Email has been part of daily life for almost 20 years. And it’s been an effective way for companies to communicate, plus market their products and services. For all its elasticity and scope, email has suffered from one major drawback: its lack of interactivity.
Forms often fail to make it through filters. Design elements don’t work in certain email programs. The world is patiently waiting for HTML5. Email marketing has been a one-way conversation. Thankfully, the technology has advanced enough to provide many marketers with the ability to start a conversation directly through emails without having to link to a landing page, squeeze page, or website. Many companies have found a way around the current technological limitations.
Why interact with customers through email? Perhaps the most important reason is to gather additional data. Many of the tactics below can help marketers learn more about their databases and then segment their databases to improve conversion.
For many companies the worst time to gather significant amounts of information is during the initial opt in. With interactive communication through email, a company can slowly build broader customer knowledge. It’s often easier to gather data once the customer has built a sense of trust with your emails and message. Here are three ways that companies are starting two-way conversations through email.
ONE - A Survey Measuring Customer Satisfaction
A customer satisfaction survey can work extremely well when it’s embedded in the body of an email. It’s important that the email be totally and completely focused on the survey and not have to compete with other content. The results of the survey can be used to segment the database. With the information from a survey, the company can also make key changes to its service and product options and discover problems it needs to address.
TWO - Trivia and Quizzes
In this tactic, ask the recipient some simple questions about the product. Trivia can be fun, entertaining, and educational. There’s no need for advanced coding/technology and the goal is to get the reader to click through to a landing page. The trivia question can be related to the company’s product or service.
THREE – The Poll
With this tactic, you can ask clients and customers what they like the most about your product or service. In many cases, marketing decision makers will believe that one feature or benefit is especially important to customers; from the email survey, they may discover that another feature or benefit is the one that gets people excited. There’s no need for advanced email technology: simply include a separate hyperlink for each response. The link leads to a specific landing page, thus eliminating an extra click.
Email marketing continues to be an extremely effective way for companies to sell products and services—and communicate. Making emails interactive can increase the effectiveness of an email marketing campaign.