Answers to Top 10 Email Marketing Questions at Klaviyo:BOS

Two people at a table looking at a laptop denoting Answers to Top 10 Email Marketing Questions

At Klaviyo:BOS you asked and we answered the questions – both in the presentations and in 1:1 meetings. Some questions were common, few were easy, and we even answered the questions you hadn’t yet asked!

Before we get to the Q&A, let’s set the scene. Our Klaviyo:BOS event (held September 13-14) featured a lot of great content. From presentations on topics like automation and segmentation, to keynotes focused on our product roadmap and the future of marketing, we packed the two-day session with an incredible amount of ecommerce strategies and tactics for our customers to learn.

One part of the show we couldn’t plan content for was our open invitation for customers to book time one-on-one with a Klaviyo employee. During these 1:1 sessions, a Klaviyo would sit down with a customer and answer any question or challenge the customer had about email marketing. We found these sessions so valuable that we’re sharing the key themes extracted from those conversations below.

How do I keep a healthy list and ensure high open, click, and conversion rates?

Cleaning your list and ensuring emails are only sent to engaged users has 2 key benefits:

  1. Increased deliverability, open rates, and click through rates, because unengaged users don’t open or click through your emails.
  2. Money savings if you’re a Klaviyo customer because we only charge for the number of engaged profiles.

Two familiar questions heard in our 1:1s and throughout the year at Klaviyo are “How do I determine who my unengaged users are?” and “What do I do with my unengaged users?” Commonly, the definition of an unengaged user is someone who hasn’t purchased in X days, and has not opened or clicked an email in Y days. Those variables change depending on what you sell, how often your customers buy, and how often you’re sending emails. However, you can change and test that segment to create what’s best for your business. Klaviyo is purposefully designed so you can easily create your own definition of an unengaged user.

What do you do with an unengaged segment? There are a few effective strategies. Some customers create a Custom Audience on Facebook from that unengaged list, and target them one last time on social. Others create a Winback Flow with multiple emails attempting to get them to purchase again. Those who don’t unsubscribe or take action are then marked as inactive. And yet others send Winback Campaigns to try and win back unengaged customers. No matter which strategy you choose, cleaning out unengaged users is important to ensure healthy deliverability and better overall engagement on your emails.

Learn the basics of list management and stop paying for underperforming profiles. We also provide some useful resources for organizing and cleaning your master list.

How do I send the right content to the right customers?

Practicing segmentation not only ensures you’re approaching your high value customers with personalized, relevant messaging, it also increases your email deliverability with higher open rates and lower unsubscribes. Since there’s so much power and possibility within segmentation, we fielded many questions in this area. These questions ranged from specific “How do I build this segment?” to more high level “What are the best segments to use for ___?”

The power of the Klaviyo platform lies in its ability to quickly and easily segment customers based on any of their known data fields. The great part of Klaviyo’s segmentation is that many questions can often be solved by working through what segment to build. Even a question as generic as ‘How do I improve my open rates?’ is solved by thinking through segmentation and how to target groups of customers with more relevant content.

Additionally, many customers at Klaviyo:BOS were newer to the platform and the ease of segmentation was a key reason for choosing Klaviyo. Those sessions turned into segmentation 101, focusing on building out the best and most commonly successful segments. Segments like Engaged, Unengaged, VIP, and Specific Product Category Purchasers were built, adjusted, and more effectively personalized.

For a great look at how one company maximized their email performance through segmentation, check out our case study on Taylor Stitch. Learn how to create engagement tiers for your own account. Anyone not new to segmentation should check out some great advice on advanced segmentation targeting.

How can I add automated sending to my email marketing strategy?

Automated emails – or flows as we call them at Klaviyo – are a great way for our customers to earn money while they sleep. Our 1:1 sessions proved that many customers look for ways to improve their results from automation, including Welcome Series and Abandoned Cart flows.

The most common questions asked at the 1:1s were “What are the main types of automated emails I should be using?” and “How can I use automated emails more effectively?” 

One great example of automation improvement was helping a customer create a more personalized Welcome Series. We helped them acquire additional information via a sign-up form and then use that information to segment and personalize their Welcome Series. What a great way to start your relationship with a new customer!

Another customer asked when to use the Winback vs. Sunsetting flows to maximize revenue from those customers without getting too many SPAM complaints. We showed them the Cohort feature, which identifies when a buyer stops engaging or buying, and how to use that as the tipping point for a sunset flow that allows a user to unsubscribe before marking their profile as inactive.

Flows are all about understanding your customers lifecycle. For those who already have flows running, we have suggestions for improving them, including your welcome series, abandoned cart, win-back, and browse abandonment flows.

How can I gain more customers with Klaviyo and email?

“I want more customers,” said every business ever. All businesses look for creative ways to acquire customers, but, with the millions of online retailers, and that enormous Seattle-based company, the challenge of attracting new customers is increasingly difficult for ecommerce merchants.

Not surprisingly, we heard a lot of questions like “How can I grow my list?” and “What other ways can I use email to bring in new customers?” We always advise not to confuse list growth with strategic list growth. You want your opted-in customers to receive information from you because they’re interested in your products or services, not because they had a chance to get a discount or get free shipping (see above about maintaining your lists for deliverability).

In Klaviyo, there are two key features available to help our customers acquire new emails in a thoughtful way: Signup Forms and the Facebook Integration. We showed our customers the flexibility of forms to optimize their email captures. Some customers changed the type of form from embedded to flyout while others adjusted the behavior of their forms to only show after X% of scroll down the page.

Marrying your email and Facebook marketing is another great way to acquire customers. We spoke with many people about integrating with Facebook to leverage the Custom Audience feature. One common strategy is to use a VIP segment, import it to a Facebook Custom Audience, and then create a Lookalike audience. The Lookalike audience allows Facebook to find other people that “look” like your VIPs, based on common data profiles, and serve them ads for your products or services. An excellent way to clone your best customers!

Gain more customers like your existing VIPs by using our Facebook integration. If you’ve already installed the Facebook integration learn more about best practices with Facebook Lead Ads to grow your audience.

How can I design better looking emails?

Your company’s brand – its look and feel, its voice and tone, its values – are paramount to helping you stand out in a sea of retailers.The look and feel of a brand’s email is often near and dear to the heart of a marketer. From a brand perspective, making the emails look perfect is important.

Our 1:1 sessions reflected this importance with various questions like “How do I create and edit memorable emails?” and “How can I customize email templates for my brand?” Some standard advice given in the sessions involved limiting emails to a single CTA, hiding your pre-header text, and ensuring there’s enough white space available so your readers aren’t overwhelmed by content.

Overall, improving design runs the gamut of touching up minute details to strategic placement of links and CTAs. At Klaviyo:BOS, we helped customers with each type of design struggle and everything in between. One customer in particular didn’t like how bulleted sections of emails were displaying. No problem! Klaviyo is very flexible, so you’ve always got the option to edit the source code of your emails if you want your design to be pixel perfect.

Take a course on email design and level up your game at the Klaviyo Academy. Or check out 5 email template design tips from the head of our design team.

Do I even need a signup form? They’re SOOOO annoying.

Forms are typically used as the primary source for email capture. However, forms can be used to gain more than just an email address. Useful data such as a birthday or a product preference is extremely useful in creating more personalized content. Lots of attendees were pleased to learn that Klaviyo Forms can now leverage Segments to specifically target groups of customers. Customers were eager to learn more about how this works and the most effective use cases.

Customers who understood the value of forms were asking “How do I get better at using forms to collect more data about my customers?” The answer is to be more strategic and targeted by combining forms with your segmentation efforts. New signups can still see a standard form to submit their basic information, but current customers can see a form that asks for their favorite color and favorite type of shirt. The answers to these questions can be used in the future for more advanced segmentation – creating a great data cycle for producing better results from more targeted content. Now your forms are part of a much more sophisticated marketing strategy!

Get a free Klaviyo signup form up on your site today. When you’re ready, learn more about how to target forms and collect more information about your customers.

Analytics. Where can I see analytics to tell me if I’m doing well?

Digging into the numbers to understand your business, what’s working, and what’s not is crucial for any business owner. Without the ability to track performance easily, it’s difficult to make the necessary changes to improve. This is an important topic for our customers, so we made sure it was front and center at the event. During the second day keynote, Jake Cohen talked about recently launched, and soon to be launched features in the reporting and analytics category. These features will make Klaviyo’s analytic capabilities even stronger.

Marketers around the world consistently look to attribute their efforts back to revenue and it is no different with email marketers. Customers at the 1:1s asked a lot of questions about the best ways to understand how emails are performing. Whether you’re interested in a campaign or a flow, there are immediately analytics available to show you how each are performing. The Analytics Dashboard is customizable and best to compare performances of different campaigns, flows, and emails over defined time periods – and those new features coming will make this even better!  

Customers came into 1:1 sessions looking to build out their Analytics Dashboard with new graphs and charts and our Klaviyos helped them build those out step by step.

Start answering questions about your customers using a customized analytics view. Don’t forget you can also easily see how your Flows are performing right in the Flow builder.

What can I do specifically to prepare for Black Friday Cyber Monday?

BFCM: The Superbowl of the ecommerce world. According to Forbes, Cyber Monday 2017 set another record of $6.6B in Sales – making it the largest US shopping day ever. So, it’s never too early to create a great Holiday email strategy and customers took the opportunity to start the planning and strategic process.

Questions obviously arose about strategies and tactics to maximize Holiday revenue. These ranged from the specific “How many emails are best to send?” to the more broad, “What segmentation and sending strategies should I be using for this season?”

One effective strategy is to isolate your Holiday shoppers by using previous purchase dates between the beginning and end of the Holiday season last year, and ensuring this was their only purchase with your business. Once you have this segment identified, personalize your messages to them based on their specific holiday experience with your brand.

Additionally, ensure the high value customers in your VIP segment are aware of your deals in advance of the Holidays. Your VIP list is already engaged with your brand and will be most likely to respond to exclusive offers and special discounts. Each of these tactics are examples of how to boost your BFCM results this year.

Stay tuned to the Klaviyo blog for awesome BFCM resources coming out all holiday season.

Klaviyo’s blog also offers a lot of information about Holiday strategies,so take a look at some of our favorites: 

What are some ideas for using discounts and coupons in my emails?

Let’s be honest, how often in your own life do you buy something simply because it’s on sale or you have a coupon code? It’s an effective strategy that lots of retailers use to drive purchases. Few, however, have a sound strategy in place to optimize the rate of that discount. Some have strong enough brands and products that they don’t actually have to give a discount at all. That’s what makes coupons such an interesting topic to discuss with our customers.

At Klaviyo:BOS, a few customers wanted to start incorporating more coupons in their email templates. The steps change depending on which ecommerce platform the customer is using, but each customer walked through the entire process step by step with a test at the end to ensure everything was working properly.

On the other side of the coin, one particular customer wanted to find out if they could get the same results from their emails if they removed the discount altogether. A great way to test this through either a flow or a campaign is with A/B testing. Klaviyo makes it easy to create two paths – one with a discount and one without – and compare the results side by side. They walked through a strategy for creating an exclusivity campaign by segmenting customers by engagement and purchase history. Whether you’re sending a lot of coupons or creating a more exclusive strategy, creating, sending, and keeping track of coupons is made easy in the Klaviyo platform.

Get started with coupons and send an incentive to those customers who need a little push.

How do I improve? What can I do better?

A significant number of customers simply want to improve their performance. They don’t have an idea in mind or a technical issue, but just a simple question: “What can I do better?” Ultimately, a very genuine sentiment that we all ask ourselves from time to time. From a Klaviyo:BOS perspective, the answer to that question varies based on the stage or experience a customer has with Klaviyo. Starting out you might be looking to improve deliverability and your open or click rates, while more seasoned Klaviyo users might want to level up their automation.

The point is that business context matters and our Klaviyo employees look to understand that context first before offering any improvement advice. During the 1:1 sessions, the answer to the “What can I do better?” questions commonly reverted back to segmentation. One customer was just starting out with Klaviyo and began by emailing their master list with a few campaigns. They wanted to know the best way to improve the open rates that were trending in the wrong direction.

The 1:1 session advanced by level-setting on the business – what they sell, how many products, typical customer profile, etc. The customer sells plants of all shapes, sizes, and varieties, so they walked through how to create a great segmentation idea that targeted profiles based on location. These locations represented different climates where particular plants are more appropriate than others. This level of targeting is proven to increase open rates due to the increased relevance of the subject for the different sets of customers, rather than one email for all.

One of the most rewarding parts of Klaviyo:BOS was getting a chance to work one-on-one with our customers and level-up their email marketing through our product. Hopefully, understanding the key themes of the questions asked and answered makes you feel like you had your own personal experience, learned some things to help, and if you’re a customer, have the chance to use Klaviyo more effectively.

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