- Personalization is critical for marketers seeking to enhance customer centricity and engagement.
- More customer touch points lead to greater personalization challenges.
- Firms struggle most with new channels and contextual data. Fewer than half of firms use customer interaction and contextual data for personalization, which means most of their efforts are general.
Great marketers send personalized email
At the risk of stating the obvious, you can’t send personalized email unless you know something about the person you’re sending it to. Your challenge is clear: learn more about your prospect or customer.
Of course, you can do so by loading up your landing pages and forms with questions, but the old adage still applies: more fields = fewer responses.
A better option is to simply parlay data gathered from your interactions into subsequent email autoresponders.
While autoresponders may not be as sexy as some of the new social media, it’s a method of marketing that should not be overlooked. Here’s why. We get flooded with information via text messages, Twitter tweets, or Facebook status updates – the information is endless. We don’t often retain what we read or hear just once. That’s why there is the “marketing rule of seven,” in other words it takes seven impressions to your book, message, or product for your consumer to take notice. Certainly it’s conceivable that you could manually send out email messages to your customer base. But if you’re trying to run a business, create a product, write new books, and all of the other things that fill your day, this really isn’t very reasonable.
Why an autoresponder?
Image via CrunchBase
As your email list starts growing and your followers start multiplying, you really want to automate as much as you can. You might not like the idea of automating your marketing, but without a certain amount of automation your marketing will never grow beyond what you can handle in a day. Yes, we all want a personalized experience within the company, and trust me when I say that a certain amount of automation will help you do that. As an example, we have automation handle all of our newsletter sign-ups. These are folks who come to our website and want to subscribe to our newsletter. They don’t need a personalized email; they often don’t need to call. They generally just want information. Other people land on the site who want more than just information, and they contact us in a variety of other ways. But the autoresponder that’s in place helps to manage the flow of new users that find us. It also keeps us on their radar screen. I created 52 Ways to Sell More Books for our autoresponder, and we deliver tips, insights, and helpful advice in two separate emails.
Understanding how a good autoresponder works
For an autoresponder to be effective it needs to be populated with small bits of information that are delivered sequentially over a period of time. In order to encourage people to sign up for your autoresponder you must offer them something they need. I’ve talked a lot about the “ethical bribe” to get someone to sign up for your newsletter. The autoresponder is very similar; give them something they need so you can get what you need: their email address.
Image via Wikipedia
To understand how autoresponders work think about the last time you subscribed to an online e-course or some other type of “drip marketing campaign.” You gave your email address in order to get something valuable in return. That value was delivered in the form of information, and often this information was not delivered at one time. A good autoresponder is just a one-shot deal; it’s a system that drops information one bite at a time into the end-user’s email inbox. When I was first introduced to autoresponders I wasn’t really sure how to use them. Then I remembered that we are all content creators. At this juncture in our careers we probably have more content in the form of blog posts, Twitter updates, and e-books than we ever thought we would. This content has enormous value not just as a whole product, but also as bits and pieces.