This is the second post in our series on how pharma marketers can get more from email by integrating it across multiple marketing channels. We’ve already discussed strategies for optimizing the email channel (i.e., what you need to do to run a successful email campaign). Today we’re going to take a look at how to accomplish those objectives. Then, in our final post of this series, we’ll explore some best practices for executing your email campaigns.
To recap, a solid email strategy involves building you share of voice, driving brand engagement, and integrating your marketing channels. This is how you can achieve your goals:
Test, Test, Test
Smart email marketers use testing to establish benchmarks, analyze measurable data, identify and improve soft spots in their campaigns, test a variety of marketing messages, and leverage individual HCP behavioral insights to design future deployments.
Ongoing testing helps you continually refine your message to make it more relevant and compelling for different audiences. When HCPs see that your messages consistently speak to their specific needs or wants, they begin to trust your voice. Over time this builds loyalty, which ultimately increases your share of voice in your target market.
Likewise, you can apply testing procedures to your CTAs to determine which wording, color, or placement gets the best response. As your CTAs become more and more effective, you’ll achieve greater brand engagement. Plus, by testing your email, you can apply your learnings to other channels. For example, if one color was more effective in your email, you can use that color in social media to see if you can increase your engagement on that channel as well.
You can test after each deployment, or even in the middle of a deployment with an A/B test. For A/B tests, send different versions of your email to two small groups belonging to your overall list. Determine which email delivered greater results. Then deploy that email to the remainder of your list.
Identify the Ideal Frequency
Knowing how often to email your HCPs also plays a critical role in building share of voice and increasing brand engagement. If you send too few emails, they may go unnoticed or be quickly forgotten. If you send too many, you risk annoying your audience. Forget responding to CTAs, an irritated HCP will delete your email before ever opening it.
Fortunately, the more deployments you do, the better you’ll understand how much is too much. If you analyze the data and discover that you usually get feedback – whether opens or click-throughs – you can probably send more. On the other hand, if those metrics are dropping, you may have hit the saturation point and may need to back off. Either way, you should offer quality content in every deployment. If you don’t have enough rich content to support frequent emails, it’s best to limit deployments until you do.
Choose the Best Time and Day to Deploy
Open rates are also affected by the time of the day and the day of the week you choose to deploy an email. The best time and day varies by specialty, so analyze your data to determine when you get the most opens and click-throughs for each of your specific audiences. If you use a rep-triggered program, your sales reps can also evaluate this information relative to their specific HCPs. (For another perspective, read Eric Dezendorf’s article on the relationship between timing and email success in Marketing Land.)
Consistent, thorough testing, plus a detailed understanding of your audience’s frequency and time/day preferences will help you achieve your goals of a greater share of voice, brand engagement, and cross-channel optimization.