In the first part of this series, we took a look at marketing strategies such as retargeting and data-gathering.
Now, we’ll dig a little into the strategies that help you build relationships to generate seemingly-organic revenue, along with greater brand appreciation.
Email Marketing is More Important Than Ever
Email marketing is nothing new, but its use will only become more pertinent in the new year. In fact, Inc. Magazine lists email marketing as “One of the expenses you should add to your marketing budget”, if you haven’t already.
But if you’ve come to believe that email marketing entails blasting out generic sales copy set on a backdrop of pretty photos or graphics, you’ll never realize the full benefits of email marketing.
Email marketing isn’t just a platform designed for bombing the inboxes of shoppers with sales copy. It’s a highly-powerful branding, story-telling, and relationship-building tool, when you understand how to use it correctly.
First, you’ll need to go beyond simply inserting your prospect’s name in the lead. Inserting names is a great start in creating personalization, but in the spirit of trying new things for 2015, you’ll need to dig deeper.
You can dig deeper by addressing specific pain points that your shoppers are experiencing. Have they informed you via surveys that they aren’t happy with their online shopping experience? Address their specific concerns in your email messages—it shows them that you care, and you’re paying attention.
Have they asked you for certain products? Are they questioning the quality of certain products? Have they petitioned you to keep certain products from being discontinued? Address all of these head-on, especially if you’re in the midst of discontinuing a product.
Bath and Body Works has done an excellent job of addressing the last issue by creating a sales page exclusively for products that have been discontinued at the retail level and are available for purchase via the website. In this way, the company addressed and validated their customers concerns about their favorite products.
As a matter of fact, their “classics, retired, discontinued” shopping page is the stuff of legend among brand loyalists!
Email Marketing Beyond Sales
It’s perfectly fine to reach out to shoppers for reasons other than announcing sales. In fact, you should be using slow periods to amplify your relationship building efforts. This is the time to embed fun and educational video content into your emails, or promote other branded content.
Do you sell cooking utensils? Create a variety of cooking videos and post them on plaforms like YouTube. Do you sell cosmetics? Create tutorials on make up application and product comparisons (for example).
When you draw closer to shoppers, then they’ll inform you of their concerns. Then, all you’ll need to do is address their concerns in the body of your emails.
Your brand will be perceived as a problem-solving necessity in the lives of your shoppers. Best of all, you’ll notice a spike in marketing email sign-ups, and your shareable content will start to go viral! In other words, your marketing efforts will take on a life of its own.
Bottom Line: When you offer shoppers what they want, then they’ll give you what you need, often without being asked!
Padicode.com says it best when it comes to building relationships via email marketing: “You are zooming in on your customer’s personality, because you are acknowledging the fact that you have a list full of people, not a list full of emails.”
People want to know that they matter. They don’t want to be treated like drones for dollars!
Crossing And Climbing
While all of these strategies are awesome for Q1 2015 and beyond, you might be wondering about the one strategy you can put to work, so you won’t have to wait until Valentine’s Day to realize another significant cash infusion. In a nutshell? Start cross-selling and upselling.
Remember the data-gathering exercise I mentioned in part one? If you use it, then you should have some insight on two things:
These are two very important questions to have answers to, because they will guide your down-and-dirty, post holiday sales tactics.
Once you’ve identified your hottest-selling products, then you can offer customers relevant product recommendations that complement their original purchase.
For example, new electronic purchases will always require USB cords, batteries, and in many cases, carrying or protective cases. Make a case for why shoppers need to spend more money on products related to their original purchase, and get aggressive about selling these while shoppers are still enamored with their new purchases or gifts.
And, there’s nothing wrong with convincing shoppers that they should spend money on a new and improved version of their purchase. Maybe they purchased a basic model of a product and now, they’re dissatisfied.
You can take advantage of this by suggesting an exchange for the premium version of a product. This works for shoppers who have purchased their own product or have received their product as a gift. This also allows you to generate higher sales margins, too.
Just when you thought that you could take a break from the chaos that was Q4 2014, it’s time to put on your thinking cap for Q1 2015, so start building that momentum!
What other strategies have you used or heard about that you plan to try in 2015? Let me know in the comments!