Author: Tony Macpherson

Another email old-timer, Tony joined Mike at e2 in 2000, co-launched EmailBureau and was co-founder of Inbox Warriors. Always looking to where email is headed next, he is often found helping clients take their email marketing to infinity and beyond. Tony likes music, movies and death by Ironman triathlon.



Good behaviour

When it comes to sending marketing emails, it’s still common practice to send manual batched campaigns where the same message is sent to the same people. The smarter marketers are sending more targeted emails to segmented lists based on information such as purchase history, previous email interaction and demographics but there’a a wealth of more subtle information available to really take your email marketing to the next level. Executed well the use of behavioural data and the subsequent generation of emails triggered by certain actions and events can improve customer retention rates as well as increase acquisition levels. When you send an email blast to a large list, you are guessing the message might resonate with the recipients. But when you let customers…

Set the tone

Many businesses are still creating online marketing collateral that comes across as rigid and impersonal. It often mirrors more traditional offline advertisements and brochure formats. Whether the excuse is ‘we’ve always done it this way’, fear of brand perception or just plain lack of imagination, adopting a so called ‘professional’ approach and conforming to old school thinking no longer fits with the new user of the Web. Of course, certain business sectors allow for more flexibility than others but, generally, there is scope to increase the appeal of marketing messages using a more conversational approach. TV advertising has been doing this for years. Why? Because you can see people in situations where anything other than interaction and behaviour we can…

display block – What’s in a name?

Here at display block we often receive the response, cool name, what do you do? We immediately know from that response whether we are talking to a geek or a marketer. Geeks get the name. If you look at the raw source code of any HTML email it’s likely to be littered with, display:block; and you can see the colon, semicolon in our logo. We thought it pretty clever and likened it to an Easter egg, the gift that you unwrap and then when you get into it, holds another little surprise for you. However, in the interests of full disclosure, this is what’s in a name…

Your pace or mine? The art of email frequency and timing

Email marketers (myself included) always say; don’t over mail your email list. Whilst this is still good advice, what determines over mailing has changed. We are all used to email now and Spam is pretty well controlled by Outlook (Hotmail), Gmail, Yahoo etc. We also spend a lot more of our lives online and managing our various email accounts is just part of what we do during our day. This means that our tolerance for email has increased, in fact, if we receive too few emails we are likely to forget about the brands that send them (see here for more about frequency). So when is the best time to send emails these days? The huge uptake of mobile devices…

Testing times

When we ask email marketing folks what testing they do when sending email campaigns, the list is usually pretty short. In fact, it’s often limited to subject lines and list segmentation. Whilst segmenting your list is probably the number one type of testing you should be doing, there are many other tests you can do to get a solid understanding of how well your email marketing is doing and where there is room to improve. Start by clearly defining what you want to achieve and set benchmarks so you can keep track of where you are along the way. Typical KPIs are opens, clicks, purchases and revenue. You should also define who you want to test various elements to and…