Sure, anyone can use email to reach out to prospects and customers. But that’s the problem: These days it seems like everybody’s using email as a marketing tool. Worse still, most of these emails represent generic marketing offers. Fact is, the more emails your prospects are receiving, the less likely it is that they will open yours.
Email marketing is most effective when used in an integrated campaign along with other media, and when email communications engage customers and prospects in a personal way, something AT&T can attest to. The company recently determined that its previous segmentation effort had fallen off and, as a result, email messages were becoming less tailored to its customers’ interests. Resolving the issue meant AT&T needed to better understand its customers’ preferences.
Working with Acxiom, a global leader in technology and marketing services, AT&T sought to drive 500,000 current customers to update their preferences regarding the email communications that they received from the company. A playful and highly personalized email script was developed to encourage customers to click through to their preferences page and update their information.
Each email mentioned the customer’s name 11 times with some silly variations, such as Bobby-licious and Betty-tastic, while encouraging Bobby and Betty to update their preferences so AT&T could send them more Bobby-esque and Betty-like offers in the future.
The campaign was a huge success. Click-through rates on these emails were 140 percent higher than previous email click-through rates, including messages promoting new devices. Open rates increased 32 percent over previous email open rates. Best of all, the approach created a virtual cycle: AT&T’s future communications can be even more tailored based on customers’ stated preferences.
Improved customer engagement will make customers and prospects more receptive to future marketing communications, and more likely to become higher-value customers.