In a perfect world, every marketing email you send would be a personalized, one-to-one communication based on everything you know about your recipient. It would provide meaningful information and just the right offer to meet their current needs. While it’s not practical to send everyone on your list a personal email at every step of their customer journey, holistic email marketing is the next best thing.
Holistic email marketing puts the customer first. It lets the member or prospect tell you what they need when they need it so you can deliver a seamless brand experience. This customer-first approach also benefits your organization and your industry. It can dramatically improve your email campaign results while fueling engagement, event attendance, membership, and retention. Getting started with holistic email marketing requires three components: segmentation, personalization, and automation.
Segmented Audience Targeting
To provide the most relevant, timely email messages and offers, you will first need to look at your audience and group them into meaningful categories, called segments. Research shows that segmented email campaigns achieve better results than mass emails.
Consider dividing your list based on a contact’s defining characteristics, such as industry, job title, geographic location, or lead score. You can also segment based on an existing list, such as past event attendees. Another approach would be to segment by actions taken, for example, a form submission or purchase made. You will also need to determine where individuals are in their customer journey: Are they new to your organization? Are they first timers or veteran event attendees? Has their membership lapsed? Is it time to renew?
6 Types of Personalized Communications
Once you establish your audience segments, the next step is to personalize messages for each group. Personalized emails are immediately more relevant to your audience. They reduce perceived information overload, and they boost engagement. Depending on your audience segments, you might send one of these six emails tailored to the customer journey.
- Welcome emails—provide background information for those new to your organization; include offers that reassure their intent and encourage them to engage
- Lead nurturing—help people move through the buying cycle by sending regular messages that show your organization’s value and promote year-round engagement
- Event promotion—send registration emails, special promotions, and post-event follow-up to drive attendance and encourage repeat attendance
- Inactive subscriber campaigns—target individuals on your list who haven’t opened or clicked in a while with messages and offers that compel them to re-engage
- Membership renewal messages—send emails based on when individual memberships expire to fuel your retention efforts
- Lapsed member campaigns—schedule a drip campaign to invite lapsed members to rejoin your organization, attend an event, and engage with peers again
To achieve the greatest results, you should pair each email with a custom landing page that has the same look and feel, messaging, and offer as your email. The landing page should also present an easy way for your audience to take action. For example, include an obvious button to click or form to fill out. Make only one offer to avoid overwhelming people or losing them along the way. Also ensure that your landing page is mobile optimized for efficient navigation.
The third component in holistic email marketing is automation. Holistic email marketing takes cues from your audience members’ actual behaviors to determine next steps—such as a phone call, direct mail piece, or another email message. To streamline this process without draining your staff resources and budget, you can use a marketing automation platform, such as Informz.
Using marketing automation, you can set up custom workflows, schedule emails, and score leads as they come in. Once you establish the workflows, the platform takes care of the next steps automatically. You monitor performance as you go and make adjustments to headlines, copy, offers, and visuals as needed.
Why Holistic Email Marketing?
Simply put, people are more likely to engage in issues that matter to them personally. Before you launch another email campaign, ask yourself, “How can we help our members and prospects achieve their objectives?” Quite often, the answer to this question will vary based on your individual audience members. Some need to become aware of your organization and its benefits. Others seek specific tools to advance their careers. Perhaps others need a little nudge to re-engage with your organization.
Holistic email marketing helps you reach all these individuals with relevant, personalized messages no matter where they are in their customer journey. The result is eager, engaged members and attendees that work hard for your organization year after year.
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