As consumers continue to research and purchase more and more goods and services online, email marketing has become an even more vital part of any successful B2C strategy. So it makes sense that, according to Aberdeen Group, B2C marketers who prioritize email marketing average an 89% higher revenue contribution than their counterparts who do not.
B2C email marketing is a delicate balance of timing, relevance, intuition, and messaging. It’s not easy to get perfect each and every time, but with the proper tools and strategy (along with a bit of persistence), you can deliver effective emails that expand your business, generate great ROI, and deliver the sort of customer experience that keeps buyers coming back over and over again.
Today, we’re going to discuss five proven B2C email marketing strategies that will help B2C companies of all shapes and sizes attract interested buyers who become repeat customers. Keep reading to learn more!
1) Welcome Emails for New Subscribers and Customers
Ensuring customer satisfaction and repeat business depends heavily on your ability to deliver a great customer experience. And that starts the minute you attract a new prospect or acquire a new customer. Make them feel truly valued by sending an email welcoming them to your business.
Welcome emails are great because they allow you to:
- Continue to engage interested consumers and new buyers while your goods and services are still at the top of their minds. You want to ensure that these people become repeat customers, so it’s important that you strengthen your relationship early on with rapid responses that offer additional value to your target audience. You can even speed up the sales cycle by providing them with a special promo offer as a reward for being a new email subscriber.
- Set the expectation early on by providing exactly what you said you would when you said you would and thanking your new customer for their business or interest in your company. Modern consumers expect to receive some sort of email as soon as they take action online, so if your subject line is relevant and timely, you should expect good open and engagement rates.
- Gather buyer preferences by directly asking your customers what they’re most interested in, how they describe themselves, and how often they would like to hear from you. Again, welcome emails consistently perform better than traditional marketing emails, so now is the time to learn as much as you can about your customers. More data leads to more targeted segmentation, which results in more personalized messaging, better engagement, and dedicated customers.
Timing is one of the most important elements of any email, but this is especially true for welcome emails sent to consumers. Ideally, you should send your welcome email immediately following their subscription or purchase to ensure better engagement, data collection, and customer experience. And if you want to communicate more than what can fit in a single email, feel free to send multiple emails to onboard your subscriber or customer effectively.
2) Send an Email to Celebrate a Milestone
Birthday and anniversary emails have become so commonplace that many customers have come to expect them as a matter of course. They’re now the rule rather than the exception and can help you generate goodwill with your customer base that will help improve loyalty and future ROI. As such, you need to gather these critical dates at the point of sale, in your online forms, or in your welcome emails so that you can automatically follow up down the road to celebrate these big milestones.
First, you’ll need to import these dates into a powerful marketing automation platform like Act-On. Then, you can create engaging email templates with dynamic personalization and content that are triggered by whatever milestone the recipient is celebrating. And, since you should be tracking their online behavior and purchase history, this is a great opportunity to provide a special offer or discount for the products and services they’ve bought in the past.
Other great excuses to celebrate include existing customers making additional purchases or successfully referring your wares to a friend. Consider encouraging them to opt-in to an online contest or share your content on their social media channels for additional savings or exclusive access to new products (more on that in a minute). Be sure to add simple and memorable user codes to these emails, and track engagement so you can continue sending these types of emails to the right audiences in the future.
3) Re-Engagement Emails
Your previous and existing customers are the lifeblood of your organization, so you need to make sure that they’re not only happy but also engaged with your brand and offerings. If they haven’t made a purchase in a while, are no longer browsing your website, or have stopped opening your regular emails, you need to create and launch a re-engagement campaign to encourage them to come back.
There are two main components of any successful re-engagement campaign.
- Your Email Subject Line: Since the point of a re-engagement campaign is to, ya know, re-engage your audience, we can safely assume that they’ve lost interest in what you’re sending them. More specifically, we can assume that your email subject lines simply aren’t motivating them to open your communications. Therefore, you should be bold with your re-engagement subject lines. Personalize the copy to include the name of the sender, and clearly spell out the special offer you’re promoting to ensure great open rates. If you have room, add a clever message in your preview text letting them know how much you’ve missed them and inviting them back into the fold.
- Your Special Offer: The call-to-action (CTA) of any email is always crucial, but especially so with re-engagement emails. Your offer needs to blow your audience away. It needs to be absolutely irresistible. This could be your last chance to get back in their good graces, so make sure your special offer aligns perfectly with their online behavior, demographics, and purchase history. Stress that their continued business is extremely important to you and provide a significant discount on their next purchase. Most importantly, this email should include very little copy. Get straight to the point, and make it as easy as possible for your user to locate and interact with the offer.
If your audience isn’t responding to your re-engagement campaigns, you should decrease the frequency of your email sends to avoid the risk of alienating them once and for all. If, after several months and emails, they still aren’t responding, you should sunset them from your marking lists to prevent damage to your email reputation and deliverability.
4) New and Updated Product Launch Emails
Good businesses are constantly releasing new products, services, and features. Great businesses are able to disseminate that information to their customer base in fun and innovative ways that lead to better engagement and more sales opportunities.
Whenever your company releases a new product or updates an existing product, you should include a strong email marketing campaign as part of your holistic go-to-market strategy. Think about it: your existing customers are already invested in some aspect of your company and offerings, so there’s a very good chance that they’d also be interested in what’s coming next!
New and updated product launch emails are designed to do more than generate sales; when done properly, they help foster connection to your entire brand. You’re advertising your bright, shiny, and new offering, so you want to create a real sense of enthusiasm that you can transfer to your existing customers. This means using big, sharp images and clever, concise copy. Most importantly, you want to make sure your branding elements jump off the page while also tying seamlessly to your new product.
Use the subject line and preview text to let your audience know that they’re about to view or learn about something new and exciting, being as explicit as possible with the limited characters at your disposal. Include a prominent CTA that clearly states the desired action, and make it easy for your customers to access the new or updated product by redirecting them to a clean and simple landing page where they can request a free trial or purchase the new item outright.
5) Use Email to Gather Customer Feedback
Successful B2C companies are constantly innovating and improving upon their product and service lines. And one way they can do that is by understanding what is and isn’t working. Sending emails prompting customers to take a survey or leave product feedback can help your company gather the data you need to develop and deliver the best possible offerings and experiences.
Obviously, you want to make sure you’re sending survey emails to customers who have actually purchased something from you in the past. So, a common best practice is to send these emails as part of a trigger campaign following a sale or interaction with customer support. These emails empower your customers to voice their opinion of your products and services, which helps to increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. Further, it allows you to understand where you’re succeeding and where you might have missed the mark, so you can continue to improve your offerings with each new iteration.
In addition to surveys, which usually limit the interaction to objective yes/no or multiple-choice questions, you should encourage your customers to give more detailed feedback by inviting them to leave a review or testimonial. You can leverage great reviews by sharing them on your website, product pages, or social media platforms. Or, you could even follow up with the customer directly to see if they’d like to participate in a more involved case study or success story.
Even negative reviews can be extremely helpful as they give you the chance to improve your product and reach out to the reviewer directly to help make the situation work to your advantage. In some cases, these reviews (and your responses) can help your other customers solve their problem, which could save you from additional negative reviews in the future. For example, a customer trying to decide if they want to buy a pair of jeans might notice a negative review suggesting to size up, which would prevent them from making the same mistake.
If you aren’t getting much traction with your customer feedback emails, consider adding additional value to incentivize your customers to participate. This might include a standard discount with a simple user code or maybe a free trial to your next product release. Make sure the offer is included in the subject line to inspire your audience to click through to the email.
B2C Marketers Trust Act-On for All of Their Marketing Needs
Act-On’s marketing automation platform has everything B2C marketers need to execute their holistic marketing strategies. From email marketing to landing page creation, social media management, and everything in between, our software helps marketers of all experience levels and skill sets launch effective campaigns to targeted audiences at scale — boosting both the customer experience and your company’s revenue.
If you’re interested in learning more about creating automated email campaigns, we think you might like our eBook, What Is Email Marketing and Why Should Care? Or, if you’re ready to learn more about our platform and marketing services, please click here to schedule a free demonstration with one of our marketing automation experts.