How to Develop an Effective E-Mail Creative Strategy
The success of your e-mail creative hinges, in large part, on four strategic elements: (1) knowing your audience, (2) making the right offer, and (3) communicating your message through strong response-oriented copy and creative. Sound familiar?
It should since these are the same basic elements that influence the success (or failure) of any direct marketing effort whether it's communicated via mailing lists, publication space advertising, package or statement inserts, telemarketing, and TV or radio spots.
So, what makes e-mail creative? Or is it different? And what should you consider before you start writing copy or doing programming?
Here are the steps to developing an effective e-mail creative strategy:
1. Know your audience and make sure you are targeting the right audience. Start by communicating with customers or prospects that have given you permission to send marketing messages via e-mail. This is called permission or opt-in e-mail marketing and is important for obvious reasons.
First, by communicating with people who have said they want to hear from you via e-mail, you will increase your open rate and, ultimately, the sell-through. Secondly, when you communicate with opt-in customers and prospects, you minimize the number of folks you displease because they don't want you filling their e-mail inboxes.
It's also important to know as much as you can about your audience so you can create and send e-mail messages that are personally relevant. This includes customers' product preferences, as well as the kinds of messages you've sent these individuals in the past … and which ones they've opened and responded to.
Here are some examples of how this information can benefit your end results:
A colleague recently told me about an interesting example of this last application. Mary is the director of a national not-for-profit organization that organizes, manages and distributes affordable, museum-quality art exhibitions. These traveling exhibitions are displayed in a variety of venues from urban museum galleries to smaller art spaces in less populated areas.