Deep Thoughts in Email Marketing — May 2016 Edition

Deep Thoughts in Email Marketing — May 2016 Edition

  May not only brings flowers, but also deep thoughts about email marketing. Again. 1. It’s funny that something that was created in 1972 is still increasing in popularity today. You can’t say that about the Ford Falcon (XA). 2. An email marketer achieving “inbox zero” should either be shot or rewarded…not sure which. 3. According to everyone in every study ever done on email, the best time to send an email is never. This is because everyone ever surveyed says they are overloaded with email. 4. When an “oops” email is sent, is the email marketer secretly apologizing, or is it really the company? 5. Elitist Triple Opt-In: When a subscriber enters his or her email address, confirms by a click on the confirmation email, and the company then decides on whether or not to approve them for the program....
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Why Choosing Functionality Over Beauty in Emails Gets You More Clicks

Why Choosing Functionality Over Beauty in Emails Gets You More Clicks

It was about 15 years ago that my wife and I received a beautiful Waterford crystal vase as a gift.  The exquisite detail and sheer elegance of the vase is utterly amazing, as any Waterford piece normally is.  We take it out as often as we buy flowers or receive them when we host guests.  However, there is one problem: the vase does not hold 12 flowers very well.  In fact, we often take two or three flowers out and put them into another vase simply because it’s a pain and makes things look awkward if we try and cram them in.  While beautiful, the vase lacks functionality, and it’s a shame since we really love the piece. People are obsessed with beautiful things.  We imagine beautiful houses, shoes, cars, jewelry, and we tend to put beautiful people on a pedestal simply because they look great.  That obsession can be found everywhere, and in fact it spills over into email. I have...
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Deep Thoughts in Email Marketing — March 2016 Edition

Deep Thoughts in Email Marketing — March 2016 Edition

Continuing the monthly tradition of providing you deep thoughts that will perhaps spawn a little laughter or a little chatter amongst the email brethren. Imagine a day where every single email marketer and every single spammer pressed the send button at the same time. I wonder if English teachers secretly want to grade the grammar from emails they receive from retailers. Would using the SL of “Open now to unsubscribe” in a campaign to your inactives work? How would DOI work at the POS register at your local retailer if you didn’t send an email to confirm? If the US Postal services eAppended the entire country into their DB, what would be the appropriate thing to send first? I think its funny when I get an email about an email conference in my spam folder. Has there ever been an incident where a deliverability consultant turned to the dark side and became a spammer? Enjoy....
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5,720 Emails and a 99.74% Error-Free Rate

5,720 Emails and a 99.74% Error-Free Rate

Trendline has been a strategic email-marketing agency since its inception in 2010. We have quietly grown over the years to more than 40 people, and 2015 was an incredible year. One area of tremendous growth in 2015 was the quantity of campaigns we sent. As an agency, we sent out 5,720 email campaigns for all of our clients, with a 99.74% error-free rate.  This was up from 2014, when we sent 3,694 emails with a 99.64% error-free rate. We have a dedicated Quality Assurance (QA) Team in our Austin office who perform multipoint checks on every single email before it is delivered to the client or the “Send” button pushed.  The process by which we do this is top secret and rigid. Our new QA team members go through almost 3 months of training before ever being allowed to give the green light to send. Sending one error-free email seems easy enough. But sending 5,720 emails, most with dynamic content and multiple links,...
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It’s Award Season! Why Winning a Markie Is Important

It’s Award Season! Why Winning a Markie Is Important

As the deadline approaches for 2016 Markie award submissions (Feb 5), I thought it would be a good time to reflect upon why winning a Markie is so important. Markie awards are presented by Oracle to celebrate and recognize excellence in marketing. The winner in each category receives a beautiful statue to announce to the world what they’ve accomplished. I was honored with the 2012 Markie for Best Customer Lifecycle Program, so I have firsthand knowledge of the quality and effort necessary to win an award, and the ensuing benefits. The Markie-winning customer lifecycle program that I built for SurePayroll in 2012 was a three-pronged approach that focused on onboarding, retention and referrals. First, we built a welcome video and onboarding document sent out to all new customers when they were ready to enter their first payroll. These emails were responsible for driving down the number of customer service inquiry calls, resulting in a cost savings to the company. Next we...
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Two Things From My Inbox

Two Things From My Inbox

Here are two things from my Inbox that I believe are share-worthy: Sent From My iPhone I subscribe to all of the potential presidential candidates' email programs (so don't think I am affiliated in any way with any candidate), and this one from Ted Cruz is interesting.  For those of us who work in email marketing, I think we can all agree that this was almost certainly not sent from his iPhone. However, it does add an interesting personal touch to the email. Recipients could be thinking that he is, in fact, just sending them an email from his device in order to encourage donations.  It dovetails with the reminder aspect of the previous email (you can see the first line of the original email at the bottom of the image), but keen-eyed readers will notice the subtle appearance of the Bluehornet in the 'From' field.  Let's see if any other candidates follow suit.   Thank You. Thank You. Thank You. As parents, we always...
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Content Is King. Now What?

Content Is King. Now What?

If you’ve read anything about social media, permission-based marketing and/or Web 2.0, you’ve doubtless heard the maxim “Content is king.” And, if you work in any field other than marketing or publishing, your reaction to that adage is probably some variation of, “Great. What does that have to do with me and my business?” Content is king because, by providing customers (current or potential) with relevant and useful information, you establish a relationship that positions yourself as “someone who knows what he/she’s talking about” rather than merely “someone who’s trying to sell something.” From whom would you rather buy? Ever patronized a local hardware store because you know you can get expert advice about whatever project you’re working on rather than because they have the best prices? That, in essence, is the underpinning of content marketing. (And it’s also the key to competing on value rather than price, but that’s a topic for another post.) Content marketing not only helps distinguish you and your business...
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How To React Quickly In Email – Take It From Spirit Airlines

How To React Quickly In Email – Take It From Spirit Airlines

We preach relevancy.  We preach timeliness.  We preach content.  We preach humanization. We preach a lot.  Sometimes we see the fruits of our "preachy-ness" and sometimes not. Regardless of your political affiliations, this email from Spirit Airlines exemplifies the ability to connect relevant information (The Presidential Debates last night content) with timeliness.  Whether  you like the messaging or the creative or not, you have take this little nugget of brilliance from Spirit to capitalize on a current event for ROI.  Some companies plan emails 3, 4 or even 8 weeks in advance.  Spirit delivered this content in just over 14 hours. See the whole email here:  http://trndl.in/QshIox    ...
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Video Email Does Not Kill The Marketer – An Interview With Justin Foster of Liveclicker

Video Email Does Not Kill The Marketer – An Interview With Justin Foster of Liveclicker

One of the greatest things about my job is that I get to meet and speak with some really smart people and learn about technology.  Video is not new by any means in email, but Liveclicker is doing some awesome stuff around video commerce.  I had the chance to sit down with Justin Foster, the Co-Founder of Liveclicker and ask him a few very direct questions about video commerce and his vision for the future. (AK) Isn’t video in email dead?  Why are people doing video in email these days? (JF) Video in email was dead.  Now, thanks to new disruptions in the industry, video in email has a second shot at life.  The two mega-trends driving video in email are the rise of HTML5 video coupled with mass adoption of mobile mail clients, especially on iOS devices.  When paired with growing access to broadband and new tools enabling video in email, the time is better than ever for senders to consider...
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Trendline will be LIVE from EIS

Trendline will be LIVE from EIS

Starting on Wednesday evening, Morgan and I will be attending The Email Insider Summit in Captiva.  The best and brightest email and digital marketers will be attending and I am super excited to meet and learn over the 3 day event. Throughout the event, we both will be tweeting and possibly blogging about the great learning's and takeaways that we see as critical to successful email programs.  I have been to EIS several times, but only in Utah, so I am excited to change the scenery. See you on the other side....
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