Email personalisation too much like hard work for many

March 4, 2016

Not many marketers would argue that personalising their communications is anything but worthwhile. In fact, in the Experian 2015 Digital Marketer Report not a single marketer said it was ‘not important’.

Here’s another stat, from a separate Experian report: Emails sent with personalised subject lines, including either first name, surname, or another unique identifier such as account number, were 7% more likely to be opened than emails sent with blanket subject lines.

So why is that one-third of marketers say they still haven’t got round to optimising their email marketing campaigns? That’s the finding from GetResponse’s ‘State of Email Marketing By Industry’ report.

The research, which generated over 1,800 responses in both the U.S. and Europe, discovered that 42% of marketers send everyone the same email. It’s hard enough to get someone’s attention to start with – it’s even harder if you’re not prepared to make the email recipient-specific.

A/B testing also helps to figure out what works best for your audience, but only half of marketers say they go the effort of testing their subject lines.

The report’s co-author Magda Ciszewska sat down with Marketing Land to discuss why it is that some marketers are only using entry-level tactics to reach their target audience.

She pointed to how two-thirds of the marketers quizzed said they were using email automation, suggesting this could be to blame for overlooking personalisation.

Ciszewska said it was also likely that a large number of respondents to the survey were “newbies to online marketing” who might not yet have discovered the more sophisticated strategies for targeting prospects.   

One they do, however, they can expect to generate more leads, of a better quality, and improve conversion rates and sales, the report notes.

The good news is, though, that it might not be long before they have seen the light with regards to personalisation, with more than half (57%) of respondents stating they intend to increase their email marketing budget over the next 12 months. I just hope that money is being invested shrewdly and the emails sent out are genuinely valuable to the recipients and take into account customer behaviour.

Kevin Mason - Director