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email testing

by: Frederick Notetaker

email testing MKTG 5731

Frederick Notetaker
GPA 4.0

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week 2 notes transcribed and ctrl f able for quick reference for tests
Marketing Speakers
Prof Drake
Class Notes
email testing
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This 24 page Class Notes was uploaded by Frederick Notetaker on Saturday February 13, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to MKTG 5731 at University of Missouri - St. Louis taught by Prof Drake in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 19 views. For similar materials see Marketing Speakers in Marketing at University of Missouri - St. Louis.


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Date Created: 02/13/16
EMAIL MARKETING COURSE – DAY 2 Email Design in a Mobile World Enlarge fonts • Minimum of 3px Know your Scale • Consider trimming your emails to between 320O550px wide to reduce scrolling Call to Action • Make it tappable. Minimum of 44x44 pxStreamline • Simplify! Content real estate is even more valuable Cut to the chase • Be short, concise and to the point Honor white space, so that erroneous tapping doesn’t occur Email Design in a Mobile World Layout • Optimize responsive layouts Be Obvious • Visually indicate that links and buttons are clickable. Hover states aren’t supported Finger Targets • Bigger is better. Use white space to reduce ‘fatOfinger’ errors Ergonomics • Remember mobile users are often holding the device in their hand. Keep important buttons, images, and links within easy reach. Designing for the “Yes” • Subscribers do not fall into your conversion funnel, they fall out when design content are not compelling • Consider each “yes” (or micro conversion) a subscriber has commit to before moving on to the ultimate action you want them to take (macro conversion) Email Process MicroOConversions Content Hierarch Create a content hierarchy, arranging each content element (text and/or image) and associated call to action with appropriate weight. Not everything in the design should have the same weight, otherwise the email can become difficult to visually navigate. The importance of each piece should be reflected in the description Above the Fold DON’T CRAM EVERYTHING ABOVE THE FOLD… INTRODUCE CONTENT ABOVE THE FOL Does your content above the fold provide motivation to respond? Are you persuading subscribers to scroll? Alt Text Source: Litmus Blog O Minimize Excess White-Space Brings an additional /3rd of creative above the fold, including primary CTA button. Image-Based Text vs. HTML Text Start by optimizing re usable image based text content areas with HTML text Original, Image-Based Text Navigation Bar • Images On: • Images Off: New, HTML Text Navigation Bar • Images On or Off: Same concept can be applied to hero content Bulletproof Button The primary goal of an email is to “sell a click”. CTAs must be optimized to render even when images are turned of Make It Work Even When Images are Turned Off… RESPONSIVE AND AGILE EMAIL DESIGn Mobile is Here Among 8-54 years olds, 79% of smartphone users check email more than making calls on their device. * 80% delete a mobile email when it doesn’t render properly and 30% unsubscribe.** The web is no longer just a desktop experience. Opens by Environment Clicks by Environment • This decreased initial mobile email CTR may partially be due to users' increasingly "triaging" messages on their devices (i.e., opening them quickly then returning later to re-read/interact). • Overall, nearly a quarter (23%) of campaigns initially opened on mobile devices were later opened a second time by consumers (70% on the same device, 30% on a different device). Source: 4/25 80/howOmobileOr eaders- inter act-with-marketing-emails #ixzz36ua3Scc9 Responsive Design Responsive design allows for superior rendering on desktops, tablets and smartphones. This provides a great user experience for subscribers. Videos • CareerBuilder Case Study Agile Email / Open-Time Personalization Movable Ink and Kickdynamic provide SaaS platforms that allows marketers to change the content of emails at the moment of open based on the recipient’s time, location, device, social context, and more. • Both technologies work with any email service provider. Weather Forecast IHG doubled its clickOthrough rates with live forecasts projecting the weather for an upcoming stay. Countdown Clock uses countdown clocks to increase urgency to limited time sale events. Roku saw a 4% increase in convert-to-click rate using a countdown clock. Countdown Clock • Revenue up 4% • Click through rate up 9% Video in Email Proprietary and Confidential | 33 Yahoo! makes direct playback of video possible by optimizing video assets for the inbox capabilities of each recipient Web to Email Thomas Cook pulls upOtoOdate currency rates from its website and displays them in their emails at time of open. Dune pulls in live content from its website to ensure that its emails feature the most appropriate, inOstock, products at time open. Device Optimizer MBNA automatically detects the type of device accessing an email and uses it to provide device-specific links like app downloads. Social Feeds Jaguar promotes its social communities by showcasing live content in its email campaigns Social Feeds Latest Tweets, Posts Instagram Images at open Nearest Store ASDA encourages retail visits by generating a map to its nearest stores based on location at moment of open. Image Personalization Personalize images using customers name or other dynamic attribute Let your audience know that it's time to act now. Showcase the days, hours, minutes, and seconds remaining until a certain event by using a countdown clock. “Device Targeter allows you to display a different image for each device you would like to target. It also offers the ability to launch any mobile app recipients might have on their smart phone or tablet.” Add the Social Chatter App into emails to pull in Twitter results for any search term(s) you sele Movable Ink’s Video app serves full video and audio for subscribers opening in HTML5 email clients. The app also automatically generates an animated GIF from the original video file to show in all other email clients. CONTENT SUBJECT LINE Subject Lines = Pick Up Line Rules for Writing Subject Lines • Keep It Short Simple • Under 25 characters usually works best • Examples: • The Good Stuff • Tune in: 30% off friends and family • 30 things you’ll love • Write subject lines that are 25 characters or less • Keep 2O2O2 Principle in Mind • First 2 seconds are critical to compel subscribers • First 2 words of subject line determine if subscriber will read the rest of it • Why does your email matter “2”day? Make It Actionable: “What can I do in this email?” • Put the action in the beginning • Examples: • Get Started with [Company] • Look. Touch. Love. • Follow Premium Outlets • Be Truthful • Match the content of the email (No bait switc Create a Sense of Immediacy, Timeliness or Intrigue • Time Is Running Out For Offer • Last Chance To Get Offer • Make a New Year’s Resolution to Save Annual Satisfaction Survey Ends on October 2 • Be Creative • Use puns, create intrigue mystery, play on current events, etc. • Ex: • Did you forget something? (Abandoned Shopping Cart) • Treat Yourself to Something Special (Halloween EMAIL COPy Pre-Headers Three purposes of a good pre header: • Continuation of a message that led to the open • Support the primary Call t O Action • Transition smoothly into “view with images” text Body Copy Scannable copy • Bullet points • Top 5 lists • Just enough copy to answer “Why?” • Be relevant • Write the headline last, but spend the most time on it • Front load, prove credibility and accurately summarize content Email Copy Rule The main goal of the email is to get the CLICK and NOT to explain everything about what the email is promoting. Details belong on the landing page. • Remember When Writing: • What is the goal of sending the email? • Ex: increase sales, convert leads to clients • Who is the audience? • Ex: Active shoppers, loyatly club segment, etc… • Keep It Short and Simple Clearly answer “What’s In It For Me?” for your recipients • Focus on the direct benefit for the customer over the company self promotion • Headlines should include a verb • Ex: “Save Time” “Save Money” • Put the action in the beginning Sense of Immediacy, Exclusivity and/or Timeliness • What%Makes%Me%Want%to%Act%Now? • Examples: “Last Chance”, “Today”, “Now” • Examples: Play on news, current trends, time of year/weather • Be Specific, Clear Genuine • Tell the customer exactly what you want them to do • Talk Directly to the Customer • Be Creative and Show Brand Personality CTA BUTTONS Keep It Short and Simple • Be Clear Direct • Make it Specific Actionable • Create a Sense of Urgency When Appropriate EMAIL PLANNING PROCESS Email marketers typically work ahead and plan in months and/or quarters to plan for calendar-based campaigns and automated programs. • Typically requires buy-in by senior management. • Holiday planning has already been taken place for retail. IN CLASS ACTIVITY Evaluate the Email Select a marketing email from your inbox. • What kinds of improvements would you make to the email in terms of content and design? • Although we didn’t cover landing pages in this class, through the eyes of a person that might be wanting to purchase/register/convert in some way, what changes would you make to the website experience? MEASUREMENT The cleanliness of the original list is the number factor on deliverability Types of Bounces • Soft Bounces – Email addresses that are not deliverable, but may become deliverable if retried in the future • Hard Bounces – Emails addresses that are not deliverable and will never become deliverable • Bounce Reasons • Likely Bad Address – Hard or Soft • Possible Block • MailBox Full or Related • Undetermined – Hard or Soft Total Opens Count of total email messages opened (includes multiple opens) Unique Opens Count of unique email opens (only first time message was opened by a responder Total Clicks Count of total clicks (clicks on all links, including multiple clicks on the same link(s Unique Clicks Count of unique clicks (only includes first time a responder clicked on each link Unsubscribes Count of Unsubscribes Total Spam Complaints Count of Spam Complaints Delivered div Sent = Delivered Rate •Delivered Rate is a measure of the cleanliness of the list •How engaged are people with our brand? •Did we deliver to clean email addresses? •Did we deliver to only people that wanted to receive emails from us? Total Opens div Delivered = Total Open Rate Unique Opens div Delivered = Unique Open Rate Open Rate measures whether people are: • Interested in emails from brand • Found the subject line interesting Total Clicks div Delivered = Total CTR Unique Clicks div Delivered = Unique CTR CTR measures whether people are: • Interested in the email content • Note: Unsubscribe clicks are included in the ctr Unsubscribes div Delivered = Unsubscribe Rate Total Spam Complaints div Delivered= Spam Complaint Rate Unsubscribe Rate SpamOComplaint Rate measure: • Dissatisfaction of an email • Whether people want emails from you High Open Rates, but Low CTRs • Highly effective subject line, but the content wasn’t interesting to them • What’s the actionable take away? • We need to change the content within the email to make it more engaging for the audience. • Lessons learned from what people don’t want High Total CTR, but a Low Unique CTR • A small group clicks on links multiple times • While not a lot of people were interested in the content, those that clicked were highly engaged • What’s the actionable take away? • We need to consider a better segmentation plan for the email using dynamic content High CTR High Unsubscribe and Spam Compliant Rates • This could indicate that people liked the content within the email, but didn’t want to continue receiving more from the company OR • Since unsubscribes are counted as clicks, a high proportion of the clicks could have been clicks on the unsubscribe link. • What’s the actionable take away? • Either way, look at the way we are collecting the data. We are sending a campaign to people that don’t want to receive it. • Do we need to change the list pull criteria? • If they’re lead emails, do we need to change our practices for getting leads? TESTING STRATEGIES Start simple. Test subject lines and headers first. It doesn’t take a lot of time or creative work to come up with a few simple variants, and the return can be significant. • Test one element at a time. If you test more than one element, you won’t be able to tell which variant drove the success. • Control for time of day and day of the week. If you’re testing other variants, then send on the same day and at the same time to eliminate the timing variant. • Keep a log of all your tests. Record your findings so you can refer back to the specific variables tested and, more importantly, learn from them. • Make sure testing is part of your day to day processes. Testing doesn’t have to be daunting, and it shouldn’t be something you put off due to a lack of resources — it should be part of your daily routine. Run tests on groups that are small, but large enough to determine a clear winner. The winning variables should then be incorporated into your larger mailing. • Don’t forget that small differences can be significant. This is especially true if your sample sizes are large. • Listen to what your tests tell you! All the testing in the world won’t matter if you’re not making decisions and modifications to your campaigns based on what you’ve learned. Unused data is sad data, indeed. What to Test? • Subject line • From name • Day of the week • Time of day • Frequency • MostlyOimages vs. mostlyOtext • Short copy vs. long copy • Links vs. buttons • Number of links • Unsubscribe at the top • First name personalization — in the subject line • First name personalization — in the email body Animated gifs • Font colors • Font styles • OptOdown • Social sharing icons • Social connecting icons • Delivery by time zone • Call to action — number • Call to action — placement • PostOclick landing page • Social proof • Tone — human vs. corporate • Copy length MOBILE SMS has nearly 00% open rate – DMA Response Rate Trend Report Viable way to get opt ins to email database • Very effective for alerts to catch fraudulent activity • Can be used for flash sales • 00% deliverable but hard to set up on the front end. • Takes two months to get campaign cleared by carriers The Roots of Push Messaging What is Push? • MidO 990s emergence • Mobile revolution • PushOenabled app Simple Push Interactive Push Message Badges Rich Messaging Location Based O Geofencing Location Based O iBeacon EMAIL AND SOCIAL Email + Social = “Like” Email and Social In Conversion Awareness interest desire action MAPPING THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY The HyperOConnected Consumer The Age of the Customer Meets the Era of Now Email Onl Prospects segmented based on policy type: group or retail • 3 touch communication strategy • 20% of eMarketing phone volume is driven from lead nurture emails Email and Display Prospects segmented based on policy type: group or retail • 3 touch communication strategy • Co branded or generic display ads, based on segment and data collected during quote process MetLife results: 9% Conversion Lift InOsegment users reached with display ads converted at over 2X the rate of users who didn’t see display ads, which delivered more than double the realized revenue, for a 61 x ROI. CrossOChannel and Automated This concept is often driven by the thinking from the email team. • Break down siloes and work with your colleagues to get these programs to market. • Often needs to be presented to leadership in a compelling way to get buyOin. • Position as a test CONTEXTUAL MARKETING Uber – What Could Have Worked • Recognition of customer being in New York/ New Jersey area and serving up an offer based on that location. • Recognition that the customer is an active traveler and asking where she plans to go next. • Usage of LiveContent to show content based on the weather, wherever the email is opened. ▸ I.e. It’s raining/sunny/hot/breezy where you are. Get a free ride on us. PARTING THOUGHTS Final Exam • Posted on Box • Multiple choice – 25 questions • All questions based on content in class • Turn in by 1:59 p.m. on Saturday, 2/20 • Email or Box Additional Materials • Social and Email: dj9FkiFE • B2B Case Study Multichannel: • Recommended Publications • ClickZ • Media Post Email Insider – I’m a regular columnist! " • Marketing Land • Email Experience Council Newsletter • Blogs at Oracle Responsys, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Selligent and Litmus 6 DATA STRATEGIES FOR EMAIL SUCCESS Most marketers understand the notion of big data. Data drives experience. Increasingly, data-driven experiences are not just key to email engagement, but also to true business differentiation and conversion acceleration. Data helps marketers align with customer context – say, a consumer’s disposition and situation – to deliver value, which in turn drives engagement and action. As you can see in the following graphic, customer context can be informed by a wide variety of data points – from both the real-time interests of the consumer and the ability of the business to address them. What marketers struggle with, however, is putting this data to use in meaningful ways – improving the customer experience, driving conversion, creating efficiencies for marketing teams, and achieving marketing goals. In reality, making data actionable is a big challenge. Marketers often ask themselves how they can leverage more data to drive contextually relevant experiences. Many marketing teams are already maxed out managing an array of cross-channel initiatives, including web, email, mobile, social, and more. But also, marketers may not know what data is already available that would drive a meaningful conversation in real time. Marketers also might not realize such data has a shelf life – if not used immediately, it can become stale and unusable. The good news is that implementing a data management process to power email marketing success doesn’t have to be difficult. Marketers can collect actionable data in meaningful ways right away. In the pages that follow, you will learn six proven strategies for leveraging data more effectively to drive better customer engagement and overall results from your email marketing programs. 1 DATA STRATEGY #1 INFERRED DATA BASED ON CLICKS Email opens, clicks, and corresponding website actions deliver valuable data that can be made immediately actionable to drive automated, contextual next-touch messaging. In other words, if marketers want to immediately apply data to marketing programs, they can look at any action a consumer is taking. That data can be used to drive a next action. Lack of engagement with any program can also be telling. For example, a customer might open an email, but not click a link. Or they might not even open the email. Any of these data points can inform the type of message and channel to be used next. Of course, actual clicks provide the most data. Walmart combines click behavior from its promotional emails with website and purchase behavior to determine what product or services should be promoted in the next communication. For example, if Walmart knows you buy Pop-Tarts about a once month, it can remind you a month later to replenish your stock if you haven’t yet made a purchase. By combining this interaction data across channels, Walmart is able to get a very representative picture of its customers’ interests. By consistently serving up relevant information and offers in its email communications, Walmart creates a reputation for delivering value that drives further engagement. Understanding which consumers are active or inactive in email, how often they are clicking, and what type of content they are clicking (navigation bars, specific content blocks, etc.) provides an opportunity for delivering contextually relevant messages. DATA STRATEGY #2 VISUAL SURVEYS Introducing an overt way to capture data via a visual survey can be a compelling way to learn more about subscribers and site visitors. One simple yet effective example comes from workout apparel maker Fabletics. Instead of relying on traditional text-based surveys, Fabletics combines vibrant imagery with a strong offer to incent its customers to share information about themselves and their interests. And they fine-tune the next question based on the previous response. So after selecting their gender, customers are served up gender-specific images for their favorite activities. Images and clicks offer actionable data attributes that imply an affinity to a certain product, brand, or category. The key takeaway is to apply that data to an automated program that drives the consumer down a path to key conversion points. A visual survey can make it fun and easy for the consumer to share their likes and preferences – and it helps marketers collect data to help drive contextually relevant experiences. If your customers need a little nudge to participate, you can link the survey to an incentive. In the Fabletics example, they rewarded people with a 50% off offer. Ultimately, if the goal of using a visual survey is to solicit a response with a user- friendly experience, the survey itself has to be compelling for consumers. Asking a customer to “go update your preferences” is uninspiring and offers no incentive, which is why so few follow through. But offering a fun visual survey can excite and engage the consumer. To collect meaningful data, marketers need an understanding of the key data points that will help them create better customer experiences. They need to ask what will drive more relevance around their product offering. Lining up meaningful data points around that can help them offer a more personalized experience. DATA STRATEGY #3 ONE QUESTION SURVEY Asking one simple question in an email can be a very user-friendly way to gather immediately actionable data. For example, asking consumers “Did you receive your product on time?” can be a key question that delivers insight into consumer satisfaction. This question can trigger recommendations on products they are most likely to purchase next and also inform customer service follow-up. And, it can be a natural cue to social sharing, referrals, and solicitation of ratings and reviews. CREDO Mobile uses a simple, one-question survey to receive a key piece of data for its marketing efforts – what mobile carrier the recipient currently uses. With only one click from an email, they can update their database, and then leverage that data to deliver more relevant content in future marketing campaigns. By offering the opportunity to win a $250 Visa gift card, there is an added incentive for the potential customer to submit their answer. CREDO even takes it a step further by making the request personal. Instead of having the appeal come from a generic address, it comes directly from its VP of Marketing. After answering a three-second question, the customer is then taken to a website with a special offer from CREDO Mobile. There, customers can learn more about the company and its values. Embedded single answer questions are all about continuing a dialog with the consumer and continuing engagement. The point is, marketers can take these quick data points and put them to use immediately. DATA STRATEGY #4 SOCIAL SHARING By providing social sharing options in email, marketers can begin to understand what type of content drives word-of-mouth sharing, what segments of subscribers are more actively sharing, and what social networks consumers are engaged with and using the most. Common uses are sharing an article within an email, sharing a product just purchased, or sharing an offer. Social sharing plays a big role in helping Zipcar get consumers to try their service. Zipcar knows that once they get someone to try their service, they have a good chance of keeping them on as a customer – and one of the most effective ways to get people to try is through a referral from a friend. By enabling email recipients to share offers, they get access to a new universe of likely customers who have been hand-picked by loyal users. Plus, by looking at share activity, they can identify the customers who are most passionate about their brand, which can be a very valuable segment to target in future campaigns. Surprisingly, a lot of email marketers don’t include this feature. But the fact is that social sharing offers data points that provide unique insight about consumers. Once someone has clicked and shared something, marketers can better understand who their influencers are, and the content they like to share. Social sharing data can also be used to build look-alike audiences: if marketing teams have a specific type of audience that is highly active in terms of buying or sharing, they can profile new audience acquisition efforts to get more of those types of influencers on their side. If you don’t have sufficient sharing data, you can always go to a third-party like Facebook, which offers ways to leverage social data to target customers based on look-alike models and customized audiences. DATA STRATEGY #5 MOBILE ENGAGEMENT Mobile email opens are typically around 70%. In other words, more customers are likely to view emails via a mobile device versus their laptop or desktop computer. This creates another data point that helps marketers take engagement to another level. For example, marketers can ask subscribers to download their mobile app for a better experience interacting with their content on a mobile device. In the competitive world of self-storage, Extra Space Storage shines for both its service and its mobile-friendly communications. Since revamping its email communications with mobile-friendly design and driving clicks to a mobile website, Extra Space Storage has increased rentals via mobile devices by 23%. Understanding which subscribers are opening emails on mobile (or not), what devices are being used, and which segments are engaged via mobile applications are valuable data points. Here’s why: mobile interaction data may be leveraged to deliver a more relevant experience based on activity and inferred preferences. As consumers engage with different types of messages via different mobile channels (in-app push, SMS, mobile-optimized email, etc.), marketers can understand how to best meet their customer’s expectations and deliver value through each communication. It’s important for marketers to remember to continue moving consumers along in the buying cycle. If someone just downloaded a mobile app, marketers can use that as an opportunity to gather data about a new customer, which can be fed back into the email program. DATA STRATEGY #6 CONVERSION ACTIONS Understanding conversion data offers a huge opportunity to drive additional conversions. Almost like predictive modeling around conversions, marketers first need to understand data around conversions. Do people convert the first time they visit or the second time? Is the conversion driven by email or mobile? Who converts most often? Once that conversion data is known, marketers can set up a recommendation engine. For example, if someone just purchased one type of product, marketers can recommend a similar product they’d be likely to purchase next. Building out a good conversion experience can increase revenue. If a consumer came to buy something, marketers need to ask them a few things. The best time to do this is right after they purchase. Overstock responds to a purchase conversion with an email asking to rate and review the product. Customers are given the opportunity to rate the product with one-click (one to five stars) or to log into their account for a more detailed review. Based on the response, Overstock can reach out and promote similar products or inquire about a negative experience. Marketers are really good about giving discounts, but they often won’t ask for anything in return. Ask customers to share something about themselves. If it’s the beginning of summer, ask, “What’s your vacation style? A business trip? A family vacation? A solo vacation?” The point is to give consumers incentives to move them down the path and put them into the next buy cycle. WHAT NEXT? 10 6 Data Strategies for Email Success | Copyright © 2015 StrongView Systems, Inc. All rights reserved. SV-U-11015 The first thing marketers can do today to start using data for email success is to conduct a data audit. Marketers may not even understand the types of data they have or even need. Here are just a few important questions you should be asking to better leverage data in your marketing programs: 1. Are there any data points that can be immediately put to use? 2. How often does it come in? 3. How fresh is it? 4. Are there gaps in that data? This last question is especially important. Knowing the gaps will help reveal both what is known and also what is unknown. You can then ask the most important question – what are the types of data that would significantly alter how you engage your customers. In other words, if you knew “X”, what would you do differently? And remember, if you don’t have the data, you can always ask. As mentioned earlier, one-click surveys can be a valuable tool for building out your dataset. It can also help drive a new series of messages. Also remember that after a customer makes a purchase, you can ask if they received the product. If they did, you can ask them to rate it or write a review. Next, you can follow up and ask what other types of related products interest them. Each message can cue up the next action you want them to take. Apply this thinking process to the entire customer lifecycle and a whole series of potential communications will open up. Finally, put the data into action. Marketers can build out test plans to understand the customer’s journey and conversion points. And remember that each customer’s journey will likely move between channels – from email to web and in-store. It’s the marketer’s job to make sure communications are integrated across channels. If someone downloads a mobile app, you should take that into account as you reach out via other channels. Understanding how customers respond to messages in different channels will help you build out an optimization plan that caters to how your customers interact with your brand. Data doesn’t have to be daunting. Marketers can begin to become “data minded” by implementing any (and hopefully all) of these six strategies to boost their email marketing and, ultimately, build customer relationships and lifetime value. 2016 Marketing Trends Survey Email marketing budgets are top targets for increased investment as brands focus on engagement and integration with additional channels and data sources A new industry survey conducted by Selligent and StrongView from November 25 to December 9, 2015, reflects the attitudes of 295 business leaders in regards to their planned marketing budgets, priorities, and challenges for 2016. According to the data, marketing budgets will once again rise in 2016, with 56% of companies increasing and 35% maintaining current levels. The number of companies increasing budgets has grown two percentage points over 2015 results. The number of brands decreasing budgets increased from 6% in 2015 to 9% in 2016. Email marketing remains the top channel attracting increased investment, followed by social media and display. Mobile slipped to fourth place compared to 2015 results. Increased interest in social media growth was reflected in responses to multiple questions. Engagement, integration, and data were core themes in the 2016 results. “Increasing subscriber engagement” was by far the most important marketing initiative for 2016 at 34% – more than double the next response of “improving segmentation and targeting.” Marketers chose “improving data analysis to better understand customer context” as the third most important initiative. Brands’ ongoing struggle with data and channel integration was evident in the top 2016 challenge – “leveraging customer data from multiple channels and data sources.” The following charts highlight the most relevant and significant data points from the survey. More information on the survey can be found in the press release distributed on January 20, 2016: THE ULTIMATE OPEN-TIME PERSONALIZATION LOOKBOOK Transform Your Email Marketing with Real-Time Contextual Relevance An increasing number of email marketers are learning the benefits of integrating open-time personalization into their campaigns, but a quick scan of any email inbox would indicate that adoption is still fairly low. This lookbook was created to help inform and inspire you to get started with this highly dynamic form of personalization... before your competitors do. Not quite sure what it’s all about? Just read on. MESSAGES BASED ON TRADITIONAL CRM DATA ARE OFTEN OUT OF DATE THE MOMENT THEY ARE SENT. Yet, today’s empowered consumers demand relevant, personal, and contextual interactions. Innovative brands are anticipating their customers’ needs, providing them with an up-to-date weather forecast in advance of a vacation, suggesting services based on where they are, when they choose to engage, and updating product recommendations based on real-time inventory. Open-time personalization enables marketers to achieve a new level of relevancy for properly engaging customers and prospects. Now, marketers can adapt email content in real-time based on ever-changing consumer situations like location, device, timing, and weather, as well as varying business circumstances such as inventory, proximity, and hours of operation. All of these data points can provide a contextual understanding of consumers, and the ability to engage continuously with them on their terms. When used as part of an integrated omnichannel strategy, open-time personalization helps brands deliver on the promise of customer centricity. Personalizing content at the moment of open delivers value for both consumers and marketers. Not only can marketers promote an upcoming product launch with an embedded countdown clock, but they can also display live weather forecastsfor customers based on the time and location of open. Video-in-email is also made possible by open-time personalization, which can optimize in-message video playback based on the capabilities of the inbox provider being used to render the message. Marketers can even use it to stream the brand’s latest Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram posts. In the pages that follow, this lookbook explores how brands can leverage open-time personalization to deliver more value in every message. We hope these examples inspire you to take your marketing to the next level. INTERCONTINENTAL HOTELS GROUP (IHG) Image Personalization Dynamically customizing the image of a product or object with a consumer’s name or other pertinent information can have a powerful impact on engagement. Consumers are drawn to pictures in email marketing messages, and that effect becomes even more powerful when those images are customized with their name. InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) leverages image personalization to add an extra touch of relevancy to its email campaigns. In this example, a personalized IHG Rewards Club card with the recipient’s name is the special component that increased IHG’s email conversion rates by 10% for this campaign. Since few companies have started using this type of dynamic personalization, customers typically notice and respond favorably to seeing their name “printed” on products. This not only helps drive customer loyalty, but it also promotes sharing with friends and family. IHG’S EMAIL CONVERSION RATES INCREASED BY 10% FOR THIS CAMPAIGN. LYNDA.COM Countdown Clock For upcoming events or limited-time sales, countdown clocks can be a powerful mechanism for prompting consumers to act. Each time the message is opened, the clock continues to countdown to ensure relevancy up until the event deadline., LinkedIn’s online learning division, combines countdown clocks with a promotional offer to create a sense of urgency, thereby encouraging more people to sign up for a new membership. With only 19 hours and 23 minutes and counting to save 30% on membership, customers are incited to sign up before they miss out on this great opportunity. Compared to previous promotions that didn’t include a countdown clock, experienced a 33% increase in click-through rates and a 10% increase in conversion rates. After such positive feedback, is now looking to integrate more open-time personalization features to continue delivering contextually relevant messaging to its customers. LYNDA.COM EXPERIENCED A 33% INCREASE IN CLICK-THROUGH RATES AND A 10% INCREASE IN CONVERSION RATES. YAHOO! Video-In-Email For the past few years, consumers have spent an increasing amount of time watching videos online. And with 300 hours of video being uploaded to YouTube every minute, there is plenty to watch. Open-time personalization makes it possible to leverage this trend in an effective way by optimizing video-in-email playback based on the capabilities of the recipient’s inbox provider. Yahoo understands the power of video, which is why it leverages it in its email campaigns. With this feature, consumers have the opportunity to watch a direct playback of the content within the message itself. By leveraging this unique type of content in its messaging, Yahoo has increased its open rates and delighted its customers. YAHOO HAS INCREASED OPEN RATES AND CUSTOMER SATISFACTION BY ADDING VIDEO TO ITS EMAILS. INTERCONTINENTAL HOTELS GROUP (IHG) Weather Aware IHG leverages weather forecasts in its pre-stay emails to provide its guests with helpful information to get the most out of their visit. When IHG knows that a customer will be traveling for an upcoming stay at one of its properties, the marketing team sends the customer a timely and relevant email with an up-to-date weather forecast for the dates of their visit that updates upon each open. With this type of email, customers can better prepare for their destination in the weeks and days leading up to their stay. If unexpected rain shows up in the forecast, customers can swap t-shirts and shorts for pants, umbrellas, and jackets. Adding this real-time content to its emails has enabled IHG to achieve a staggering 68% unique open rate. A testament to the power of delivering contextually relevant messaging, IHG’s customers are validating the value of these messages through their actions. IHG ACHIEVED A 68% UNIQUE OPEN RATE BY ADDING REAL-TIME CONTENT TO ITS EMAILS. JAGUAR LAND ROVER Social Feed Jaguar, one of the world’s most iconic luxury car brands, enabled open-time personalization in its email outreach campaigns to promote its social media communities. Each message featured a live stream of its Instagram feed at the time of open. By including live Instagram images in its emails, Jaguar not only brings the template alive with visually appealing images, but it also prompts people to commentand like them on social media. As the world of marketing moves towards a more visual, cross-channel experience for consumers, what better way to appeal to customers than through social media? Through its Instagram account, Jaguar displays the highlights of driving XF, XE, and F-Type models at the beach, on mountain roads, and in historical locations. Once users click through on the images, they are able to join in on the conversation with other loyal fans. INCLUDING LIVE INSTAGRAM IMAGES IN JAGUAR‘S EMAILS ENCOURAGES ENGAGEMENT AND SOCIAL SHARING CREDO MOBILE Countdown Clock Credo Mobile, America’s progressive phone company, leveraged a countdown clock on Black Friday 2015 to entice customers to purchase a limited-time offer. By highlighting the time-sensitive offer, Credo Mobile experienced a 14% higher click rate on messages that had the countdown clock versus those that did not. With open-time personalization, Credo Mobile capitalized on its flash sale email campaign and drove more business to its website. One of the most popular applications of open-time personalization is the countdown clock—an easy way to encourage urgency with flash sales, or by counting down to the start of a sports game. The excitement generated by knowing that one’s favorite team is playing in 1 hour and 35 minutes and 06 seconds, gives the fan a better reason to click on the advertisement and learn more about the players, game details, and potentially purchase an item or two. Credo Mobile and are only two examples of brands using Selligent’s open-time personalization capabilities. Other leading brands, including IHG and Trulia, are also using it to generate more conversion, CTRs, and sales. CREDO MOBILE EXPERIENCED A 14% HIGHER CLICK RATE ON MESSAGES THAT HAD THE COUNTDOWN CLOCK. N CONCLUSION Inspiration for Open- Time Personalization As customers interact with your brand and the world at large, they leave behind key data points such as previous purchases, location, and preferences. With open-time personalization, you can use more of this data to connect with customers at a deeper level. From location and device type to social feeds and time of open, all of these data points can be leveraged to create more relevant and valued content. As illustrated in the examples above, open-time personalization can enable email marketers to: • Insert countdown clocks to create urgency around special events or promotions • Incorporate video-in-email that is optimized for each inbox, including direct playback within the message • Personalize content based on the device used to view the email, including deep linking and OS-relevant messages • Stream a brand’s latest tweets and Instagram images at the time of open • Display live weather forecasts and weather-related products • Offer real-time product recommendations based on weather conditions, temperature, and previous purchase or interest The ability to personalize content at time of open creates new opportunities to send relevant and valuable messages that reflect real-time changes in consumer behavior and business conditions. As you’ve seen, marketers can use location, device, time of day, weather, and social data to dynamically contextualize email content for each customer’s surroundings and situation every time they open your message. Using contextually relevant content in your email communications allows you to deepen customer relationships while increasing engagement and conversion. Now that you’ve seen open-time personalization in action, we hope you’ve been inspired to incorporate some of these ideas into your email marketing campaigns.


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