The current trends in personalized email marketing software are simple and easy to understand. Software looks primarily at what people are doing on any given website, and extrapolates interest based on browsing or purchasing behavior.
In other words, this type of personalized email marketing is working from information gathered in the “store” so to speak. All it cares about are shopping habits.
But the Internet is far more than just shopping, although that’s become a major cornerstone in recent years. The Internet is also about social media, citizen journalism and the distribution of important—and not so important—events and information through official and amateur channels. And all of these streams of information have an impact on how, when and why a person decides to shop.
Personalized email marketing software can—and should—take advantage of all these opportunities, because they create shopping motivations and incentives where there weren’t any before.
The Social Aspect
Many buying decisions are based on peer pressure or social trends. When a person hears about a new item, gadget or fashion that is being adopted by acquaintances, friends and family, the natural reflex is to investigate what all the noise is about and, if it seems sufficiently interesting, entertaining, or compatible with personal interests anyway, take the plunge and join the crowd.
Facebook, Twitter and other social media networks are all the frontline for seeing this kind of word-of-mouth power at work. Facebook in particular is especially good at documenting these interactions, and making this data available to businesses in order to better take advantage of the power of social media in a more timely fashion.
By combining the power of social media with a more targeted approach using personalized email marketing software to note shopping preferences, there’s even more compelling reasons for people to go online and shop. Now it’s not just for personal interest, it’s also for being part of the crowd.
Local Events & Concerns
Geography and locality can also be surprisingly important factors in effective marketing, especially when used in tandem with personalized email marketing software. Individual cities have their own vibrant cultures, events and traditions that can be targeted at people who live in those specific areas with special events, promotions, or product recommendations made based on residential address and local events.
Acknowledging that where a person lives and what is happening to them locally is a good way to engage consumers and build up even more of a relationship with them. So whether it is the Calgary Stampede in Canada, or a Pride Festival in Rio, Brazil, or even Oscar time in Hollywood, these localized events can, when properly used in marketing, entreat users to spend a little more to get more involved with events.
A local film festival, for example would benefit anyone that sells movies by putting out promotional events, sales and discounts tied into that event. A sporting final taking place in the city could be partnered with a sale on related items, especially if the local team wins, putting people in a spending mood.
Even weather can be properly used with targeted, local marketing. If a storm is happening in a particular city, or the weather forecast calls for sustained snow for a period of days, personalized email marketing software can remind shoppers of basic home responsibilities, like ensuring that proper yard maintenance gear such as shovels or sidewalk salt are available on promotion, or that umbrellas are now on sale.
By making content relevant to where a shopper lives, and what is happening in their lives at that time, product recommendations may become more than just marketing, but useful suggestions relevant to their current situation.
People don’t live in a vacuum where the only thing that matters is what’s happening in their lives. They are surrounded by fashion and entertainment possibilities that make very real, very large inroads into their lives. We see this across a broad range of demographics, with different types of media. The Harry Potter books became a gigantic hit for children, creating a new interest in all things fantastical and magic, while older female readers flocked to 50 Shades of Grey and created a huge upsurge of interest in BDSM paraphernalia. In film, the latest Star Wars film has rekindled both nostalgia and an interest in science fiction, while big summer blockbusters like Avengers: Age of Ultron continue to make comic books a surprisingly popular product.
Even television, with shows like Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead has a giant impact on people’s interests, and Adele and Justin Bieber continue to infect the public consciousness and radio waves. When these people, or their works hit the mainstream, they embed themselves in the public consciousness and can have an influence on shopping.
Personalized email marketing software should take advantage of these turns of popular culture. Big movies, books, music and television programs excite and inspire people and make them seek out things that may only be tangentially related to whatever happens to be the latest craze. Take advantage of these unpredictable surges of popularity and give an engaged, excited shopper and excuse to get even more involved.
The more personal marketing becomes the more effective it can be. Users that are greeted with special acknowledgement of events such as birthdays and anniversaries will remember these gestures, but when combined with specific discounts or promotions, it becomes an even more effective marketing tool.
This can even be combined with the social aspect by acting as a “social calendar,” keeping users informed about upcoming birthdays of friends and relatives, or notifications when friends or relatives make additions to wish-lists and other types of shopping trackers. By becoming involved in and remember the important events in a shopper’s life, you strengthen the relationship that makes that shopper turn to your store or service when the time comes.
There are a wealth of different ideas, events and trends that can influence a person’s shopping decisions and behavior. Personalized email marketing software can’t account for every single one, but it can give you the tools to seize these opportunities when they arise.