Most of us are spending more time online than ever, mainly due to an increase in ownership of smartphones and tablets. And we’re always checking them – up to 150 times a day according to research – social networking, websites, shopping and, of course, email.
Checking our email is the number one activity on our smart devices. This is good news for email marketers as you’re pretty sure the emails you send will be seen (whether they’re read and acted upon is another matter and another article!) However, being ‘top-of-mind’ is much harder to achieve, to do that you need to be in front of people more often and to do that means sending more emails.
Now, there’s nothing wrong with doing this – we’ve signed up to receive emails from companies and websites we like so they have our consent, we identify with these brands and may well have bought their products and services. We can choose to delete, ignore and even unsubscribe from these emails whenever we like (although we rarely do) – and it’s just email so there is no invasion of privacy or pestering.
The fact is that the more traditional sending pattern of monthly or bi-weekly emails is no longer enough – weekly is probably the lower limit these days. So, how frequent should your emails be? This is unique to each company but there are plenty of companies sending emails four or more times a week – but, be warned, you need to get these right. Some weeks ago I booked an apartment in Lanzarote and have since stayed in it and flown back to the UK, yet three to four times a week since I booked I have been getting emails like this one sent just yesterday:
They’re clearly using information they know to serve dynamically driven content (in this case that I live in London and booked a stay in Lazarote) but they get it wrong as they’re not using the fact I had already booked nor the dates of my stay. Two days before this they sent me a ‘tell us about your stay in…’ email so they do know this information. Maybe they just think I would have liked it so much I want to return there immediately!
This activity did annoy me a little but mainly because I thought they should be doing it better. I actually quite like booking.com, have used them before and likely will again so I haven’t unsubscribed – but I have taken to deleting their emails with a little shake of the head. Even so, I’m sure they will continue to email me so, whatever happens, I shan’t forget who they are.
The key areas to remember when upping email frequency are:
- Relevance – show me content I am interested in, based on what you know about me.
- Design – ease of use, visual appeal and a quick and easily read message.
- Offer – Tell me about special deals, events. previews etc.
I bought a jacket from Reiss not so long ago and they have sent me an email every three days or so since and, if they have a sale on, that can be every two days and even daily. I don’t read them all but I look at most of them because I like their clothes and if I can get something I like in the sale then great.
If an email has something in it I want, I’ll read it, tap on a link and go back to your website – I may even buy it.
Look at they ways in which you can send more emails. Find out what data you hold against you email records and generate more meaningful content for them. If you’re worried about alienating your email database then test to a small group first and check the results. I am sure you will be pleasantly surprised.