The Hack – Curate Deals & Discounts for Your Email Subscribers
AARRR stage – Retention
Growth Problem – How to Value to Your Users Using Email
SaaS app users are constantly bombarded with transactional email, which often follow each and every action they perform within an app. This is in addition to all of the subscription and other mail that they receive. Stop it already!
To state that this is slightly annoying is as much an understatement as saying that your inbox is slightly full. Unless you’re one of those ‘Inbox Zero’ types, your Gmail is most likely OVERFLOWING with unread mail.
This brings us to the following point: if you’re going to add one more thing to read into your users’ already-chaotic, information-overloaded lives, it better add value. Especially, if you send out a regular subscription email, which you should be doing.
So are we addicted, or has email been a part of our daily lives for so long that we just can’t imagine what we would do without it? Businesses know that we are already logging in, so why wouldn’t they want to take a piece of our time too?
Moreover, checking email is generally a singular task. When you’re on social media, companies are competing with timeline posts, notifications and advertisements for your attention. When your email is open, it’s often the only thing your brain is having to process. This means you’re likely more engaged with the content.
But does that content you’re receiving actually have value to you? Does it contain information that you would never know about had you not opened it?
Out of all the email newsletters I receive, some which I signed up for and some I honestly can’t remember if I did or not, I can think of maybe 7 brand newsletters that I actually find valuable: Flight price notifications, discounts to my favorite stores, local events and industry-related news. However, I would say only 50% of the ones they send out actually contain information intriguing enough to make me take action. The rest is just noise.
What You Can Do
So how can we make email marketing line up more with the inbound methodology, and therefore, more user-friendly? Get creative with how you can add value for your customers through different types of email content:
01. Personalize It
Marketers have been personalizing email by adding smart fields to generate the user’s name for some time now. Lists are used to seperate customers to better target them by interest, location, career, and so on. These tactics work well; but if you really know your customers, then take the time to deliver content exclusively for them.
Do you have a few customers who maybe used to purchase from you often, but have now dropped off? Look at their previous purchases and write a direct email to them suggesting a few new items that fit their needs. For example, maybe your customer bought a pair of shoes a month ago that now comes in other colors. It won’t take a ton of time for you to write a short and sweet message saying something like:
It looks like the last time you shopped with us you purchased our Black Lace-up Flats. I hope you’re really enjoying them – they are my favorite shoes to pair with springtime dresses!
I wanted to let you know that we now carry them in three other colors: White, cream and tan. And till midnight on Tuesday, I’m giving you this exclusive promo code for 30% any one item of your choice.
If there is anything I can help you with, please feel free to respond to this email.
Obviously this tactic can be hard to do if you’re running a large business with a huge customer base. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Use the resources you have available to you to create an experience that will make a lasting impression with your customers.
02. Spark Emotion
You know that warm, happy feeling that certain commercials can leave you with around the holidays? The gathering of a happy family or a couple celebrating over the sounds of holiday music can help put you in a festive mood, ultimately making you want to buy gifts for the people you love.
So many companies seem to nail this around the holidays, but then the rest of year there is no emotion shown. Customers want to connect with brands; and in order to do that, they need to seem trustworthy. Take some time to understand the power of empathetic marketing, and figure out the best way to connect with your customer base either through sharing a personal story or by putting yourself in their shoes.
03. Ask for Opinion
Every time I see an email containing the word “survey” in the subject line I immediately loose a little respect for the company. I know that may seem harsh, but why do companies repeatedly expect us to just give them more of our time without getting anything in return? (What ever happened to getting some kind of “thank you” deal for filling those out?)
Instead of asking your customers to complete a survey, get creative and start a social media campaign/contest. Then send the information out to your email subscribers asking them to “like” your page and tell you something good about why they love your company (this is also a great way to get more social followers).
An example of this might be if you run a clothing store, you could ask your customers to tell you about a moment when wearing one of your items helped give them confidence in a stressful situation, such as in an interview. Users can “Like” your page, leave their comment and be entered into a contest of some sort.
04. Add Statistics
People love statistics. It’s a short and easily-digestable snippet of information. Users can easily scan it to decide if the article it’s linked to is worth reading, or to quickly understand the popularity of something. If you want to feature a product in your next email, turn to your reviews and include the stats with the product in the email. It’s much more powerful to say that “80% of our customers gave these shoes 5 stars” than it is to include a testimonial saying “these are so cute!”
05. Give Something Free
Because who doesn’t want free stuff? The intensive could be for online, but it could also be for in-store if that’s where you’re trying to drive traffic.
06. Make it Visual
Visuals, meaning photography, infographics and video, are so important to include in everypiece of marketing you do. Here are some important reason why:
- Researchers found that colored visuals increase people’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80%. (Xerox)
- Content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without relevant images. (Kissmetrics)
- Shoppers who view video are 1.81X more likely to purchase than non-viewers. (Adobe)
- Infographics are liked and shared on social media 3X more than other any other type of content. (Massplanner)
- Visual content is more than 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content. (Bufferapp)
07. Add Social Proof
Social media is here to stay, so if it isn’t already a huge part of your marketing strategy then it should be. If you have built up a follower base, include information from it in your email such as “Most Liked on Instagram.”
In short, if we want businesses to include more value in their email marketing, then we can start by being the trendsetter. Provide your customers with the information they need and want instead of just noise, and ultimately, build a lasting relationship with them.
At this point, my AOL account is clearly a lost cause. I could delete it, but now I kind of want to just keep it to see how many unread emails I will rack up over the next decade. At least my other email accounts that actually matter are in better shape.
Just Hack It:
- The keyword here is ‘abundance’. As in: found a cool deal for an app related to your one? Share it with your users in your next email blast!
- Found a rock-bottom discount for another app that could be useful to your users? Share it with them!
- If you do this on a regular basis then your users will see that you’re thinking of them. And who wouldn’t like that?
- If you want to take this even further then you can collaborate with other SaaS companies to create custom ‘packages’:
- Could you do something similar in your industry? Sure you can!
- Remember, when you scratch your users’ backs, they’ll scratch yours. And that means they’ll stick around for longer.