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List management – quality over quantity

Email use will top 3 billion users by 2020, yet successful email marketing isn’t just about the quantity of contacts you have stored in your database.

Research continues to show that email marketing remains a powerful tool to be utilised in professional services marketing.

And in this new era of GDPR, effective email list management is more important than ever.

List management might not sound exciting, but a quality email list means engaged subscribers and cleaning up your lists is an invaluable task.

So how can you achieve that quality list you’re after? Here’s our thoughts.

Out with the old

Cleaning up your list and verifying good emails should be your first step in achieving a quality set of contacts. You should have already removed all those unsubscribed emails after GDPR laws came into place so you’re halfway there.

The first step is to remove all those old and inactive subscribers, so you can avoid bounces and spam complaints.

While removing subscribers from your list can be time consuming, it’s the best way to ensure that you are only focusing on those contacts that are engaged with your business. Even with the legitimate interest clause, if a subscriber hasn’t engaged with you in over 6 months, it is probably time to remove them from your list. MailChimp has a great post on how you can handle and remove inactive subscribers. You can find it here.

Get proper permission

Getting proper permission is another way to ensure that you are building a quality email list. While tempting, you should avoid purchasing third-party lists as a way of increasing your contacts; even if those list brokers say that they are GDPR compliant. Not only do these lists break multiple spam laws, but they also mean the emails you are sending are unsolicited and are unlikely to get a response.

Consider using a double-opt in method to ensure that you only store real emails on your list. You could use reCAPTCHA subscriber confirmation or even get contacts to confirm their emails before they are added to your list. By asking contacts to confirm they are a real person, you can prevent fake sign ups, keep invalid emails off your list, and ensure that only interested subscribers are kept up-to-date with your latest thinking and thought leadership.

Keep it personal

This is so important. Whether it’s giving subscribers the option to update their preferences and interests on their profiles, splitting your list into segments, or personalising every email to keep subscribers engaged, keeping it personal is the best way to build good relationships with your contacts.

Sending the same email to every contact won’t work. You need to work hard to keep your subscriber’s attention and personalising their experience is one way to do this. Keeping your subscribers engaged is a sure way to ensure that you only keep quality emails on your list. At South Thames Marketing we use a platform called Nimble, which is great at helping you manage your relationships with your subscribers.  It allows you to easily identify key contacts when you need them, so you can contact the right people at the right time. Find out more here.

The single customer view

Now you have cleaned up your email list it’s time to use that data differently. This will help you employ a single customer view (SCV) of all the data you have on your subscribers.

A SCV will provide you with a brilliant representation of your subscribers by consolidating all the data you have into a single, easy to read location, providing a holistic view of each subscriber. This will give you the ability to create a profile on each customer, so you can get a clear overview of not only who they are as an individual, but also where they are at in your business.

There are many benefits to employing a SCV within your business. To start with, cleaning up the data you have on your customers, and segmenting it based on what your subscribers want, you will be able to pull out the useful stuff and organise your marketing campaign around this.

A SCV will also help you improve your targeting. By using a SCV to create more specific categories, you can then target your customers with relevant content that best meet their needs. This will help you improve your customer experience as your SCV will hold all of the contact records for each subscriber allowing you to be fully informed on all of the subscribers needs every time they get in contact.

You can read more about why you need a single customer view here.

We recently partnered with Wired Plus, an email marketing automation platform which is ideal for small to medium sized professional services firms to maximise their digital marketing success. A central hub for all your customer data, Wired Plus uses Marketing Automation to target customers according to their preferences and behaviours with the right message at the right time. Powerful, affordable and GDPR compliant, this platform will give you all the tools you need to succeed. To request a demo, click here.

Interested in finding out more about email marketing? Confused about where to start? We’re here for you. We can help you understand how email marketing can work for your firm, develop a thorough strategy, and execute it to the best possible standard. Click here to get in touch.