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Using Email Marketing to Create Meaningful Customer Connections

5 Mins read

In today’s often cold and impersonal digital world, emotional connections are more important than ever before. By forming a meaningful, personal relationship with your customers, you’ll not only ensure that your brand stands out, but you’re also likely to increase conversions and CLV. By understanding and leveraging emotion rather than just products and services, your business can create an exceptional customer experience that leaves a long-lasting impression in customers’ minds. In this article, Alex Melone, Co-Founder of CodeCrew, will explain how you can achieve this by implementing emotional drivers in your email marketing campaigns.

Get Personal

Think about this – if someone shouts “Hey” in the street, you’re probably not going to turn around. But what if they use your name? The same logic can be applied to email marketing. After all, each one of your customers gave you permission to send them content they would find useful and valuable – and treat them like an individual rather than just another address on a mailing list. And this isn’t something you should take for granted.

As mentioned above, the first and most effective way to create an emotional connection with a customer is through personalization. It seems like a small thing, but starting an email with a personal greeting can elevate your messaging and requires very little effort on your part. All you need is the name the subscriber provided and a decent email service provider.

When your customer sees their name in the subject line or at the top of an email, they’ll know that someone made the effort.

You can also take this one step further and ensure that your content is focused on the subscriber as well. Compare these two sentences:

  • We’re giving customers 15% OFF
  • You’re getting 15% OFF

Clearly, the second option makes you (the reader) the hero. The first option is centred on your business and its actions, with little consideration for the customer.

Create Customer Segments

Another thing that can help your business thrive in email marketing is segmentation. This requires dividing your audience into segments based on their purchase history and preferences. For example, if a customer buys cat food from you, there’s quite a bit of information you can derive from that. You can safely assume that they have a cat, you’ll probably know in which county or neighborhood they live, and how often they need to reorder based on their previous purchases.

Once you have a profile of your customer and you add them to the relevant segment (e.g. “cat owners”), you can help craft a more personalized experience. Next, you can take them off the dog food list, recommend scratch posts, and offer other relevant products that might interest them.

The important thing here is to keep your messaging hyper-relevant to each customer. Demonstrate that you’re in tune with your audience’s needs and you’ll create a much stronger connection with leads and purchasers.

A Note from the Founder

Just like you want to make a customer feel like a valued individual, you should also remind them that you’re more than just a business. Your company was founded on a dream to build something amazing, right?

A great way to reinforce this is by having the occasional email campaign that seems as though it’s written by the founder of your business. These should focus on both thanking the customer for supporting your business, and remind them of your brand’s vision and ethos. Not only does this highlight the benefit of supporting a smaller business, but it also makes the customer feel like they’re part of your brand’s story.

Mark Your Calendar

Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day are all key dates on any marketer’s calendar, but it helps to think beyond sales. Dates like these dates have an emotional meaning for many customers, and it’s important that you create a connection on a deeper level.

Let’s take Father’s Day as an example: Fathers play a crucial role in our upbringing – for most, fatherhood is synonymous with strength, guidance, and support. This makes Father’s Day the perfect common ground from which to form a meaningful connection with your customer.

On the flipside of the coin, you should also consider sending opt-out messages for these days. This way, you’re showing that your brand is caring and understanding of the fact that not all customers enjoy these campaigns. For some, these days can have a negative connotation and they’re likely to appreciate you giving them the choice to skip these campaigns.

And don’t pander, ever. Your customers are likely to see through any disingenuous messaging and when you try to shoehorn your products and services into a day that’s meaningful for many, your brand will be worse off.

So, how do you tie something as emotional and universal as parenthood to a product or service? It’s tricky, but the best answer is to focus on the ‘why’ instead of the ‘what’. This means more than simply saying, “Hey, we all have parents, so buy this product.” You must put your customer first and demonstrate why your brand MIGHT just be the perfect way to spoil Mr and Mrs Customer.

Don’t Just Tell – Show

Next, we’ll focus on imagery. If a picture says a thousand words, it makes sense to be very particular about the imaging you use in your emails. Used correctly, imaging can evoke emotion and create a stronger connection between your brand and the customer.

Where possible, it’s always best to use lifestyle images instead of images of your products. An image of a lawnmower is fine, but a family enjoying a backyard picnic elevates the message and adds emotion. It sells the proverbial sizzle, and not the steak. After all, it’s not the product itself that matters, it’s what your customers can achieve through your product – we’re making the customer the hero, not your business.

If you’re selling a service, then it’s best to show an image of the final result – satisfied people living a great life, thanks to your brand. The basic premise here is to forego the products and services and focus on the results.

Final Thoughts

Over the past fifty years, marketing has evolved far beyond the sell-sell-sell mentality, and email marketing is no exception. Regardless of how you make meaningful connections with your customers, the important thing is to always respect them as individuals with an interest in what you’re doing. Remember, conversations lead to conversions. You might not make a sale today, but once your customer is ready, you’ll be right there with a big smile and open arms.

Alex Melone is the Co-Founder and Chief Production Officer at CodeCrew. Alex has extensive experience in the email marketing industry. He started his career as a project manager and became a self-taught expert in deliverability and back-end functionality before branching into entrepreneurship and founding CodeCrew. Alex strives to continue pushing the limits of email’s capabilities. He believes that digital innovation, continued development and rising to new challenges are the recipe for SME success in the new era of marketing.

Email marketing stock image by AFANASEV IVAN/Shutterstock

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