Kate Barrett author of the new book “E-telligence: Email marketing isn’t dead, the way you’re using it is”. You may also remember her from our first Virtual Summit back in 2017. Kate’s worked in email marketing for over a decade helping some of the UK’s leading retailers to up their email game – including Argos, QVC, and Marks and Spencer.
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Getting Into Email Marketing
Some 13 years ago Kate was finishing up her Business degree at University. During a break in that process, she went to work at an email technology provider.
Not looking for any one particular career path, Kate says she ended up falling in love with the work there. She left that job to finish up her degree, but says she was ready to jump back in as soon as she graduated. The company where Kate had worked and fallen in love with email marketing had many large retailers on their client roster and she enjoyed digging into the details about how those brands communicate with their customers.
Her own firm specializes in helping eCommerce companies which, she says, are the perfect match for email marketing.
Where to Start with Email Marketing
The first place to start with email marketing is in taking a look at what strategies you have right now and improving those before you start moving on and making it more complex. Kate says “Don’t run before you can walk” when it comes to growing your email marketing.
Optimize What You Already Have
Whether your business has a couple of campaigns or an extremely complex email marketing plan, if you don’t know what your sending, who you’re sending it to etc., you’re going to fall down. On the other hand, if you start by optimizing what you already have, you can get to a lot of low hanging fruit.
Kate gives the example of an abandoned cart email. Most companies, if they have anything at all, send a single email that alerts people who’ve abandoned their basket to come back and complete their purchase. She points out that this particular strategy can generate a lot of revenue if you can find the right rhythm for your business.
Kate suggests trying different tactics like varying the amount of emails and the time they are sent out. More than that, she says this is a great opportunity to figure out WHY people are abandoning their basket in the first place and address those challenges in your follow up content. Be critical and ask yourself if people are shying away from purchase because of high shipping or because they are finding the product somewhere else.
She also suggests finding the balance to being persistent but not annoying. If you’re sending out a special offer and you have a certain number of people who haven’t opened it, try to resend it to those people with a slightly varied content or subject line.
Kate says it’s important to think about giving people another opportunity to connect with you. And if you don’t want to be annoying, make sure you maintain a relevant and intelligent interaction with your customers.
Listen to learn the crucial importance about creating customer centric and relevant email marketing campaigns.
Building a Great email Marketing Strategy
For Kate, the most important thing in marketing is being customer centric and putting the customer at the heart of everything you do.
The more you can understand your prospects and customers, the more you can create emails that will really resonate with them and lead through to generating more revenue and a better return on investment.
1.) Think about customer journey. Look at how a prospect would see your brand from the first moment they encounter your brand to the point of deciding to buy a product from you to actually making that purchase. Then, trying to make that customer loyal. A certain number of people will need reactivating, either coming back through your email marketing campaign or through another channel. Dig deep and try and map out what questions they are asking and how they’re feeling, you’ll be able to create content for your emails (and marketing in general). Questions and Emotion = Content
2.) Master triggered emails. While most businesses will have manual, recurring content like a sales email that are sent out regularly— weekly for instance—triggered emails are where the real gold is. Kate says that building a system that reacts to certain actions on your site is the most effective way to leverage email marketing tactics. Most triggered emails can be broken down into different phases—for instance an email triggered by an abandoned basket would be categorized in the consideration phase. Kate says a lot of people ‘fall down’ during the post purchase phase. She recommends touching base with customers rights after they’ve purchased in an effort to nurture that relationship and begin to build loyalty.
3.) Look at the technology available to you. Once you’ve figured out how to react well to your customers and have loaded your marketing calendar with relevant campaigns, Kate suggest you make it even more clever and begin looking at the available technology. Artificial Intelligence providers, testing providers and more can help you get to where you want to be.
More than just sell, sell, sell—email marketing is also about relationship building.
Listen to learn what customers really want in their inbox.
List growth is all about creating a solid foundation. Looking at even the most simple elements like keywords optimization and optimal location of your email sign up button on your website can make a big difference.
Nurturing your customer is an important part of making a sale and Kate says that creating inspiration is key. Businesses will want to find the right people to get on their list and so need to pay attention to where those people are hanging out.
If your customers are on Facebook, you need to be showing up there. But it’s different for different kinds of businesses. If you’re targeting B2B customers for instance, Linkedin might be a better platform than Facebook. Think about where your customer is and what they want from you.
What Customers Want
Customers don’t really want newsletters. Kate says that by and large people are interested in special offers, coupons and how to’s. She stresses that figuring out what your audience wants will allow you to find them and drive them to your sign-up form.
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eCommerce Book Top Tip
- E-telligence: Email marketing isn’t dead, the way you’re using it is by Kate Barrett
- Strong Woman: The Truth About Getting to the Top by Karren Brady
- She Means Business: Turn Your Ideas Into Reality and Become a Wildly Successful Entrepreneur by Carrie Green
eCommerce Traffic Top Tip
- Email Marketing of course! Email marketing is amazing because it is extremely targeted, personalized and is a channel that you can really nurture people on.
Tool Top Tip
Growth Top Tip
- Grow your email list with the right audience. Think about how you’re targeting, how you’re getting them onto your list, and how you are communicating with them after that.