It's my birthday and, if you're reading this on May 19, 2015, my employer and I are giving me the present of a day off of work. I'm giving you the present of loyalty program tips you can use to retain your customers. After all, you probably have their birthday information in your database. Experian says 76 percent of marketers collect birth dates, but only 35 percent send out "Happy Birthday" emails. It's a shame, because the research shows: "Birthday emails enjoy three times the transaction rate of regular, promotional mailings (.09 percent compared to .03 percent, respectively)."
Forgive the borrowed interest, but predictive modeling is to marketers as sex is to schoolboys. They're all talking about it, but few are doing it. And among those who are, fewer are doing it right. In customer relationship marketing (CRM), predictive modeling uses data to predict the likelihood of a customer taking a specific action. It's a three-step process.
Mobile-optimized content will reign supreme in 2015. This requires brands to ensure that their content strategy takes into consideration varying screen sizes. With a smaller screen comes a bigger responsibility. Businesses need to reinvent the way they interact with their audiences across mobile, social and email, or else they will risk losing them as customers.
Even as opens were up and clicks were down, revenue per email held steady at 8 cents in the third quarter of 2014, says the "2014 Q3 Email Benchmark Report." The research announced on Tuesday by New York-based Experian Marketing Services may reveal an open and click trend—Q3 research released on Jan. 7 by competitor Epsilon found similar increases and declines and reasoned that they were the result of recipients using mobile email.
Marketers are worried that the lack of cookies—or pixel-firing Web tracking mechanisms about customer activities on sites—will make targeting and retargeting particularly difficult on mobile devices. However, Verizon's "unique customer codes" can track users across browsers and via apps, even when they've opted out of cookies, reports The New York Times. "While Internet users can choose to delete their regular cookies, Verizon Wireless users cannot delete the company's so-called supercookies," write Natasha Singer and Brian X. Chen on Sunday.
Today, your customers are multi-screen users, and it's unlikely that people are solely consuming your content and emails on only a smartphone, or only a desktop. Today's marketer needs to be prepared for their customers to read emails on a combination of mobile, desktop and webmail. This means taking a mobile-first or responsive design approach.
Launching an email automation solution takes some work. But it doesn't need to be complicated—and you probably already understand the process and its benefits better than you know. After all, most of us are already automating in our personal lives even if we don't realize it. Do you schedule your credit card bills for monthly auto pay, or sign up for regular prescription refills? Email automation applies that same principle to your marketing, at scale.
During the winter holidays, there is a fierce competition for attention in the inbox. Many marketers' first inclination is to increase their sending frequency in order to outmuscle other brands for mindshare, but is that the best option? While this tactic can increase your presence in the inbox it can also harm your email program by annoying your customers. Turning off prospective buyers isn't the biggest risk, either; generating more complaints can signal to mailbox providers that your messages are unwelcome, pushing them to reevaluate your sending reputation and potentially delivering your email to the spam folder.
One-stop shop. Marketing agencies and vendors are moving quickly to ensure marketers never have to leave their doors to find specialties of any type. The latest to do so is Epsilon, one of the big players currently synonymous with the word "data." On Wednesday Epsilon, an Alliance Data company, announced its rebranding as a "an all-encompassing, global marketing business."
Just like Santa, mailbox providers have their own "Naughty" and "Nice" lists: blacklists and whitelists. As we head into the holiday shopping season, email marketers should begin the process to ensure that they make it to the right list and stay off the other.