When it comes to business outreach, you should never underestimate the effectiveness of email marketing. In today’s world, you might think that social media would be a better approach, and while social media is definitely useful, email remains the preferred method of communication for most business professionals.
Hero image courtesy of Pexels.
If you’re looking for a way to maximize the efficiency of your email marketing campaign, mail merge is a productivity tool that you want to have in your arsenal. Keep reading to learn how to use mail merge to its fullest potential and how it can boost your customer engagement.
The Basics of Mail Merge
Mail merge is a tool that allows you to send personalized emails to a long list of recipients without having to address and send each email individually. This is a huge time saver in email marketing, speeding up the process and making large campaigns doable, which means faster expansion (and higher profits) for your business.
To send a mail merge, you first need to compile a spreadsheet of data with your recipients’ contact details, like their names and email addresses. This will allow you to create a mass email template using a simple code to automatically insert each recipient’s name into the email, thus creating a personally-addressed email for everyone on your mailing list.
Why Personalization Matters
Like we said before, emailing marketing is popular for a good reason: It works—did you know that 73 percent of millennials prefer to interact with brands via email? That being said, the standard “email blast” is outdated and, consequently, ineffective. Why? Well, because no one wants to receive an email that makes no effort to appeal to them as an individual.
Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to craft emails one by one, writing a unique message to every person on your mailing list. Not only would that be a waste of time, but it’s also completely unnecessary. Rather, you just need to foster the illusion that your email was drafted to your recipient personally. Here are some ways to add a little personalization to your email campaign:
- Use the customer’s name — Put the customer’s name in the subject line, the greeting, and even images.
- Create segmented lists to cater to specific viewers — Segmentation can help you to send relevant content to viewers using data gathered from purchase histories and customer profiles.
- Experiment with dynamic content — Dynamic content is another way to ensure that your emails are as personally relevant to the recipient as possible and heighten your company’s engagement.
Adapting your content to the type of customer that you’re sending it to is an excellent way to optimize your email marketing campaigns. Image courtesy of Ascent360.
How Mail Merge Can Boost Customer Engagement
Okay, so we know that personalization makes email marketing more effective, but how exactly can it boost your company’s customer engagement? While this varies from business to business, these are some of the most common key performance indicators (KPIs) to look out for when analyzing the success of your campaign with mail merge:
- Conversions — Consider the number of recipients that followed through on your email’s call to action (CTA).
- Return on investment — Calculate your return on investment with an online tool that streamlines this multifaceted metric.
- Click-through rate — High click-through rates (number of clicks divided by number of emails sent) usually mean strong CTAs.
- Open rate — How many of your emails were actually opened?
- Unsubscribe rate — Learn the hard way if your emails weren’t well-received by your recipients.
- Bounce rate — The bounce rate of your emails indicates how many emails weren’t delivered, whether because of a nonexistent email address (hard bounce) or a temporary technological issue (soft bounce).
Don’t Discount the Power of the Email
Over the years, many people have predicted the death of the email. After all, we have dozens of forms of instant messaging from texting to GChat, so why would we need email, right? And yet, none of these predictions have come true, and thanks to smartphones, sending and receiving emails is easier than ever.
Now that smartphones are such a huge part of emailing, it’s critical that you employ responsive email design so that you emails display correctly on mobile devices. Image courtesy of Powered By Awesome.
That being said, in order for your email marketing campaign to do its job, you need to make your emails stand out. One of the easiest ways to do this is by using mail merge to customize your campaigns. Don’t put good copy to waste by sending a standard email blast—step up your email marketing campaign with mail merge.