Weekly Roundup #81 - Welcome Emails, Social Search & Mag Ads
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Weekly Roundup #81 – Welcome Emails, Social Search & Mag Ads

Summary:

Have you read last weeks round-up? If not, we covered how to build an eCommerce app, the shift in B2B strategy and how SecretEscapes has successfully introduced AI into its email marketing

After you have covered those topics, check out these bad boys:

 

 

Email Subscribers: How to Craft Your Welcome Email

email 2017

Each new email subscriber is really valuable, so it goes without saying that your next interactions with that person are vital. A series of welcome emails will increase their knowledge, awareness and loyalty to your brand, ultimately leading to their custom. (you hope.)

Making a great first impression is crucial, so put some serious thought into them. The welcome emails should cover the following topics:

  • Introduce yourself
  • Tell your brand story
  • Reinforce the benefits of being a subscriber
  • Emphasise why you differ from your competitors
  • Set expectations for your relationship moving forward
  • Segment your new subscribers

These six steps cover a lot of information, which is why it is advised to spread it out over a series of welcome emails rather than one, single large email.

The first step in planning your welcome email strategy is to map the journey that you want your subscribers to take. To do this, ask yourself what you want your subscribers to learn about you and your business during the welcome period, and more importantly, what actions you want them to take after reading your welcome emails.

Your answers to these questions will help decide three things: the number of emails that you will need in your sequence, the content of your emails and the order in which you will send them.

The order should have a natural progression. A personal introduction and your brand story will always form the first email in the series, but the rest of the emails will depend on the actions that you want your subscribers to take. As a rule of thumb, it is best to start with calls-to-action with the least resistance. Choose a call-to-action that is easy, less pushy – such as signing up to view a product demo.

Something to keep in mind is that each subscriber will have signed up for a different reasons and your email sequence will need to be tailored to tie into that reason. This is one of the best things that you can do for your email list, so start with segmenting your new subscribers based on what incentive they opted in for, as well as their interests. This will also allow you to split test the creative elements in your emails so you can understand what works best for whom.

So how do you go about writing them? Here you go:

The perfect subject line

Whether you prefer a subject line that is straight to the point, or prefer something with a bit more character or creativity is personal. There are no hard and fast rules here, however it is advised that the first email in your series has a more straightforward, factual subject line that indicates exactly what the content of the email is.

Personalisation

Personalisation is not simply about adding a name. Addressing your customers by their name often leads to a more positive experience, and a more emotional response – however it is equally as important to tailor your emails to them in other ways.

A gripping opening line

After crafting a subject line that has persuaded your subscriber to open your email, it is vital to follow it with an engaging opening line. Write copy that is concise, persuasive and authentic to your brand’s voice.

The thank you

A warm thank you to your subscribers is always appreciated. Show that you are grateful for their trust, which can be in the form of a simple ‘thank you’, or by offering a gift or discount as part of your thank you message.

Your brand story

A well told brand story is a powerful tool. Subscribers will feel more emotionally invested in you and your business if you can tell them what you are about in an engaging and authentic way.

Incentives and Benefits

It is most likely that email subscribers joined for a particular free resource, so it is good practice to address this issue at the very beginning of your email. Providing instant gratification for signing up can have a great impact on how subscribers perceive you and your business.

Set expectations

Let your subscribers in on your future plans – let them know what content and offers they can expect in the future as a subscriber. Tell your subscribers how often you will email them and what gifts they can expect and when – for example, offering a generous discount on their birthday.

The micro-commitment

Try to get your subscribers in the habit of saying ‘yes’ to your emails – this could be anything from connecting with you on social media, reading more of your content or whitelisting your emails. Inviting people to watch a video or demo can be another way of achieving a micro-commitment from your subscribers.

Primary and secondary calls-to-action

The most effective call-to-action (CTA) strategy for your welcome emails is to have both a primary and a secondary CTA. If there are two objectives that you have for your email it is most effective to select one, and include several CTAs for it. After emphasizing your primary CTA several times throughout the body of the email, the second CTA can be almost as a P.S. at the bottom of the email.

The tease

A teaser will build anticipation and increase your subscribers engagement and interest in your content. A teaser will increase the likelihood of them opening your subsequent emails – this can be something as simple as saying that you have a few surprises in store, that they’re going to be good and subscribers should stay connected so that they don’t miss out. Keep them hooked!

Visit Sleeknote for more on how to craft the perfect welcome email

The Power of the Personalised Video Campaign

2017 video marketing

Mobile video is the fastest growing ad format, its popularity rising by 103% year-on-year. Video’s growing popularity means that it can no longer be ignored in the effort to engage with customers.

In our digital world, each click leaves a digital footprint which marketers can use to understand their customers. Personalised content no longer means simply adding the customer’s name to copy. In 2017 it is a way to create meaningful, one-to-one engagement that delivers a unique, real-time experience for each customer.

The recent Honda Fireblade campaign is an interesting example of what successful personalised content looks like. Honda offered the chance to win a Honda Fireblade motorcycle by uploading a selfie with one of the Fireblades displayed at an official Honda dealer, using the hashtag #FirebladeSelfie. Honda then made a personalised ‘good luck’ video for each of the participants, which used both their uploaded selfie, as well as user data to create a two-way conversation between the brand and the consumer.

Honda’s aim was to drive visitors to dealerships and to engage with the new product. Over 1,400 selfies were taken over the period of the competition, with over 100 test drives booked. Honda also saw 5,900 new followers over the campaign, which is a 136% increase compared with an average month, and a 91.5% increase in engagement over the campaign period.

Honda’s twitter engagement over the campaign was 11.85% per tweet, which is a great improvement on the 0.07% per tweet average for top brands. The Fireblade campaign shows the importance of taking personalisation one step further to create truly engaging material and deeper interactions.

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Your Social Search Strategy

It is now possible for consumers to discover new brand content by simply searching via hashtags and trending topics, whilst it is equally possible for businesses to publish relevant and timely information, within the newsfeed of potential customers, and at no extra cost. A social search strategy is quickly becoming a vital element of your general search strategy.

But can social media platforms really compete with the traditional search engines such as Google and Bing? Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram have each taken action to improve their search functionality, so we take a look at what this means for your business…

Snapchat

‘Search for Stories’ is the latest function from Snapchat that allows users to browse through the public stories area. Using the latest algorithms, ‘Search for Stories’ scans content – including captions, visual elements and time of posting – in order to group stories by theme. These changes mean that Snapchat users can discover real-time content about a topic in a way that is more similar to Twitter, and without having to go to Google to find that information. For more general social searches, the content that appears will be based on the time and location of the search which will result in a more personalised experience for the Snapchat user.

Facebook and Instagram

Facebook has recently introduced several features such as encouraging their users to geotag their experiences to assist in indexing for local search, integrating interactive maps to local search to enable accurate search results for business listings and adding suggested search terms to the search box as well as a business category indexing tool to help users discover relevant businesses.

Facebook’s Messenger platform has been transformed so that it functions more along the lines of the Yellow Pages, meaning that users can contact businesses directly from the platform without needing a phone number. Facebook is beta-testing the combination of social media data with local search results, which would see Facebook users be able to see the locations where their social network has checked-in, meaning that they can discover the opinions of their friends and family on their local businesses.

Instagram, now owned by Facebook, has also introduced a ‘Story Search’ function, which lets users search through stories labelled with specific hashtags, hashtag stickers and location stickers.

With each social media platform increasing their search functionality, brands should consider how to best utilise it. A social search strategy will increase your business’s visibility – to make the most of this opportunity follow these three steps:

  1. Ensure that the published information that has surfaced about your business is correct at every consumer interaction.
  2. Make sure that the information is rich and that it contains deep facts and attributes about the business – such as the location, latest news, reviews, promotions, images and videos.
  3. Be the single source of information and content published about your business rather than relying on social media platforms or search engines for accuracy.

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Modern Magazine Advertising

Tatler Magazine Homepage Screenshot

Magazines are in a period of decline – with both sales and advertising budgets dropping. Total spend has declined by 6.8% on magazine advertising – with advertisers moving towards digital platforms, where magazine brands have no particular advantage.

However, despite the figures, magazines are introducing new and innovative ways to advertise with them. Moving away from advertorials, magazines are now partnering with advertisers to create more integrated, effective content.

A great example of a magazine-brand partnership is Shop Direct, who worked with a range of women’s titles to raise awareness of their online brand Very. Partnering with Elle, Cosmopolitan, Heat, Closer, New, Red and Marie Claire each magazine developed its own campaign that was tailored to its particular audience. Ranging from native in-mag content and branded cover wraps to a physical ‘take over’ in the form of a pop-up shop.

Brand lead for Very, Becky Hardman, explained the partnership as a way to, “Go where its customers are” and that magazines still offer, “great reach”, as well as credibility. Hardman also noted that, “When we’ve worked with the same editorial teams for a few different projects, the campaigns get better and better. We communicate better, which leads to better creative ideas and more impact for the customer.”

There are also great opportunities to combine print and digital to create a complete campaign. Bringing a 21st Century twist to printed media, the phone operator Three created a video-in-print cover ad as part of its ‘Go Binge’ campaign. Time Out’s magazine cover offered readers the chance to stream exclusive footage of a new Netflix show. Jolene Sickelmore, Head of Communications and Execution at Three UK, said that Three, “didn’t want to look at standard print options – in light of our pioneering nature, we wanted to actually get the prop into people’s hands and show the UK what it’s like to be a Three customer.”

Sickelmore concluded that despite declining circulation, magazines will retain an important role in advertising. “As many magazine and print publishers invest into their online offerings, we will continue to value them for the strong and reliable content environment they can provide.”

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5 Statistics from the past week…

Finally, a round-up of this week’s statistics from Rachel Gee at Marketing Week…

  1. 61% of social media users have unfollowed or considered unfollowing an influencer that promoted too many products. Inauthentic influencer-brand partnerships can be damaging to the reputation of both parties, so choose wisely!
  2. Although Facebook remains the most popular social network in the UK it is losing younger users to Snapchat and Instagram. For people aged between 12 and 24 years old, Facebook is a much less popular choice – though Instagram and Snapchat users combined still don’t outnumber Facebook’s 32.5 million users…
  3. There is a great discrepancy between how marketers view their work and how the consumers do. 82% of marketers believe that they have a deep understanding of who their customer is, with 48% considering themselves to be innovative. However only 23% of consumers agree. Whilst marketers are prioritising customer experience, the majority of consumers (67%) see their interactions with brands as primarily transactional.
  4. Business confidence in the UK has fallen to -3% from a net score of 6% last month. However, companies are planning to hire, with a net balance of 10% set to increase headcount – although this is still the lowest level for a year.
  5. Lidl is now the seventh biggest UK supermarket, taking over from Waitrose. Lidl’s sales are up 18.9% over the past three months, with over 10 million households shopping there – proving that the pressure on household budgets has seen consumers move to the discounters.

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by:

Sebastian Paszek

Marketing manager

Controlling the chaos of the digital landscape, Sebastian is a multiplatform executive, project manager and photographer.