Whether due to shopping cart abandonment or simple disengagement, remarketing e-mail messages can help draw customers back to your Web site. Four experts offer strategies.
Perhaps the easiest and most effective way to remarket to lapsed customers is to remind them why they signed up for your e-mails in the first place. Are you opening your e-mail relationships with a welcome message that highlights the benefits of being part of your program? These benefits drew him or her into the program once, and they may help to re-engage him or her again.
Customer engagement in an e-mail program can decline significantly in as little as a month, so it’s important to assess your entire list to determine when customer attention first begins to wane. Try segmenting your list into audiences who haven’t engaged you in specific timeframes, and then cater your messages to the length of time. Try different incentives based on past behaviors to see what works best.
The most important lesson in remarketing, however, comes from Kenny Rogers: “You’ve got to know when to hold ’em; know when to fold ’em.” Endlessly marketing to customers who are not engaged in your e-mail program burns your budget and could potentially damage your company’s reputation.
To re-engage customers, remind them of why they signed up originally
Director of marketing and corporate communications, Habeas
How an organization reaches out with remarketing messages is as important as what those messages say about the product and brand. In order to re-engage and grow new customer relationships, the new experience must engender trust.
A recent study from Habeas and Ipsos asserts that the key to building good relationships with customers via e-mail means offering more customer control over interactions. Choices could include newsletters, educational information, special offers, articles, whitepapers, webinar invitations and other specific content and relationship-building offers, as well as options on the frequency and format of these communications.
These options — extended to a qualified group of potential customers based on past interactions — will differentiate an organization, and demonstrate the new value of the brand that is extending the offers, as well as the “newness” of the offers themselves.
For best results, marketers should help customers move into a position where they consider the value proposition of the new offering, while perceiving greater value in the brand.
Customers respond to increased choice in content and e-mail frequency
VP of industry relations, Silverpop
E-mail is an excellent channel to renew or strengthen bonds with former customers who, for various reasons, have disengaged with your marketing program. They bought something from you 18 months ago, but you’ve heard nary a word since then.
First, establish if they’ve simply stopped acting on your e-mails or stopped buying. If they’ve gone “e-mail inactive,” meaning they haven’t opened or clicked on your e-mails in an extended period, you can launch a reactivation program. To recapture their interest, you can try different subject lines, different mailing times, message formats or offers.
If they’ve remained engaged with your e-mails but haven’t purchased for an extended period, send trigger campaigns based on specific links clicked in previous e-mails. You can develop campaigns such as replenishment, upgrade or up-sell/cross-sell programs, based on their purchase history; survey customers on their current interests/product interests, or incentivize them to update their profile and interests; and test different subject line approaches, such as “We want you back” or “We’ve missed you! Save 10% off.”
Trigger campaigns can recapture customers who still read your e-mails
Director, research and strategy, ExactTarget
The simplest and most common remarketing technique is to send an offer to customers based on items abandoned in a shopping cart. These messages provide a compelling incentive on items that are relevant to the customer, especially when the promotion is time sensitive. In the end, you win back a lost sale and offer a quality customer experience at the same time.
Implementing remarketing campaigns has proven to be both successful and challenging. Conversion rates on these triggered messages are significantly higher than standard promotions and the impact on revenue can be substantial. But there are several strategic considerations that must be taken into account.
Not all products make sense for a standard promotion — especially if the abandoned item is low revenue or margin. It can make sense to apply the offer to the category at large, instead of the individual item. Also, while remarketing messages sent once in a while can be a pleasant surprise to customers, messages sent after every abandoned item will eventually train customers to abandon their cart and wait for the promotion. Use frequency caps to limit predictability.
Offer promotions on items customers have abandoned in shopping carts