Issue #044 | January 2012
Forrester Evaluates Top Six Email Marketing Vendors in 2012 Wave Report
On January 20, 2012, Forrester Research published "The Forrester Wave™: Email Marketing Vendors, Q1 2012." It's been two years since the last report and a lot has changed in that time. By focusing on the top six email marketing vendors for enterprise marketers, the current 2012 report represents a more competitive evaluation and a substantial narrowing of scope from the 15 vendors included in the 2009 report.
While many previous vendors have dropped off the 2012 report, there has also been movement within those that remain. Two previous vendors have dropped out of leadership positions, while another vendor, StrongMail, made its debut in the report as "the single most inquired about firm," which Forrester welcomed as the first and only solution offering both a hosted and installed solution.
The expansion of the report to include a vendor offering an installed option validates this deployment method for enterprises needing high levels of security, integration, scalability and performance. To that point, the report states, "heightened concerns about email data security [in 2011] had marketers clamoring to understand installed options as well."
The evaluation started with 48 email marketing vendors and then narrowed down the list to six based upon the vendors "that could manage marketers' immediate email marketing needs and also know how and why to integrate email into cross-channel conversations." The selective nature of the report provides enterprise marketers with a ready-made "shortlist" for evaluating their next email marketing vendor.
As part of the 37-point criteria used to evaluate the vendors, Forrester spoke with 74 end users of the evaluated solutions and found that email marketers are employing more advanced email practices than was reported in the 2009 Wave report. An impressive 93% of email marketers surveyed are running welcome programs, vs. 86% in 2009. The bigger contrasts come in terms of coordination email with site promotions (85% vs. 36% in 2009) and segmenting users based on site behavior (73% vs. 47% in 2009). The survey results also shed light on the biggest email marketing challenges faced by email marketers over the next two years: integrating with other channels (57%), leveraging dynamic content (50%) and leveraging segmentation (43%).For enterprise email marketers looking to replace their existing email marketing solution, the 2012 Forrester Wave report is a valuable resource that helps narrow the competitive landscape to the top six providers. You can learn more by downloading a free copy of the report, compliments of StrongMail. You can also learn more about StrongMail by downloading the whitepaper, "10 Reasons Why StrongMail Should Be on Your ESP Shortlist."
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eec Evolution Conference
In addition to being a Platinum sponsor of the annual eec Evolution Conference, StrongMail is co-hosting two pre-conference interactive workshops and participating in an email marketing strategy panel with customers HauteLook and Workopolis that will tackle the issues of reengagement and deliverability.
We encourage you to learn from our experts in these interactive sessions and swing by our booth to get a demo of latest release of Message Studio and its brand-new UI, continuous automated testing and more.
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10 Email Marketing Tips to Spruce up Your Welcome Messages in 2012
Happy 2012 everybody! Yes, I'm making the same New Year's resolutions to lose weight, save more, exercise frequently, and spend more time with the family. I'm also committed to keeping email marketing the premiere customer communication vehicle. With that, I'd like to start at the beginning with the very first email a new subscriber receives from your brand: the welcome message.
First impressions mean everything, so it's imperative that you take the time to provide your new customers with a proper introduction to your brand.
Here are 10 things to make sure you include in your welcome message(s):
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New Version of StrongMail Message Studio Showcases our Dedication to Innovation
StrongMail has come a long way since I first joined the company as CEO in 2005. Back then, we were reinventing the science of email delivery, empowering companies to get their emails delivered to the inbox faster and with greater visibility than ever before. Today, we have evolved into a full-fledged provider of interactive marketing solutions and services for email and social media with more channels and innovations on the horizon. In short, we're shaking up the status quo with our advanced campaign management and lifecycle marketing capabilities that can be deployed on-premise or in the cloud.
StrongMail's commitment to innovation can be seen in the latest release of our Message Studio email marketing solution, announced earlier this month. I couldn't be more proud of everyone who helped bring this product to market. Continuous testing and real-time optimization, Google Analytics-style data visualizations and new mobile capabilities are just some of the new and improved features that are accessible via a slick, revamped UI. With these additions to an already powerful and proven solution, it's no wonder that Forrester Research chose StrongMail as one of six top email marketing vendors for enterprises in their January 2012 Forrester Wave™ for email marketing vendors.
Bottom line: If you haven't checked out StrongMail lately, I recommend that you do. With more Forrester inquires in 2011 than any other vendor, you can bet that your competitors are. Check out www.strongmail.com to learn more or drop me a line.
The Ultimate Lifecycle Email Marketing Guide:
Event-triggered alerts enable marketers to effectively engage in-market customers who have demonstrated active interest by signing up to receive in-stock notifications, price drops or other real-time notifications from a brand. The relevancy and timing that are inherent with these messages result in conversions that are on average 2X to 6X higher than standard broadcast emails.Back to top
3 Steps to Launching a Successful Winback Program
Now that the holiday season is over and we are all getting back into the normal swing of things, a lot of digital marketing folks are beginning to look at their email marketing lists and trying to figure out how to winback some customers who haven’t engaged with them a while. This is a common challenge across the industry, and I have heard many different recommendations from a number of experts in the field.
There are a number of steps you can take to prep for these types of programs and help ensure a successful campaign to win back your customers. While the creative and actual messaging is essential for a successful program, it’s important to remember that all your efforts in those areas won’t matter one bit if you don’t put in the effort on the front end.
These three steps will help you prepare for this year’s big win-back campaign.
1. Determine What an Inactive Customer Means to You
I will often hear experts say that if someone hasn’t opened or clicked on a message in 3 to 6 months (or some other arbitrary date range), you should simply remove them from your list. While this might be a decent starting point for the masses, I believe you could be missing out on some valuable customers. Let’s say for example that you send a monthly newsletter. Are you only going to give the person three opportunities to engage with you before you start asking them to come back? In their minds, maybe they never left and were just busy working on some high-level projects that prevented them from focusing on the information you have sent them.
2. Examine the Content You Are Sending Them
3. Don’t Send Winback Emails from the Same System as Your “Master” List
After you’ve taken the three steps above, it is time to focus on the messaging, creative and potential special offers you are going to employ to get your customers engaged with your brand again. Remember, doing the work on the frontend will save you time and agony on the backend.
One final note: when creating a re-engagement program, make sure to not overwhelm your customers with too many messages. If they have already become inactive for whatever reason, continuing to send them more and more mail is not going to get them to come back. In fact it will likely cause them to mark all of your messages as spam, which would be worse than simply losing them as a customer.
A well-planned and executed winback campaign is certainly worth the effort, and these three steps will help get you started.
You can also keep up with these developments and more by bookmarking or subscribing to StrongMail’s blog, Maximizing Deliverability.Back to top
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