New Technologies That Will Change How Subscribers Read Your Emails

I don’t have to tell you that marketing technology is always changing, you experience that every day. As an email marketer you live and breathe browsing behaviors, purchasing decisions, and re-targeting decisions based on new sets of data. Your email program has probably evolved over the years adapting to shifts trends. Consumers now use an array of devices used to check email and to maximize your reach you’ve worked to integrate all your marketing data to deliver the perfect content, at the perfect time to your subscribers.

Recently there have been some changes that will not only impact the content that can be sent subscribers, but also how those subscribers interact with your messages. Two topics that signal this shift is the growing adoption of AMP for email at the mailbox provider level and text-to-voice software like the new “Play My Email” function for Outlook. Both are markers of what is possible with email creatives and how email fits into a subscriber’s everyday life.

AMP Scripting for Email

AMP or an Accelerated Mobile Page was developed to combat slow-loading mobile web pages and was not originally for email. The weight of all the assets and resources that go into a single web page can be too much to render quickly. AMP allows content to load faster, be more engaging, and easier for the end user to consume content. Now enter AMP for email, carrying the same mantle as it’s AMP for web predecessor. It is tempting to dive into the nitty-gritty of AMP for email, instead let’s take a high-level overview of this new technology and how it can make a subscriber seamlessly move through the sales funnel of interest, decision, and action. To illustrate this a little better, I will use a fictional travel company as an example.

Envision you get an email from this travel company that has a call out for a destination you have been wanting to visit. After seeing a highly desirable resort at an affordable price, you click on the call to action and are taken to the travel company’s site. You look at pictures, view local activities, peruse the accommodations, and then decide that this option is not for you and you want to review others. You then go back to your email, scroll through, click a different link, and start the evaluation process all over again. This constant back and forth between email and browser could create fatigue. You may stop browsing and potentially begin looking for a new way to book your vacation.

This whole process is creating friction between two stages of the sales funnel, interest and decision. If a subscriber must take unnecessary time to explore all their options before making a decision, they can just as easily choose to make no decision at all. This leaves both the subscriber and sender somewhat dissatisfied with the email experience. With AMP for email though, all that investigation can be done in the subscriber’s inbox with a few simple clicks. They can view photos of the resorts and discover other information in an efficient fashion right from their inbox. AMP for email also has form submission elements that can cut out part of the purchase or action stage of the sales funnel. In the earlier example, if you decided to book that vacation you can select the dates, room accommodations, and other options right from the email and essentially use the travel website as the credit card processor. This example of AMP for email blends almost all stages of the sales funnel into a faster and more engaging interaction, rather than using the email as a launching point for a subscriber to interact with the brand.

Text-to-Voice Email

Microsoft recently announced a function known as “Play My Email” and this is in line with other text-to-voice features that have been appearing recently. Devices like Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Nest are gaining popularity in many households and it a matter of time before they’ll be reading a subscriber’s email aloud as a normal part of their day.

What does this mean for email marketers though? Subscribers will be even more distracted while checking their mail than before. Surveys have shown that most people check their email using an additional piece of technology. Now subscribers can have and email read to them while they are cooking dinner, folding laundry, or any other task that may be near to these text-to-voice devices. With these additional distractions, it is now more important that the content of an email is of high value to the subscriber. The content sent to subscribers will need to be specific to their immediate needs and wants for them to find the email in their inbox later and take further action. Using other technologies like dynamic content not only achieves the goal of having the content be of high value to the subscriber, but also can streamline the email development process by not having to create new email creative for each subscriber segment.

This also means that it will take longer for subscribers to consume the information in an email if it is read to them rather than skimming through an email visually. Usually if a sender can have a subscriber spend more than 8 seconds looking at an opened message that means they have successfully grabbed the subscriber’s attention. With the text-to-voice devices, much of that time may be spent having the friendly from and subject line read out loud to the subscriber. If the main content is buried down in the email past pre-header, navigation, or other content, the subscriber can just as easily skip that message and move on to the next item in their inbox. There have been great innovations that revolve around the visual aesthetics of email and how it can catch subscriber attention, but now is the time to focus on the optimization of the written content in your emails. It is important to ensure your written content is conversational, relevant, and informative from the first word or instance of alt text to have the voice-to-text software that is reading the email convey the value you are presenting to the subscriber.

The progression of all technology has one main goal, to make any task no matter how big or small more effortless for all people. Advancements like AMP for email and text-to-voice software options are appearing to make one of the most used channels of communication streamlined and more accessible to all email users. One nugget of email marketing wisdom that I like to keep top of mind is all senders are being compared to the best sender in their subscriber’s inbox, whether they are direct competitors or not. Being ready for these changes in customer experience and information consumption will help ensure your brand is what all others get compared to, not the other way around.

Improve Your Company’s Future with these Ecommerce Email Tools

This is a guest post from Tatiana Podus at Promodo.

The advantage of email marketing is its low cost and high efficiency, especially when looking for a tool to attract active traffic. And depending on the size of your list, investments in email marketing can start at a very low price.

This is a win-win when considering the incredible ROI that email offers. Not to mention, email has a 2.5% conversion rate, ranking first among the best-performing marketing channels.

7 Ecommerce email tools to improve conversions

In today’s data-driven world, simply sending the same email to your entire list isn’t enough. Subscribers are fed up with generic emails: They’re far more selective and demanding than they used to be.

Read on to discover 7 advanced ecommerce email tools to help you make your email marketing campaigns truly effective and get a competitive edge in the market.

1. АМР for email

AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a technology designed to make web content load faster on mobile devices.

In email marketing, it enables you to create interactive emails—ones your subscribers can interact with in a variety of ways, such as: browsing through a gallery, placing or modifying an order, filling out forms, and completing surveys.

According to Litmus, mobile devices account for up to 42% of email opens. This means that almost half of the opens can be converted into orders directly from within an email, without visiting the website.

And, with the help of AMP, you can modify the emails that have already been sent to your subscribers.

For example, let’s say you send an email with discounted items, but the items that were showcased in the email sell out quickly. In this case, you only have to change a few lines in the code to replace the sold-out items with available ones.

And this even works in emails that have already been sent.

It is important to note, however, that at the time of this publication, AMP pages are only supported in Gmail and Mail.ru.

But this shouldn’t stop you from sending emails to other email clients. If the AMP version isn’t supported by an email client, it will be replaced with a regular HTML email.

Soon, this technology will likely be introduced to Outlook and Yahoo Mail.

2. Geomarketing, geo-targeting, and geofencing

Geomarketing is a way to send email and Viber messages, as well as push notifications, based on the subscriber’s real-time location.

Why is localization important? Find out here.

Currently, one of the only tools actively used in geomarketing is geo-targeting, though geofencing will soon be available for implementation. Let’s take a look at the key differences between the two.

Geotargeting is used to send notifications to subscribers based on their geographic location (country, region, or city). The subscriber’s location data is obtained based on the actions they take. It can be recorded when a user opens an email or clicks a link. If the user’s location changes, the data in the system will be updated, too.

Take, for example, a contact has changed their location and moved to another area of ​​the country. A business could send them notifications about the nearest gas stations or diners in the updated location.

Geofencing is also used to send automated notifications to subscribers based on their current location. The difference is that users will only get notifications when they’re within a radius of 1-2 km from a gas station or a diner. This allows businesses to deliver maximum value to customers, as well as improve brand awareness and brand loyalty.

This format is perfect for businesses in the service sector, such as beauty salons, gas stations, or car repair shops.

For example, if you run a food delivery business, you may want to share a discount on pizzas on a Friday night in a particular residential area where sales are low.

Geofencing will enable you to target your customer engagement efforts only at this particular area, without having to segment your database manually.

What’s more, you’ll be able to save your marketing budget by narrowing the target audience for sending.

3. Advanced segmentation

Advanced segmentation is an email marketing staple, but it’s also one of the most important ecommerce email tools, allowing you to send targeted emails to users based on the dynamic data about their behavior.

You can learn more about segments in the video below.

 

With the help of advanced segmentation, you can track the following:

  • Basic data: the data imported from a user profile or a contact list
  • ESP data: the data about subscribers’ interactions with emails
  • CRM data: the internal sales performance analytics data including the data about offline purchases
  • External data: the data about user interactions with the website or mobile app

With a special script placed on each page of the website, you’ll be able to obtain and process more information about the actions of your subscribers in real-time, and then automatically insert content in emails depending on the level of detail of the data you have.

This table describes advanced segmentation: one of the best ecommerce email tools you can use.

Advanced audience segmentation allows you to offer your subscribers related products based on the actions they take, which will help you increase transactions and email-generated revenue.

For example, say a subscriber has purchased a vacuum cleaner. This data can be processed so that the next email would contain information about the purchased product and a content block with related products: a bag, additional nozzles, etc.

Now let’s say another user has only viewed vacuum cleaners on the website. In this case, an email would contain information about this vacuum cleaner, as well as special-priced cleaners or more functional counterparts.

4. Hyper-personalization in email and push notifications

Content personalization refers to creation and distribution of messages targeted directly at a specific group of users.

By segmenting your audience into such groups, you’ll be able to send them emails depending on their specific characteristics and the objectives of your business.

Hyper-personalization implies creating individually customized emails based on an analysis of subscriber behavior. According to SocialMediaToday, personalized emails generate up to 14% more revenue and help improve open rates by 29%.

This personalization guide will take your emails to the next level.

In email marketing, hyper-personalization enables marketers to make individual offers to each individual subscriber based on the history of their purchases. For example, you may receive replenishment emails when you’re out of your favorite product.

Push notifications can also be based on user interactions. These push notifications may include reminders of products that users have added to their favorites or abandoned cart notifications.

5. Gamification

Gamification is an effective eccomerce email tool that grabs reader attention and increases user loyalty through interactivity. When applied to email marketing, gamification can help drive engagement of new subscribers and activate dormant ones.

Such interactive elements aren’t designed for direct sales, but in the end, users should be able to use the rewards to get discounts or bonuses for their purchases.

There’s a variety of different puzzles and games, such as:

  • rebuses
  • puzzles
  • crosswords
  • lotteries

Some of these interactive elements can be implemented directly within an email, while others may require a separate page or publication.

Gamification in emails shouldn’t be too complicated, because the primary goal is to entertain readers, not to make them anxious.

Just make sure that the conditions for participation and claiming an award are clear and transparent.

6. Omnichannel and multichannel marketing

Omnichannel and multichannel marketing approaches are often confused with each other.

However, recently, the term “omnichannel” has been getting increasingly higher rankings, in terms of popularity among search queries, and, the demand for omnichannel marketing is likely to grow even more in 2020.

Multichannel marketing allows you to communicate with users using multiple communication channels, including email, SMS text messages, social media networks, search engine marketing, and so on.

At the same time, multichannel marketing implies that these channels aren’t synchronized with each other: They have separate sales workflows, and customers who are attracted through each channel may be treated as separate entities.

Omnichannel marketing also means that marketing experts connect with users using multiple channels. The difference is that these channels are connected into one single, holistic user-centric structure.

This makes it possible to get as much information about customers as possible. And with that information, you can provide them with the best, most comfortable way to make orders, ask questions, and communicate with a company in every possible way across all channels and devices—from the very first touchpoint to repeat purchases and beyond.

Advantages of omnichannel marketing:

  • All communications are maintained via channels that are convenient for each particular user at their most convenient time.
  • Omnichannel marketing reduces the risk of losing a subscriber by leveraging multiple channels in a seamless experience.
  • All data about subscribers’ interactions with emails is stored in a single place.
  • Omnichannel marketing provides for a more detailed analysis of customer lifecycle and lifetime value (LTV) based on comprehensive data across all customer touchpoints. As a result, you’ll be able to send more relevant information to each individual subscriber.

Omnichannel marketing has a huge advantage over multichannel marketing, as it makes it possible to analyze each channel in conjunction with others.

Plus, you can set up a unified user service system, increase customer loyalty, and provide an opportunity to establish individual and personalized communication with users.

However, the omnichannel marketing approach has one significant disadvantage: the difficulty of implementation from the technical perspective.

That’s because you’ll need tools that’ll allow you to collect data from different marketing channels and combine this data into a single source of information for your marketing campaigns.

Learn how to combine email marketing and social media. 

7. Email marketing analytics

Analytics is the right thing to do if you want to develop your marketing strengths.

Conducting an analysis of your email marketing efforts will enable you to see the whole picture, measure your current marketing performance, and make informed decisions for the future.

Email analytics allow you to monitor the success of your email marketing efforts and make timely adjustments.

In order to keep an eye on your email marketing performance, pay attention to the following indicators:

  • email open rates
  • click-through rates
  • conversion rates
  • number of unsubscribes
  • delivery errors

To increase some of the metrics and reduce others, you should conduct A/B testing for your emails, apply a deeper segmentation, and automate your workflows in general.

Analytics can help you make objectively reasonable forecasts, for example, for a year in advance, as well as set goals and achieve them by applying the tools you need in email marketing.

Get the introduction to email insights and reporting here.

Wrap up

Email marketing is one of the most efficient channels for business communications. Not only does it drive good engagement and conversion rates without significant investments, but it also has great automation capabilities.

We hope that the ecommerce email tools described in this post will help you improve your email campaigns, making them easier to read and more useful to your readers.

If you’re having any difficulties setting up your email marketing campaigns, it’s best to contact experienced email marketing specialists.

Tatiana Podus is a marketing manager digital marketing agency Promodo.

The post Improve Your Company’s Future with these Ecommerce Email Tools appeared first on Campaign Monitor.