Missed it? You can still tap into the insights shared recently by VB analyst Jon Cifuentes and guest panelist Realtor.com CMO Nate Johnson as they show how to how to break through the inbox instead of getting banished to email purgatory.
Although it predates newer channels like social by decades, email marketing is still a marketing powerhouse. You just have to look at the data compiled in VentureBeat’s recent deep-dive report into the email marketing landscape found that email marketing to see its impact. In fact, it’s what’s driven Realtor.com’s 40 percent year-over-year growth.
“I get really excited about email,” says Johnson. “I’ve seen how effective it can be as a marketer and also as a product executive.”
Email is the most powerful channel for a number of reasons. It lets you reach out beyond the constraints of your website and app, and into users’ personal space. It’s also a very controlled experience, with more room for development than traditional channels. The marketer decides everything from what time it shows up and what it looks like to what CTA to use and how much personalization to introduce.
And finally, it’s incredibly measurable — you can keep tabs on its delivery rates, open rates, and clickthrough rates, especially as you thoroughly A/B test for effectiveness. A brand new email template is almost never a strong performer. But as you measure, refine, and evolve, your emails become workhorses.
Because email is so ubiquitous, however, users have also grown more sophisticated and have begun to expect a lot more. Email marketing needs to be equally sophisticated.
“The very best marketing organizations are equal parts science and art,” Johnson says. “My team is incredibly creative at the way they position product in front of whomever the user is. But they can also crush a spreadsheet.”
The huge shift into mobile as the dominant channel has also thrown a wrench into game. With mobile in the mix, the marketer is competing for attention not just with other emails, but also with social networks, messaging, and games.
That’s why personalization is hugely important, Cifuentes says. You’re competing for time — but understanding your users, where they are, at what time, what they want, is essential to cracking that code.
“Just personalizing the subject line was a 30 percent lift across the whole industry,” Cifuentes says. In more high-engagement areas, such as travel and retail, that lift goes up to 40 percent. And studies show that the more sophisticated the techniques get, the better the growth metrics.
“Can you imagine the impact on your business if you improve clickthrough 70 percent?” Cifuentes says. “It’s a windfall, if you do it right.”
You don’t need a dedicated science team to pull this off. Basic tactics are easy to figure out without technical expertise, and as case studies show, they can lead to major results.
But before you can even start to evolve your email marketing and personalization experience, you need to get your hands dirty. You need to have a good understanding of your data, traffic patterns on your site, and what users are trying to do, what kind of information users are asking for, and figure out if there’s a way to get those actions into email.
The next is to assess the tools and data you have, and the tools and data you need. Do you have the toolkit at the ready, and do you have the right data in the right place and in the right format to get it into those emails, so you can deliver personal experience.
Lastly, you really have to know what you’re trying to achieve with personalization and strategize from there. “One of the problems with email is that it’s a double-edged sword,” Johnson says. “If you do too much of it, they vote with their mouse and they stop clicking. Increasingly, they get irritated and unsubscribe.”
In the end, Johnson says, “Always be iterating. Always have a finger on the pulse of what your users want and what they’re looking to do, so that you can keep it as a strong channel.”
For insight into the best tools, the best personalization techniques, and how to keep your users happily subscribed, check out the full free webinar today.
Don’t miss out!
In this webinar, you’ll learn how to:
- Boost sales and cement customer relationships
- Address implementation challenges
- Discover best practices for high tier email marketing
- Choose the right, highly-rated email marketing solution for your business.
- Jon Cifuentes, VentureBeat Research Analyst
- Nate Johnson, CMO, Move Inc. (Realtor.com)
- Wendy Schuchart, Analyst, VentureBeat
This webinar is sponsored by Sendgrid. All research is conducted entirely independently.