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Show Your Subscribers Some Love

  |  March 11, 2014   |  Comments

When the love is lost, saving the relationship with your subscriber can be tricky. However, there are several ways you can show your subscribers how much you care before they start to get a wandering eye.

It can be tricky for retailers to navigate their rocky relationships with inactive subscribers. I mean, face it - there's a certain point where you have to be honest and realize your subscribers just aren't that into you. When the love is lost, saving the relationship with your subscriber can be tricky. However, there are several ways you can show your subscribers how much you care before they start to get a wandering eye.

Subscribers can become bored when your email program becomes too routine. You may have made a fabulous first impression with a stellar welcome series after the subscriber made the first move and opted in to your email program. But since that flirtatious beginning, your regularly weekly promotional emails may have become easy for the subscriber to overlook.

Now, I'm not advocating for making your email program less promotional or saying you need to reconsider how many emails you send, but you should find subtle ways to keep the spark alive. Your brand has a voice. Your products add value to your customers' lives. You have more to say than "20% Off" and "Free Shipping." It's time to be more spontaneous and remind your subscriber why they should still care. Here are a few ways to bring some charm to the inbox:

Be Human
Feature your buyers, experts, or other employees in the inbox. You likely have existing content, for example your blog, Pinterest, or YouTube page, that could be repurposed for an email. Show your subscribers how your business comes together, how you select the next season's product line, or how your employees like to use your products. This softer-sell approach will remind your subscribers of all the ways your brand is different from your competitors and could help keep your brand top-of-mind when they are ready to buy.

Share a Story
Let your subscribers know how you give back to your community, how your business and products are environmentally friendly, or how you ensure products are created under fair, humane standards. Many of your subscribers will not be aware of how your company goes the extra mile to make the world a better place. Let your subscribers be part of the effort by giving them ways to contribute to your company's causes or give back to their own communities.

Show How Much You Care
Compile a list of ongoing services you offer to your subscribers and find ways to feature the benefits of these services in the inbox. Perhaps you offer price matching, in-store pick-up, layaway, no-hassle exchanges, live chat support, a loyalty program, free shipping...there are so many possibilities to consider. All of these services may be buried in your site's FAQs or help section, but it's time to give them the spotlight so customers are aware of the benefits and convenience of shopping with your brand.

Ask Questions
Lastly, many of your subscribers may think you just don't know who they really are. While you have been sending them emails for a while now, you just don't seem to know that much about them. Why do you keep sending them emails about high-end fashion when they really want a clearance deal on last season's styles? Take the time to send an email asking your subscribers to complete their profile. Let them know you want to send relevant emails that make their shopping experience even better. You can target this email to those with incomplete profiles and, perhaps, include an incentive to update the info. Be prepared to deliver on that promise, though. If your subscriber takes the time to visit your site and update their info, you need to actually use that data to make your program, and in turn, the relationship even stronger.

I strongly recommend inviting your team to be part of the discussion about how you can build a stronger bond with your subscribers, but don't overlook the value in asking folks further away from your e-commerce team to join in. An outside perspective can help you discover ways your company adds value to your customers that go beyond typical marketing strategies. The more, the merrier. In the end, your subscribers will definitely feel the love.

Image via Shutterstock.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jim Davidson

As an expert in email, mobile, and social strategies, Jim Davidson brings over 13 years of experience in online marketing, managing email and cross-channel programs for top retail clients. From strategic vision to implementation, Jim has led clients to successfully meet aggressive revenue and performance goals. As Bronto's manager of marketing research, he regularly publishes industry-focused white papers, research reports, and contributes to the Bronto Blog. Jim's articles frequently appear in leading retail, e-commerce, and marketing publications.

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