Be Your Subscribers' Best Friend: Design for Dynamic Content By Alex Madison and Lisa Harmon May 12, 2009 Imagine how strong your brand's relationship with subscribers could be if you knew each one intimately and could send personal emails to all of them. So far, the closest you can get to this email inbox utopia is to construct dynamic messages based on your subscribers' unique interests. First, determine your technical capabilities and the available touchpoints from which to gather subscriber data. We never recommend requiring subscribers to give you more than the essentials at …
The nature of email marketing can be illustrated through a comparison to book buying. The average consumer spends less than three seconds scanning titles of books on a bookshelf in the store, and then spends roughly 20 seconds scanning the contents before making a decision to either purchase or sit down with the book to research further. We have turned into a culture of top 10 lists and recommendations.
Just about every email expert, consultant or workshop speaker has fielded this question: "What's the best time to send emails so my recipients are most likely to read them?" This is one of those "It depends" questions, because no single mailing list is like another. In addition, your recipients aren't all in their inboxes at the same time, unlike the mass audiences that tune in to the Super Bowl every year at the exact same time across the continent.
Outsiders probably have no clue how valuable an email list is to a marketer. It certainly seems to have played a role in Barack Obama's election. At December's Email Insider Summit, Stephen Geer, director of email and online fund-raising for the campaign, crowed about its list. "Such a huge asset," he said. At the latest summit, wrapping up today, presenters discussed Papa John's email case history.
Some might think it a little pessimistic to write a report on going-out-of-business email strategies. However, my hope is that few marketers will ever have to put the advice directly to use. The bigger takeaway is a question that every email marketing should ask themselves: Is my email program being used tactically or strategically?
For those of you stuck at home, 100+ marketers are converging on Captiva Island, Fla., for the biannual Email Insider Summit. This was quite a challenge to program this year, but not for the reasons you would think: budget, timing, travel cuts. The real challenge was balancing the new issues we face as our email marketing channel is converging with mainstream and social media influence marketing, and while the breadth of speakers has become so vast.