Use data to power your email campaigns

1. Write down or mock up in your email design 3 ideas for places where you could personalize the content of your emails.

For example, use someone’s name or company, or dynamically change the featured content based on what you know about them. You could also note this on your email planning calendar.

2. Use your email platform to segment your email list subscribers into groups that act alike.

Subscribers can be segmented in most popular email platforms, including Mailchimp, Emma, and ActiveCampaign. For example, you could segment your subscribers into active openers/clickers vs inactive, or frequent purchasers vs lapsed buyers.

3. Develop a unique campaign or campaign messaging variations for each of your subscriber segments.

Ask yourself, What is most likely to get each group to act? How are they differently motivated? For example, if you have a segment that hasn’t opened in 12 months, you may send to them less frequently and only send your very best offers or larger content like an e-book or annual report. Another example would be, if you know what portion of your database ordered 3 times in the last year vs those whose have ordered 2 times or less vs those who have not yet ordered, you can customize a promotion to each group. For 3X, set a higher minimum order or focus on a frequency reward. For 1-2X, send an offer designed to get them to try a new product or refill. For 0X, send more convincing copy around why they should order in the first place, along with a try-it-now call to action and offer.

4. Create follow-up campaigns for subscriber segments based on what they've already interacted with.

Most platforms, including MailChimp, Emma, and ActiveCampaign, support automated segmentation when users subscribe or engage with particular emails. For example, if someone clicked on an announcement about a new vehicle, you might follow up in 3 days if they haven’t been back to the website or scheduled a test drive. Or, if someone opened and clicked on an event invitation, but you haven’t seen their registration yet, you could send a reminder after a day or two.

5. Identify 2-3 key moments in your prospect's purchase journey, such as questions or hesitations along their decision making process, that you can address and support with a triggered email or automated series.

Ask yourself, What are the points in my prospect’s journey to purchase that can make or break a sale? For example, a new customer onboarding series can help a new customer feel good about their purchase and combat buyer’s remorse, and a cart or webpage abandonment email might help to draw back in those who hesitated during checkout, but still may want your product.

6. Note any opportunities for other channels to step in and help nurture too.

You may need to work with other teams to plot these touch points. For example, moments when a sales reps or a call center should reach out to a hot lead, or moments when paid media and retargeting can follow up with a new lead.

7. Look at your email reporting for the past 12 months and note the campaigns that had the best results.

For example, your top 5 emails by open rate all had a sports theme, or the top 3 revenue driving emails all had an offer with a deadline.

8. Make a list of email ideas you'd like to test inspired by your best performing emails' success and add them to your email planning calendar to remind yourself that the campaign will include an A/B test.

For instance, following the above example, you could note in your email planning calendar that you’d like to test a sports theme in your June newsletter.