Email isn’t just a cost-effective, high-ROI tool to reach new customers. It has become a brand tool that can create and sustain customer relationships at different levels. While competition keeps heating up to reach inboxes, the need to respect customers’ individual needs has become equally important. These six rules, successfully tested with thousands of businesses, can help you improve your customer relationships through email.
Use Newsletters to Communicate Regularly with Customers
- Make them relevant, valuable, timely and tailored to your customers’ needs
- Design your e-mails so they are easy to read and provide information clearly
- Know the type of device on which your emails are received and design accordingly
- Send on a regular schedule so messages are expected
- Keep subject lines short; less than 50 characters is ideal
- Use a consistent ‘from’ address; customers open e-mails they are expecting to receive
Give Options and Set Expectations
- Kick off the relationship with a welcome letter where you can set terms and expectations
- Look to provide customers only information they need or would like to receive
- Find out when and how frequently they would like to receive it
- Tell them how frequently they’ll hear from you and stick to your promise
- Segment lists to best match your customers’ needs
Make Your Emails Work for Your Customers
- Know your audience
- Make your customers’ lives easier with valuable information and reminders
- Keep customer motivation as your main focus
Keep it Personal with Triggered Communications
- Send date-based triggers to remind customers of action needed to continue providing uninterrupted service.
- Recommend products or information that might meet their needs
- Recognize milestone dates, such as birthdays, anniversaries, or thank them for time as your customer
- Whenever possible, encourage your customers to interact with you. Ask for their opinions; offer surveys or polls
- Listen to feedback–and use it
Make Sure They Still Want to Hear From You
- Maintain good list hygiene: remove hard bounces or registered complaints
- If a customer hasn’t opened an email in a certain amount of time, send them an email asking if they would like to continue receiving your communications.
- No matter what, always remove and respect unsubscribe requests
Finally, select an e-mail marketing tool that is either fully integrated with your CRM system or a stand alone system that can be fully integrated. Either way, you can reach out to your contacts, grow your customer base, nurture and qualify leads, and automate sales and marketing practices. A fully integrated e-marketing solution will let you create campaigns, view history, interactions, and most importantly results. Reports will show trends over time so you can understand which campaigns bring the most success.