- Build in sections of your emails that can pull dynamic content that can change based on the day of the week, the weather, or a rotating supply of product recommendations or articles.
- You can also build logic that triggers special emails to loyalty members for designated reasons. For example, trigger an email that sends them a coupon once they hit a certain threshold, or create triggers to share sales with your most loyal customers a day early.
- With real-time content, you can create rules that will pull in the most up-to-date product offerings and sales, no matter when a customer opens their email.
- Even simple A/B tests such as comparing emails that feature new products vs. emails that feature sales and deals will set you off on a path of improved performance.
This summer lull doesn’t look like it normally does. With COVID-19 lockdowns coming back across many states, marketers are still managing a crazy communication strategy that needs to be up-to-date and relevant for people in very different situations.
And, they have to do all of it with fewer resources. Gartner reported that 65% of all marketers are experiencing moderately or dramatically reduced budgets this year.
Q4 is also rapidly approaching, and so any free time is likely taken up figuring out exactly how to make the most of what will be a very uncertain holiday season. It’s enough to make any marketer run for their bed. Oh, wait, that might be where they are already working from!
With that in mind, it’s time to get real about doing more with less. And the good news is that there are a lot of smart options.
Email in particular is a reliable communication channel that can drive big returns with a bit of thoughtful planning and execution.
Follow these foolproof email hacks to save your team time, while engaging customers through the ups and downs:
Email hack #1: Dynamic evergreen content
Evergreen content should never be boring. Why should it when it could be dynamic instead? Build in sections of your emails that can pull dynamic content that can change based on the day of the week, the weather, or a rotating supply of product recommendations or articles.
Think about how the content can be set up and then run automatically without any need for updates or adjustments.
- Create a ‘New Arrivals’ product feed from your ecommerce site that can be targeted by gender, category and past searches
- Showcase UGC submitted by your Instagram community that’s tagged with relevant keywords
- Highlight dynamic maps showing your nearest store to email openers
- Insert a ‘Tap-to-Download’ feature for your mobile app
For example, Windsor Fashions pulls in maps into their emails to help new online customers find the nearest store location, which many people don’t realize might be in easy driving distance.
LegoLand uses an email content feature that displays the local weather for visitors planning a trip to one of their parks.
Email hack #2: Low-maintenance loyalty
No matter how complicated your loyalty program might be, sharing personalized loyalty information and offers should be easy.
With dynamic content that pulls from a loyalty database, every member can get an email that accurately displays their status, how many points they have, and even what they could buy right now.
You can also build logic that triggers special emails to loyalty members for designated reasons. For example, trigger an email that sends them a coupon once they hit a certain threshold, or create triggers to share sales with your most loyal customers a day early.
Ulta Beauty uses personalized email for new loyalty members and continues to engage with dynamic loyalty emails over time. They use real-time content to showcase currently available rewards and have a feed that pulls loyalty account information into each email, as well.
Email hack #3: Real-time deals
By now, everyone is used to being annoyed by out-of-stock notices and delayed shipping notices. In order to counteract this frustrating side-effect of 2020, focus on adding real time content that will ensure that you’re never stuck promoting something that is no longer for sale.
With real-time content, you can create rules that will pull in the most up-to-date product offerings and sales, no matter when a customer opens their email.
Not only does this save time because templates are automatically updated, it also creates a much better customer experience. The likelihood that they’ll actually be able to buy what you feature in your email will go up while your work will go down.
Email hack #4: Fake it ‘til you make it
All this talk about personalization and dynamic content is great – if you have a lot of great data and creative assets. But, there are plenty of scrappy marketers who create highly personalized emails with scarce data.
Share what products are currently trending on the site. Add a countdown timer that shows when a deal will end, or share product recommendations based on the local weather.
Most important, set this up in an automated testing scenario so that you’ll learn and improve as you go – building up your own treasure-trove of data in the process.
Even simple A/B tests such as comparing emails that feature new products vs. emails that feature sales and deals will set you off on a path of improved performance.
With a little bit of planning and setup now, you’ll be set up with a personalized, dynamic email strategy that will take care of some of your hairiest jobs, like managing loyalty communications and creating campaigns for sales and promotions.
With dynamic templates in place, only a few updates here and there, and your emails will always be relevant and ready for whatever comes your way.
Danielle Gustafson is the Sr. Director, Global Customer Success at Liveclicker, where she leads a dedicated team of Client Success Managers who provide world-class service and top notch email strategy to the Liveclicker family of brands.
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