July 10, 2020

Emails: Sending More and Sending Them Right

Atul Patel, COO
July 10, 2020

Emails: Sending More and Sending Them Right

Atul Patel, COO

Emails. We all send them. We all receive them. Even I have subscribed to several different brands that I’m interested in, one of which includes Best Buy. Do you know how many emails they send me? At least 5 a day. Why haven’t I unsubscribed? Because I’m interested to see what deals they have. I’m moving right now, and I need appliances. I’m shopping to see if there are any deals on a washing machine, and guess what? They send me an email on a deal for a washing machine. 

Best Buy retargeted me using an automated email system. Not only that, but they also personalized the email subject line with, “Looking for a deal on a washing machine?” And it piqued my interest because it’s exactly what I was looking for. So of course, I opened it and clicked the link to the special offer. 

Emails. We all send them. We all receive them. Even I have even subscribed to several different brands that I’m interested in, one of which includes Best Buy. Do you know how many emails they send me? At least five a day. Why haven’t I unsubscribed? Because I’m interested in seeing what deals they have to offer. I’m moving right now, and I need appliances. I’m shopping online to see if there are any deals on a washing machine, and guess what? They send me an email on a deal for a washing machine. 

Best Buy segmented and retargeted me using an automated email system. Not only that, but they also personalized the email subject line with, “Looking for a deal on a washing machine?” And it piqued my interest because it was exactly what I was looking for. So of course, I opened it and clicked the link to the special offer.  

Email marketing done right

Dealerships should be taking advantage of email marketing because according to the Direct Marketing Association, 59% of consumers prefer email communications from brands above any other channel, no matter the context. We often get questions about how many emails a day or week is too much. Well, of course, no one wants to be spammed with emails. But you shouldn’t be afraid to send emails if you’re doing it right.  

Auto dealers are afraid of receiving too many unsubscriptions. That’s understandable. But have you ever thought about the positive side of them? Those that aren’t interested in what you’re offering are going to unsubscribe to your emails. This results in smaller email and provides better outcomes for the email campaigns. This brings me to my next point: if you want to avoid the unsubscriptions, you need to ensure that the emails that you are sending out are optimized for various devices and personalized for shoppers in segmented lists.  

Email marketing done right

Dealerships should be taking advantage of email marketing because according to the Direct Marketing Association, 59% of consumers prefer email communications from brands above any other channel, no matter the context. We often get questions about how many emails a day or week is too much. Well, of course, no one wants to be spammed with emails. But you shouldn’t be afraid to send emails if you’re doing it right.  

Auto dealers are afraid of receiving too many unsubscriptions. That’s understandable. But have you ever thought about the positive side of them? Those that aren’t interested in what you’re offering are going to unsubscribe to your emails. This results in smaller email and provides better outcomes for the email campaigns. This brings me to my next point: if you want to avoid the unsubscriptions, you need to ensure that the emails that you are sending out are optimized for various devices and personalized for shoppers in segmented lists.  

Optimization, personalization, and segmentation

In a word dominated by the digital presence, almost everyone checks their emails multiple times a day, especially in the morning. In fact, Campaign Monitor found that 58% of consumers check their email first thing in the morning. If you’re looking to grab the attention of your shoppers, sending an email to them first thing in the morning is the way to do it.  

So for me, one of the first things I do when I wake up in the morning is check my emails using my phone. Even if the email is a marketing newsletter, there is a chance I’ll open it up and read it. Now, for me to actually click on a link in the email, it better be relevant to what I’m shopping for.

Yes, unsubscribes aren’t ideal, but the best way to prevent them is to optimize, personalize, and segment for your email subscribers. People come to your website and willingly subscribe to your newsletters. What you do next with their valuable email addresses will ultimately determine the success of your email marketing.

Optimization is the key to success

Optimizing your emails for mobile devices should be one of the first steps. Whether you’re sending massive email blasts or personalized, segmented emails, you need to ensure that these emails are loading fast and looking good. According to Litmus, mobile opens account for 46% of all email opens.  

There are a lot of email marketing tools out there, and one feature that is a must-have is the ability to view your emails using a mobile device before sending it. And don’t worry if you can’t access that feature—what you can do is just send a sample email to yourself and open it using your mobile device. The point is, if you’re planning to send out an email, you need to make sure it is optimized for mobile devices. Otherwise, money goes down the drain. Now, why would it cause money to go down the drain? Think about it like this. If your subscribers can’t even open or view your email using their mobile devices, you’ve spent money sending out emails that half of the users can’t even open and even potentially lose out on a sale. 

Get personal with it

The goal of sending out emails is to get your customers to shop on your site and into the showroom. Emails can get expensive and yield low results if you do it the wrong way, but one way to capture the interest of your shoppers is to personalize the email.  

When I say personalize, I meant that you need to include the shopper’s name in the subject line and even in the body of the email. Not only do you need to include their name, but you should also be providing them with content that is relevant to what they’re shopping for. Why? Because personalized email messages improve click-through rates by 14% and conversions by 10%, according to Campaign Monitor. If I saw these numbers, I’d be going to my marketing team and telling them to personalize emails right away, so I suggest you go do the same.

Beyond adding the shopper’s name in the subject line and body of the email, you need to ensure that the content of the email is personalized as well. This means that you need to segment your visitors into specific lists based on their interests, whether it’s for car service, a new vehicle, a trade-in, or whatever it is they’re looking for and send them emails based on these interests.  

Now, another form of personalization to really consider is using emojis. I know, it seems ridiculous, right? But trust me. It grabs attention, adds a bit of personality to your dealership and it’s proven to work. In fact, Send Pulse found that 56% of brands using emojis in their email subject lines had a higher open rate. Just give it a try. It doesn’t hurt, and you can even do A/B testing with one email subject line with emojis and one without. You can see for yourself what works best.  

Better lists, better results

So, what really gets me to unsubscribe is when emails start becoming irrelevant to what I’m looking for. We dove into segments in my last article, so I won’t go too deep into it. But in the same way you segment website visitors for advertisements, you can do it for email subscribers. It’s just as easy. 

Where on your site do the shoppers sign up for emails? Was it on a special offers page or a specific VDP? When a shopper signs up for email newsletters, you can already segment these users based on where they signed up because it shows you what page they converted on. Right away, with the knowledge of where they signed up, you already know what emails you should be sending to your customers.  

Get Response found that smaller email lists perform better than large email lists, with a list of 1,000-2,499 that have a CTR of 5.32%. This is compared to the CTR of 3.98%, which was for a list of 2,500-4,999. Obviously, the reason this happens is because if there’s a bigger list, there’s a higher chance of people in that list that will bounce and unsubscribe. This is also why your dealership must personalize your email campaigns to your subscribers.  

What’s cool about segmenting your email campaigns is that you can use these segments for advertising towards your display retargeting ads as well. If you segment users based on specific vehicles or specials your dealership is offering, you can use these same segments concurrently with your other advertising efforts.

Get them while it's hot

This next strategy is about automatically sending your shoppers emails that are relevant to their shopping history. I’m not talking about sending them an email a week later, but as soon as they exit the session. If they entered an email address on your website, you should have a system set up to send them an email that contains personalized content based on their browsing history. For example, your dealership can set up price alert emails to notify your shoppers when the vehicle they are looking at has a price drop. If your dealership offers customers an option to favorite a vehicle, you can also set up automated emails to remind them about some of the recent vehicles they favorited and incentivize them to come back to your site. 

Automated emails can also be sent based on segmented lists based on website activity. If a group of email subscribers all fits into the same segments for a custom audience, you can send them emails that pertain to their interests. Epsilon Email Institute found that automated emails alone see a 70.5% increase in open rates and 152% higher CTR. These automated emails we’re talking about are triggered by a website event that the customer meets, thus providing a better experience that improves both the open and click-through rates. Campaign Monitor found email marketing automation boosts conversion rate by 50%. So, what the automotive industry needs to do is take a page from these B2C marketing strategies and start implementing it into their own digital marketing plans.  

Bottom Line

The point I’m trying to get across is that you shouldn’t be afraid to send more emails. If you’re doing it right, then there shouldn’t be any hesitation to send those emails and get the customers into the showroom especially when it’s statistically proven that customers prefer to receive emails from your brand. The bottom line is: 

  • Don’t be afraid to send emails 
  • Remember to optimize, personalize, and segment emails 
  • Automated emails bring together both segmentation and personalization for a better online shopping experience 

Make better data-driven decisions

Create, analyze, and schedule email marketing campaigns all in one platform.

Make better data-driven decisions

Create, analyze, and schedule email marketing campaigns all in one platform.
Read more from Orbee Auto
Read more from Orbee Auto

Personalization

Personalize Your Digital Marketing Using Behavior-based Segments

Using behavior-based targeting can increase digital marketing spend efficiency and increase the number of conversions while spending less on advertising.

Read more →

Operations

5 Performance-efficient Email Marketing Strategies Your Dealership Should Adopt

62% of internet users worldwide prefer to receive emails over other forms of communication from retailers. Here are 5 more reasons why your dealership should be sending more emails to your prospects.

Read more →

Read more from Orbee Auto

Personalization

Personalize Your Digital Marketing Using Behavior-based Segments

Using behavior-based targeting can increase digital marketing spend efficiency and increase the number of conversions while spending less on advertising.

Read more →

Operations

5 Performance-efficient Email Marketing Strategies Your Dealership Should Adopt

62% of internet users worldwide prefer to receive emails over other forms of communication from retailers. Here are 5 more reasons why your dealership should be sending more emails to your prospects.

Read more →