Tag: digital marketing

Time for a direct connect

We are living in very uncertain times. The current economic climate is not one that marketers look forward to, considering most customers are quick to tighten their marketing budgets in a wavering economy. The last time we went through a tough economy, one of the first things that most business owners and marketers did was to cut marketing budgets. Resist the temptation! The biggest learning most CMOs would have had from the recession of 2009 is that companies which continued to invest in marketing effectively, survived and a few in fact grew. The key is that you invest in the right tools.

The digital medium is increasingly emerging as a popular tool, more so during tough times, thanks to a more tangible measurement metrics and higher accountability of results. Add to this, the rapid adoption of the internet extending to Tier II and Tier III cities in India as well, the digital medium is emerging to become one that marketers cannot afford to ignore any longer. India today is the third biggest internet market in terms of users, with over a 100 million internet user base. The time an average Indian spends online today is now on par with TV viewing time at 16 hours in a week. Information is now being democratised on the web, search is now a daily activity and email is part of the connective tissue, through which companies can collaborate with and engage their customers better.

Time for a direct connect

Advertising cutbacks hence is not affecting targeted marketing channels such as email marketing and other direct digital marketing channels such as mobile advertising. Marketers are building their customer lists, improving customer analysis and focusing on direct digital marketing (DDM) as a more intelligent and serious aspect of the overall marketing efforts. In turbulent times, it makes more financial sense than ever for companies to focus on marketing to their own customers and prospects. Marketers increasingly want to segment their audience and tie in their email activity with web analytics in an attempt to make communications as relevant as possible to the receiver.

The popularity of DDM is growing more than ever in India because it allows marketers to connect directly with their customers. By targeting specific demographics and studying the habits of your consumers, organizations can open a direct window into the needs of the market. In addition, by contacting each individual customer, marketers have a much greater opportunity to engage them in a discussion about what they require and how a specific product or service could help them do that.

The more closely you are able to follow the preferences of different groups of your customers within the target market, the better you will be able to convince them that you have a solution for them. Compared to traditional mass advertising efforts, email marketing also provides a shorter and easier path to ensure return on investment (ROI) which is everything in the current economic scenario. The marketer can measure the response at every step, including testing which message is more effective.

Below are a few key essentials to ensure your direct digital marketing campaign delivers good results:

List and contact management: The first step is to create or ensure a hygienic and relevant list of customers whom you can address. Segmentation is critical in email performance and some platforms can segment customers based on ‘who they are’ or ‘what they do’, etc.

Create a good message: Good and relevant content is key to how effective your DDM campaign is. So, this is an area that you need to focus on and get right. Message creation may be done via templates, the ability to rapidly create campaigns by copying and editing previous messages can be a time saver.

Deliverability: A great message and a quality list though do not necessarily deliver great results. To engage, marketers must get their emails and messages into prospective’s inboxes and ensure deliverability rate is no lesser than 90%.
Auto responders known as triggers are marketing sequences designed to build relations with the customer. You can not only include sign up forms but also behavioural responses such as a click or download.

Web landing page generation: Create a HTML code that allows customers to subscribe to your email list. High end platforms enable marketers create forms and landing pages as destination for email recipients.

Reporting and analytics: One of the most valuable aspects of DDM is its measurability. Measures such as list size, open rate, link rate, unsubscribe rate, spam complaints and rejection rate are a must.

CRM integration: It is a good idea for DDM to be directly integrated with sales CRM data so that a sales executive can map a prospective customer’s email activity.

Most importantly, DDM allows for you to integrate it with other marketing efforts, whether it is mobile or other on-the-ground promotional initiatives. So, here’s wishing you are able to engage your customers better in 2012.

Read original article at financialexpress.com

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Found a Crystal Ball yet?

If you are an email marketer you might have started to believe in destiny. With ISPs headstrong to tighten their policies for bulk senders, rubbing the good ol crystal ball and hoping for the best might seem like a good option. We don’t know much about crystal balls but can sure share some good practices that can help you control the destiny of your email communication.

Gmail has listed a set of guidelines and best practices for Email Marketers, when followed should yield favorable results.

Guidelines for Email Marketers

“The way Gmail classifies spam depends heavily on reports from our users. Gmail users can mark and unmark any message as spam, at any time. To increase the inbox delivery rate of your messages, make sure that all recipients on your distribution lists actually want to receive the mail.” – GMAIL

Presuming you do everything by the book i.e. ensure users opt-in to receive your messages, honor un-subscription, follow the best practices for HTML design, monitor bounces, and ensure your subscribers engage with you and so on; you should not need a crystal ball (or Aladdin’s lamp for that matter). That being said, you can request your faithful subscribers to white-list you!

Being white-listed by subscribers ensures:

1. Your mails almost always lands in their in-boxes.

2. Your reputation with ISPs is significantly improved, so consequently your deliverability improves even for the subscribers who have not white-listed you.

We have listed a set of step by step instructions that you can email to your subscribers and request them to white-list you:

White-Listing Instructions

To ensure the success of this exercise you may consider offering incentives!

 

To learn more feel free to get in touch.

Geetika@kenscio.com

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