News Roundup_ Netflix, GDPR, Personalization, Unsubscribes & Avoiding Mistakes

News Roundup: Netflix, GDPR, Personalization, Unsubscribes & Avoiding Mistakes

Curious about what makes Netflix’s email-marketing strategy successful? Want insights into how GDPR is impacting email marketers? Need alternatives to unsubscribe confirmation messages? Want to make fewer mistakes and/or boost ROI? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, read on!

How Netflix wins with email marketing
When it comes to streaming television, Netflix is large and in charge. Fueled by income from more than 125 million subscribers, it can churn out a seemingly endless variety of original programming. And, according to Seamas Egan, writing at Forbes, its success is largely fueled by its expertise at email marketing, which plays a pivotal role in growing – and maintaining – the streaming giant’s huge audience. Egan has praise for the way Netflix uses personalization, segmentation, and design – and for its willingness to take risks.

“For marketers, understanding their audience through the data and information they already have is critical — that is the heart of Netflix’s success,” Egan writes. “Netflix is able to generate excitement by knowing its audience and segmenting viewers. It’s able to keep our attention through skim-friendly content and by adding animated GIFs to emails, something that has even been shown to increase revenue. Consider these key components of Netflix’s email marketing program to help grow your brand.”

Questions remain following GDPR implementation; here are some answers
GDPR is now in full force, but questions remain. To address them, Kyle Henderick of MarTech Today had a Q&A with Kara Alvarez, of Yes Lifecycle Marketing. The result is a conversation that touches on topics including how GDPR treats personal data and personally identifiable information (PII), the challenge marketers face to balance compliance with GDPR and personalization, and the implications of not having met the GDPR deadline.

GDPR implementation has been resulting in list attrition
“According to a pair of new studies, efforts to comply with the European Union’s new GDPR regulations are leading to huge attrition in existing email lists,” writes David Z. Morris at Fortune, citing a study that found that 23% of Americans are using GDPR-related opt-in messages as a “chance to unsubscribe from email lists” and another indicating that “only 15% to 20% of Americans are even opening” the messages. “The effects can be truly devastating for companies — one marketing firm told CNBC that its clients have lost up to 80% of contacts,” Morris writes, but he adds that “This could wind up being a one-time dip, though, as new subscribers click through the new opt-in messaging with as little attention as we’ve ever given to online privacy warnings.”

Unsubscribe confirmation messages are passé, but there are better options
“If you’re still sending unsubscribe confirmations, you’re likely just annoying people,” writes Ryan Phelan at Marketing Land. “Sending an unsubscribe confirmation made sense at one time in email marketing. But that was in the mid-1990s to early 2000s, before marketers could manage their email programs on their websites instead of through list actions.”

As alternatives, Phelan suggests posting a compelling message on your unsubscribe page to try to convince subscribers to stay, offering options for modifying subscriptions or using user forums and other settings to invite customers to join you on your social media channels. But he also cautions that some customers require notification that they have successfully unsubscribed, such as those who are seeking to end a legal or financial association. And: “If you offer a paid service, like a paid or recurring subscription service, an (unsubscribe confirmation) email reassures the customer by confirming that their financial obligation is over.”

Tips for heading off common email marketing mistakes
Writing at Business 2 Community, Maria Mora looks at 11 common email marketing mistakes and offers 41 suggestions to address them. The mistakes she cites include not segmenting lists, not A/B testing, using emails for selling instead of informing, including too many calls to action, failing to track analytics, and making emails too long. She writes that many of those mistakes can be headed off by respecting your recipients. “Testing frequently, nailing your frequency, providing value in the content you send and personalizing your messages are important, but it all comes back to respect,” she concludes. “Respect your contacts and much of this will fall into place naturally.”

Personalization + automation = higher ROI
“When you combine personalization with email marketing automation, you take email campaigns to new heights,” writes Campaign Monitor’s Andrew King at Business 2 Community. “Subscribers are more likely to open, click, and convert as a result of receiving messages that are tailored to their interests and values.” King advises email marketers who want to boost ROI to take advantage “advanced techniques” that include website tracking snippets, behavioral segment builders, segment-triggered automation and dynamic content.