In order to develop a loyal readership full of subscribers that not only open your emails but also look forward to receiving them, you need to employ automation and personalization.
Personalization, in particular, is essential for modern publishers that want to serve up relevant content. Publishers are shifting away from sending one message to a large list—they’re sending personalized messages that are tailored to the subscriber.
Marketers are shifting away from 1:All messaging:
- 33% of surveyed marketers stated “personalization” as capability most important to marketing in the future
- 74% marketers say targeted personalization increases customer engagement
- 20% average increase in sales when using personalized experiences
And today’s consumers expect personalized messages:
- 77% of digital natives expect messaging tailored to them (VentureBeat)
- 51% expect, by 2020, that companies will be able to anticipate their needs and make relevant suggestions (Salesforce)
- 74% customers feel frustrated when website content isn’t personalized
Personalization can be as simple as adding someone’s first name to an email, and as advanced as delivering automated messages recommending projects that a subscriber is sure to love.
1. Have the email come “from” a real person
The “From” commands a valuable amount of real estate in a person’s inbox. With people receiving an average of 88+ emails per day, it makes sense the sender is listed in larger and heavier font—people want to quickly see who the message is from and determine if it’s worth opening.
Dubsat does a good job of this in their promotional campaigns, dynamically changing the From Name so that the email campaign appears to come from the account manager the client regularly deals with.
This is an extremely easy tactic to implement now that reaps strong benefits—68% of Americans say they base their decision to open an email on the “From” name.
Some common use cases for this tactic include:
- Sending your marketing campaigns on behalf of individual sales reps for accounts that are currently being worked.
- Sending out technical updates/product announcements on behalf of your support or customer success teams.
2. Implement dynamic imagery
Appropriate use of images in emails is a strong way of improving your click-through rates. Vero ran a test and analyzed more than 5000 campaigns and noticed that campaigns with images had 42% higher click-through rates than campaigns without images.
This doesn’t mean you should just blanket all of your emails with images without considering the context—there is a time and place for images, and personalized campaigns are a great way to create unique experiences for your readers.
We tested dynamic content in a recent campaign based on the subscriber’s individual location. We created different images for people based in the UK, USA, and Australia and tested them against a generic version. What did we see? By utilizing dynamic images, we saw a 29% increase in click-through rates.
3. Be savvy with segmentation
At the heart of personalization is segmentation. When you segment your list, you divide it into different categories based on a variety of factors. By segmenting your list you can create tailored content for each group and realize some awesome revenue as a result.
Segmentation offers a way to send more personalized content. In order to send people relevant newsletters that cover their areas of interest, you need to segment your list into different categories.
Many publishers segment their lists based on:
- Areas of interest (i.e. fashion, cats, politics).
- Geographic location
- Content consumed/articles read
- Engagement rates
- Browsing behavior
There are two main ways you can approach segmentation:
- Allow subscribers to self-segment by using separate sign up lists.
- Sort existing subscribers on the back-end using the subscriber data they’ve provided at sign up.
Need an example of what segmentation allows you to do? Kate Spade New York segments based on geographic location, and uses it to show email recipients to the nearest store. This store information can be switched out using dynamic content—you can show the closest store based on a subscriber’s location. If you live in Boston, you’ll be encouraged to visit the store on Newbury Street.
When it comes to personalization, publishers can employ many of the same tactics as retailers and others who deliver relevant, personalized content at exactly the right moment. By having emails come from a real person and segmenting your audience, you can reach your subscribers with content that provides real value.