by Special Guest Marcus Stanek
Shawn Khorrami believes that if there was a theme for the 21st Century, it’s about doing more with less. If the end of the 20th Century represented the Information Age, then the beginning of the 21st Century is about getting a jump on the Productivity Age. A key ingredient to this Productivity Age is the power of automation and artificial intelligence (AI).
Email marketing has emerged as one critical element to a quality marketing mix for businesses. Within email marketing, artificial intelligence is beginning to convert those obnoxious spam emails into intriguing, personalized content sparking engagement with prospective, existing, and former customers. In other words, it is adding to company revenues by not only increasing sales but by doing it more efficiently.
Here is Shawn Khorrami’s quick guide to seeing how artificial intelligence is transforming current trends in email marketing.
The Goal of Artificial Intelligence Email Marketing: Automated, Personalized Emails
Most email marketing recipients today are not necessarily unhappy with receiving marketing emails. Rather, recipients are frustrated when they receive that for which they did not ask and do not care. On the other hand, marketing emails that land in the inboxes of those that subscribed to content that they deem relevant are growing excited with the next installment of relevant content.
As marketers and programmers grow more emotionally intelligent of their target audience, they are able to make these emails more relevant by personalizing them. These emails display the recipient’s name, contain a subject line that is accurate to the relevant content within, and are released by AI at the best time of day for that recipient.
Current Trends Explained
More than anything else, the 21st Century has shown email marketers everywhere the power of analytics. Email marketing software companies compete for new business by continually improving the data. The analytics of email marketing ultimately makes those emails more personalized and more effective. Shawn Khorrami has seen entire marketing efforts revolutionized by these advances in email marketing through AI and analytics.
Here are some of the current trends in email marketing resulting from advancements in analytics.
The Drip Campaign
A drip campaign is a lead generation and conversion technique. It involves a sequence of emails sent regularly over an extended period, often until the recipient unsubscribes. AI allows email marketers to build templates and tell a story over a long series of personalized emails. After drafting the content, email marketers need only schedule a sequence launch and define the frequency with which these emails go out to recipients.
Analytics can clearly separate out categories and subcategories of recipients. For example, based on the behavior and response of each recipient, AI can follow user-set parameters to label each recipient as a prospect, actively interested, current client, or former client. After segmenting these recipients, drip campaigns automatically reach out to each group with personalized emails based on their segmentation.
Cookies and Retargeting
Website cookies allow for the drip campaigns and segmentation above to be dynamic. Cookies track each web visitor’s behavior to properly change their label so that they always continue to receive relevant email marketing. For example, perhaps a prospect clicks one of the links in an email and browses a certain category of products. The cookie following this user online notes their interest changes their label, and in the next set of emails, they receive relevant content based upon their recent browsing history so that the content is as up to date as possible.
ROI Defined by Engagement
Anytime an email recipient opens, reads, or clicks on a marketing email, analytics tracks each action as engagement. Now marketers can track progress by the way that recipients engaged each email in a drip campaign. The AI behind these tools keeps all segmentation and behavior up to date so that each subscriber is more likely to engage each new email.
Shawn Khorrami concludes that modern email marketing techniques are the results of years of hard work and experimentation, but he believes that there is still much more that can and will be done to improve personalization and emotional intelligence within email marketing.