Personalized, targeted experiences. That’s what online marketing is all about these days and we’re getting smarter and faster at providing segmented and personalized web experiences. Email marketers are already savvy on the benefits of personalized marketing, so why not take that personalization beyond the first click?
Your website is beautiful and functional, but can it address your prospects and current customers by name or talk to them about their last purchase? (If so, feel free to skip to the next blog article. Most of our websites aren’t quite there with Big Brother yet.) Enter: Landing Pages. Our friends in search marketing already know some of the awesome benefits of landing pages. Depending on what search term was entered, which offer was served up in the Pay-Per-Click ad and more, search marketers can direct traffic to different versions of the same page, tailored to what they already know about the visitor.
With email marketing, we can take that even a step further. We already have a relationship – presumably – with our subscribers. We usually know at least their name, and often times, their company, their interests based on what they’ve clicked on in the past and in the best of cases, we have buying history. We can use that information to create special landing pages that address our subscribers by name, prefill a form for them and make educated guesses on what products or services to offer them.
You know that feeling you get when you call a customer service line, enter your account number by typing it in and then as soon as a real person answers the phone, they ask you for your account number? We can skip that with forms when we email our subscribers. Help them get a head start by filling out as much as we know and asking them to provide the rest.
Of course, there are ways to offer product suggestions and personalization on your full website. Amazon.com sets the bar for this and continues to find ways to intuitively guess what will engage a customer the most. In the case of most marketers, however, we don’t ask visitors or even customers to log in to the website for their personalized info page on email marketing, for example. In those cases, we can lean on landing pages to help us carry the personalization of email past the click.
Here’s the challenge I hear most often: depending on how much access you have to your website, you may not be able to jump in and create landing pages yourself. And if you do, the personalization only goes as far as the number of iterations you create.
This is a big reason why many email service providers are now offering landing page tools to help carry your email database info through to the web browser. This means, you can go from “Those who bought laundry soap also bought room freshener” to “Hi Jane, we noticed you bought patio furniture last month and were thinking that you may want to get a sun-brella for when Missouri gets so hot you can’t leisurely sit outside anymore!” Or for a B2B example, “David, we hope you enjoyed the conference in Vegas as much as we did and had a safe trip back to Kansas City. If part of your role at Acme as Marketing Manager is to create, track and measure email marketing campaigns, we’d love to help.”
Bonus: Adobe’s Flash products are made to take variable data into consideration and not just in text. Incorporate personalization into your graphic elements as well! If you have a few moments for a fun “FlashPURLs” example check out: http://flashpurls.emfluence.com/WhatAreFlashPURLs
Takeaway: Use landing pages instead of the one-size-fits-all pages of your standard website to take personalization from email all the way through to the web browser and lead forms.