As the global leader in marketing data analysis and campaign management software for cinema exhibitors, we recognize that keeping in touch with your audience can be challenging. However, email is a dynamic, personalized communication tool by which you can measure real actionable results and ROI by establishing a tried and tested email campaign strategy.
Some of the key metrics that email marketers are concerned with are:
- Open rate
- Click-through rate
- Delivery Rate
We recommend to our customers to ensure relevant, timely and personalized emails for the best way to engage with their audience. Movio has sent over 600 million emails over the last year so we like to think that we know a thing or two about email best practice. This blog provides some basic rules and quick tips to follow when creating your email marketing campaigns.
Subject line - don’t fall at the first hurdle
Your email subject line is the first opportunity you get to grab your audience’s attention. This is why you should make sure you pay close scrutiny to how you craft and report on the success of your subject lines.
Remember that you are competing with many others in their inbox, so you really need to stand out and become a trusted source that the recipient is happy to hear from. You need to ensure your audience don’t delete your message without even taking a look. If people regularly engage with your emails you’ll avoid landing in the dreaded spam folder. We covered the issue of email deliverability in our blog ‘3 keys to email deliverability success’ where you can find tips to ensure you avoid missing out on those precious clicks.
There are a few different strategies you can use to improve your open rate using your subject line:
1) Remember that the subject line is your email ‘headline’, but unlike a newspaper headline you want your audience to take action and participate when engaging with your subject line, it needs to both peak interest and ensure that much wanted email open click.
2) Writing a good subject line is a process of trial and error and you’ll need to find what’s good for your audience, however, keeping it simple and short is usually best; you want it to be not too long and not too short - 6 to 10 words results in the highest open rates. Also, refrain from using all caps, lots of punctuation and excessive repetition, as these are all indicators of spam email.
3) In order to increase engagement, you should get personal where possible. For example, using your recipients first name is proven to increase email open rate. Movio customers have found that their emails get up to a 25% increase in open rate by using loyalty members first name in their communications subject line. Another way you could use personalization is by running a campaign that is based on the members previous movie preference e.g by using Movio Cinema you can send a promotion for ‘Ant-Man’ to those that watched ‘The Avengers’. You can then write a subject line that can be personalized by saying 'Hey Matthew if you enjoyed the Avengers, you'll love this new release!'
4) Finally be honest. Make sure that your subject line and content are consistent so don’t lure people into a click with an enticing subject line if you don’t deliver on your promise.
If you are still unsure what is working best for your audience you should test different subject lines and review your campaign results to confirm what works best for your audience.
- Be concise - Subject lines should ideally be fewer than 50 characters
- Get personal - If possible use the person's first name
- Peak interest - Make the reader curious to read more
Relevant content - let’s get personal
From a deliverability point of view sender reputation is heavily weighted towards IP and Domain reputation, however, content also plays an important part. Therefore, always ensure you have no broken links, HTML or spelling errors and don’t include links that could point to fraudulent, or potentially malicious websites.
When sending out your email campaigns you’ll need to ensure that you are being relevant to your audience. Don’t expect to be able to email your whole database to just remind them of your existence. Your emails have to be personalized and targeted, otherwise you risk getting lots of unsubscribe requests.
Email marketers should be considering sending the right message, at the right time via the right channel. Your audience may have a preference of communication so consider the best way to send your messaging for your audience's preference.
You can ensure the relevancy of your messaging during the planning of a new email campaign. It’s good to start with your goals by asking yourself ‘what do you want to achieve with this campaign?’ From there you can start to look for the group that will help you achieve those goals.
For example, you may have a goal to ensure that your audience renew their membership. Therefore, you would need to identify those members so that you can then craft a message informing that group that their membership is about to expire and prompt them to renew.
In Movio Cinema, this is a simple filter that allows you to find a group whose memberships are about to expire.
This action can be set up as a recurring campaign in Movio Cinema so no more manual work is required. Every day it will find the relevant members to contact and send out the campaign.
Another way to ensure relevancy is to look at your members preferences based on their previous movie ticket purchases, or films they’ve added to their watchlist on your website, to inform them that a movie of interest is about to be released. You can then provide a call to action to purchase tickets.
In Movio Cinema, conditional content can allow you to have the content of your email change depending on the member receiving it. The below examples show how one email can be tailored so that male and female audience receive different content. The male recipients would receive information on Ant-Man and Southpaw and the female recipients would receive info on Ant-Man and Far From The Madding Crowd.
Movio Expert, Sarah Lewthwaite, stressed the need to find the right audience in her blog ‘A recipe for successful cinema loyalty emails’she said “Select a targeted group from your database to communicate with, in a relevant fashion versus going out to your entire database. This might mean only communicating with a small segment of your base for a particular campaign, but if it is the right segment, you will more likely get the right results.”
- Campaign goals - Start with setting your goals, this will help you identify your relevant target group
- Personalization - Target specific groups to achieve your goals and ensure a personalized relevant message
- Analyze your results - Use reporting to ensure you are getting the best results and refine your strategy accordingly
Design - reinforce your brand
Images are a powerful way to engage readers with your message and a well designed layout can really impact your click through rates. However, ensure you have a balance of text and images as image only emails may be considered suspicious and end up in the spam folder.
In Movio Cinema you can upload pre defined templates, customized to your brand. In our email editor you can apply the templates you want to use and edit the content according to your specific campaign. Ensure you always use your logo in a strategic place and that your brand is consistent across all your communications: Email, website and social media.
Other email campaigns need to have a clear and concise call to action so your audience can understand perfectly the action they can take. These will be highly-targeted so they are relevant. There should only be one call to action per email and the reader should be able to easily skim your email to see what the content is concerning.
Mobile is no longer a trend but a necessity, so you should be ensuring that you are optimized for mobile device. Emails are increasingly being opened on mobile device, over 50% of emails are now first opened on a mobile device, so a mobile friendly design will give a better user experience. In order to ensure engagement with your audience you need to present them with a message that will look good on desktop or mobile with minimal clicks for the user:
- Keep it simple
- Use bigger clear fonts
- Put all your core info above the fold
- Call to action - Keep it simple and clear, your call to action needs to be clear to your audience
- Images - Imagery is engaging and reinforces your brand but ensure you stick to best practice use
- Go Mobile - Ensure your content is mobile friendly
Email is by no means dead but it is evolving, so as marketers we need to make sure we evolve too.
The best way to do this is to learn and listen to your audience. We’ve now got a great opportunity to get to know and communicate directly to them in a way that they want, and with content that is relevant to their interests and needs.
Movio Cinema’s reporting allows you to easily view the success of your campaigns so you can clearly see your open and click through rates, as well as calculate your ROI. This gives you the opportunity to really get to know your audience and what their needs and wants are.
The secret is to keep testing, refining and learning new combinations and as a result you end up discovering your businesses perfect email marketing strategy.
Contributing Author: Camilla Souza - Marketing assistant intern - I'm studying a Diploma in Applied Business (major in International Marketing) and I am loving building up my knowledge. Movio is an exciting place to be especially for a marketer and film fan.