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Email List Definition and using Custom Fields
The foundation of email marketing is proper List Definition and maintaining List Hygiene. When the email addresses maintained in one or more lists are used in an email campaign, filtering the right addresses for that specific campaign helps to retain the subscribers. Recollect the right subscriber (who), right time (when), right frequency (how often) and right content (what) rules of email marketing.
Getting started with Lists
As soon as they plunge into the email marketing bandwagon, several customers start creating multiple lists and setup signup forms for various sites. And upload tons of email addresses from internal systems without giving a thought. Once the lists are created and loaded with subscribed and imported addresses, it would be very difficult to manipulate and rearrange the list data. This will also result in confusion to the list subscribers, as they could have subscribed for one particular list name and you might move their address to another list.
Note that most of the email service providers (such as LeadPro) provide unlimited list capabilities. Does that mean you should create any number of lists for your business?
Before creating a (email or contact or address) list, think and plan how the list addresses are going to be used. What sort of campaigns you might do in the future? Do you want to have a separate list for customers and prospects? What happens when a prospect gets converted to a customer? When you move an email address from one list to another, how will you track the past history of that particular subscriber?
Filtering for Target Marketing
If you are a small business, you might very well live with a single list. If so, how do you target the specific segment of the subscribers in the list? Demographic information such as sex, age group, income group, and job title (generally included in all list management and email services including LeadPro) can be used for targeted marketing to some extent.
However for most of the subscribers the demographic information may not be available in the list. Also, there are several other business data elements that could be used for filtering. For example subscriber type (customer, past customer, prospect, partners, subscriber, etc.) could be one of the elements. The other could be the scale of activities (such as most active, active, least active, and in-active). Another example is nature / frequency of emails (daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly). This kind of useful business insight can be maintained in the list using custom fields feature of list definition.
Custom Fields Definition
When custom fields are defined, use list of values wherever possible so that these values can be used easily while performing filtering for targeted emailing. Avoid free form text entry. Also, do not over step; create as few custom fields as possible.
Be cautious when you are merging more than one list (with custom field data) into an email campaign. You should know what you are doing when filtering the custom fields from multiple lists. The information contained in the custom fields may not match and create issues.
Hence whether you are a small business owner or a campaign manager for a large organization, you can use the custom fields very effectively, if you plan the number of lists and custom contents in the initial stage. While it may be difficult to think too far into the future, it is essential to plan and organize to an extent feasible in the current scenario.Let us look at the filtering mechanisms available with the current email marketing services and how it could be leveraged to reduce the opt-out rates and increase the value of the dollars spent on email marketing in a future edition.
LeadPro is a suite of email marketing and lead management tools available to subscribers as an on demand service. LeadPro provides excellent analytics and performance measurement reports including email opens, URL clicks, bounces, domain analysis, email forwards, multi-campaign comparison and aggregate numbers, and opt-outs. It includes features such as comprehensive email list management function with demographic and custom fields, customizable sign-up form design, email personalization, extensive filtering for target marketing, HTML newsletter templates and inbuilt editor to create messages. LeadPro comes equipped with reputation management services to maximize email deliverability, and enterprise support services.
Please take a look at feature comparison page or product overview page for more information and email marketing best practices. Also, our blog sites (LeadPro and Web Analytics) have lots of information on email marketing, lead management, online survey management and web analytics.
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If you have missed any of our recent newsletters on email marketing tips, tricks and best practices, please take a look at the recent issues on this page.
In addition to LeadPro Email Marketing and Lead Management solutions, Anagha Group provides several other sales, marketing and customer management oriented technology solutions and on-demand services. For more information on these services, please give us a call at 1-877-9-LEADPRO.
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