5 Must-Have Email Marketing Strategies

improve daily newsletter

[Photo credit: Death to the Stock]

There’s a ton to figure out when it comes to running your own online store.

There’s fulfillment, shipping, sourcing inventory, support questions… maybe even coordinating with manufacturers and creating a product of your own.

On top of all of this, you have think strategically about your email marketing program and actually sell things.

The strategy du jour is, of course, daily newsletters. Anyone who has done this kind of email marketing knows how time consuming this approach is. If you’re spending time on one thing, you’re skipping another. Additionally, the data shows that less frequent emails net higher open rates and click through rates. With these things in mind, one has to wonder – why are we doing all these emails?

In this post, we’ll help you think differently about your email marketing program and offer alternatives to the daily grind. So before you get started cranking out another daily email, consider these approaches instead.

1) Improve (Or Begin) Your Abandoned Cart Emails

The average eCommerce site has a 73% shopping cart abandonment rate. This isn’t a mark of bad websites or poor check-out experiences (although those don’t help), rather, it’s a sign of the times. Consumers shop around before they make a purchase online. Your product is likely one of many in the running. Your abandoned shopping cart is a sign that they are still mulling the decision over.

So if you aren’t already doing abandoned cart emails, it’s time to start.

Here are a few things you can offer in abandoned cart emails to nudge consumers to make a purchase:

  • Personal style consultations (for fashion). Show how someone would wear the product as part of an outfit.
  • The opportunity to see the product in person (great for fashion but also for big-ticket purchases, like furniture or cars).
  • Customer support information. Offer a way to ask product questions (great for electronics or auto parts).
  • 3rd party validation, Instagram photos from customers, positive reviews.
  • Helpful reminders about state of product inventory.

You’ll notice one approach I didn’t mention: Discounts.

Discounts are tempting, but people can get used to discounts and may avoid buying from you unless something is on sale.

Remember: If you’re only competing on price, you’re competing against Amazon. That’s going to be tough.

You have to offer other unique qualities and services to convince a customer to make a purchase. Try to only offer discounts to abandoned carts of new customers. Rely more on your brand value, product quality, and customer loyalty to drive repeat purchases from existing customers.

2) Win-Back Campaigns

A smart email segmentation strategy is to separate recent purchasers from those who haven’t shopped on your site in the past six months or so.

If they’ve purchased before but haven’t been back in a while, it’s not necessarily because they don’t like you! With so much noise out there, they may have just forgotten about you. Or, they may not know about new products that you’re selling, and they may think that first item they bought from you last year is really all that you offer.

If you set up a “purchase” event in Klaviyo, all it takes is a few clicks to create a list based on who completed that event within a set time period.

Then, as for the content of those emails, consider these campaigns:

  • Offer a discount. I know, I know. I just got done saying discounts are a bad idea. But since consumers are so discount-driven these days, a few dollars off could be just the incentive an old customer needs to click on your email and get back to your site. To discount the smart way, combine it with a sense of urgency and timebox the coupon code for just a few days.
  • Tell them about new products. Focus is great for new online stores, but if you eventually expand beyond that first product line, you need to make sure people know about it. Don’t assume they’ve seen a news article or your Tweets about it. Reinforce the news with an email send, and it may inspire them to go back to your site and check out the new stuff.

3) Pageview-Based Campaigns

Similar to how you would set up a “purchase” event for abandoned cart nurturing, you can also set up “pageview” events to send emails to customers based on the products they browse on your site. Marketing to consumers in this way allows you to create email campaigns that are really product specific.

Here are a few things you can do in pageview-based campaigns:

  • Answer common questions about that product
  • Show product reviews
  • Recommend similar products
  • (Yes, here we go again) offer discounts that make sense for that product’s price point

Basically, a lot of the same stuff you would do in an abandoned cart nurturing campaign can be done when retargeting someone based on their view of a product.

There’s one thing to keep in mind.

This may be obvious, but it’s worth stating that doing this for every product pageview could get a little hectic. Repeat product views are a stronger indicator of consumer interest that a one-off click. Considering limiting this kind of retargeting to only repeat pageviews.

4) Set Up Retargeting

The average American spends upwards of 11 hours per day on digital media and three of those hours on social media. Skipping retargeting could be a lost opportunity.

It’s remarkably easy to set up retargeting on Adroll or Retargeter. Since you’re retargeting your own visitors, it’s less confusing than other forms of advertising, which require you to know the demographics and search phrases you’re going after.

Even though you’re not doing audience targeting like you do with Facebook or LinkedIn, you can still get granular. Marketers can do product specific retargeting and include images of the product a customer browsed or left in the cart in the advertising.

5) Create Content

The video, photo series, or blog post you create today will pay off dividends for months to come. Time invested here never goes to waste, so long as you know how to re-package the content you create for every marketing channel.

Gary Vaynerchuk writes about approach this in his book, Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook and explains it in his interview with Marie Forleo.

(Click through to 7:00 to hear the really good stuff.)

For example, the video you create today can be transitioned into a 15-second snippet for Instagram and a six second Vine video for Twitter. Behind-the-scenes photos from the shoot can be shared on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Finally, it can also be repackaged into a great email send.

Basically, the upfront effort of producing content can translate into many more great marketing assets, including your next newsletter.

What Does All This Mean?

It’s easy to get into the daily grind of marketing. It feels like there is always another Tweet to send or email to create. But to have a successful marketing program, it’s important to step back, access the bigger picture, and identify what different approaches you can take.

 

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