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Big Data Presents Huge Email Marketing Opportunities

Posted on the 16 July 2013 by Marketingtango @marketingtango

The dictionary lists “data” as a noun. But for integrated marketers, the word should actually be used as a verb.

Data is “an action generator” for Stephen Dumas. As Segment Marketing Director of Silverpop, he prefers to think of data as something a company uses to get buyers to take action.

Forrester defines Big Data as “Techniques and technologies that make handling data at extreme scale affordable.” Dumas reassures marketers that Big Data can be handled by taking small steps.

Improving Email Effectiveness

Big Data presents a huge opportunity for greater precision in your integrated marketing, especially in direct mail and email campaigns. By effectively leveraging data, you can build trust with your customers and help ensure your email will be something they’ll open and value.

Collect email addresses wherever your customers land so you can start building a relationship as soon as possible. Be sure to accommodate for multiple devices to reach customers where they’ll be seeing your message.

Here are three basic types of Big Data and examples of how they can be used:

  1. Simple Data — information you already have or can easily access. You can segment your audience at this level for effective messaging. [Name, email, gender, city, etc.]
  2. Proactive Data — information you collect at the point of sale or checkout. [Address, phone, product purchased, date purchased, etc.]
  3. Complex/Implicit Data — information you may acquire unintentionally from other actions that offers an opportunity for truly individualized interaction.

Simple Data

Email open rates typically drop 20–25% within two months of opt-in. To counter the drop-off, start building a relationship by creating a “Welcome” series of emails based on your customer’s opt-in date. Don’t go “hard sell” too soon, especially if the person is not yet a customer. Build credibility and trust to increase the likelihood of your customer returning and becoming a brand advocate. Personalize the message with information directly related to their interests.

Proactive Data

Use data that you’ve collected to drive a higher cross-sell or re-purchase rate. For example send a Happy Birthday message along with a discount deal, or an anniversary message.

To reduce unsubscribes, create a Customer Preference Center that includes email frequency options. A preference center allows people to choose how often they want to receive messages, which also helps improve the quality of your customer leads.

Implicit/Complex Data

Website analytics data can be used to build an abandoned shopping cart program. Simply knowing when people leave in your sales process can help increase conversions.

Another example would be using the purchase history data of your customers to help clear out old inventory. Leverage the data from past customer orders to entice people with related product offers by dynamically inserting relevant, personalized product images based on their preferences and purchase history.

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