It’s a sad fact that many companies struggle to gain true value from their marketing automation platforms. Often this is because a large number of marketers don’t think beyond sending the traditional ‘batch and blast’ emails that have long dominated the comms space. There are others who lack the confidence to use the advanced features that automation platforms have to offer.
But whatever the reason, the situation can escalate quite quickly to the point that deliverability from automation platforms becomes poor. So how are marketers supposed to achieve any real results then? And what can be done to combat the problem?
Firstly, it’s important to understand what deliverability is. Deliverability is the term used to describe how likely your email is to arrive in the inbox of the recipient, instead of ending up in their spam folder or, worse still, being rejected by their mail server altogether.
It’s soon easy to see why building and sending an email to a brand’s entire database, even the contacts one of the directors bought from eBay, can have catastrophic consequences. Yes the marketer knows the importance of targeting and relevance, but they’ve crossed their fingers to see how a campaign goes. Unfortunately though, this tactic will have probably impacted on their open rates for their next five campaigns too.
The answer is simple. In the old days of sending email via online ESPs, if they didn’t like your mailing practices they would just issue a warning. If you committed a ‘repeat offence’, you’d be banned from using their service. This allowed ESPs to protect their mailing identities and fix the problems people caused before they became too serious.
With a marketing automation vendor, on the other hand, you’ll have already committed to a 12-month contract, and they’ll have probably already taken your money. They are not in a position to block your access to the service quite so easily, yet they are faced with the same issues online ESPs have always had, if not more-so. Today’s ESPs have much, much more work to do, to maintain relationships on behalf of each client.
Also with many MA platforms basing their pricing models on the number of contacts they hold, the last thing they’ll want to do is strip or block contacts as this will directly impact on their revenue.
This presents an interesting problem – the only thing they can do is to allow your mailing profile to slowly degrade and group your account with other clients adopting a similar practice. It’s simply a race to the bottom, where each client in that group will eventually start to see lower and lower returns. The MA provider just allocates the set number of hours per week to remedy the issues.
Aside from general good email practices like base segmentation, bounce suppression and preference management, you must make sure you can undertake the following:
When you do all of this and you maintain good emailing practices as well, you’ll start to see improvements to both your mailing profile and your ROI. Inbox protection is getting smarter by the day, allowing marketers who understand email to win, but closing the door on those who don’t.
Force24 gives all of clients a personalised mailing profile, before managing all technical and non-technical aspects of email delivery on their behalf. We constantly evaluate the mailing performance of our clients and work 1-on-1 with each, to ensure they get the best possible responses to their messages.