4 Things we learned at the DDMA That will change the way you do email marketing

DDMA Email


01 August 2022 by Team ITG

If you want to learn all about what's hot and happening in the world of data-driven email marketing automation, then the DDMA Email Marketing Automation Summit is one event you want to attend.

Every year, the DDMA host this event for anyone interested in the world of data-driven email marketing. This year, there was a diverse portfolio of speakers. From designers to email marketers to copywriters and neuroscientists. One thing everyone has in common. A sheer passion for email marketing automation.

While only a few managed to bag a boat ride and delicious dinner, we all walked away with valuable insights to elevate our email marketing automation strategy.

Here are the 5 expert tips we learned at the DDMA EMAS 2022:

1. Meet Customer's Primary Needs

The first keynote speaker of the day was April Mullen from MessageBird. April talked us through Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs.

*Source Wikipedia

Using this framework, before moving on to the next marketing phase, we must ensure that our customers meet their psychological and safety needs first. This includes:

  • Ensuring any anxieties associated with your brand are addressed and resolved. This could include easier-to-understand pricing or more straightforward descriptions of services.
  • Can we improve our transactional interactions and add more channels like WhatsApp to address more critical communication?

As we move up the pyramid into "Love & Belonging", April states that this is typically an area that we marketers are exceptionally good at. This is an area where the community is vital. How can we improve in this area?

  • Elevate our customer’s voices. April uses some great examples of organisations that have actively asked their customers to provide personal, uplifting notes to other customers. This creates a beautiful sense of community between customers and enforces affinity with your brand.

At the higher ends of the pyramid, Esteem and Self-actualisation, we move more into celebrating our customer's milestones. Using our brand power to help them become the best versions of themselves.

The key learning we've taken away from this session: Before celebrating and elevating our customers, we must ensure that primary psychological and safety needs are met. Only then can we go on to create a loyal community.

2. Focus audience attention

We're sure you know by now there's a significant link between psychology and marketing. Tim Zuidgeest, Neuromarketer and keynote speaker, proved the correlation between the two markets in incredibly engaging and interactive ways.

Tim explained to us that people can have two types of attention. Top-down & Bottom-up. This has an impact on how we view and interact with emails:

Top-down consumers know what they're looking for and have a target in mind. So, how can we make sure we approach this segment in the right way?

If we have a target, anything that doesn't resemble that target becomes blind to us. Therefore, as marketers, it's more successful for us to use a more blended approach to email banners. As the audience is looking for a particular layout, anything without that layout will be overlooked.

Bottom-up consumers are not particularly looking for something specific, which means their attention will be grabbed by something that stands out. Marketers should use colours and movement within their banners to guide them to the items you want them to notice.

One last excellent tip from Tim was product photography and direction. In an experiment with an image of a drill, we see the image of the drill pointing towards the CTA resulted in a higher conversion percentage.

Wil je Tim ook in actie zien? Op 6 september kun je hem gratis zien op ITG Connect. Bekijk de volledige line-up hier.

3. Zero-party data set to save the day

Beata Linz from Adbirds was one of the highlights of the day. She opened a new innovative world and way of working with email once the dreaded cookie-less era is upon us all.

Since Google announced we would lose third-party cookies in 2023, the classic narrative is that the fallback will be significantly on first-party data. However, many elements of first-party data are also under attack. How long will we be able to measure email behaviour and analyse website journeys through Google Analytics? Beata honed in on something well within our control: Zero-party data. The future-proof option for many organisations.

Different definitions are going on in the market. Zero-party data described the data someone gives to an organisation directly, like name, email, etc. This is what we have been calling explicit first-party data. Beata described first-party data as all contextual data we can extract from customer behaviour, like interest and preferences based on click behaviour, page visits, etc. That's what we've called implicit first-party data.

While data collection might seem like a cumbersome task, Beata brought some incredibly interactive and engaging forms of zero-party data collection; here is a couple:

  • Interactive Games & Quizzes ​
    Many organisations use Quizzes and Games as an interactive way to collect zero-party data on their contacts. "Just ask what your audience wants. In a fun way!".
  • Account Creation
    Another way to collect data on your audience is through account creation. Provide value on the other end and ask all the questions you need for a personalised experience.

For this method to be successful, there are a few considerations we need to make:

  • Continuously capture data in real-time. Our data is of no use to us if it's outdated. Ensure you're continuously asking your users to keep their information as real-time as possible.
  • Only ask for the data you need and use it. The data we collect must be relevant and able to provide your customer with a bespoke experience tailored directly to them. Asking for data and putting it in your desk drawer will only damage your brand image.

Accentura found that 83% of users ARE willing to part with their data in exchange for a personalised experience. Make sure you're asking the right questions in the right way for a headache-free process change in 2023.

4. Design Trends for 2022

The cherry on the cake was Mike Nelson from ReallyGoodEmails. He reviewed the challenges we marketers continue to face and helped those with and without design knowledge understand what's pleasing to our end users. What's inviting, and what are the most significant trends for 2022?

Here are 4 of our favourites:

  • Pastel
    Pastel colours give your brand the image of being comfortable and approachable. Ultimately making users feel less stress when receiving communications or dealing with your organisation.
  • Arches
    Arches have been and will continue to be popular for the next few months. Though they're at risk of the general public getting bored and moving on. The best thing about arches is you can have them pointing towards converting CTA's.
  • Gradients
    Seeing two colours come together gives your audience a joyful feeling. Therefore, evoking a positive image toward your brand.
  • Large Typography
    Large, bold fonts are taking to the stage for 2022. They inject confidence into your brand image. While it's not best practice from a technical perspective, there's more creative freedom in using these as images (for example, for a header).

Are you interested in other data-driven trends for 2022? Download the Email Benchmark 2022 for top tips and predictions for the rest of the year.

On that note…

DDMA EMAS is an engaging and insightful annual experience for all walks of marketing automation, whatever your speciality, whatever your level. The conference is a fantastic reminder that we will never stop learning and how we can tackle the future together.

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