I’m not the biggest sci-fi fan out there, but even I know at least one thing about Star Wars: Imperial Stormtroopers can’t aim.
Their typical tactic seems to be spraying an area with laser fire and praying that maybe someone (hopefully someone from that pesky Rebel Alliance) gets hit.
This Stormtrooper tactic is scattershot marketing in sci-fi laser form: send out masses of email marketing content to a very large group of people—a lot of whom may not even be in any way part of your relevant audience—and hope for the best.
This approach may have worked in the past—mostly because there weren’t really a lot of other options—but these days it’s largely ineffective, reeks of impatience, and wastes not only your time but also your clients’ time.
It’ll get you some results but not the best possible results.
For the latter, you’ll first need to slice, dice, and segment your audience data to increase your chances of actually hitting your targets.
Here’s how WORKetc helps you do that.
Segment Your Audience
You can keep thousands of contact records in WORKetc. The Stormtrooper move here is to send out a marketing email with a one-size-fits all message to all of these contacts.
That’s not something you want to do. It’s lazy at best, and at worst, paints you as an indiscriminate spammer that should be blocked.
You first need to break down these contacts into smaller groups according to similar characteristics and preference and then tailor your marketing content to these specific chunks of contacts.
Why? Because according to a study conducted by the UK’s Direct Marketing Association, 58% of their respondents’ total revenues came from targeted emails.
The study also notes some markets reported that segmented campaigns have led to a 760% increase in their revenue.
You can segment your audience—both current and potential customers, as long as they’re in your database—any which way in WORKetc by using tags. Like according to industry, for example.
Imagine that you own an accounting firm that caters to everyone from lawyers and construction firms to game development companies.
Each of your clients have already been segmented and tagged according to their industries: “Legal” for the lawyers, “Construction” for the construction firms, and so on.
Now, let’s say there’s a new local ordinance being passed that will affect how construction firms—and only construction firms—calculate their taxes and payroll.
You decide to put together a webinar to explain exactly how the new law will affect your clients and what changes you’ll have to make in your services.
You can then simply create a new email list that auto-adds all those clients who fall within the construction space—i.e., the ones that you tagged with “Construction”—since they’re the ones who’ll actually find your webinar relevant.
Finally, all you need to do is send out your email invites to everyone in that email list.
Automate What You Can
You can bulk add (and bulk remove) tags in WORKetc just by filtering your contact list or by creating detailed smartlists, which are saved searches that let you quickly see customized searches through all of your data.
You don’t have to do everything manually, though. You can apply tags automatically to any new contacts just by using WORKetc’s custom webforms.
Let’s say your startup is getting ready to launch your hot new mobile app. But first, you need actual end-users to put it through its paces over the course of an open beta test.
You can simply create a beta signup webform using WORKetc and set it so that everyone who completes that form gets a “Beta Tester” tag added to their contact records.
Once you’re ready to send out the download link for your app’s beta release, you can just create a new email list that auto-adds every single contact with the “Beta Tester” tag and send out your announcement.
What about the people who signed up late for the open beta, though? They can still be added to the email list automatically since they’ll also have the “Beta Tester” tag, meaning you won’t have to manually update your mailing list every time a new beta tester joins.
And speaking of manually updating email lists, we’ve recently added a new, completely optional feature to WORKetc that automatically removes contacts from an email list as soon as the tag that email list filters for is removed from that contact’s record.
Let’s say you have an email list that automatically includes all contacts with the “Sales Lead” tag. Once you close a deal with a contact that has the “Sales Lead” tag, that tag is immediately switched over to a “Client” tag.
This new functionality means you won’t have to manually remove every contact in the email list that no longer has the “Sales Lead” tag. WORKetc will do it for you automatically, letting you concentrate on sending out the right marketing content to the right group of people.
You can also have finer control over how you tag web form results simply by filtering and sorting according to the fields that are important to you.
If your app is launching on both iOS and Android, for example, you can add a “Preferred Platform” field, sort the results using that field, and then apply bulk tags accordingly.
Make it Personal
If there’s one aspect where small businesses always win out over massive enterprises, it’s in the level of personalized customer service.
Personalization shouldn’t stop there, however. You need to extend it to your email marketing campaigns as well.
Targeted emails with content tailored according to your market segmentation is already a good start towards personalizing your marketing campaigns, but you can still go further without having to spend too much effort.
The simplest way to personalize an email is to include the recipient’s name in your email’s subject line.
Now, editing every single marketing email you send out one by one is just a fool’s errand—especially if you’re sending out a thousand at a time—but WORKetc’s autotext tags will let you automatically pull the right data from your contacts database.
You just use the [First Name] autotext tag—turning your subject line into “[First Name]: Here’s your EXCLUSIVE invite!”, for example.
The subject line in the email your client John receives will then automatically read “John: Here’s your EXCLUSIVE invite!” while your client Rachel will get an email that reads “Rachel: Here’s your EXCLUSIVE invite!”.
It’s a simple thing, but according to data from Experian that simple thing could lead to a 29% increase in your email open rates.
The increase is most pronounced in businesses that deal with consumer products and travel (over 40%), but even B2B firms were noted to experience a 13% increase in open rates.
Open rates weren’t the only thing affected, either. Experian found that some respondents enjoyed 73% higher revenue per email, just by personalizing their subject lines.
Dig In For the Long Haul
Patience is a critical characteristic for any entrepreneur who wants to succeed.
Don’t follow the Stormtrooper saturation tactic. Do study your audience; spend time on preparation and segmentation.
Also—and this is key—make sure to send marketing content only to people who asked, chose, or opted in to receive emails. Not only is this good advice, it’s the law.
You can still strike while the iron is hot, but don’t do it without knowing exactly where to strike. Not only are you wasting time and resources if you do, you run the risk of becoming just another marketing fail.