may be one of the best ways for you to achieve sales but it doesn’t mean your business will automatically make sales just because you are utilising it. Instead, you need to carefully plan your business’ email campaigns and generate an interest in your offers. This is done through careful design and the use of psychological triggers.

Here are our seven powerful email strategies you can use to convert your subscribers into loyal buyers.

1. The Time Of Day You Send Your Emails

Sending emails later in the day can be an effective way to encourage sales. Some people state that 8:00 pm to midnight is a good time. Mainly because decision fatigue is higher in the evening which often leads to greater impulse buying.

However, if you are a B2B business, this might mean your email is lost overnight. Instead, consider sending your email about 4:00-5:00 pm.

2. Urgency

There is nothing more worrying to a buyer than potentially missing out on an offer or business advantage. That’s why it’s important that you include some urgency within your offer to encourage the reader to act fast.

There are several ways you can do this, for example:

  • Have a limited edition.
  • Limit the number of people who can buy your product or service.
  • Limit the time the offer is available.
  • A combination of the above.

3. Personalise But Not With Their Name

You might think that using a subscriber’s name is one of the best ways to grab their attention, however, research has found it can harm your sales. This is most likely because it is overused and easy to implement, so it has little value.

Instead, you should use other identifying data to relate to your subscribers and get them to pay attention to your brand. An example would be an automatic email that identifies a recent action on your website.

4. Create Killer Subject And Preheader Lines

The subject line of your email is the first thing that people are going to see in their mailboxes. The preheader line is the next thing they are going to see. These two lines can make or break your email’s results.

If you don’t have value and urgency to your email, and don’t let the recipient know what the email is about, your open and click through rates will likely reduce.

It’s also important to consider the length of the subject line. Anything between 70-90 characters won’t get great results. Subject lines above this will get more opens and subject lines longer than this will get more click throughs generally.

5. Entertain And Educate

You should try to minimise your email’s selling, and instead, try to email your audience on a regular basis with informative content that makes them smile. This helps to show your personality and you can use other marketing content like blog posts, YouTube videos or short courses online to expand on your message.

It’s important to use autoresponders in your campaigns as this can lessen the strain on your business to create content on a regular basis.

6. Don’t Forget Mobile Users

While you are creating emails, it is important not to forget that more than half of your email subscribers will be using mobile devices like tablets and phones to read their mobiles. If your mail doesn’t look right on their device, then you aren’t going to make a good impression.

Ensure your emails are optimised for mobile and look at it on different devices. Some tricks can be found here.

7. Utilise Weekends

You might have packed up for the weekend, but the internet hasn’t, nor have your subscribers. Studies have shown that compared to weekday emails, those sent on Saturday and Sunday do perform better.

Though ironically, Thursday seems to be the day where the largest orders are made, and Wednesday is when the cost per transaction is lowest.

Conclusion

When was the last time you sent an email that got you results? Try adding a few of our tips above and see whether they can help you improve your business’ email marketing campaigns. It could help you grow your business without the need for substantial investment.

Have you tried our tactics above? What were the results?

Let us know in the comments below.

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How To Get Your Emails Opened And Clicked

How to get more opens and click through rates.

Sending emails to your subscribers is only half the battle; you should also ensure the recipients are opening and acting on your mail. This can be trickier than you might think. Open rates vary between industries and even demographics, yet there are common elements and tactics that can usually help you improve your statistics.

So what tactics do we recommend for improving your open rates and click-throughs?

1. Personalisation

How do you get your audience to care about your message? Make the message about them with personalisation. This can be done with a simple insertion of the recipient’s name; though that isn’t always enough.

Sometimes you have to try something more advanced, such as sending campaigns that are segmented based on subscriber behaviour or demographics. The more specific the information to the reader, the greater the chance they will take action.

2. Pre-header Text

Sometimes a subject line isn’t enough for your audience to act; they need more information. While information within the email is probably sufficient, some mail browsers aren’t going to display this. Instead, you need to use pre-header texts.

These should be about 100 characters long and give detailed information about what is included in the email including a strong call-to-action.

3. Use Powerful Call-To-Actions

A call to action is the tool you use to ensure your audience takes further action. However, too many small brands don’t use the best call-to-actions when encouraging readers to carry on the purchasing journey. For instance, many use ‘click here’ which is overused.

A call-to-action should have three parts to it:

  • Urgency (so the user doesn’t wait for fear of missing out).
  • Definition of the action to take (so they know what to do).
  • Value (so they know what their reward is going to be).

Without these elements, call-to-actions are pointless.

4. Mobile Friendly

More than half of all emails are now opened on a mobile device. If your email isn’t optimised for mobile devices, which includes phones and tablets, then you can lose out as when the customer gets to a desktop, they’ve received other emails which they want to deal with.

Some of the major issues with emails on mobiles is the image size. If it is too big then it will consume time and data limit on mobile devices. Limit images to the proper size, no more than 600 pixels wide, and minimise their memory usage.

5. Send Your Emails At The Right Time

Different audiences will read and respond to emails at different times. If you don’t send emails at the right time, then you will find that less emails will be read. There are numerous studies into when the best time to send emails is; however, they rarely agree.

The only way to ensure you are sending your emails at the best time for your audience is to test. This should be done via split testing, where two times are tested and the result analysed. This should be done several times with the best time from the previous test pitted against a new time.

The test should also be done with regards to day. Some brands find that weekends are better than weekdays.

6. Be Concise

Try to limit your emails so they are only about 150-200 words long. This gives the audience enough data to make an informed decision but isn’t too long that they get bored while reading the message.

If your content needs more information, try linking it to a landing page where users can read more.

Conclusion

Your emails are the best marketing platform you have. They consistently have the best return on investment and you can monitor direct results.

However, that doesn’t mean your campaigns will automatically be great. You will need to optimise your campaigns to ensure audiences are opening and responding to your campaigns. Use the tips above to help guide you to improve your email campaigns and get the best results.

Do you have any email marketing tips? Do you optimise your emails for mobiles?

Let us know in the comments below.

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6 Email Marketing Tips You Don’t Want To Do

Don’t use the wrong information

If you look online, there’s a lot of advice about email marketing. Some of it’s great, it will help you expand your brand’s mailing list and convert more people, but not all the advice out there is good for your business.

Some information out there can damage your brand’s image and cost you financially. Here are six of the worst email marketing tips.

Mistake No. 1 – Buying Email Addresses

This is possibly the worst email marketing tip you could ever read. In many countries, contacting people via e-mail without their permission is against legislation. For instance, in North America and Europe, you can’t contact someone for marketing purposes without their permission.

This is a type of spam that can have your mail server blacklisted, preventing you from contacting anyone, or you could receive a fine.

Email addresses should never be bought. For some countries, particularly Canada and US states, you should be using the Double Opt-in Subscription system to ensure that audiences want to receive your marketing information.

Mistake No. 2 – Send Emails To Everyone

Like with everything, consumers are all different. They’ll have different motivations, challenges, etc. that you need to discover and market to. Sending messages that have no appeal to your audience won’t convince them to buy.

Instead, you need to segment your audience and send relevant emails to each group. Segmentation can be based on demographics (age, location, gender, occupation, etc.) or behaviours (high spenders, recent website visitors, etc.)

Mistake No. 3 – Don’t Personalise

By not even mentioning the receiver’s name on their email, you are demonstrating your lack of care for the individual. How the audience is addressed can have a massive impact on conversions.

So, don’t skimp on personalisation.

As well as addressing them by name, think about their behaviours and incorporate that in the email copy.

Mistake No. 4 – Don’t A/B Test Your Content

Testing your content against your audience is an important aspect of marketing. One of the best ways to test content is to A/B test it (split testing). This is where you divide your audience into two groups and then make a small change to the content (i.e. different font). Then you can look at the results and see which content your audience prefers.

It’s best to always test your content with one small change at a time. Your marketing campaigns should be tested regularly, as you won’t know what the best optimisation for your brand is until you’ve exhausted all possibilities. Considering there are an unlimited number of combinations, this should mean there is never a time you won’t be testing.

Mistake No. 5 – Text All In Capital Letters

Have you ever read an email or text in capital letters? It seems like that the person is shouting to get your attention. This isn’t the image you want to portray; why would anyone buy from you if you are shouting at them? They are more likely to unsubscribe and never engage with your brand again.

While capital letters can be used to highlight something in an email, it should seldom be used. It’s much better to highlight content using bold lettering or a call to action.

Mistake No. 6 – Send Your Emails Whenever You Want

Another piece of poor advice is to not worry about what time you send emails. Firstly, this can damage visibility of your content. If you send them at busy periods, then your marketing messages will be lost in the sea of emails someone receives.

Secondly, if you send the emails at the wrong time, the email could be ignored, and they might not catch the email until the offer has expired.

Instead, you need to discover the best time for your brand to send emails. While there’s a lot of information available about this online, it might not be accurate. Every audience has different behaviours, and therefore, you should test your audience’s preferences.

Conclusion

Email marketing is one of the best ways to promote your business and convert customers. There is a lot of information online about the ‘best practices’ for email marketing, just be sure you are reading the best advice from a reputable source.

What bad advice have you been given? What happened to your business’ marketing campaigns as a result?

Let us know in the comments below.

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6 Reasons Why Your Business Needs To Do Email Marketing

email marketing

Why do you need email?Ema

Digital marketing is proving to be highly successful. It offers businesses increased profits by lowering costs and increasing sale opportunities. There are lots of different online marketing channels, but some of them are more effective than others.

This is why some brands only employ certain digital marketing channels.

The one channel we would really recommend is email. Email marketing has shown that it can outperform all the other channels in sales, and it’s easy and cheap to maintain.

But don’t just take our word for it; here are six reasons why your business needs email marketing:

1. Email Marketing Has The Highest ROI

The median ROI for email marketing, as discovered in a 2016 survey, was 112%; more than four times better than any other marketing format. This ROI wasn’t just for 2016. Research has constantly shown that the ROI of email marketing is far better than other digital and offline marketing channels.

Part of the reason is that sending an email is cheap; especially when compared to sending direct mail or making a phone call.

2. Email Marketing Can Reach Customers On The Move

The growth in the use of mobiles is giving more prominence to emails. More than half of emails are now opened on a mobile device. This means that no matter where your audience goes, they can receive your marketing message.

This can’t be said for direct mail or display adverts.

Emails can help you reach customers at important times; such as when they are out shopping or on the move. It also allows them to take advantage of the deals you have on offer, by taking vouchers contained within your email on the go, instead of printing them off at home.

3. Email Activity Can Be Traced

One of the best benefits of email marketing is the ability to check who is reading and taking interest in your marketing messages. This can be useful as one important step of email marketing is sending follow-up messages.

Say you send a deal about a new product; you can grab a list of all those who opened, read, and clicked through to the link on the email and then send them further information. This new information might convince them to make a purchase.

4. Emails Can Be Automated

Whether it is an auto-sequence, cart-abandonment email, or a behavioural response sequence – your email marketing campaigns can be pre-written and sent out without any further instruction. This can be great for you as you can get all the information needed for your sales team while also selling to customers via email, without the need for manually sending emails.

Try to include at least some automation in your email campaigns to reap the rewards that it can bring. A good start would be a welcome email sequence that tells new subscribers what they can expect from your emails.

5. Email Has A Long Lifespan

The average lifespan of a tweet is a couple of minutes, for a Facebook post a couple of hours. Therefore, you have to hope that your core audience is online when you publish on either of those platforms. With email, you don’t have that worry. The email will sit in their inbox until they interact with it.

In fact, some research has shown that it can take two weeks after an email has been sent for someone to buy from it – long after those social media updates have been forgotten.

6. There Is A Larger Audience With Email Marketing

Facebook may boast it has 1 billion users, but there are nearly 3.7 billion email users in the world. Even social media sites know this as they send notifications via email about activity on their accounts. Emails are also needed to sign up for most sites.

Most people also check their emails regularly throughout the day. There are even some people who wake in the middle of the night to check their emails.

Conclusion

Email marketing is one of the best ways to connect with audiences. There are more people with an email account than a social media account, and they will regularly check their accounts throughout the day. Email marketing also has a good ROI and allows you to monitor reception by subscribers.

Do you use email marketing yet? What is preventing you from using it?

Let us know in the comments below.

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How You Can Inspire Positive Conversations In Your Business

How to create positive conversation for your brand.

Today’s world is full of peer reviews and thoughts about one brand or another. Experiences expressed on social media, review sites, on blogs, or in the media can make or break your business.

Studies have shown that your business needs reviews to attract customers. Two-thirds of consumers are more likely to buy a product with reviews, and peer reviews are more trustworthy than brand content to other customers.

Other research has found that positive reviews can increase sales by 18%.

Reviews are also great for improving your brand’s SEO visibility.

Not Just Reviews

It isn’t just reviews where positive comments are needed. Social media and news outlets are also influencing platforms where positive conversations about your brand need to be encouraged. These can be harder to manage. You need to monitor social media for mentions of your brand, and then interact with those who are mentioning your brand.

On social media, people can mention your brand negatively, without verifying a purchase or any interaction. This has led to some industries suffering from fake reviews or fake news, and this can damage your business.

One good example of this is the ‘pizzagate’ incident in New York during the 2016 Presidential Election. Not only was negative news released about the small Pizza company, but staff were issued with threats and attacked by a gunman.

Anyone with a negative opinion of your brand could share their details and their negative opinion on social media or in the news could completely ruin your business. Restaurants in the UK and US have both experienced this.

Controlling The Conversation

To ensure that you have the mentions online to boost your reputation – you need to control the conversation. This can be done very easily with the right strategy across all your marketing platforms. Here are several tips to support you:

1. Collect Feedback

The worst thing to experience is a negative review that is a surprise. This can be avoided by continuously collecting feedback from your customers and seeing where they think you can perform better.

If they are asking for something that you can’t provide; either because it is impossible or they don’t pay for that service, you need to explain that. This should be done constructively and for your customer.

2. Highlight Your Positives

Another thing to do is to talk about what people love about your brand constantly. Are you the brand that loves to give away free gifts, offers lots of free advice, or has the best security? You need to promote this not only to new leads but also to existing customers.

Then your current customers will be more likely to mention these positives in their customer reviews and on social media.

3. Ask For Reviews

Customers are unlikely to leave reviews unless you ask for them. So regularly ask for reviews from current or past customers. Sometimes it can take numerous asks to get the reviews you need.

4. Create A Community

Creating a community on social media will encourage more positive interactions and mentions of your brand. You should also respond positively to all mentions of your brand.

Should your brand have a negative comment on social media, it is best to respond to the comment and ask the customer to contact you about their issue.

5. Be Authentic

Stop thinking about your sales pitch and consider more about the customers’ needs. Talk to them about what they need and how you can provide a service to help. By concentrating on their needs, you’ll make them feed important and more inclined towards positive conversation.

Conclusion

Positive conversation is an important part of your brand’s growth. However, you shouldn’t hope for positive conversation; you need to strategize a way to generate those mentions on social media, in media and on reviews. There are several ways this can be done, but it all counts on you focusing your solution on the needs of the customers.

How do you create positive conversations about your brand? Does it have an impact on your sales?

Let us know in the comments below.

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How A Change In Thinking Can Lead To Great Results For Your Business

What can a positive mindset do to your business? Here are some of the best benefits!

There is one characteristic that all successful people have in common – they have a positive mindset that allows them to challenge and adapt to changes in their environment. People say that business leaders who succeed are often the products of failures, and this can be true in many ways.

Evan Williams, for example, had a failed podcasting company before co-founding Twitter. Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and investor in PayPal and Airbnb, had a failed dating and social network.

These entrepreneurs didn’t stop after failure, they kept on going because they had a positive mindset that allowed them to analyse where failings had occurred and then changed their processes to succeed next time.

The Positive Mindset

The positive mindset is not someone who is optimistic without reason. They don’t just hope for the best and wait for opportunities to happen, as this could make you oblivious to challenges your organisation could face and you could lose awareness of the market around you.

Instead, someone with a positive mindset believes that good things can happen for themselves but instead of ignoring obstacles to their success, overcome challenges with unique problem-solving skills.

How Does A Positive Mindset Improve Business Results?

Research has found that a positive mindset has numerous benefits. Here are some of them:

More Energy

Scientists call positive attitude a dispositional effect. Those with a positive attitude tend to have higher levels of energy and enthusiasm making them more productive.

However, that doesn’t mean that those with a negative disposition are bad for business. In some cases, they are necessary as just the right amount can give someone a calm and relaxed personality – just what you need in a crisis.

Better Problem-Solving Skills

Those with a more positive outlook have a greater capacity to take on new information. Therefore, they can actively change their perception of a problem and the ability to find new solutions to solve them.

In today’s modern, rapidly changing business world, this skill is of high value.

Able To Deal With A Crisis

There is a lot to worry about in business, for example the growing threat of cybercrime, losing a key client, or a great employee handing in their notice. When something unexpected happens that could ruin your plans there are two types of reaction: a positive – get on with it attitude, or a negative panic mode.

A positive mindset allows you to be more positive and tackle the challenge without wasting time on worrying about the ramifications of the unexpected event. It allows you to solve problems faster and move onto the next order of business.

It Promotes Positive Attitude Among The Team

A positive mindset and outward appearance is infectious. Your team will gain the same energy and outlook as you have with a positive attitude. This will increase the business’ productivity and the team’s quality of work.

It will also lower staff turnover and increase cohesiveness between team members.

Conclusion

Your business’ success depends on many aspects, some of which will appear unrelated, but a positive mindset can help improve the chances of good things happening to your business.

This, in turn, should help lower costs and improve profits; allowing you to invest in business improvements.

What are your tips for a positive mindset? Do you have experience of a positive mindset for improving your business performance?

Let us know in the comments below.

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How Unconventional Solutions To Marketing Can Really Work

unconventional marketing

Unconventional marketing can sometimes be the spice to attract customers to your brand.

Marketing is an important part of your business’ growth. However, with so many companies conducting campaigns every single day – consumers can often become bored. Therefore, the best marketing campaigns can be a little unconventional.

Unconventional Ideas That Worked

Cards Against Humanity are experts at unconventional marketing ideas. One year, on Black Friday, instead of following the traditional trend of lowering costs, they increased them by $5. This strategy increased sales on the day and for a period afterwards.

Another year on Black Friday, the company invited customers to buy nothing for $5. The campaign raised $71,000 on the day, with some customers making multiple purchases. The company split the money between members of the team; most of whom donated the funds to charity.

Rudy’s BBQ demonstrated that you don’t have to be a big or global business to be successful at unconventional marketing either. They regularly use negative statements to promote their brand. One billboard expressed they were the worst BBQ in Texas while another misspelt sauce. They also regularly engage audiences on social media – even when they are in one of their restaurants.

Despite these negative terms within their marketing slogans, trade is high, and they have numerous positive reviews online. It has also helped them grow from one to three sites.

Why Does Unconventional Marketing Work So Well?

The two examples show exactly how unconventional marketing can improve sales. Both present an inverse of an established trend such as a seasonal sale or the positive re-enforcement of a brand’s service.

Yet, both businesses succeed.

One of the main reasons for this is because unconventional marketing disrupts normal consumer expectations.

The human brain is conditioned to identify patterns, so people expect to see certain marketing promises and slogans. Therefore, audiences tend to ignore much of the marketing materials presented to them.

However, unconventional tactics break the familiar pattern. This forces the audience to examine the marketing literature presented more closely.

As they pay more attention; the audience remembers the brand more effectively.

In addition, thanks to social media, unusual and humorous items are shared more frequently. Therefore, the reach of such campaigns can grow organically. The more people that see your marketing materials, the greater the sales.

Finally, consumers sometimes want to test your assertions. If you claim to be the worst, they’ll want to see for themselves.

Unconventional Tricks You Can Make

The above two examples aren’t the only unconventional tactics you can try. There are numerous other tactics you could use; here are some examples:

Weird Discounts: You don’t have to increase prices to stand out in a sale. Most discounts are presented as a multiple of five (5%, 10%, 15%, etc). Instead, try for a different discount like 6.22% or 10.91%; something that is a little more unusual. These tend to work because the consumer concentrates more on the fraction rather than the whole number.

Market Another Brand: Create another brand and market that one. An excellent example of this would be Compare The Market. They advertised Compare The Meerkat instead, where a loveable meerkat would complain about all the people accidentally landing on his site instead of Compare The Market. The campaign took off so much that even after several years the characters are still around.

Send Them Cake: If you’re a local brand, and you have a marketing list, why not send a small gift. Cakes, doughnuts and flowers are typical options, but you can be creative.

Conclusion

Sometimes typical marketing tactics just don’t work. Instead, you have to be a little less conventional to grab the attention of your target audience. Unconventional marketing can take many forms and is only limited by your imagination.

What unconventional marketing tactic have you tried? What will you try next?

Let us know in the comments below.

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What’s In A Name? 8 Personalised Email Examples You’ll Love

email personalisation

Email personalisation can really support your business’ growth.

Personalisation is the key to email success. People want to feel that marketing messages aren’t just offering them relevant products, but the message has been carefully created just for them. Personalization, according to some research, can increase open rates by 244% and click-through rates by 161%.

There are many different tactics for personalization you can use; some are complex, while others are less so. Here are eight examples of personalised emails for you to look at and consider.

1. JetBlue – Anniversaries

JetBlue has a unique approach; they purposefully send an email after you’ve been subscribed to their mailing list for one year. It’s an interesting concept that gets you thinking about the relationship you’ve built up with them over the year.

They even play on the traditional anniversary jokes such as forgetting, who’s buying the presents and that time you didn’t talk to them.

2. Amazon – Recommended Products

Amazon is an expert at personalised emails. They use your account’s browsing history to send you product suggestions for products that might be suitable considering what you have previously been looking for.

Amazon often sends these to customers within two to three days. They also send cart reminders to get you to complete transactions.

3. LinkedIn – Job Opportunities

LinkedIn has always been about the career opportunities available. Therefore, LinkedIn often looks at your experience and then matches your experience and qualifications against job opportunities other organisations have posted on the site.

These emails are sent roughly once a week and don’t require the reader to buy anything – which makes them effective and boosts the value of their job posting services.

4. Twitter – Recommendations

Twitter is a social media site that sends numerous personalized messages. Firstly, they send messages to remind you of the content that is available on the network from those who you are following and often interact with the most.

They also provide information about potential people to follow. And Finally, you could receive emails regarding the promotional opportunities available to your business.

5. Hawaiian Airlines – Birthday Wishes

Birthday wishes are a good way to show that you care about your subscribers. Hawaiian Airlines send out birthday wishes. They also offer subscribers a chance to earn 500 extra airline miles should they book within one year.

This email demonstrates intricate knowledge of the subscriber, which can be endearing, and adds a reward for interacting with the brand. There is also an element of gamification which is very attractive to most customers.

6. Netflix – Recommended Watching

Netflix is great at sending recommended watching emails to customers. They base their recommendations on previous watching history and will send details of films or television programs when they’ve been released.

The emails even have functions for the receiver to add the program to their list of favourite programs or to watch now. An additional function on the email is that subscribers can see similar programs to the one they are recommending.

7. Birchbox – Hello You

Birchbox is a company that loves to get personal. Their emails always start with the subscriber’s name and then they add on the number of reward points they have collected so far.

The products that are recommended to the subscriber are also based on their previous purchase history; this gives the best impression that the email will recommend products that are relevant.

8. Facebook – Event Trigger

Facebook is good at sending emails based on actions you’ve taken. For instance, if you don’t log into your account for five days, they will send you an email to remind you about your account.

The network will also send an email if you log back in after a length of time.

Conclusion

Personalization will get your email marketing campaigns more returns. There are many options for personalization, and not just including their name in the email. What personalisation will you use in your next campaign?

Let us know in the comments below.

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How To Enhance Your Target Engagement Using Video Thumbnails

How can you iincrease engagement rates with your videos?

Videos are an important part of your digital marketing mix. One-third of all time spent online is spent watching videos, and the ability of videos to convert watchers is unprecedented.

A video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80%, and audiences are 64% more likely to buy an item online after viewing a video.

Videos embedded within your emails can also increase click-throughs by up to 300%.

However, many small businesses (just under 80%), don’t utilise any video marketing. This can seriously affect their online success.

It Isn’t Just Shooting A Video

Once you’ve committed to video marketing, you need to find a place to host them. Unless you have a high-powered server, your own website is not a good option. They will just slow down your website too much. That is why a video sharing website, like YouTube or Vimeo, are better as these videos can be embedded into your website or email template.

YouTube is also great for helping you with your website’s page rank on search engines.

However, just uploading a video isn’t going to get you success. There are many elements to a successful video marketing campaign. First, each video needs to have a keyword orientated description written that needs to be about 300 words.

Then, all videos with speech should include closed captions.

Finally, you should consider a unique and custom thumbnail.

What Is A Video Thumbnail?

A video thumbnail is an image that represents the video to internet browsers or email subscribers. It is the first thing they will see, and most will make their decision about whether to watch a video or not based on the look of the thumbnail.

When uploading to YouTube, your videos will be scanned, and YouTube will give you the option of three video screenshots to represent your video. These can be then used to promote your video on the channel, and anywhere you embed your video.

However, generic or autogenerated thumbnails are always great for video promotion. In fact, YouTube states that 90% of their top performing videos and YouTubers use custom thumbnails.

There are several reasons for this:

  1. Autogenerated thumbnails can seem randomly selected and can sometimes look unprofessional.
  2. You can design custom thumbnails, so they have the best graphics, your branding and call-to-action to engage with users.
  3. It demonstrates you’ve taken the time to develop your content and therefore, it will be perceived as being higher quality.

How To Develop A Custom Thumbnail

Developing a custom thumbnail for your videos isn’t challenging. All you need is a camera and Canva, a free graphic design program online.

First, take an image that will represent your video. The best custom thumbnails contain these aspects:

  • Great colours.
  • A face.
  • Action shot.

Next, go to Canva and sign in. Then create a new custom image that is 1280 pixels by 720 pixels.

Upload your image and drag it into the editing area on the right-hand side.

Then add some text and branding.

Then you can download your video and upload it to YouTube or other video sharing website. The only issue you might have is that your image when downloaded from Canva can be greater than the 2MB limit YouTube sets for custom thumbnails. However, using another free tool, RIOT, you can reduce the file size down significantly to match their requirements.

Once uploaded, you have a custom thumbnail that will display everywhere you’ve embedded your video, including in email marketing communications.

Conclusion

Video marketing is important and can be a useful addition to email marketing campaigns. Emails with videos have better click-through rates and lead to a greater number of enquiries or direct sales.

The most successful videos are those which contain custom thumbnails, the image that represents the video when it is not playing. These can easily be produced, but there are key considerations for developing the best custom thumbnails.

If you match those requirements, your videos will be watched a lot more.

Do you use video marketing in your campaigns? Do you include videos in your email marketing campaigns?

Let us know in the comments below.

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