The From Line

Sending, Managing & Monetizing Email

Marketers need your help! Take this quick survey and score an Amazon gift card!

Survey: Perceptions About Consumer Permission

Be one of the first ten to answer and receive a $10 Amazon gift card! Help marketers better understand permission marketing by taking our quick 20 question survey. The first ten completions will receive a $10 Amazon gift card and the remaining submissions will be placed into a drawing for a $100 gift card!

We look forward to your participation!

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  38113 Hits

My customers don’t seem to be engaging like they used to. What can you suggest to help reverse this?

Answer by Danielle Ashery, VP Client Services

Email Surveys

Often marketers get stuck in the rut of sending predictable emails, invitations and discounts, coupons and calls to action but nothing seems to motivate their customers. They play the guessing game, trying to figure out what makes their customer tick and what will motivate them to purchase. Doing this not only wastes time and energy, but it is ineffective. When customers do eventually purchase, you can't necessarily pinpoint the motivating factors. This uncertainty prevents marketers from replicating the success. The good news is this doesn’t have to be a guessing game. Business can easily arm themselves with the information needed to have a successful email marketing strategy by leveraging survey tools.

Survey Strategy

Surveys deliver clear feedback on customer thoughts, desires and motivations. Leveraging an incentivized survey strategy will garner valuable feedback from subscribers. Marketers should construct a simple, easy to complete survey with clear up front expectations. Tell your subscribers exactly what sort of commitment they are entering into: how many questions will they be answering, how long will it take to complete and what will they receive in the end. Keeping your survey strategy short and sweet will maximize responses. Limit your survey to around 5 questions and simplify the process as much as possible. Keep in mind that there are many different ways to execute a survey. An engagement map is a particularly unique option. It visualizes the question, increasing customer interest and engagement. Engagement maps also shorten the answering process by limiting the amount of typing involved. Marketers will have an easier time evaluating responses as they will be measuring clicks instead of analyzing written answers. As with any email marketing campaign, marketers should be careful to always test their messages. Certain email clients may not support embedded surveys, so subscribers will need a click through link instead.

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How do you convince your clients that email works with an integrated campaign?

Asked by Lorrain, 'I’m not allowed to tell you' agency

Answer by Sara Steinnagel, Community Manager.

Email Marketing campaigns

Based on this question, it sounds as if your agency is simply not educated about the overall value email marketing provides. Email should be the backbone of an integrated on or offline campaign helping to build and reinforce customer relationships. What happens when the campaign is over? Do customer relationships fizzle? Why bother collecting all that permissioned data and not use it? Doesn't your agency view this as a wasted opportunity? Aren’t your clients’ customers expecting to hear from them?

Email Marketing Value

According to the Direct Marketing Association’s 2011 Power of Direct report, email is bringing in $40.56 for every dollar spent on it in 2011, compared to catalogs' ROI of $7.30, search's return of $22.24, Internet display advertising's return of $19.72 and mobile's return of $10.51. Email is the most cost effective digital marketing medium there is. Granted, building a quality email program tends to be more complex than for other digital mediums, however the payoff can easily be substantiated. Convincing your account management team about the value of email marketing is a function of education. Like all educational processes, it will be slow and mastery will take time. Eventually your account team will need to garner enough confidence to pitch the client accordingly. If your account team seems reluctant to educate themselves about email marketing, just let them know that eventually their customers will find out and take their business elsewhere. More importantly, it sounds as if your agency needs an inside champion for email. Are you up for the job?

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I'm a B2B marketer and I need to know how I can increase my click through rates.

Asked by Lauren Rutley, Visual Mining

Answer by Elie Ashery, CEO

Click Through Rates and Open to Click Through Rates

Before any marketer should worry about their overall click through rates, they should first concentrate on their open to click through rates (number of unique clicks/number of unique opens). This stat reveals a lot about your content relevancy, value and creativeness. If your open to click through rate is high but your overall unique click through rate is low, you’re in a much better position than if both stats are low. Assuming your sender reputation is stellar, the reason for this is that it shows the subscribers opening your email find the content relevant and engaging. More importantly, to get additional subscribers to open your email is more of a less costly function of creating compelling and enticing subject lines. With both open to click through rates and unique click through rates low your problem is much bigger. The issues can range from poor email design to content value. From a design standpoint I find that B2C marketers think what works on the web will work in email and from B2B marketers they think what works in direct mail will also work in email. Just as the same rules don’t apply to newspapers and radio the same is true in crossing online mediums.

Since you’re a B2B marketer I encourage you to keep your designs simple, with less words. Especially for complex sales it’s important to focus only on the pain points. Busy executives don’t have the time to sift through fluff. Keep your calls to action easy to find and above the fold. Remember, most people are lazy and don’t like to scroll. Assessing content value is a much more difficult process. It involves surveying your core clients or the new markets you’re after and constant testing. Don’t be afraid to change content formats. What works today will probably not work tomorrow. If your market isn’t downloading your white papers from your email try a click through to a podcast (read your white paper). Executives like to take mental breaks and let someone else do the driving. Creativity is the heart of valuable content that’s palatable. This is where you draw the line with company quants.

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Should social and email messages be redundant?

Asked by Chip Ahlswede, Government Affairs Strategies
"What is the best way to centralize /coordinate all of the external messaging (newsletters, blogs, tweets, Facebook pages etc.) so as to not be redundant?"


When it comes to e-messaging centralization and redundancy are two separate issues. I’m going to answer your question on redundancy since I think this is your real concern. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with cross channel message redundancy. I have multiple reasons for this opinion and all of them centralize around the fact that different markets have channel preferences and consume information in different ways. If you’re servicing multiple markets there is nothing wrong with having the same message as long as the message is packaged according to the market and channel. For example, a promotional Tweet by its nature should be very different than an email. It would probably be best to spend the time learning your different markets’ channel preferences than worry about message redundancy.

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