Email marketing is driven by the data that fuels it. At least it should be. The data that informs you about contacts should help you decide what your campaigns will be, as well as who you’ll send them to. So how can you make sure your data is the driving force instead of taking the back seat?
The most important place to start is to figure out who your target audience is. If you plan on having multiple different campaigns with different focuses, you might want to create a few personas for the people you’re trying to target. Whatever you do, you need to know who you’re addressing so that you can make your email campaigns as personal to them as you can.
What do we mean by this exactly? We’ve heard and written a fair amount about the GDPR coming into force soon enough – which is important to think about when it comes to your email marketing.
What these new General Data Protection Regulations mean is that data in the EU and the UK need to be double opted-in to contact lists for communications to be legal. If you start trying to market and sell to data that hasn't opted-in to your communications, you’ll be facing a huge fine. Like, €20 million huge – that or 4% of your annual turnover. They’ll take whichever equates to the largest amount of money.
This might seem scary when you think about your wallet, but it’s not all that bad. Double opting-in isn’t actually that difficult, and it can even mean higher engagement rates for your campaigns. So really, it’s in your best interests no matter what to get this done. Collect data correctly, drive your email marketing forward and avoid getting chased for breaking an important data law. All good things.
If you’ve got a good CRM, you should have access to a fair amount of data on your contacts. In fact, once you’ve double opted your contact list, your access to data should be even easier than it was before. That means that by this point there’s no excuse for you to be sending impersonal emails.
Based on whatever information you have, you should start setting up segments for all of your contacts. That means narrowing down your campaign groups so that everyone you’re emailing is getting something relevant to them. You can base these groupings on company focus, what pages these contacts have looked at, or even what position they hold within their business.
As long as the campaign you’re sending is applicable, you’re doing it right. Just be sure that, rather than sending heaps of irrelevant mass emails, you’re letting the data speak and be the driving force behind your email campaigns.