Personalisation has long been a proven tactic for email marketers.
One of the reasons why it’s so effective is because it engages readers on a (you guessed it) personal level.
Personalisation makes us feel special. It tells us that the company who sent this email “gets” us.
But what is personalisation in respect to email marketing?
- Is it calling someone by their first name?
- Is it speaking to subscribers as individuals with words like “you” instead of “customer”?
- Or is it tailoring your email content so that each person only sees the stuff that’s interesting to them?
The truth is – email personalisation is all of these things plus more.
Read on for 4 tips to improve your email marketing with personalisation (click to skip ahead):
- Greet readers by their first name
- Speak to each reader as if they are your only reader
- Think conversation, Not self-promotion
- Tailor your emails for each recipient
This is one of the most basic things you can do towards email personalisation and whilst it’s not the only thing – I think it’s a good place to start.
Some email marketers have turned their back on this tactic because they want to disassociate themselves from Spammers who have started using it to create a false sense of association with unsuspecting recipients.
But I think this is a mistake. You should differentiate yourself from Spammers by sending permission based, interesting and valuable email content. Not by neglecting to greet readers by their first name.
This is a copywriting tip I picked up courtesy of the super-smart folk at Copyblogger and it’s served me well over the years. The idea is that by focusing on your reader as just one person (instead of a collection of hundreds or thousands of people), you’re able to better engage them with a more powerful statement.
A really easy way to do this is to use the word “you” instead of something like “customer”. Here’s an example of this principle in action.
By using web forms, customers can grow their databases by up to 193%.
By using web forms, you can grow your database by up to 193%.
See how much more powerful this second statement is. Because I’m speaking to you as an individual, you’re able to better visualise how this statement applies to your business.
You know that annoying guy who’s always talking about himself and every time he opens his mouth you immediately tune out? Well you don’t want to be that guy. And you know what… your subscribers don’t want you to be that guy either.
It’s ok to promote your business. But do it in such a way that communicates the value you provide to subscribers. And just like you would in person, take a breath every now and then and let the other person talk. Ask questions of your subscribers and use surveys where they can provide feedback. Importantly, be sure to show them that you’re listening by incorporating that feedback into future email messages.
By leveraging what you already know about subscribers, such as their personal interests, buying patterns and email behaviour, you’re able to create a customised email that is high-impact due to its relevancy to each recipient.
At first this might sound like a time consuming task because the profiles of your subscribers will differ greatly. And you probably don’t want to spend the time sending multiple versions of the same email to your subscribers separately. Thankfully you don’t have to though.
Aligning your email content with your subscriber’s interests is actually quite easy when you use the conditional content feature. You simply add your content into the email editor and then choose the conditions for when you want each section of content to display for your reader.