Expert Discussion on Leveraging Social-Intent Data to Complement Email Marketing
As of late, most marketers adopt high-end digital marketing platforms to reap results. They try to nurture their prospects and results by increasing online conversation and generating leads and revenue. However, even experienced marketers struggle to engage with their audience effectively through email.
Recent researches have shown that a socially active average individual receives nearly 120 emails daily. Users are often bombarded with promotional emails from different companies and service providers. The same study has shown that the reason Australian users unsubscribe from emails is not due to aversion towards the content of those emails, but merely because they start to receive too many emails to handle.
Nurturing your prospects
In this competitive email marketing scenario, it is not easy to nurture prospects as desired. For this, you need a thorough understanding of your customers, their perspectives, interest, and priorities through the journey of buying. However, most marketers struggle to gather data on their target buyers’ actual interests and buying habits.
While devising email marketing strategy based on the limited data, most marketers assume that a particular group of buyers generically share the same interests and buying timelines. However, in reality, customers who belong to different statuses have diversified needs, and lumping them together is not a wise move.
The best advice in this regard is to shift your email marketing approach from the traditional persona-driven marketing to more accurate intent-driven campaigns. It means that instead of sending content-based emails on a weekly or bimonthly basis, you need to develop some custom-tailored emails which are categorized based on the specific interests of your target audience. Rather than setting a weekly or monthly schedule, it is ideal to send out behavior-driven emails.
Eg: Sending product
specific emails or offers to those customers who have previously shown interest in that particular item. For example, if you get more traffic to the content related to price comparison of SEO services, shooting an email regarding a special time-critical service fee reduction may instantly give you some results.
This custom shift to the intent-driven mailing campaigns seems to help marketers to increase their opportunities dramatically. Further, we will discuss why intent-based email marketing is a much more efficient strategy, and how to plan successful email campaigns based on social intent data.
Definition – intent-based email marketing
Intent-based email marketing campaigns are those which directly target the prospective buyers as soon as they show any interest in a particular topic/product. There are smart methods to assess the interest of each prospect and offer them with further relevant content.
To implement intent-based email marketing in real-time, you need accurate data. Also known as behavioral data, intent data represents any standalone or group of actions taken by the prospects as a clear signal of what they actually care about.
Types of intent data
When it comes to SEO, there are two basic types of behavioral data such as first party data and third party data.
- The first party intent data consists of all actions which users like to take on your digital content. It is easy to track website visits, campaign engagement by various classes of users, and downloads of content. Behavioral data can be captured from your marketing platforms and can be used for many things such as segmenting target audience, personalizing web pages, devising advertising campaigns, and planning content strategy.
- Third party intent data, which is also called external data, is a mix of all online activities and traffic channels from those digital properties which you do not own. Many of your prospective buyers now carry out research even before they enter your website. They refer to social networks or review sites to learn about and discuss the issues they want to address. The platforms like Quora are an example of this.
Working together, first and third party intent data may help you fill the gaps between how your buyers function and how you should approach them through emails.
Developing behavioral-based personas for intent-based marketing
To create intent-based mailing campaigns, you need to create buyer personas based on their behavior. You need to do it over close communication with the marketing team to figure out what your actual target audience cares the most about at the particular point in time. The key questions to answer during this research are:
- What are the current issues of the target audience?
- What are the hottest discussions happening in your industry?
- What are the striking keywords that most users search with?
- What type of events does your target audience attend?
- What publications or sites do they trust the most?
- Who are the online influencers of your target group when they look for informative and educational content?
- What do your top competitors do?
If you are a marketer supporting a third-party client, then the additional questions to answer are:
- What types of solutions and products are there in their technology stack?
- Do they offer products and services which are complementary to your products and services?
Once you have answers to all such questions, you can start building a list of targeted activities and keywords to help people identify you.
This homework will help you to devise the best e-mail marketing strategy based on the intent data derived from the social platforms. As it takes a lot of work and time to set up such campaigns, always think of the potential ROI that you will receive over time. By incorporating intent data from the social media platforms into your e-mail marketing campaigns, you can easily identify and touch base with high-quality leads which you could not have found otherwise. It means that you can take well-calculated measures that will offer you a fair shot.