B2C Email Marketing Best Practices is a guide that helps you understand the latest trends and tactics that are used in B2C email marketing.
B2C Email Marketing Best Practices As consumers, we receive dozens of emails every day in our inbox. That’s why as marketers developing a B2C email marketing strategy you need to take into account the psychology of your customers: What engages them? How much email is too much? And can they receive too few? A good balance is key to staying subscribers and making them loyal customers. Keep reading to learn the best practices associated with B2C email marketing.
What is B2C email marketing?
Business-to-consumer marketing, also known as B2C marketing, applies to the techniques and strategies to market its products and services to consumers. It includes the development, advertising, and sale of items for people to use in their daily life.
Consumers check for products and services depending on an urgent need and purchase items with little research and analysis than a corporation would. As a result, B2C marketers have a significantly higher margin of opportunity to impact customer behavior.
Importance of B2C marketing
B2C marketing is critical for every company that sells consumer goods or services — diners, pharmacy stores, automobile firms, fashion enterprises, software developers, supermarkets, and so on. However, the internet has proven to be the most popular platform for B2C companies to advertise their products or services and perform market surveys.
Nearly every B2C firm wants to be a part of this trillion-dollar e-commerce market and move its marketing efforts online. B2C marketing is profitable in several ways:
- Increases webpage visits: B2C campaigns are designed to get potential buyers to visit your company’s website to learn more about it.
- Provides more sophisticated communication with consumers: B2C firms may deliver more targeted messages at strategic moments if they know who their target audience is. In this case, segmentation comes in handy.
- Aids brands in growing the email lists: As the number of prospects who visit a company’s website grows, so does the number of subscribers.
- Improves ranking in search engines: By employing selected keywords, a website can improve its position in search results. That way, users have a better chance of finding the business.
- Improves conversion and brand recognition: Through bulk email marketing, social media engagement, and other channels, B2C marketing techniques enable firms to reach and engage with large crowds. As a result, a company’s popularity grows, and conversion rates rise.
B2C marketing challenges
Data drives modern B2C marketing, customizing brand encounters and making each consumer experience exceptional. There are several opportunities to increase engagement, but there are also numerous traps for businesses to avoid.
One of the most pressing problems is overcoming the privacy-personalization dilemma, which occurs when customers appreciate personalized brand experiences suited to their tastes while being wary of any effort to collect personal data to fuel such efforts.
Some common challenges faced in B2C marketing are:
- Sufficient technological abilities.
- Making decisions based on consumer information.
- Developing knowledge in new channels and touchpoints.
- Delivering a constantly good customer experience.
B2C vs. B2B: The difference
There are several distinctions between B2C and B2B marketing. The buying and selling processes, decision-making tactics, and buying costs are some of the most noteworthy differences.
While a company would almost certainly undertake considerable study before investing in innovative technology, office area, or a big purchase with another company, B2C transactions are often more spontaneous and immediate.
Effective B2C marketing usually elicits instinctual feelings or responses, whereas successful B2B efforts focus on providing instant value. Identifying these distinctions and making the necessary modifications to your marketing approach will enhance overall results.
What are B2C email marketing examples?
B2C marketing strategies assist you in preparing for B2C sales, anticipating feedback, and monitoring progress. All three of these elements can help any marketing initiatives thrive. Going into any marketing plan without completely grasping how it works is a bad idea. Bad marketing may have a long-term detrimental influence on your company image.
As a result, we advocate experimenting with as many B2C marketing platforms and tactics as feasible. Identify yourself with how they function and what they can achieve.
Developing or updating a B2C email marketing strategy is critical for a number of factors. Firstly, it is the ruler of ROI, raking in an average of around $40 for every single dollar you invested. Next, it is the preferred form of interaction for any promotional and instructive content.
Email marketing aims to contact the target audience where they are most likely to be found. Many marketers might tell you that social media is where customers are (which is true in some cases).
Core Ingredients of an Effective B2C Email Marketing Strategy
To devise a strong email marketing strategy, you need to start with (or work towards) the following elements:
- Quality Curated Email Lists – Successful B2C email marketing needs clean, regularly maintained and segmented email lists. The higher the quality of your lists, the better your open and engagement metrics.
- Tidy Databases, Primed for Personalisation – Perhaps the biggest difference between B2B and B2C emails is the potential to personalise B2C emails to the Nth degree. An up-to-date database which allows you to sort and segment based on purchase history, behaviours, demographics, or interests could drive higher conversion rates and boost ROI.
- Clear, Navigable Designs – Consumers are time-poor and inboxes are overflowing. The last thing they want is a difficult-to-digest email with no clear structure or CTA. Instead, meet expectations with a modern, mobile-friendly design, scannable copy, and eye-catching calls to action.
- Timing & Consistency – Finally, both when and how often you send emails will play a huge role in the success of your campaign. Test different send times to discover when is most effective at driving engagement and conversions. And don’t leave it too long between emails. The goal is to remain front of mind with consumers.
Strategic Advice from B2C Email Marketing Experts
Just as every good chef uses the recipe as a guideline, the best email marketers take the above best-practice and add their own tried-and-tested flourishes in search of marginal gains.
Here are 4 top tips from established experts, hailing from email marketing platforms to D2C consumer brands on their top email marketing strategies.
1. Experiment, split-test and get creative
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in email marketing is forgetting that you are not your customer. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter if you like the copy, design, or offer in your newsletter — if it doesn’t resonate with your customers, it’s not going to deliver results.
That’s why Karolina Cala of Calla Shoes suggests experimenting and split-testing.
“It’s vital that you keep testing every aspect of your email campaign. For example, there’s a very common assumption in email marketing that using emojis in titles makes your email stand out in the inbox, therefore providing higher open rates,” she explains.
“A lot of business owners latched onto this trend, but if you run a simple A/B test, you may find that your audience isn’t reacting.”
Instead of succumbing to assumptions, you should use split-testing to your advantage and take the opportunity to get creative with your subject lines.
“We all get insane amounts of promotional emails in our inboxes,” says Karolina, “and you want to make sure that yours stands out. My favourite title I ever sent out was ‘I blame Julia Roberts’.”
Nigel Temple from MailChimp Training agrees – “The human eye reads in chunks,” he explained. “You read two or three words at time, i.e. the first few words of an email subject line. The email recipient makes decisions very quickly. If the start of the email subject line doesn’t appeal to the consumer, then it is all too easy to delete it.
“In order to find out which Subject lines work best,” Temple continued, “test your subject lines on a continual basis. This will help to increase those all important email open rates.”
So, what works for your audience? Emojis? Intrigue? Humour? Controversy?
Test, test, and test again to find out.
- Read HubSpot’s guide to A/B testing for more information.
- And for tips on writing the perfect subject line, Megan Marrs from Wordstream has you covered.
2. Remember: bigger is not always better
Many companies see email marketing as a numbers game. Send as many as possible to a huge list and see what sticks. But, as Maret Reutelingsperger of Mobe Digital highlights, the age of buying email lists and spamming inboxes has been and gone.
“Besides not being GDPR compliant, there’s evidence that indiscriminately blasting emails to anyone and everyone results in lower engagement rates and higher spam reports,” says Maret.
“Selling to an engaged audience is much easier, and nets you higher conversion rates. Talk to your 100 biggest fans, rather than 100,000 strangers.”
And to do this, you need to focus on community building. Maret suggests using the information you have in your database to further segment and personalise your messaging. “As you become more familiar with each other, you can ditch the formalities and really let your brand voice shine.”
- For advice on organically growing an email list, look no further than this selection of 29 Creative List Building Techniques by Andy Pitre.
- And if you want to learn more about communicating with your audience, this conversation between Kerry O’Shea Gorgone and Ann Handley is worth a listen.
3. Use open-time content to deliver up-to-date offers
We lead busy lives, and our inboxes are often neglected. We don’t always open emails the minute they land — and, according to Jordan Sawyer, that’s something email content has to take into consideration.
“Most email content is designed to be opened there and then,” says Jordan. “If I open 12 hours later, the content of the email can be completely out-of-date. It’s frustrating opening a sales email with an enticing subject line only to discover that you’ve missed the sale.”
So, what’s the answer?
Jordan’s advice is to use open-time content to ensure that your content is always up-to-date. Live email content detects the time of open and can seamlessly swap the sale content to a win-back message if the sale is over.
“This is a great way for B2C marketers to increase email performance and enhance customer satisfaction,” explains Jordan.
Learn how to use live email content to create contextual campaigns in this guide by Lauren Smith.
4. Ask subscribers what they want to see next
Brainstorming B2C email content can be a huge drain on time and resources — and there’s often no guarantee that what you come up with will engage your audience.
With this in mind, Jordan’s next recommendation is simple yet effective: Ask!
“Asking your subscribers what they want to see in the next email is a great way to connect with your audience,” he explains. “The inclusion of a live poll/vote in your email will see click-through rates soar.”
Customers like to feel heard, says Jordan, and if they’ve told you what they’re interested in or what they’re searching for, you can use this data to personalise the next email – thereby increasing email performance in the process.
This is backed by Eman Ismail of Inkhouse, who says “the key to getting better results from email is to send the right email to the right people at the right time. That means knowing your audience, paying attention to their past behaviours, and trying to predict their future needs and behaviours, too.”
“Once you’re able to send emails that are relevant (yay to segmenting!),” she says, “and emails that subscribers find valuable, beneficial and (of course) interesting, your open rates, click rates and conversion rates will inevitably improve.”
A successful email campaign incorporates a series of emails sent over time to nurture interest, encourage a call-to-action, and even painlessly break the news when they’ve been unsubscribed. All these actions have their own best practices.