In recent years, many leading brands have diligently been working on eliminating data silos and ensuring that there’s one source of truth for all of their data. New information pours in by the second. Marketers instantly use that data to create highly personalized experiences on the web and mobile apps in real time. Online retailers work hard to make their website a well-orchestrated, enjoyable experience for customers, often with highly customized elements and personalized recommendations. Everything is immediate. The standards are high. No retailer would accept their website being too slow to respond to customer behavior.
For retail marketers, the holidays are a time of intense pressure and scrutiny. Most retailers see their revenue numbers soar during the holiday season. And online and interactive channels are increasingly driving those numbers. Marketing teams have carefully planned and coordinated for months to ensure customers get maximum value and a better experience.
Whether they’ve realized it or not, enterprise marketers have had limited options for years when it comes to email marketing solutions:
- Option A: Commercial email service providers (ESPs). These essentially come in two flavors — Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) or on-premises. Obviously, SaaS dominates in this industry, with many vendors rebranding in recent years as “marketing clouds.” Traditional on-premises solutions are hard to find nowadays but still exist.
- Option B: Custom in-house solutions. Many companies, particularly larger senders, have developed their own custom email marketing solution in house for a variety of reasons. These businesses then typically utilize a cloud-based email delivery solution to get messages out the door.
As email volumes rise into the tens of millions each month for many larger brands, new challenges in multi-channel marketing emerge. This is particularly as it relates to the increasing demand for personalized, real-time messaging. Consumers expect relevant communications in real time, but the very infrastructure of email marketing is based on a series of time-consuming tasks, such as data mapping, file transfers, synchronization, and batch delays. Each step introduces another delay, and that can quickly turn a real-time marketing opportunity into a missed opportunity. How can marketers keep up with growth and improve their ROI?
Here are three things major brands will need to start tackling in order to communicate more effectively with their customers.
Deliverability data has become a checkbox on the path of email marketing, but what does deliverability data reveal about the entire customer journey? The success of an email marketing campaign is usually evaluated by a few key deliverability metrics. Was the email accepted by a recipient’s Internet service provider (ISP)? Check. Did the recipient open the email? Check. Did the recipient click on any links? Check. Did the recipient unsubscribe or report the message as spam? No. Phew!
If you can put a checkmark by these metrics, your email marketing campaign was a success, right? Perhaps that was the case in the early days of email marketing, but consumers are more sophisticated than ever before, and the customer journey is more complex than it has ever been. While it’s good to know a recipient opened an email or clicked on a link, that doesn’t tell you much about where they are in the customer journey. Or does it?