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Email Marketing: Creating Relevant Campaigns With Increased Open and Clickthrough Rates

Friday 18 April 2014

18 minute read

By Sarah Burns

Email marketing is not as easy as it is to delete such campaigns from your inbox. Marketing with email is challenging as you cannot see examples unless you opt-in to them. 

This opt-in function also means your marketing has to be really "on top of it's game", otherwise people will soon "opt-out", as well as click 'delete', 'delete' and delete', each time your emails arrive.

First of all, you really need to knuckle down on just what your email marketing can offer - it has to be strong and relevant, but if you don't have the purpose and template right, quite honestly you deserve to be deleted.

Here are 6 types of follow up / automated email marketing messages you could be producing to follow those initial contact touch points.

Thank You Emails

These are often referred to as "form submission" emails as they are literally following up from somebody submitting details on a form on your website / social media platform. Their sole purpose is to fulfil a promise, be that of signing up to news, updates or downloading content from a landing page - you're giving them a digital copy of that promise.

Automatic emails that fulfil this role should include the CTA again (big and boldly) and link to the direct offer / content, not redirecting the user back to the form (very unhelpful)! 

It's an idea to KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid!) with these types of emails - the user doesn't need complicated design - they just want what they deserve.

3 Steps:

  • Thank them
  • Reiterate the offer
  • Give them the promised material

New Marketing Offers

This is where you get them excited - and you're probably pretty happy too! Advertising, promoting, explaining and selling your latest content or product is where you really garner interest. Those who've already expressed awareness, interest or desire to be part of your brand's world, will like these messages (should they be created well). 

One single offer is advertised and linked to in these emails (via a CTA, of course). A specific landing page and CTA set-up is crucial to the success of this content - don't send them to your homepage with the task of finding it themselves.

3 Steps:

  • Create a targeted landing page and CTA
  • Use 'actionable' language
  • Make everything attractive and "sellable"

Partner Emails

Otherwise known as "co-marketing emails", these form a campaign with one or more partner companies for a mutually beneficial purpose, i.e. event or joint product promotion. The #1 benefit of such a follow-up email is the leverage of a whole other contact database!

Most importantly, ensure your customers (and the partner's customers) are aware that this is a joint campaign - mention both businesses and incorporate both / all logos into the email header.

3 Steps:

  • Ensure it's clear you're sending this with a partner company.
  • Create a design and content which can be altered so the partner company can send a similar version to their email list.
  • Visualise the offer / event / content by creating unique graphics or actionable copy.

Confirmation Emails

Have you ever paid for an item online, signed up for an event or downloaded a song and then not had any confirmation your payment / interest or attendance has been registered? 

It's incredibly annoying, as well as being potentially misleading and damaging. 

If a person completes an action on your website or from an email marketing campaign - always confirm that the action has been noticed / received / is being acted upon. 

As potential money and reputation is on the line, always make your confirmation emails as clear as day when it comes to what they contain - don't be subtle (yes, it's another case of KISS)! Never try to double these emails up as another email marketing follow-up variant, just stick to the brief. 

3 Steps:

  • Don't be vague with the subject line - use a variation of "confirm" and / or "thank you", if it applies.
  • Keep the design simple and the copy to the point.
  • Simply explain you've received their interest / payment / comment and will be in touch / it is being dealt with.

Digital News / Magazine

If you're running a business blog for your company (you really should be, if you're not!) then there's the perfect opportunity for a regular automated email. 

Producing a round-up of your blog posts is a great way to have instant content for a regular touch point email with website / blog visitors.

3 Steps:

  • Image, headline and brief summary / intro with a CTA is all you need for each blog post you're featuring.
  • Make these emails simple to navigate but visually appealing - recipients won't read the content if it looks "ugly".
  • Engage with users by adding something else i.e. social sharing buttons.

Lead Nurturing Emails 

Such emails are targeted and follow-up with recipients to check they're still interested, boost your relationship and nurture them through the marketing funnel so that they ultimately move into a position of "sales readiness". 

Organising your database into segments based on interests / sales funnel level and other means you can instantly send out relevant and personalised emails that will nurture them into leads. 

Always tell them why they're receiving this email (for instance, "We noticed you like X as you downloaded X, so we thought you'd find X interesting..."). 

3 Steps:

  • Style these in a similar way to general email marketing messages, just make it clear at the start why they're getting this message (it could appear to be spam, otherwise).
  • Craft a campaign with specific thoughts to planning, set-up, segmentation and the timing of your emails.
  • Carefully select which offers, content and messages you're going to target them with - ensure you make the right choice!

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