Getting the most out of your holiday emails
With the holidays in full swing, columnist Scott Heimes offers tips on how to plan a successful email marketing campaign that engages your subscribers.
It can be difficult to cut through all of the email noise during the holidays, but there are certain tips all email marketers should follow to get the most out of their campaigns and to provide their subscribers with the messages they’re most interested in receiving.
Practicing good email hygiene and customizing messaging based on your subscribers’ past purchase and engagement behavior are key components for all email campaigns. But during the holiday season, there is room for marketers to provide special rewards to their top recipients.
Marketers should also pay close attention to engagement rates and make their unsubscribe option even more visible to make the most of their campaigns during some of the busiest months of the year.
Reward your top recipients
A brand’s entire subscriber base should always be a top priority, but reward those who engage with your emails the most during the holidays with an extra deal or personalized message.
Because these subscribers are often engaging with your brand, they’re likely advocating for it as well. Don’t be afraid to reciprocate their engagement and advocacy by sharing extra value to thank them for being loyal subscribers.
Try sharing early access to a new white paper or study, or award them with a discount on their next purchase from your brand. These are relatively easy rewards to arrange, but the value goes a long way.
Pay close attention to engagement rates
Most everyone sends more email during the holidays, especially retailers. While most of these emails contain great deals and important information, the high volume can lead to email fatigue and increase the amount of unsubscribes and number of spam complaints. Because of this, it’s imperative that marketers listen to their subscribers by keeping a close eye on engagement rates.
If engagement rates (opens and clicks) decrease, or if a brand experiences a high number of unsubscribes, be sure to revisit and analyze sending frequency and what content is being shared. While it’s encouraging to make changes to the content shared with subscribers during the holiday, it may be that it isn’t resonating as well as anticipated. That’s okay, but be sure to adjust appropriately.
Conversely, if there’s an increase in engagement rates and conversation from email, this is a sign that you have a chance to increase your sending frequency. If volume increases, continue to closely monitor engagement rates for any changes.
Don’t hide the unsubscribe
Especially around the holidays, don’t hide the unsubscribe line in your email. The best-case scenario for any email campaign is for the recipient to unsubscribe from a list rather than marking the email as spam.
The iOS 10 update that includes the unsubscribe detector at the top of the email can prove to be a huge opportunity for marketers this holiday season. This will make it easier for people to unsubscribe from lists rather than send an email to the spam folder.
The greatest takeaway for marketers this holiday season will be to watch engagement rates closely and make adjustments to campaigns as we come up to Christmas. Marketers also need to make it easy for recipients to unsubscribe, to decrease the number of spam complaints, and keep their email delivery intact.
And most importantly, marketers should focus on their subscribers by sharing exclusive deals and rewarding their top engagers with custom, personalized content.