Email marketing is, by and large, the best and easiest way to turn one-time shoppers into long-term, active customers. Unfortunately, you may be one of many who have a full email contact database, but are finding that only a few are actually opening what you send them. A surprising amount of individuals and businesses find themselves in this situation and spend valuable time trying to figure out how to easily increase their reach and engagement in a successful manner, focusing their energy on retention rather than acquisition. The good news is that there are a number of ways to easily utilize retention marketing and relevant customer relationship management tools to personalize your content and effectively win back the interest and clicks of your subscribers.
What is Retention Marketing and Why Does it Matter?
Over half of the average email contact database has either attempted to opt out or has remained opted-in but is considered to be entirely inactive in that they do not click on, open, or actually read the emails that they signed up for and that are sent to them. In this light, many business owners and marketers are on the hunt for easy and effective ways to target these so-called unreachable subscribers and boost their reach and engagement as much and as effortlessly as they possibly can.
The solution that people turn to most often today is utilizing other channels besides email. This customer-based approach relies on data collection and, increasingly, the utilization of various technological tools to turn prospective or one-time buyers to repeat customers. Instead of focusing on short term acquisition gains, retention marketing can help you to take advantage of the value of the customers that you already have and increase long term profitability for you and your company.
Understanding the Data: First-Party, Second-Party, and Third-Party
Before committing to using a certain tool to increase your reach and boost your engagement rates, it is important to learn the difference in value between first-party, second-party, and third-party data so you can fully understand your specific needs and take the first step beyond acquisition and towards retention.
First-party data is what you collect directly from the customer (or prospective customer) including website tracking information and similar data such as subscription information and cross-platform data from mobile apps and websites. Because it comes straight from the source, first-party data is considered to be of the highest quality and is very valuable. This is because you can use first-party data to retarget returning customers by using the personalized information you already have about their past purchases and product preferences.
Second-party data is the next best thing; it is similar to first-party data, but is acquired from a separate source. In essence, second-party data is someone else’s first-party data. It is typically obtained through a mutually beneficial arrangement with a trusted partner who is willing to exchange relevant data. Second-party data is important because it can play a major role in audience extension as well as customer targeting.
Third-party data consists of the widely accessible facts and figures that are typically acquired from data aggregators that gather information from a diverse variety of public sources. The downsides of third-party data include the fact that it can be extremely vague and the fact that you are not necessarily gaining unique insights as your competitors are almost certainly using the same information due to its availability.
You can most easily collect and organize first-party data, which is the most valuable type of information, by utilizing customer relationship management tools such as Google Customer Match (GCM), Twitter Tailored Audiences (TTA), Facebook Custom Audiences (FCA), and Linkedin Matched Audience (LMA).
Transform Your Strategy with Customer Relationship Management Tools!
Thanks to our ever-evolving digital landscape, there are a number of accessible and relevant technological tools that can help you to reach every single member of your contact database. Customer relationship management (CRM) tools can help you to use your first-party data to extend your engagement and easily personalize your content. As previously mentioned, some of the most trusted tools in the industry for solving this retention-related issue are GCM, FCA, LMA, and TTA.
GCM can help you to deliver the most relevant information to your highest value customers based on their online activity, their location, and the device they are using to access the Internet. Simply uploading a list of the email addresses in your contact database allows Google to match them with signed-in Google users in a safe and secure way. From there, you can create campaigns and individual ads specifically designed to target your audience. You can also use the Similar Audiences tool to reach new prospective customers who have interests and buying habits that are relevant to your product or service. FCA is a similar self-service tool that can be used to segment your Facebook followers into unique groups based on their interests and buying habits. You can easily create these groups using lists of Facebook User IDs, email addresses, phone numbers, or even mobile advertiser IDs and select individual groups to target when creating a post. In the same vein, TTA allows you to use Twitter lists as well as mobile apps and the web to segment your target audience and selectively advertise based on their preferences. Lastly, LMA allows you to personalize advertisements for certain groups based on their profession with the goal of driving more conversions. Like the other tools, you can utilize its functions more easily by integrating the service with your contact management platform or your email contact list.
Personalizing the strategies you use to target customers based on the hobbies and habits of segmented groups is an effective way to increase customer retention simply because consumers prefer it.
When you take variables such as their past purchase history, buying patterns, search history, and interests into consideration when targeting a prospective or past customer, you are able to explain features of your product or service that will actually make their lives easier. It is truly a win-win situation for all involved: people will show more interest in your advertising and marketing efforts if they are personalized, which will ultimately improve your performance and give you a better return on your investment.
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