5 Easy Ways to Make Your Email Program More Data-Driven
There’s been a lot of talk about email marketing data recently, sometimes so much that it feels a bit overwhelming. If you don’t have the luxury of a large marketing team and data scientists readily available, there’s good news! You don’t need to be a #datageek to run a data driven email marketing program. Here are 5 steps you can take today to make your email marketing program more data-driven and more effective starting tomorrow.
Equip your copywriter with data, even if it’s just subject line open rate data
Your copywriter doesn’t need to monitor your analytics to learn daily from your own email file, specifically what’s working and what’s not. Have your copywriter keep a running tab of your top subject lines based on open rate. When you give your copywriter the opportunity to combine creativity with hard data driven email, you’re streamlining the process of testing and optimizing what you already know is working.
Measure your effectiveness with the right metric: CTOR (Click-to-Open Rate)
Your Click-to-Open Rate is a much stronger data point than your Open Rate or Click Rate. Why? It informs you about how users are engaging with your email once you open it (when you have their attention). Calculate your Click-to-Open Rate by dividing your email campaign’s number of clicks by the number of opens, and multiplying that value by 100. This metric should be the primary metric you use when testing and optimizing the body content of your email. Compare your Click-to-Open Rate to your industry standard:
Use personalization tags to provide a more relevant and intimate experience for your users
The data that your users have opted to share with you is one of your most powerful tools when communicating with them. In the age of instant email communication, some of your most important information (bank statements, delivery notifications, medical information) is delivered alongside spam messages in your inbox. You owe it to your users to give them a personalized experience. You want to provide them with the content they need and no more than that.
If you’re able to collect location data on your users, insert personalization tags into your email body content. This ensures they receive only relevant and helpful information. Utilize the data you have on your users’ opt-in date. Send them an email on their signup anniversary to point out and enhance your users’ loyalty to your brand.
Monitor your Burn Rate daily to keep tabs on your list health
It’s easy to pay attention to the active metrics, Click-to-Open Rate, Open Rate, Conversion Rate, etc. But don’t forget about your inactive, like Burn Rate. To calculate your Burn Rate, add your raw unsubscribes and spam complaints, then divide that number by your raw number of recipients.
List health can be time-consuming (and expensive) to monitor if you’re calculating engagement rates, lifetime email value, and inbox deliverability. Your IP address can be quickly blacklisted with one or two bad sends. That’s why it’s important to keep Burn Rate in mind when reporting to ensure your list is always growing and never shrinking.
A/B Test everything
Your email list is unique and constantly changing. That means you never know what is truly going to work and what won’t. You owe it to your users to find out what they like and what they will respond to — and send them exactly that.
The opportunities to A/B test are endless. From subject line to images or the color of the buttons in your email body content, you can gain higher engagement—and therefore ROI—if you pay attention to the subtle or unseen factors to test. Testing and optimizing your send rate could boost your open rate far more than a subject line test could.
Also, don’t forget about A/B testing your landing pages. That’s where your most dedicated and engaged users land. That’s why it’s your duty as an email marketer to make sure you close the deal and ensure your users are taking an action on your landing page.
As a reminder, your email marketing program is unique, and so are all the users on your list. Pay attention to your users and how they’re reacting to your emails. Test everything, and treat your users with respect by offering them a personalized email marketing experience. Data drives all of this, and by embracing data driven email you will see a bump in your engagement, ROI, and list health.
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