Our world has changed – COVID-19 has fundamentally changed the way we live our lives and how we go about our day-to-day activities. Whether it’s continuing to work from home, the weekly shop, home schooling our children, or planning for special events in our lives. With all these changes, it has meant brands are having to take a closer look at how they engage and connect with their customers.
Speaking of special events, one such event children and families are preparing to celebrate is Father’s Day, which takes place on Sunday 21st June. Like many other special events, Father’s Day holds a special place in so many of our hearts – it gives us the opportunity to celebrate, spend time and show our love to all the father figures in our lives – whether its our father, grandfather, uncle, brother or guardian.
While this year’s Father’s Day might be a slightly different experience to previous years, there are still many great ways hoteliers, retailers and restaurants can continue making personal connections during this, and other, special events. One such method is to deploy a personalised email campaign this Father’s Day. While lockdown restrictions are easing, and hoteliers, retailers and restaurants, are welcoming back customers in-person, albeit, in a more “social-distanced” new way, not everybody is ready for that in-person experience yet – meaning your personalised email campaign is now more important than ever.
In fact, Epsilon’s PeopleCloud Messaging solution has recorded recent shifts in email trends cementing the significance in this messaging channel. As you might expect, Retail email volumes spiked in mid-March due to the communication and announcements surrounding COVID-19, but then decreased during April. However, volume continues to rise week-on-week, with volumes nearing the volumes from mid-March at the end of May. The analysis also shows weekly opens rates were extremely steady during May, while engagement rates, during the same period, were higher than February and March.
By making you email campaign memorable, it will enable you build a deeper, long-lasting relationship with your customers, and ultimately boost your bottom line. So, as you craft your personalised email campaign, consider the following tips:
Life has changed and so has our thought process, feelings and emotions. Your customers are concerned, and anxious about COVID-19, next steps and the impact on family members. More than likely over the last few months, your email strategy has been the key vehicle in staying connected and engaged with your customers. This Father’s Day, your email campaign should tap into the emotional bond of this special day – what does it mean to your customers and how fathers and father figures want to celebrate. It’s about the experience and by striking the right emotional bond with your customers, it can help you connect on a more human level, enabling your email to rise above the inbox-clutter.
The Personal Touch
Personalisation has taken on a whole new meaning, but it’s even more important in today’s world. When developing your Father’s Day email campaign, you must start by understanding your data across all touchpoints and channels. Then I recommend infusing creative fun by using your data and customer insights to understand your customer - their habits, desires, preferences, abilities, emotions and triggers – and, through the addition of machine learning, proactively predict how best to engage. You can further compliment your data by adding in social interactions and behaviours, device continuum, hyper-location and time quality. This insight, coupled with the right technology, enables you to recognise, engage and build that deeper, long-lasting relationship with your customers. Or as we say in Epsilon, 1:You personalisation.
With everything happening around us, a connected omni-channel strategy is key – let’s be honest, omni-channel strategies are redefining the entire customer journey. What’s interesting is, your customers don’t see omni-channels when their engaging with your brand – they see experiences. However, with that said, it must be acknowledged, omni-channel marketing is not getting easier. The “always-on” world we find ourselves in, with numerous touchpoints and rising expectations. The explosion of data and the sheer quantity of information from different devices. Let’s not forget the share of wallet objectives. So, for this year’s Father’s Day campaign, look to integrate your email channel with other digital channels such as social, mobile and display to deliver a truly connected personal experience. Then take it a step further, by seamlessly incorporating your Father’s Day campaign instore. By using the omni-channel approach, you will be able to integrate your Father’s Day campaign across online and offline properties and provide a seamless experience to your customers, with the hope of getting more repeat business.
I think it is fair to say, we have all spent an unusual amount of time quarantining at home, and when we go out for exercise or essential items, social distancing is top-of-mind. All these changes, challenges and concerns have taken a toll on your customers, so when a special event comes around, it is a great opportunity for your brand to have some fun and, if done correctly, your customers will remember it. Your Father’s Day campaign is an opportunity to mix-it-up a bit – when creating your email campaign look to entertain, use dynamic content based on previous behaviours and triggers, add new elements like gamification. Engage them by adding innovation and interactivity to your emails, to make their messages personal, engaging and fun. Kinetic techniques, agile content and even AMP experiences can make an inbox feel more like a website. Add fun competitions that fathers and father figures alike can participate in with their family and friends, by continuing the fun and conversation to your social media channels.
Learn more: Email 2020 trends guide: Interactive content
Keep it Simple
I appreciate this last point might seem out of step with my previous points, but what I mean here is when developing your Father’s Day campaign, keep it simple for your customers to connect with you. Simple for them to connect the personalised email they received, with their preferences and previous behaviours. Simple for them to navigate from email to your website to check-out. By keeping it simple, your customers will have a more enjoyable and seamless experience, resulting in higher satisfaction rates and hopefully a more positive impact on your bottom line.
But this point is also critical for you, as you work through your email and cross-channel marketing campaigns. The technology and solutions you currently have, should empower you to simply deliver individualised campaigns and real-time messages to every customer—each one truly optimised for a more inspiring inbox experience. If the technology and solutions you’re currently using is not enabling you to leverage email to the best of its ability to deliver personalised experiences and create deeper relationships with consumers, then consider Epsilon’s PeopleCloud Messaging solution. With Epsilon’s PeopleCloud Messaging solution, you can engage customers when they are most likely to interact with your brand—with the right message at the right moment on the right device. Indeed, for the fourth time in a row, Epsilon has been named a Leader in Email Marketing by Forrester Research in the report: The Forrester WaveTM: Email Marketing Service Providers, Q2 2020. This is a powerful validation for why the world’s leading brands trust our email marketing expertise. To learn more, please feel free to contact us.