Contrary to what many pundits espouse, email is far from dead. It is a very personal channel that is effective in raising the level of engagement with consumers. Here are some tips on getting consumers to "like" or follow your brand on social media channels even more.
Start with the signup page. Tell them who you are on your signup page(s). Make it easy to find your social media links by putting them on your email subscription page. If you can, and if your consumer is willing, facilitate the email signup via social media. The Wall Street Journal does a nice job in this respect. Privacy issues may stop you from using the Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter sign-in to create an email account, and a few financial institutions have learned this the hard way.
Don't ask them to become a friend. Instead, make it a value exchange by featuring a discussion, asking a question, or even offering resources (this could be access to a sales page, white papers, or webinars). Using a certain level of intrigue and reciprocation is much more effective in obtaining new signups. Now, when consumers show up at your social site, be tactful and nurture them just like you would with your email marketing program.
Make it mobile friendly. With more than 40 percent of consumers checking their email on mobile devices, make the mobile connection easy. You can do this by optimizing your content for mobile, reducing the content, and by having an interactive exchange with your consumer. Ask for feedback on merchandise, solicit opinions on a column, and add mobile surveys. The key is to give people the ability to interact via mobile devices.
Send a socially focused email message. Run a campaign each month where your primary call to action is to invite your consumer to join your social media following. When you do this, don't take them to an empty discussion board. Instead think about getting your consumer into a discussion that is already well underway. Hold back on the offer to sell to the consumer within the email or even on your social media site as soon as they get there. Instead, use a content engagement strategy to get them there, get a dialogue going, and then make the offer. This step-by-step approach works very well.
Reward via exclusivity. Create special emails for your social media club by making exclusive offers to your insiders first. In fact, consider making the offer to your insider group and then seek their help in getting the word out to their group of friends. Prior to sending the email message, let people know that it is coming via social media. It is very easy to segment your email list, so why not share your message with your social club first?
SES San Francisco will include some very good content on using email and social media to drive up engagement. We even have a workshop scheduled on how you can drive extraordinary engagement. Hope to see you there.
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Sundeep Kapur has been assisting organizations with their converged channel marketing strategies since 1990. From direct marketing to digital to converged, he is a passionate teacher who works with businesses across multiple industries, helping them to enable technology and services to brand, and personalize and speak to consumers more effectively.
He is an industry-recognized expert who has delivered keynotes, run panels, and delivered "relevant, inspirational, and outstanding" education for organizations around the world.
Sundeep is also an avid user of social media, having leveraged words, pictures, and video into a conversational digital book. His daily dose of best practices can be found at www.EmailYogi.com, where he has more than 1,200 articles on best practices.
December 12, 2013
1:00pm ET / 10:00am PT