In our line of digital marketing we work a lot with partners of our clients. Most of the partner work is co-branded campaigns such as email campaigns. So we had an experience with a client partner today that I couldn’t help but share.
One of our real estate clients has a large brokerage representing their properties and we are kicking off an email campaign to the brokers list of leads. So we design the HTML email campaign, deliver all files and code, and they are to import into their email campaign software. What do they do?
- Completely redesign the campaign to an unrecognizable state. We have no issue with the brokerage wanting to brand the campaign, but they are using a template from their email platform that is just elementary. For this particular real estate property, luxury and image are of the utmost importance.
- They did NOT include a call-to-action at all. At the very bottom of the new design it had a phone number and email in 10 point font …just in case someone wanted to call.
- All the links out of the email take the user to an informational page. Not a landing page with a conversion form, but a page with tons of copy and information.
So I embarked on a journey of reaching out to their “Director of Marketing”.
Chad: “Hey, we’d really encourage you guys to include a call-to-action in this email campaign for the client.”
Jill: “We have links out of the email that go to an information page on our website for the property.”
Chad: “Ok, but what specific action do you want leads to perform when viewing this email campaign?”
Jill: “Well, if they are interested, they’ll call us on the phone number at the bottom of the email.”
Chad: “Jill, we are trying to sell property for $1.7M each. We need to ask the lead if they are interested in some way so that we can continue to marketing to them. It takes 6-10 touches of a lead before they are likely to convert. Plus, email marketing 101 is give the lead one (1) thing to do in an email campaign. In this case we want them to download a brochure of the property by submitting their information. That gives digital marketers an indication of their interest and we can nurture that lead over time.”
Jill: “We have the number sent, opens, and clicks report. Isn’t that enough to demonstrate interest?”
Chad: “Sigh …those report have little value when evaluating a campaigns success. They are nice to have, but that was revolutionary data in 2003. As digital marketers we need to put leads in the sales funnel. Would you rather call someone who click on links in an email 5 times or someone who downloaded a brochure of your property?”
Jill: “Someone who downloaded a brochure.”
Chad: “My point exactly.”
Jill: “Well, we don’t have a conversion form built on our website right now.”
Chad: “I noticed that. Let’s use the landing page and conversion form of our client.”
Jill: “We can’t, it’s against company policy.”
Chad: “Company policy? So instead of getting a sales lead you’d rather let company policy get in the way? We’ll give you the lead conversion directly. Your brokers can work them. We just want to capture people that are interested in the property!”
Jill: “It’s company policy. We just can’t link out of an email to a clients website.”
I was worn out by the end of the conversation. I’ll never understand why some people resist to get better, learn, or draw knowledge from others who have significant experience in certain subjects. I know this campaign is a waste. Between Polk Three, the brokerage, and our client, we collectively have about 30 hours in this project. Now we are going to launch a half #$@ campaign that won’t have any traction and more so NO LEADS.
So what can you learn from this? Here are 3 easy best practices for email campaign:
Have 1 call-to-action and make it obvious. This doesn’t have to be obnoxious, but just obvious.
When linking to a landing page, the information has to be VERY relevant to the email campaign they just clicked from. Do not overwhelm them with large amounts of information. Just inform them just enough to want to convert.
Provide a conversion form on the landing page. As humans we are easily distracted, especially online. There can be so much noise (links, videos, downloads, words, etc) that the lead you spent hundreds of dollars to get just escaped your webpage.
There are endless books about email campaign marketing, but these 3 tips could be just the information you needed to get better conversions on your upcoming email campaigns.