How to Personalize Email Marketing Messages to Get Better Results

There is no more effective way to increase email campaign opens and improve your email marketing results than segmenting your list and sending personalized content to each segment. The data proves it. 

Research by Mailchimp found that list segmentation can increase open rates by 14% and click-through rates by more than 100%. Separate research by SmarterHQ found that brand loyalty improves among Millennials by 28% when they receive personalized email marketing messages. 

Those are just a few statistics that prove list segmentation and personalization work, and savvy marketers know it. Research by Mailjet and Ascend2 found that marketers rank personalization as the second most critical element to improve in order to increase email engagement (59%) just behind content quality (64%). In other words, personalization may not help you get better email marketing results if the quality of the content inside your messages isn’t good enough.

How Personalization and List Segmentation Work Together

The goal of list segmentation and personalization is to make every recipient feel like the message you send was written just for them. I can’t stress enough how important this is to the success of your email marketing investments. Consider the following as evidence…

Did you know the average person receives more than 100 email messages every day? How many of those messages do you think each person actually opens and reads? How many do they delete without opening or mark as spam? Think about how you engage with the email messages you receive every day. What do you do with most of the email messages you receive each day? 

The reality is that most people don’t open all of those messages, and every unopened message can hurt your domain reputation (also called sender reputation) and the future deliverability of your email marketing messages. Email service providers like Google, Outlook, and Apple Mail only want email marketers to send messages that people actually want. 

When recipients don’t open your messages, mark them as spam, or block you as a sender, that negative engagement shows email service providers you’re not sending content that people want. In other words, you’re not taking the time to segment your lists and personalize the content in your messages to be as relevant as possible to the recipients. Instead, you’re sending generic messages and hoping someone responds positively.

To learn more about domain reputation and deliverability, follow the links below to get all the details:

What does all of this mean? It’s simple. If you segment your lists and personalize the content of the messages you send so they’re as relevant as possible to each segmented audience, the following things will happen: 

  • Positive engagement with your messages will go up.
  • Negative engagement will go down.
  • Email service providers will think you’re a good sender.
  • Your domain reputation will stay high.
  • Your messages will continue to land in inboxes rather than spam.
  • Your email marketing results will improve.
  • You’ll reach your email marketing goals.

Personalization is More Than a Name

Yes, you can personalize email messages by adding the recipient’s name to the subject line and/or greeting inside the message, but that’s so 1990s. To get better results, you need to dig into your data and find more ways to personalize the content that you send.

Demographic Personalization

You can segment your lists and personalize the content of your message for niche audience using the demographic data that you have about them. For business-to-business (B2B) email marketing, this could include their location, type of business, recipient’s role in the company, and so on.

As an example, imagine you’re sending a message to promote your nutrients to cannabis cultivators. Knowing that different states have different laws related to whether cannabis can be grown indoors or outdoors as well as seasonality differences, it could make sense to personalize the content of your message based on where the license holder is located and the type of grow environment they operate. 

Cannabis License Holder Email Marketing Tip: If you’re using the Cannabiz Media License Database to send email marketing messages to licensed cannabis businesses, then you have access to a significant amount of data that can be used for demographic list segmentation and content personalization. For example, you can segment and personalize based on license type (cultivator, manufacturer, dispensary, and so on), location (e.g., country, state, county, zip code, and so on), canopy size, role, license status, grow environment, and more.

Behavioral Personalization

Review the behavioral data you’ve collected about your audience. How have they engaged with your email messages in the past? What messages did they open? What links did they click? These behaviors give you a lot of information about their interests, problems, and priorities, which you can use to send more relevant content in the future. 

If you use UTM codes and Google Analytics to track behaviors beyond the link click in your message (e.g., what people do on your website after the link in your message takes them there), then you can gather even more information about what your audience is interested in. Use this information to ramp up the relevancy of your future messages, and your results will increase significantly.

Putting behavioral personalization into practice, imagine you’re planning to send a campaign to cannabis dispensaries across the United States to promote your security system products. If you’ve been nurturing your audience over time, then you can look back at their engagement with your previous messages to determine what content to send them in your new message. 

Use the open and click data for your previous messages to learn if certain topics didn’t resonate with specific recipients (i.e., they didn’t open the messages about those topics). If so, then you don’t want to keep sending new messages about the same topics to them again. Find the messages that did motivate them to open and click. Those are the topics you want to focus on in your future messages. Segment your list based on topic engagement using prior campaign open and click data, and personalize the content of future messages accordingly. 

Cannabis License Holder Email Marketing Tip: If you’re using the Cannabiz Media License Database to send email marketing messages to licensed cannabis businesses, then you can drill down on metrics like opens and clicks to the recipient and link levels. Use that data to create segmented audience groups based on behaviors, and send personalized messages to each niche group in the future to get the best results.

Key Takeaways about Email Marketing Personalization

Personalization improves email marketing results. Therefore, before you send any email marketing campaign, ask yourself if every person on the list who will receive it will be happy to get it? Is there anyone on your list who won’t be happy? Are there ways you could change the content of your message to make it more relevant to them? 

Your goal should be to only send content people want, and the way to do it is by segmenting your lists and personalizing your messages.

Want to learn how you can connect with cannabis and hemp license holders using the Cannabiz Media License Database for sales and marketing, including email marketing? Schedule a demo and see how a subscription can help you reach your goals.

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