Litmus Blog https://litmus.com/blog Litmus Company Blog Wed, 16 Mar 2016 18:34:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 How to Track Post-Click Visitor Engagement In Your Next Email https://litmus.com/blog/how-to-track-post-click-visitor-engagement-in-your-next-email https://litmus.com/blog/how-to-track-post-click-visitor-engagement-in-your-next-email#comments Wed, 16 Mar 2016 18:32:30 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11987 While your email service provider is full of great metrics like open, click, and spam rates, there’s likely a gap in subscriber engagement. What do your subscribers do after they’ve clicked through to your website? What pages are they visiting on your site? Do they spend time on a particular page, or do they bounce immediately? Are they purchasing anything? By adding tracking to your links you can answer these questions—and more—for a full picture of your email campaign success.

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How do you measure the success of an email campaign?

While your email service provider is full of great metrics like open, click, and spam rates, there’s likely a gap in subscriber engagement.

What do your subscribers do after they’ve clicked through to your website?

What pages are they visiting on your site? Do they spend time on a particular page, or do they bounce immediately? Are they purchasing anything?

Good marketers can accurately measure results. Great ones can attribute activity downstream—downloads, sales, etc,—to the specific activities that drive them.

By adding tracking to your links you can answer these questions—and more—for a full picture of your email campaign success.

Tracking Manager in Litmus Builder

Automatically add tracking codes to links in your emails. Tracking your subscribers post-click has never been easier or quicker.

Add post-click tracking →

 

How do I add post-click tracking to my email campaigns?

While post-click tracking will vary based on the web analytics tracking tool you’re using, we’ll cover the one of the most popular—Google Analytics—in this post.

If you’re using Google Analytics, you can track your subscribers’ post-click activities by adding UTM codes to the end of the URLs in your email. Also known as UTM parameters, UTM codes are bits of text added to the end of your URL to help you track user behavior on your website.

If you’ve ever been to a website, or hovered over a text link, and noticed a URL like the one below, it’s likely because UTM codes are being used.

https://litmus.com/email-builder?utm_campaign=tracking_manager_launch&utm_source=pardot&utm_medium=email&utm_content=image1

In the example above, you’ll see the website address (https://litmus.com/email-builder), and then a snippet of text after the question mark. The snippet of text following the website address are the UTM codes.

Adding UTM codes to your links won’t break your links. Instead, they give you access to data that goes beyond the opens and clicks provided by your ESP.

Each portion of the UTM code tracks a different aspect of the traffic on your website:

  • Campaign Name (utm_campaign=tracking_manager_launch): Use this to identify a specific product promotion or campaign. In the example above, the campaign is “tracking_manager” which means the focus of the email campaign was the Tracking Manager launch.
  • Campaign Source (utm_source=pardot): The campaign source should cover where your traffic is coming to the site from. In the example above, the email was sent via Pardot so that is the source. If your content was shared via Twitter, for instance, you would use “twitter” as your source.
  • Campaign Medium (utm_medium=email): Use the campaign medium to take a high-level look at your marketing efforts. In the example above, the medium is simply “email.” You’ll be able to track all of your general email marketing efforts, but then can drill down into the source and name to get detailed data on specific campaigns.
  • Campaign Content (utm_content=image1): While not a required UTM code, campaign content is a great way to dig deeper into your data. You can use them to specify text links, CTA buttons, and even linked images to see which types of CTAs generate not only the most clicks (you can see that in your ESP’s data), but what types of CTAs encourage the most post-click activities.

The use of these UTM code elements varies based on how you want your information displayed in Google Analytics. In the example above, we have the medium as the highest level of organization, followed by source, name, and content. How you organize yours is up to you!

Note: UTM codes are case sensitive! So, “Pardot” and “pardot” would both be separated in Google Analytics reports. Be consistent when it comes to capitalization to avoid any confusions.

Creating UTM codes

There are numerous ways to create UTM codes: using Google’s URL builder tool, manually writing them, or using an internal customized tool.

Google URL builder

Google has a free tool for creating URLs with UTM codes on them. You plug in your URL, and the numerous UTM codes and a link will be generated for you.

Manually writing them

While time consuming, it’s possible to manually add UTM codes to each of your URLs once you’ve memorized the formula. However, creating them yourself definitely leaves room for error.

Internal tool

Keeping track of UTM codes can be a bit unwieldy depending on how many campaigns you’re running. If you have an awesome dev team (we definitely do!), then you can create a tool of your own to manage your UTM creation.

UTM tool - post-click tracking

While time consuming from a dev perspective, this internal tool has been a great way for us to create and organize our UTM codes.

Adding UTM codes to your campaigns

So what do you do after you have your UTM codes for a campaign? It’s time to add them to the links in your campaign.

Manually adding them

You can manually add your UTM codes at the end of every link in your campaign. Simply search your email for URLs linking to your site, and add the codes to the end of the URLs.

While this is definitely an option, it’s time consuming, and leaves room for errors, such as missing links.

Some Email service providers can do it for you

Many ESPs support automated link tracking. For example, Campaign Monitor has a Google Analytics integration. Once users link their accounts together, they enter the domains they want to track (ie. ours would be litmus.com), as well as the campaign source.

Campaign names are automatically pulled from the name of the campaign in Campaign Monitor, and the medium is set to email. Neither of these aspects can be edited by the user. The UTM codes are then added to every link on the domain(s) selected during the integration.

While automated link tracking by ESPs is a big time saver, you don’t have the flexibility to edit campaign names to your preference.

Tracking Manager in Litmus Builder

With Tracking Manager in Litmus Builder, adding tracking codes to links in your email has never been quicker or easier.

Say goodbye to the hassle of copying your tracking code, endlessly scrolling or searching for every single link the email, and pasting the tracking code to each link. And now you can customize your UTM codes to suit your tracking preferences.

Simply input your tracking code, and select which links in the email you’d like to apply it to.

builder tracking manager - post-click tracking

Every link you select will have the UTM codes automatically added to the end of it.

Want to include campaign content for specific links? Create unique tracking codes for those specific links, and Tracking Manager will automatically add them in.

Want more details about how it works? Check out our help documentation, or explainer video below:

 

Tracking Manager in Litmus Builder is now active in all Litmus accounts. Don’t have a Builder account yet? Sign up today—it’s free!

How do I look at my email’s post-click performance?

Once your campaign has been sent, it’s time to start analyzing the post-click activities within your analytics software. In our example, we used Google URL tracking, so we’ll cover how to look at reports in Google Analytics.

Navigate to “All Campaigns” under “Acquisition.” The campaigns listed here are not email specific—they cover campaigns across all channels. Change the report’s primary dimension to “medium” to focus just on email results.

google analytics medium report

Then, click on “email” and then add “campaign” as a secondary dimension to receive a list of all of your email campaigns to compare against one another.

google analytics medium and campaign report

This report includes all campaigns under the email medium. You can see pageviews, new users, bounce rates, and more.

If you have goals set up in Google Analytics—like newsletter signups, trial signups, paid signups, etc.—you can also see how many people from a specific campaign completed one of those goals.

Did one campaign outshine the others in terms of sessions, and goal completions? Take a look at how that campaign differs from others and make educated decisions about how to improve future campaigns.

Want to see how email stacks up against other channels?

To compare email performance versus other channels, navigate to “Channels” under “Acquisition.”

google analytics channel report - post-click tracking

Within this report, you’ll be able to see the performance across all channels that bring traffic to your site—organic search, referral traffic, email, etc. You can see how each channel measures up in terms of pageviews, new users, and goals that you’ve set up. This is the perfect place to show the power of email!

Looking for more tips on analyzing your campaign performance in Google Analytics?

Check out Campaign Monitor’s post, “3 Steps to Measure the Success of Your Email Marketing with Google Analytics.” Smart Insight also has a great post on creating Advanced segments in Google Analytics to isolate visitors from email so you can report on just your email traffic.

Tracking Manager in Litmus Builder

Automatically add tracking codes to links in your emails. Tracking your subscribers post-click has never been easier or quicker.

Add post-click tracking →

 

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Peek Inside Litmus Culture: 2016 Annual Team Retreat https://litmus.com/blog/litmus-culture-2016-annual-team-retreat https://litmus.com/blog/litmus-culture-2016-annual-team-retreat#comments Tue, 15 Mar 2016 15:00:28 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11872 At Litmus, we strive not just to make email better, but to make ourselves better. We pride ourselves on our culture of collaboration and creativity (we even won an award for it!), and our relentless focus on our customers (you guys!). We take immense pride in our company culture even as we grow. Peek inside one of our favorite weeks of the year and see what it's like to be a Litmus employee!

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At Litmus, we strive not just to make email better, but to make ourselves better. We pride ourselves on our culture of collaboration and creativity (we even won an award for it!), and our relentless focus on our customers (you guys!). We’ve grown dramatically since last year, nearly doubling the number of people behind the magic with 24 new employees.

With that, we’ve added talent from all corners of the globe. Our “remote first” culture allows us to be humans first and employees second. We get to watch our kids act in school plays, go for a quick run, refrain from putting on pants in the morning if we want to, or indulge our wanderlust, as long as we get our jobs done. And though that’s awesome, there’s no substitute for face-to-face bonding.

“I love that we’re remote first,” says Paul Farnell, Co-founder and CEO of Litmus. “It’s opened us up to talent we never would have seen otherwise. Staying connected—whether that’s through Slack, video conferencing, or frequent calls—is one of our challenges, and I think we’ve all really embraced that challenge.”

We just spent some time coming together as a team at our annual company retreat—from as far away as Pakistan and Ecuador—to reconnect, recharge, and ultimately re-inspire ourselves and our teammates. We whiteboarded, presented, chatted, and skied together to remind ourselves who we are and what matters most to us.

“Everything we do is as a team. We’re always seeking to improve ourselves and celebrate the accomplishments as a group effort. Our semi-annual company-wide meetups are my favorite way we do that.” –Paul Farnell

A high energy office

litmus culture band

Our office almost burst with the energy and enthusiasm of all our new arrivals to kick off the week. With several brand new employees and many more introductions to be made, we brainstormed like crazy! Our office was abuzz with new ideas and creativity.

2015 Litmus team.
2015 team photo
2016 Litmus team.
Say cheese! We posed for our latest team picture. Look how much we’ve grown since last year!

The marketing and customer success teams took the enthusiasm from the office and headed downtown for a team offsite to talk through the big picture: where we are and where we want to go. We chatted about our values, our approach, and our goals for the coming months—all with an amazing view of our favorite city.

culture boston

Lots & lots of team bonding!

Bruins game

Team at the game.
View from the box!

The team enjoyed a fierce battle between our hometown Bruins and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Though the Bruins fell 4-1, we had a blast spending time with each other and cheering on our favorite hockey team.

Leaping on Leap Day

All of the high energy from the excitement of seeing each other again had to go somewhere, so we bounced over to Launch Trampoline Park in Watertown, MA, to jump it all out (on Leap Day, no less). Fierce dodgeball battles were fought. Only a few minor injuries occurred.


Adventures in Stowe, VT

Stowe VT Retreat Week

Finally, it was time to celebrate! Whether it was hitting the slopes, relaxing at the spa, or sightseeing in Burlington, VT, we got to spend time together for a few days.

The best part about Stowe? Getting to know everyone better, including our founders. Paul, David, and Matt held “office hours” over cocktails for one-on-one meetings, set up “Founder’s Jeopardy” so we could ask them anything, and spoke about their vision for the year and beyond.

skiing culture
Paul CEO Stowe Presentation
Stowe-culture-hibachi

Join the Litmus team!

We couldn’t be more excited for what’s next at Litmus! With our incredible growth this past year, we’ve made it a priority to focus on maintaining our culture and spirit of teamwork. We’re continuing to grow our team to make email better. Join us—maybe we’ll see you next year in Stowe!

Join our team →

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February 2016 Email Market Share: Mobile Opens Climb Back to 55% https://litmus.com/blog/february-2016-email-market-share-mobile-opens-climb-back-to-55 https://litmus.com/blog/february-2016-email-market-share-mobile-opens-climb-back-to-55#comments Fri, 11 Mar 2016 19:11:59 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11910 February market share saw mobile email opens climb back to their highest levels yet—55%. While webmail opens decreased slightly from 27% to 26% of opens, desktop opens remained stagnant since last month. Let’s take an in-depth look at February market share data!

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February market share saw mobile email opens climb back to their highest levels yet—55%. While webmail opens decreased slightly from 27% to 26% of opens, desktop opens remained stagnant since last month. Let’s take an in-depth look at February market share data!

TOP 10 EMAIL CLIENTS

The positions of the top 10 email clients have remained unchanged since December 2015, with Apple iPhone, Gmail, and Apple iPad continue to hold the top three spots.

  1. Apple iPhone: 33.0%
  2. Gmail: 15.8%
  3. Apple iPad: 11.6%
  4. Android: 10.3%
  5. Apple Mail: 7.6%
  6. Outlook: 6.7%
  7. Yahoo! Mail: 3.0%
  8. Outlook.com: 2.1%
  9. Windows Live Mail: 1.3%
  10. Thunderbird: 0.7%

Discover your top 10

When it comes to email marketing, it’s all about your audience. Use Litmus Email Analytics to discover which email clients are most popular with your subscribers. Sign up free!

Discover your audience →

 

ENVIRONMENT GROWTH

Environment growth

February ended with mobile representing 55% of opens, webmail with 26% of opens, and desktop with 19% of opens. While desktop opens have remained stagnant since January, mobile opens increased 1.9%, and webmail opens decreased 3.3%.

The differences might seem slight compared to last month, but it’s a major change from last year. Since February 2015:

  • Mobile opens have increased 19.6%
  • Webmail opens have decreased 18.8%
  • Desktop opens have decreased 13.6%

DIGGING INTO MOBILE OPENS

Mobile email opens

Apple iPhone and iPad represent 44.6% of total opens, and 80.8% of mobile opens. This is good news for email designers since iOS has great support for HTML and CSS. If you’re seeing a large percentage of your audience opening in these clients, try using modern techniques like HTML5 video and CSS3 animation to see if it increases engagement.

Since January, iPhone opens increased 4.1%, while iPad opens decreased 4.1%. iPad opens have been on a continual decline over the past year and have decreased 4.9% since March 2015.

It’s probably no coincidence that the iPad’s slump to 11.6% of opens has accompanied a downturn in tablet sales. As of Q4 2014, Apple had sold 12.3 million iPads, while Q4 2015 gures report sales of 9.8 million—a 20% drop.

DIGGING INTO DESKTOP OPENS

Desktop opens

While Outlook opens have remained relatively stagnant since January, they’ve taken a major hit since last year. Outlook opens have decreased a whopping 27.2% since March 2015. This decrease is likely a result of business shifting away from expensive desktop suites, and moving to scalable services, like Gmail Apps.

However, Outlook opens still represent 6.7% of market share, so it shouldn’t be discounted. Digging into Outlook stats, here’s a breakdown of which versions subscribers are using:

  • Outlook 2000-2003: 15%
  • Outlook 2007: 16%
  • Outlook 2010: 35%
  • Outlook 2013: 27%
  • Outlook 2016: 7%

Unfortunately for email designers, these later versions of Outlook use Microsoft Word to render emails. HTML and CSS support in Outlook 2007+ is less than ideal.

Here’s just some of what email designers are up against:

  • No support for background images in divs and table cells
  • No support for CSS float or position
  • No support for text shadow
  • Poor support for padding and margin
  • Poor support for CSS width and height
  • Problems with nested elements background colors

If you’re seeing a large percentage of your audience opening in later Outlook clients, then definitely keep these quirks in mind.

DIGGING INTO WEBMAIL OPENS

Webmail opens

Webmail opens have remained relatively unchanged since last month, but have seen major changes since this time last year. Since March 2015, Gmail opens decreased 11.7% and Outlook.com opens decreased 53.3%.

The fall in Gmail opens and subsequent rise of iPhone and Android opens may suggest users of the Gmail app are switching back to the native email apps on these phones. The Gmail app for iOS and Android continually frustrate users with their notoriously poor support for responsive design.

The drastic drop in Outlook.com opens can be attributed to Office 365 replacing the Outlook.com infrastructure. This rollout began in summer 2015, and finished in early February.

Where did we get all this data?

This data is derived from over 13 billion opens collected worldwide with Litmus Email Analytics between February 1, 2015 and February 28, 2016. It highlights worldwide trends across all industries and verticals. Some email clients may be over- or under-represented due to image blocking. Tracking trends over time is the best way to monitor open data for email!

Which email clients are most popular with your audience?

While general email client open data is great for looking at trends, it’s your audience that matters. With the addition of a small tracking code to your campaigns, Litmus Email Analytics generates a report of where your subscribers open your emails. Use that data to focus your testing efforts—and ensure your campaigns look great in inboxes where your subscribers are opening.

Try Litmus free!

Discover your audience →

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Uncovering the Metrics Behind an Award-Winning Email https://litmus.com/blog/uncovering-the-metrics-behind-an-award-winning-email https://litmus.com/blog/uncovering-the-metrics-behind-an-award-winning-email#comments Thu, 10 Mar 2016 15:28:18 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11887 While opens and clicks are a great way to measure overall engagement, they don't paint the whole picture of a campaign's performance. Our award-winning campaign didn't have high opens or clicks, but it did accomplish its goal of creating awareness and generating buzz around The Email Design Conference.

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Every interaction with your subscribers counts. Send emails that your subscribers want, that are relevant to their needs and interests, that excite them, and (most importantly!) that make them want to take action.

Campaigns that accomplish all the above not only win the hearts and minds of your customers, they’re a win for your business. And we’re particularly proud of one campaign in particular that also won an award: the 2016 EEC Email Marketing Program Award for “Best or Most Innovative Integration with Another Channel.”

That campaign was our save the date email for TEDC15 (The Email Design Conference).

What surprised us? This campaign wasn’t a success because it had the most opens or clicks. In fact, it had much lower open and click rates compared to our other emails.

However, opens and clicks wasn’t our goal. The main call-to-action in the campaign asked our readers to tweet—and, boy, did we get a lot of tweets! It excelled at its stated goals of driving awareness and creating buzz around the conference, and we’re humbled and grateful to have won an award in recognition of those efforts!

A look at the campaign

The goals

After embedding a video background into TEDC14’s “save the date,” we had set high expectations with the community for a follow-up in 2015. As such, the primary goal of the campaign was to surprise, delight, and inspire our audience with a creative use of email, preferably leveraging a technique that is rarely seen or thought to be unsupported in email.

By utilizing innovative techniques in event-related emails, we wanted to demonstrate thought leadership and prove to our subscribers that we have the expertise and skills to teach others at TEDC. Additional goals were to raise awareness and excitement about the event, drive social mentions, and create anticipation for future ticket sales.

The email

After many brainstorming sessions, we opted to announce dates and generate excitement for TEDC15 by embedding an innovative live Twitter feed inside an email.

tedc15-email

You can view the full email in your browser, or check out the Litmus test results to see how it displayed in 40+ email clients.

“Save the date” emails were sent to Litmus subscribers and past attendees. Each contained a live dynamic Twitter feed featuring tweets using the #TEDC15 hashtag. As recipients opened the email, live tweets appeared within the email. Subscribers tweeted using the hashtag, then returned to the email to see their own message appear live in the stream inside the email.

Measuring success: What metrics matter?

The campaign garnered widespread attention, resulting in 5,000 new visitors to the Litmus website, 1,000 new prospects, and 750 tweets containing the event hashtag—all within 24 hours.

To date, it’s garnered nearly 1,260 forwards and 350 prints. More than 60% of the people that opened the email spent 18 or more seconds reading the message, the highest duration of engagement of any email we’ve ever sent.

When we launched ticket sales a few weeks later, early bird tickets sold out in 10 minutes for the Boston event and 48 hours for the London event.

Despite being sent nearly a year ago, the campaign continues to drive additional email and social engagement as users re-visit the email and contribute to the Twitter stream.

The goal of this campaign went beyond opens and clicks to draw the email community together and create awareness for the event. Between hundreds of tweets, dozens of forwards and prints, and early bird tickets selling in minutes, it exceeded every expectation.

What’s your most successful campaign?

Many marketers focus on open and click rates. While those metrics can be a great way to measure overall engagement, they don’t paint the whole picture of a campaign’s performance, especially when different emails have different goals.

What has been your most successful campaign? How did you measure its success?

Share it with us in Community →

Want to see what other email goodies we have up our sleeve?

Tickets for TEDC16 are launching soon. And, we have something extra special in store (hopefully we’ll be writing about it this time again next year!)! Subscribe to get our newsletter—and TEDC news—delivered straight to your inbox.

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A Tribute to Ray Tomlinson, the Inventor of Modern Email: Look How Far We’ve Come! https://litmus.com/blog/a-tribute-to-ray-tomlinson-the-inventor-of-modern-email-look-how-far-weve-come https://litmus.com/blog/a-tribute-to-ray-tomlinson-the-inventor-of-modern-email-look-how-far-weve-come#comments Tue, 08 Mar 2016 21:06:11 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11856 With the passing of Ray Tomlinson, the inventor of modern email and the @ symbol, we’d like to thank him for creating our favorite communication medium and reflect on how it’s evolved over the past 45 years.

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With the passing of Ray Tomlinson, the inventor of modern email and the @ symbol, we’d like to thank him for creating our favorite communication medium and reflect on how it’s evolved over the past 45 years.

Prior to 1971, email existed in a limited format. Users could only share messages between people on the same limited network. However, in 1971, Tomlinson, who worked in Boston at Bolt, Beranek, and Newman, took it to the next level. He conceived the method of sending messages across a network, and introduced the @ symbol to allow messages to be targeted at certain users on certain machines. It was the start of 1:1 personal emails.

Due to the scarcity—and high cost—of computers at the time, very few people had personal computers, so the popularity of email as we know it today didn’t take off until years later. It wasn’t until personal computers became more commonplace and online services boomed in the late 1980s and early 1990s that email became more conventional.

Email evolved into both a personal and business medium—which is exactly what Tomlinson predicted. In a 2012 interview with The Verge, Tomlinson said, “I see email being used, by and large, exactly the way I envisioned. In particular, it’s not strictly a work tool or strictly a personal thing. Everybody uses it in different ways, but they use it in a way they find works for them.”

And it’s continued to evolve—and grow in popularity—every year since its inception.

The current state of email

Today, there are over 205 billion emails sent each day, and over 2.6 billion email users. And, these numbers are expected to exponentially increase. The Radicati Group predicts there will be over 246.5 billion emails sent each day and 2.9 billion email users by 2019.

There are now dozens upon dozens of different email clients and apps available. Users can choose between a variety of desktop, webmail, and mobile clients—and even wearables like the Apple Watch—to read and send their email. Over time, the popularity of reading on mobile and tablets has increased. Today, over 55% of emails are opened in those environments.

Email has become one of the most powerful channels to reach consumers. With ROI of 38-to-1, it has the highest rate of return among digital marketing channels. And people want to receive emails, with 72% of consumers saying they prefer companies to communicate with them via email over any other channel.

Every year, we push the limits of what’s possible in email. Emails are no longer solely text-based. With the use of HTML and CSS, they can have colors, buttons, images, and more.

Emails are now segmented based on subscriber preferences or activities, and can include dynamic content to create a personalized experience.

More recently, email designers have begun using techniques commonly found in advanced web design, like HTML5 video, live Twitter feeds, and carousels.

The future of email

As evident in our Email Marketing in 2020 report, the future of email is strong! We surveyed thousands of marketers and consumers about the channel, and then asked 20 experts to share their vision of email’s future.

Our survey results found that email is more likely to be around in 10 years than Facebook, cable TV, Twitter, and other channels.

Here’s just a preview of some exciting predictions about the future of email:

  • Subscribers will be able to make purchases right inside a marketing campaign, without ever leaving their inboxes.
  • Campaigns will offer more of an app-like experience with embedded video and other interactivity.
  • HTML live text and subject lines will be able to be changed after the email has been sent.

A cheers to Ray!

While Ray may no longer be with us, his legacy will live on each and every day, with each press of the “send” button. Here’s to you, Ray! Thanks for creating our favorite communication medium. We promise to continue making email better.

Join us as we celebrate the creator of modern day email in the Litmus Community! Share with us how email affects your life every day.

Share your love of email →

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20 Predictions from 20 Experts about Email Marketing in 2020 [SlideShare] https://litmus.com/blog/20-predictions-from-20-experts-about-email-marketing-in-2020-slideshare https://litmus.com/blog/20-predictions-from-20-experts-about-email-marketing-in-2020-slideshare#comments Tue, 08 Mar 2016 17:24:52 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11799 We asked 20 experts for their predictions about email marketing in 2020. In this SlideShare, we’ve selected our favorite prediction from each of our 20 contributors, and made it easy for you to tweet the ones you find intriguing or agree with. Enjoy this peek at the future of email marketing!

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“How will email marketing change by the end of the decade?”

That’s the question we posed to 20 experts for our Email Marketing in 2020 report. Their answers predict dramatic changes in personalization, automation, interactivity, compliance, and much more.

In this SlideShare, we’ve selected our favorite prediction from each of our 20 contributors, and made it easy for you to tweet the ones you find intriguing or agree with. Enjoy this peek at the future of email marketing!

For our Email Marketing in 2020 report, Litmus asked 20 experts to share their vision of what email marketing will look like in the year 2020. Here are some of their predictions…

Daniel Burstein, Director of Editorial Content, MarketingSherpa, predicts…

Email readers are going to get better and better at helping recipients manage their email by factoring in contextual information and no longer simply displaying email by an arbitrary factor like recency.

>>Click to Tweet Daniel’s Prediction

Morgan Stewart, Chief Executive Officer, Trendline Interactive, predicts…

The client-approval step will shift toward reviewing content modules, not full creative, and signing off on targeting models, not customer segments.

>>Click to Tweet Morgan’s Prediction

Jill LeMaire Redo, Vice President of Digital Strategy and Insights, Epsilon, predicts…

By 2020, hyper-personalization in marketing will reach a significant level, along with rules-based triggers, assimilation of the mobile channel, and connecting data from other channels and platforms.

>>Click to Tweet Jill’s Prediction

Ryan Phelan, Vice President of Marketing Insights, Adestra, predicts…

We might not be far from achieving some of the 1-to-1 marketing that appeared in Minority Report, but the impetus for change is going to come as leaders in the younger generation adapt to and evolve the incumbent technology.

>>Click to Tweet Ryan’s Prediction

Eric Stahl, Senior Vice President of Product Marketing, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, predicts…

Email will leverage every interaction from the Internet of Things, location, behavioral data, and customer preferences to deliver messages to the customer in exactly the right context.

>>Click to Tweet Eric’s Prediction

Tim Watson, Email Marketing Consultant, Zettasphere, predicts…

Machine intelligence will manage and control the messaging to each individual across channels, creating the truly integrated experiences that are currently talked about a lot but rarely delivered.

>>Click to Tweet Tim’s Prediction

Loren McDonald, Marketing Evangelist, Silverpop, An IBM Company, predicts…

In the next 5 years, email will be seen as not just a high-ROI channel by itself but rather a platform that integrates with and makes other channels more successful.

>>Click to Tweet Loren’s Prediction

Tom Klein, Vice President of Marketing, MailChimp, predicts…

Subscribers will be able to make purchases right inside a marketing campaign, without ever leaving their inboxes. Campaigns will offer more of an app-like experience, too, with embedded video and other interactivity.

>>Click to Tweet Tom’s Prediction

Dave Chaffey, Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder, Smart Insights, predicts…

Given current variable adoption of best practices, by 2020, systems will step marketers through all the best practices for customised lifecycle marketing, creative, and delivery.

>>Click to Tweet Dave’s Prediction

Kristin Naragon, Director of Email Solutions, Adobe, predicts…

2020’s practitioners will be coveted assets. In fact, smart companies that recognize the value of email marketing will retain top talent by offering tenured career opportunities within the company.

>>Click to Tweet Kristin’s Prediction

Chris Lynch, Senior Director of Product Marketing, Oracle Marketing Cloud, predicts…

The convergence of marketing technology with advertising technology is taking email marketing to another level. Email platforms will need to be able to integrate with platforms that handle the anonymous marketing data.

>>Click to Tweet Chris’s Prediction

Simms Jenkins, Chief Executive Officer, Brightwave, predicts…

No longer will email work ‘just because.’ Only smart, innovative, and highly dynamic emails will drive interaction, and generic blasts will get weeded out of the subscribers’ priorities, if not outright emotionally junked.

>>Click to Tweet Simms’ Prediction

Cara Olson, Director of Direct Marketing and eCRM, DEG, predicts…

With many brands spending the past two years focusing on data and integrations, I predict that the next several years will focus on taking advantage of the single view of the customer.

>>Click to Tweet Cara’s Prediction

Paul Farnell, Chief Executive Officer & Co-founder, Litmus, predicts…

I believe email volume is going to increase dramatically by 2020, but it won’t feel like it. Inboxes will prioritize messages, many email interactions will be brief, and many emails won’t feel like emails at all.

>>Click to Tweet Paul’s Prediction

Dan Denney, Front-End Developer, Code School, predicts…

By 2020, I expect the bulk of email marketing to be similar to the experience of Gmail’s Quick Actions. The whole message will be the length of a current subject line with a call-to-action.

>>Click to Tweet Dan’s Prediction

Elliot Ross, Managing Director, Action Rocket, predicts…

I’m optimistic about the second generation email platforms. These platforms are the developer-friendly platforms of choice for startups and are well placed to take power from the late 90s vintage behemoths.

>>Click to Tweet Elliot’s Prediction

Mark Robbins, Email Developer, Rebelmail, predicts…

I see interactive as a huge shift in email development. Early analytics have shown far greater engagement from users who receive interactive messages.

>>Click to Tweet Mark’s Prediction

Andrew Bonar, Founder, Deliverability Ltd., predicts…

Where best practice dictates that permission, personalization, and relevance are key to success today, in the future those tenets will barely be considered a minimum acceptable standard.

>>Click to Tweet Andrew’s Prediction

Laura Atkins, Owner, Word to the Wise, predicts…

By 2020, ESPs being the authenticated senders won’t be enough for end users. ESP customers will have to authenticate mail themselves. Overhead and management will increase for both ESPs and their customers.

>>Click to Tweet Laura’s Prediction

Len Shneyder, Vice President of Industry Relations, SparkPost, predicts…

The Internet of Things has the potential to generate trillions of messages a day, and this tidal wave of email could be laden with all kinds of personally identifiable information (PII), requiring more and more security.

>>Click to Tweet Len’s Prediction

Email Marketing in 2020

Prepare for the future of email marketing with the insights of 20 leading experts, plus survey results from thousands of marketers and consumers.

Download Now

 

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The Future of Email Marketing [Video] https://litmus.com/blog/the-future-of-email-marketing-video https://litmus.com/blog/the-future-of-email-marketing-video#comments Fri, 04 Mar 2016 17:39:58 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11767 We asked 5 of our speakers from The Email Design Conference: How do you see email marketing changing over the next several years? Here's what they said...

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Think of the innovations that have impacted email marketing professionals in the past 5 years—things like mobile devices becoming the dominant email-reading platform, the debut of the Apple Watch, the firm establishment of engagement-based email filtering by ISPs, the cross-channel integration of email marketing, and the emergence of interactive email functionality like email carrousels and hamburger menus.

Considering all of that change, we couldn’t help but wonder: What do the next 5 years have in store?

For our Email Marketing in 2020 report, we asked 20 experts to tackle this question. Their answers augur dramatic changes in personalization, automation, interactivity, compliance, and much more.

We asked this same question of six of our speakers at The Email Design Conference. Their answers focused on email production workflow, coding support, the subscriber experience, and interactive elements.

You can watch the full interview here, or read a transcript of it below.

 

Brian Graves, UI Team Lead, DEG

In 2020, the subscriber experience in my mind will really be a lot more interactive in nature. So, all these new CSS elements and things we can do there are going to kind of be mainstream at that point in my mind. We’re going to move past some of these limitations of older clients like Outlook and hopefully by then Outlook and Gmail have moved on as well and we’ll have much more advanced things we can do in the inbox.

Fabio Carneiro, Lead Email Developer & UX Designer, MailChimp

So in five years I think the subscriber experience will—it will probably get messier before it gets better. You know, there’s a lot of push right now for—as all these exciting technologies become more and more available to email designers—there is certainly this rush to try to use everything you can without necessarily stopping to think about whether or not you should. So we’re going to be fighting a lot of that certainly over the next five years—I mean, definitely over the next year, just given how fast we move.

Lee Munroe, Product Design Lead, Mailgun by Rackspace

We’re going to see a lot more front-end web development coming into email. We’ve seen responsive design obviously come in to email. We’re going to see a lot more eventually come over to email as the clients catch up, hopefully. Maybe we’ll even see email standards at some point. Fingers crossed.

Mark Robbins, Email Developer, Rebelmail

In 2020, there’s still going to be some sort of overflow from the old things. People will still be using older versions of Outlook. We’re still going to have to work with fallbacks, but we’re going to have a much higher percentage of interactive email clients. So we will be able to build a lot more advanced emails. They’ll be a lot more going on with dynamic content, dynamics CSS—more of a personal experience as well.

I think there’s still going to be a split. People hand-coding emails because you can build something very quick hand-coded. Just knock it together in Litmus Builder and send it out, and that’s a nice simple process. But also a lot more build processes and workflows, like Gulp and Grunt, and automating things of code, as well as the sort of simple drag-and-drop type editors which will have this advanced code built in the back of them, but anyone—any marketer without any coding skills—can log on and do these things.

Dan Denney, Front-End Developer, Code School

If we’re talking about building email in the year 2020, our picture is gonna be way different than what we’re doing right now. We’re not going to be writing our own code. It’s going be a lot more drag-and-drop to making decisions around more like an “if that, then this,” send this email. So we’re getting customized messages to all our users based on their data. And I think that the blast will be a thing of the past.

Mike Ragan, Designer, Action Rocket

The boundaries are always being pushed and it’s like and we’re expanding into nothing, like an always ever expanding universe. So I actually don’t know what they’re going to look like. Maybe it will all be plain text. I don’t know. Maybe it’ll go completely on its head. And that will be it. I mean, that’s what people were saying for the watch. I mean, wearables, it’s the next step because it’s where we’re at now. I don’t know. I’m interested to see how email design evolves.

Email Marketing in 2020

Prepare for the future of email marketing with the insights of 20 leading experts, plus survey results from thousands of marketers and consumers.

Download Now

 

More Expert Videos

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We Analyzed 13 Billion Opens to Discover Where Subscribers Read Email [Infographic] https://litmus.com/blog/we-analyzed-13-billion-opens-to-discover-where-subscribers-read-email-infographic https://litmus.com/blog/we-analyzed-13-billion-opens-to-discover-where-subscribers-read-email-infographic#comments Tue, 01 Mar 2016 21:06:00 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11778 In our 2015 Email Market Share infographic, we analyze over 13 billion email opens to see where subscribers read emails. We take a look at mobile, webmail, and desktop opens over the course of the year, providing insights about why these changes occurred and how they may affect your email campaigns.

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The past year has brought many changes to the world of email marketing. Whether it was the replacement of Outlook.com with Office 365, the introduction of the Apple Watch, or a continuous increase in mobile opens, email client market share stats have seen plenty of shifts.

In our 2015 Email Market Share infographic, we analyze over 13 billion email opens to see where subscribers read emails. We take a look at mobile, webmail, and desktop opens over the course of the year, providing insights about why these changes occurred and how they may affect your email campaigns.

To get a full, in-depth picture of all of the major innovations from the past year, check out the 2016 State of Email Report.

email-client-market-share-2015-002

-Infographic transcript-

2015 brought lots of changes to the world of email marketing. Whether it was the replacement of Outlook.com with Office 365, the introduction of the Apple Watch, or a continuous increase in mobile opens, email client market share stats have seen plenty of shifts.

TOP EMAIL CLIENTS

The top 10 most popular email clients of 2015.

  1. Apple iPhone: 33%
  2. Gmail: 15%
  3. Apple iPad: 12%
  4. Google Android: 10%
  5. Apple Mail: 8%
  6. Outlook: 6%
  7. Yahoo! Mail: 3%
  8. Outlook.com: 3%
  9. Windows Live Mail: 2%
  10. Thunderbird: 1%

OPENS BY ENVIRONMENT

Over the course of 2015, mobile opens increased 17% and now represent 55% of opens. Webmail opens decreased 13% to end the year with 26% of opens, and desktop opens decreased 17% for a year-end 19% of total opens.

55% of emails are now opened on mobile. Plus, since August 2015, mobile opens have surpassed the 50% mark.

MOBILE OPENS

Android opens increased 35% to represent 10% of opens, and iPhone opens rose from 27% to 33% of opens. Conversely, iPad opens decreased 5% over the course of the year and now only represent 12% of opens.

  • iPhone: Increased 22%
  • iPad: Decreased 5%
  • Android: Increased 35%

iOS represents 45% of total market share, which is great news for email designers since HTML and CSS are well-supported.

DESKTOP OPENS

While the rest of desktop opens remained relatively stagnant in 2015, Outlook opens decreased 33% and now represent only 6% of opens.

  • Apple Mail: Increased 1%
  • Outlook: Decreased 33%
  • Thunderbird: Increased 536%
  • Windows Live Mail: Decreased 25%

While the popularity of Outlook overall is on the decline, older versions of the desktop client—which also happen to have better HTML and CSS support—are being phased out in favor of newer versions. Outlook 2016 for Windows was released in September 2015 and has already seen some adoption, picking up over 5% of Outlook opens. Outlook 2013 also saw a 50% gain over the year, whereas Outlook 2003 dropped 35%.

WEBMAIL OPENS

Similar to desktop opens, webmail opens took a major hit in 2015. Webmail clients saw decreases of between 4% and 42%

  • Gmail: Decreased 8%
  • Yahoo! Mail: Decreased 28%
  • Outlook.com: Decreased 42%
  • AOL Mail: Decreased 4%

The fall in Gmail opens and subsequent rise of iPhone and Android opens may suggest users of the Gmail app are switching back to the native email apps on these phones. The Gmail app for iOS and Android each have notoriously poor support for responsive design, which can lead to a frustrating experience for users.

YEAR IN REVIEW

Month-by-month highlights and email client news from 2015

January

The year starts out with desktop at 23%, mobile at 47%, and webmail at 30% of opens. The Outlook app for iOS and Android is launched.

February

Mobile opens dip to 46%, while webmail opens increase to 32%.

March

Mobile opens climb back up the ladder and reach 48%.

April

Android takes over the #5 spot with 8.5% of opens. Apple Mail falls to the #6 spot. The Apple Watch is launched, and along with it comes the addition of wearables to the email app fleet.

May

Outlook drops from the #4 to #6 spot. Android opens continue to climb and reach the #4 spot with 8.6% of opens.

June

More Outlook, Android, and Apple Mail swapping! Outlook regains control of #4 spot with 9% of opens, while Android drops to #5 spot and Apple Mail drops to #6 spot.

July

Outlook and Android continue their flips. Android regains control of #4 spot—and stays there the rest of the year. The latest version of Windows is launched and it comes with a new universal mail app—Outlook Mail.

August

Yahoo! Mail takes over Outlook.com’s long-held #7 spot. Thunderbird replaces AOL Mail in #10 spot.

September

Mobile opens surpass the 50% mark, while webmail opens dip to 28% and desktop opens dip to 21%. iOS 9 and Outlook 2016 are launched.

October

After the launch of Outlook 2016 in September, Outlook replaces Apple Mail for the #5 spot. However, it doesn’t last long—Apple Mail climbs back up to #5 spot in November and stays put the rest of the year.

November

Mobile opens jump from 52% to 54%. This is likely a result of holiday shoppers reading their emails on-the-go. AOL Mail replaces Thunderbird at #10 spot. After more than two months in rotation, iOS 9 adoption grows quickly and accounts for 72% of all iOS opens.

December

Mobile opens continue to rise and reach 55%. Thunderbird ends the year in the top 10, beating out AOL Mail for the last spot on the list.

*Our 2015 market share data is derived from over 13 billion opens collected worldwide with Litmus Email Analytics between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015. It highlights worldwide trends across all industries and verticals. Some email clients may be over- or under-represented due to image blocking.

Which email clients are most popular with your audience?

While general email client open data is great for looking at trends, it’s your audience that matters. With the addition of a small tracking code to your campaigns, Litmus Email Analytics generates a report of where your subscribers open your emails. Use that data to focus your testing efforts—and ensure your campaigns look great in inboxes where your subscribers are opening.

Discover your audience →
Free 14 day trial. No credit card required.

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This Month in Community: Emoji + Email to Fall in Love With https://litmus.com/blog/this-month-in-community-emoji-email-to-fall-in-love-with https://litmus.com/blog/this-month-in-community-emoji-email-to-fall-in-love-with#comments Mon, 29 Feb 2016 17:00:04 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11770 The Litmus Community is the place for email designers and marketers to discuss their craft, talk about industry news, and join in the (occasional) controversial rant and discussion.

In case you haven’t been keeping up, here’s what happened this month in the Community.

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The Litmus Community is the place for email designers and marketers to discuss their craft, talk about industry news, and join in the (occasional) controversial rant and discussion.

In case you haven’t been keeping up, here’s what happened this month in the Community.

A New Responsive Framework

Community member Nicolas Garnier dropped a bomb when he announced a new framework for easily building responsive emails, MJML. The framework, which was built in-house at Mailjet, abstracts away a lot of the complexity of building responsive emails and provides prebuilt components for quickly developing campaigns. It’s one of a few frameworks trying to modernize how we develop email campaigns and is a breath of fresh air for many a frustrated designer. Check it out and give Nicolas feedback in the Community.

Emoji in Email

Melissa McCollum posed a few questions about the use of emoji in email. After noticing that different platforms display different emoji, she was curious about how others handled the situation. How do you keep emoji consistent across platforms? And where is the best place to use emoji? Let her know your thoughts.

Email in 2020

Inspired by our recent Email Marketing in 2020 report, I put the question to the Community:

What will email marketing look like in 2020?

So far, the consensus seems to be that context and delivering the right content at the right time will be a key to email success in the coming years. We’d love to hear what you think. Will our tools change dramatically? How will content differ in four years? Will automation rule our industry? Weigh in on the Community discussion.

Emails to Fall in Love With

In our latest Community Contest, we challenged people to push the envelope of Valentine’s Day designs. As with most of our contests, we were blown away. While there were only a few entries, they did a great job of breaking free from Cupid’s typically cute chains.

Community members Paul Airy and Sophia George both delivered beautifully designed Valentine’s Day emails. We especially loved Paul’s patented “Love ‘O’ Meter”. In the end, we had to crown the tag team of Miah Roberts and Camille Palu the winners with their “Love U” email.

Miah and Cam’s email takes pixel art animation to a whole new level. Meticulously coded tables provide the foundation for some nice CSS animations to deliver a stark and entertaining Valentine’s Day email unlike any we’ve seen before.

Check out all of the entries and check back for a new Community Contest soon.

Join the Community Today

There is a ton more happening in the Community than what’s described here. Keep up with the latest news, techniques, and tools by joining the Litmus Community today. It’s free to join and filled with the best minds in email marketing.

Join the Community →

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The Evolution of Email Spam: Here’s How Your Customers Now Define It https://litmus.com/blog/evolution-email-spam-heres-customers-now-define https://litmus.com/blog/evolution-email-spam-heres-customers-now-define#comments Wed, 24 Feb 2016 12:00:03 +0000 https://litmus.com/blog/?p=11728 Your customers view any irrelevant or unwanted email as spam. It doesn’t matter how long they’ve been a customer or if they’ve given you permission—if your email is repeatedly of little to no relevance to them, it’s spam.

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About a month ago, a friend and fellow Boston marketer and I got into a discussion about the merits of customer marketing, and more specifically, how email plays a role.

Casey Hogan was frustrated, as she had just received her tenth—tenth!—upsell email from a brand that she had been using for four years.

Obviously annoyed, she took to Twitter in search of empathy.

Asked by another user to clarify, she went on:

I added my .02 cents…

…and the inspiration for this post was born.

For Hogan, formerly a marketer at Drift and Drizly, the customer experience is something of great personal meaning. And like anything else worth analogizing, she related her experience to dating:

“Getting a subscriber is just like getting someone’s number…Most people don’t want to hear from someone they just met three times a day. I would also guess they don’t want to sporadically hear ‘hey can you set me up with your friends?’ either.”

Conversely, by permission marketing standards, all seems fair. But when we consider how subscribers’ rising expectations has worked to evolve what email spam really is, her frustration comes into focus.

A friend and colleague of mine, Chad White, writes in his book Email Marketing Rules that “Having permission only gets you so far nowadays. Irrelevant and unwanted email is the new spam in the eyes of both consumers and Internet Service Providers (ISPs).”

How your customers define email spam

White’s definition above is whiteboard material.

Your customers view any irrelevant or unwanted email as spam. It doesn’t matter how long they’ve been a customer or if they’ve given you permission—if your email is repeatedly of little to no relevance to them, it’s spam.

Or, as was the case mentioned earlier, this particular brand was more interested in using Hogan to create new relationships than actually building a relationship with her. As detailed by Hogan, the customer experience looked something like this:

  • Use code for first X free
  • Refer friends, get $
  • Refer friends, get $ ..
  • Refer friends, get $ ….
  • Refer friends, get $ …..

…and so on. Ten times.

There was obviously no relevance for the user, otherwise she wouldn’t have taken to Twitter to voice her frustrations. But how are brands to define relevance? As White says in Email Marketing Rules, “it’s often discussed in vague, mystical terms.”

In an attempt to lift the veil a bit, I’ve detailed some ways I’ve found effective at ensuring a more relevant experience for subscribers.

Set the right expectations

This section is really about table stakes. If your subscribers aren’t sure of what kinds of communications to expect, you’ve exposed yourself to the risk of being reported as spam, thus hurting your subscriber reputation and any future hopes of landing in the inbox.

So tables stakes or not, it’s important to note here.

Sign up forms and welcome emails are two areas of prime real estate you should use to clearly inform people what they will be receiving from your brand.

If you plan on emailing occasional gated material, let people know in advance of them providing their email address. Whether or not you view additional communications as a value add is irrelevant, both to this principle and to your subscribers.

Let subscribers of any list know ahead of time exactly what they can expect to receive from your brand. Then, most importantly, reduce your messaging to specific lists to the content they expect to receive.

Personalize the subject matter, not the subject

Advances in marketing technology has resulted in a misconception of what personalization really is, and more unfortunately, in marketers abusing the tactics available for achieving faux personalization.

So let’s start with what personalization is not. It’s not:

  • Knowing your subscriber’s name, or
  • Location
  • Company name
  • Job title
  • Industry, or any other basic demographic information

Personalization is about interests, behavior, and challenges. And while most brands can talk about these characteristics in detail as they pertain to their target audience, many do not tailor the email marketing strategy to communicate the right messages to those who need it most.

Let’s use an example from my own inbox.

I joined the Dollar Shave Club last fall, and right before my first box shipped, I received an email with the subject line, “Your first box is about to ship. Toss more in.”

This was pretty pertinent information for me. Naturally, I opened.

Inside were four product suggestions, including a shave butter I had never tried. I wouldn’t normally purchase shave butter, but at $4.99, I thought, “Why not? One less thing I have to remember at the store.”

Dollar Shave Club knows this about me (and all its users): we value convenience over features. Their razors don’t have 8 blades, a battery, or other gimmicks. It’s just a razor. But they’re delivered to the doorstep every month, for less than we’d pay in the store.

Convenience over features.

This email, from the subject line through the body copy, stayed consistent with this message. That’s personalization. They didn’t need to use my name anywhere in the email. Instead, they know why I buy from them and use this to improve my experience and increase sales.

Now, this was a more general form of personalization. Most automation software enables you to collect more relevant, personal information on your customers and prospects. Not only should you be gathering information around buyer interests, behaviors, preferences, purchase history, and more, you should also be powering your personalization efforts with the insights you glean from it.

User-friendly

Your subscribers are viewing email on a variety of different apps and devices, each with its own rendering quirks that affect the way your email looks and performs.

These are challenges your marketing and design teams face.

From your customer’s standpoint, their challenge is that it may be really hard to read your email on mobile, or that your call-to-action isn’t “clickable” on whichever device they happen to be using. Or maybe it’s that some (or all) the images used are broken, or your links are broken or leading to the wrong page.

Poor user experience leads to frustration, which as shown in the opening, could also lead to declarations of spam.

Utility

While most marketers believe that what they produce and send is of value to their customers, in order to truly be of utility to your customers, you need to think in their terms rather than your own.

Besides using customer intelligence to segment your messaging (discussed earlier), White lists two other ways that email marketers can execute greater value and utility in their strategies: worthwhile and engaging messaging.

Worthwhile

Discounts, deals, and buyer-related information are the number one reason people sign up for emails. This aligns perfectly with David Ogilvy’s summation that, more than anything, people care about saving money.

However, be careful as to use these motivations as a means to take advantage of your customers. As evidenced in the opening, many brands essentially hold their customers ransom with discounts and deals.

In other words, they follow the formula of “if you perform [x], we’ll allow you to save [y].”

Could it also be possible that “performing [x]” aligns with a buyer’s interests while also appealing to their motivation to save money? Sure. But be careful, as there’s a very thin line in appealing to a customer’s motivation and holding them ransom.

Engaging

Chances are a sizeable portion—if not the majority—of your email list is not made up of customers, but prospects—prospects who are not yet ready to buy, but would benefit from educational materials that pertain to their specific needs and challenges.

Here’s where the intelligence you’ve gathered about your prospects—and the subsequent segmentation—come into play in order to deliver the right content to the right people. The “spray and pray” approach is not only less effective, it’s also less valuable to your subscribers.

You may find yourself sending multiple variations of an email, thus spreading your reach across several emails rather than one, in order to achieve this, but you may also find yourself with higher engagement as a result.

Email spam redefined

Your subscribers don’t think in terms of algorithms, they think in terms of relevance.

While ISP algorithms and content filtering are a critical component of ensuring your emails even make it to the inbox, your sender reputation and level of subscriber engagement are even more important when it comes to optimizing for the inbox.

It’s time marketers redefined how they define email spam, because their customers and prospects already have.

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