The From Line

Sending, Managing & Monetizing Email

Make Your Acquisition Marketing Strategy Shine With These Effective Tips

Is your brand in desperate need of a strategy to engage its customers, cultivate a stronger brand-to-customer relationship, create a more talked about social buzz, and drive repeat sales and returning customers?

Acquisition marketing can help significantly in each of these areas, and can improve upon your overall online marketing efforts.

But if you're like the majority of sales-based companies trying to navigate their way through the sometimes intimidating waters of digital marketing, you've probably missed valuable opportunities to acquire new email and mobile subscribers. It's important to keep in mind that each one of these missed opportunities leads to one less conversation, and one less purchase.

To determine how effective your brands acquisition marketing is, ask yourself the following:

  • Are you asking for the customers email address at the exact point of sale, as soon as they land on your website, or not at all?
  • Does your website have an email opt-in form that is easy to locate and simple to fill out?
  • Most importantly, what are you doing with the analytical data you're collecting? 

Knowing exactly what you are doing with the data your brand is collecting allows you to push forward a more personalized, relevant customer experience. Choose to ignore data in your acquisition marketing efforts and you miss the biggest opportunity of all.

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Bounce Codes: Understanding Why Email Bounces Back

All email list administrators know what they look like, but what do they mean? Some bounces seem to have a clear meaning, but others are cryptic enough to make any normal person tear their hair out. The way bounce codes look when they show up is not even consistent!

Sometimes they'll look like this:

Remote-MTA: dns; smtp.myemail.com [192.0.2.3]

Diagnostic-Code: smtp; 550 No such user here

Other times you'll see something like this:


while talking to smtp.store.example [192.0.2.3]

>>> RCPT TO:<This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

<<< 550 No such user here

Okay. Take a step back, a deep breath and relax.

You can safely ignore most of what you see in both messages. The important part of the message is the 3 digit numerical code, 550 and the short description that follows immediately.

What do those three digit bounce codes mean? Well here's a list of the codes that matter to a mailing list manager and what they are supposed to mean:


  • 550 - The requested command failed because the user’s mailbox was unavailable (such as not found)
  • 551 - The recipient is not local to the server.
  • 552 - The action was aborted due to exceeded storage allocation.
  • 553 - The command was aborted because the mailbox name is invalid.
  • 554 - The transaction failed for some unstated reason.

The code to worry about for email marketers is code 550. Usually this means that there is no mailbox for that address. At this point you would want to cull the address from your list to avoid wasting resources on mailings, but even a code 552 which means that the user has exceeded their storage allocation is important. If the mailbox is full for several mailings it might be best to remove the address from the list.

Bounce codes are a great tool for refining lists gor maximum efficiency. If you have any questions about bounce codes or about how we can help you manage your email marketing please contact us.
 

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Don't let your sales funnel slip! Optimize your efforts now.

How do your sales and marketing teams define the sales funnel? If their views aren’t compatible and streamlined, you likely have a problem. Don’t fret though. Your team is just a few important steps away from maximizing their sales opportunities.

Develop the Most Qualified Lead

There seems to be a traditional rift between marketing and sales personnel when it comes to defining the sales funnel. It could be attributed to the number of steps required to qualify a lead or it may be due to the economic friction “generated by the need to divide the total budget.”

Ultimately, one of the biggest roadblocks to alignment is the different view each team has of the sales funnel. Therefore, it is up to the two camps to agree on what defines the most qualified lead.

There are generally four types of leads based on the level to which a customer is a good fit and interested:

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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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The Email Monetization Playbook
Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!

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Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!