How to Keep Your Customers Engaged Through Email

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Put simply, the longer a customer is on your email list, the less likely they are to open the email. Some of this is natural – customers no longer have the need for your offering. However, a great deal is down the customer getting fed up with your emails, receiving the same irrelevant content time and again with no perceived value of being on the list. So what can you do to keep your subscribers engaged for longer?

Start as you mean to go on

We cannot emphasise quite how important the first few emails you send are. The first email customers receive is likely to experience high open rates as subscribers will want to check out what exactly they have subscribed to. Ensuring that your following emails are packed with relevant content or include some kind of value to the subscriber is essential.

Customers will decide to open your next email based upon many factors, but we believe the most important one being the past experience they have had with your emails. Start the lifecycle by introducing a targeted welcome programme tailored to new customers and what their interests will be, a relatively easy first step to achieve.

Target your discounts

Not all customers are the same – and not all customers are as engaged as others. Those who are less engaged and have not been back to your site in some time require extra effort to gain their attention again. One way to achieve this is through targeted discounts.

If you are worried about the impact on your brand, just remember these are going to a controlled list only, and simply adding the discount in the form of a unique discount code prevents this being plastered all over voucher code websites.

What next after the first purchase?

Let me guess – 75% of your customers have only purchased once from you online? It’s fairly common for a number of brands, and one of the reasons behind this is because we do nothing to get the second purchase from a customer other than crossing our fingers and sending some simple batch and blast emails.

A far better technique is to take a personal approach through email, recommending them the right products to follow on from their first purchase, and targeting a discount to get the second purchase. After all, the more times a customer buys from you, the more of a habit and pattern is established, helping the customer to build a relationship with your brand.

Be valuable

Customers have the expectation of receiving value from your emails. The moment they fail to see what benefit your emails offer is the moment they lose interest and stop opening your emails altogether. Why many marketers fail here is because they use email as a tactical tool to drive business requirements such as pushing certain ranges or messages which are important to the business at that moment, not what is relevant and valuable to the individual. Yes email is your one main push medium, but short term goals usually cause long term problems.

Keep sending?

There are views in the email industry that if a customer has not opened an email within a certain period of time then cast them off and dump them. As much as this is recommended, sometimes it can go too far.

Just because a customer hasn’t opened your email within a certain period of time following the initial send, doesn’t necessarily mean that you should give up. You do need to make a decision as to what your cut off point is and stick to it. Persistence isn’t the most glamorous of tactics, however customers could have unintentionally missed your email for a number of reasons before then being buried deep into the inbox. Resends can work, but it is never recommended that you resend the exact same email.

To find out more how we can help improve the engagement of your email campaigns, speak to one of our experts today.

About James Lucas

Former Senior Marketing Executive at Emailcenter UK Ltd, a leading provider of email marketing software and solutions.