When a customer gives you their email address, it is an invitation to connect with them in a personal way. In order to take advantage of this gesture, marketers must be respectful and thoughtful with marketing messages. When successfully executed, email offers a great opportunity to deliver a good customer experience. However, if done poorly, marketers may alienate the customer and deliver a bad brand experience. Below are some ideas on how to use email to build good customer experiences.
- Consider the Customer’s Point of View.
When developing email campaigns take a look at your own inbox and think about what you like and don’t like about marketing emails. Think about how the subject lines and preheaders look among all of the other marketing email in your inbox. Then open the email and look at the call-to-action, the artwork and the message. What works and doesn’t work? Since consumers are getting hundreds of emails a day from brands, it is important to adopt their point of view and build messages as they will be consumed in a real user’s inbox.
- Send Personalized Content.
If a customer is signed into your site, you can track a their browsing behavior and send follow up emails in response to their behavior. For instance, you can send an abandoned cart email if they do not follow through on a purchase. When you make a sale, you can identify the types of products that your customer likes to purchase and use this data to make suggestions about additional items they may like. Be sure to align your data so that you do not to send a customer an email promoting a product they have just bought. But definitely send a follow-up email with upsell recommendations.
- Don’t Always Try to Sell Something.
Just because you have a customer’s email address, it doesn’t mean that you should try to sell them a product every day. Instead, think about your long-term strategy and use email as a chance to build a relationship. Relationship building can come in the form or a personalized email. A sports e-commerce company might ask how a new tennis racquet the customer recently purchased is working out with information on the best ways to improve their swing, as well as places to play tennis in their area. Provide content that is engaging and useful without trying to push a sale in every email.
- Create Useful Content.
Content is king and good content is the best way to get people to pay attention to your brand. Think about the right content that supports your brand positioning and use email to deliver this message. For instance, if you sell cosmetics or tools, video tutorials that demonstrate how to use the products can be very useful to your customers. If you are a publisher, getting updates on breaking news or exclusive interviews will likely be appealing to your audience. Each business will require a different approach to content, but think about how it works best for your company.
- Offer Exclusive Offers.
People love to get a good deal and it’s worth rewarding your email subscribers with these benefits. Perhaps you offer email subscribers a certain percentage off of purchases every month, or you give them the first chance to buy a brand-new product. If a person has shown enough interest in your brand to share their email address, then they deserve to be given exclusive access.
- Surprise Your Best Customers.
People love a good surprise and appreciate a company that is willing to give. If you are an apparel retailer, perhaps you want to offer a free t-shirt to your best customers on their birthday. If you are a travel marketer, perhaps you can offer your best customers a two-for-one deal every six months. These offers don’t have to go out to your entire list. By surprising your best customers, you are showing them how much you appreciate their business and will improve their customer experience. Consider the ways that your brand can surprise customers and use email to reveal these gifts.