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Strategy

Inject Authenticity into Your Promotional Emails

While generic mass-marketing lacks the luster it once had, it’s not completely ineffective. Let's lay out how you can use promotional emails better (Part 1)

Matt Duczeminski
May 16 2019

We’ve argued that email marketing is anything but a dying art. Today’s consumers want to receive promotional emails from brands, and they want those emails to:

  • Provide value
  • Perfectly meet their needs and expectations
  • Show that the brand cares deeply about their customers’ success
  • Convey the message that the content was made just for them

If your customer base consists of more than five people, however, you might find it difficult to create individualized email content for each customer. The next best option is to deliver emails that suggest they were written with each recipient in mind.

This is exactly what we’re going to dive into today. Continue reading for four content-driven ways to deliver more authenticity into your promotional emails.

1.   Be Personable and Personal

We’ve talked before about the importance of developing your brand’s personality, so let’s get straight to it; the more personality your brand conveys, the more your audience will realize the company cares about the individuals it serves.

Let your personality shine via email by:

  • Developing your brand’s voice and style
  • Empathizing with your audience
  • Using a jargon-free conversational tone

To take personalization a step further, leverage predictive learning and dynamic content technology to generate content for individual recipients – all from a single email template. Here’s one airline’s take on personalized mailers:

(Source)

Does Hawaiian Airlines send this email to all their qualified customers? Of course, but that doesn’t dilute the value of a friendly offer. Use a special occasion like a birthday to present a personalized offer that’s hard to refuse.

Speak Your Audience’s Language

No one wants to read a dry email full of phrases and references they don’t understand or care about. Focus on your customers and what they’ll get out of investing in you – not just your services.

Take a look at the following email from freelance writing coach Jorden Roper:

Now, look at it again – this time with the word “you” highlighted throughout:

While Jorden provides a link to her blog post on how to choose a niche, she never mentions that this is her article. The email focuses on what her audience stands to gain from reading the post. And she does all this using phrases and words her audience is likely to use when explaining where they are in their writing career. Speak your customers’ language and they may either forget they’re reading a promotional email, or better, look forward to reading the next one.

Be Concise, Not Short

Let’s get one thing straight:

Your ultimate goal when crafting a promotional email isn’t to get your audience to read it; your goal is to entice them into taking a specific action after they’ve read it.

The last thing you (or your recipients) want is for them to spend their precious time scrolling through your message when they could be browsing your site. After gathering data on over 40 million branded emails, Constant Contact found that email click-through rates are highest at around 20 lines or 200 words.

(Source)

The longer your emails, the more “hidden” your call-to-action – but go too short and you won’t see great results either. Use these emails as you would when catching up with a friend over coffee. Give them the main points and then give your pal the stage. The alternative would be sharing the story of when you purchased your brand-new standing mixer, including every minute detail, boring them to tears. Your choice.

The longer your emails, the more “salesy” they’ll read. Give customers just enough so they have what they need to move forward in their buyer’s journey and take immediate action. So go ahead and share how you had to go to the ER because you sprained a muscle in your hand making 130 cookies for a bake sale, prompting a trip to Macy’s for your new mixer – just maybe leave out which apron you were wearing and whether the flowers outside had begun to bloom.

Stay Consistent with Your Messaging and Approach

Stick to a relatively rigid set of guidelines when creating each individual message. This may seem counterintuitive, but read on:

You’re likely already using an email template of some kind, because we marketers just don’t have the time to write a new email for every single customer who comes along. A template ensures that any mailers that don’t fit in with your set style will stick out like a sore thumb.

Check out the following promotional email from Chubbies:

(Source)

Chubbies’ line features laid back casual wear, and like a well-coordinated outfit, they’ve made sure their brand voice matches their message.

Take a look at another email from Chubbies:

(Source)

Same cool, calm, relaxed tone.

Imagine if the team sent a generic cart abandonment email devoid of the brand’s personality. It would be confusing and off-putting – an evident sign that they were slacking in their consideration of their customers and their user experience. Consistency helps create an authentic brand that strengthens the bond between you and your audience.

More From PostFunnel on Email Marketing:
5 Tactics Marketers Use To Make Automated Messages More Human
4 Tools That Make Delighting Your Customers Easier
5 Top Quality Tips to Transcend Your Welcome Email Stream

Wrapping Up and Looking Ahead

Your customers generally know that the vast majority of emails they receive from your brand are also sent to thousands of other customers. They know that though the emails say “Hey Steve,” their name was automatically generated, and those “handpicked” items in the email were chosen for people like them.

But, this doesn’t mean they don’t want to feel special. You can build an authentic relationship with your customers even when using templates – as long as you create each mailer with specific customer segments in mind.

In the next post of the series, we’ll dig into the more technical side of the process.

Check our Brand Prix series: Comparing big brands’ retention strategies 

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Matt Duczeminski

Matt is a professional writer specializing in helping entrepreneurs improve relationships with their customers. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife, Sarah, and he'd probably get a lot more work done if his cat would stop bothering him.

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