Health systems are implementing a variety of new email programs designed to enhance their brands, increase referrals, and build stronger relationships across the medical community. In a recent post we discussed email strategy, or what healthcare marketers need to do to make these campaigns successful. Key elements include building share of voice, driving brand engagement, and integrating your marketing channels.
Today we’ll look at email tactics, or how to accomplish those objectives. A/B testing, identifying the ideal frequency for your emails, and deploying at the right time top the list.
Test, Then Test Again
Whether you’re sending email to in-system physicians and allied health professionals, CME registrants, or new recruits, ongoing testing helps you continually refine your message to make it more relevant and compelling for your audiences.
You can test after deployments, or even in the middle of a deployment by sending different versions of your email to two subgroups of your overall list. Testing will indicate which version produces better results, and you can then deploy that email to the remainder of your list.
Specifically, A/B testing is used to:
- Establish benchmarks
- Analyze measurable data
- Evaluate different marketing messages
- Pinpoint and improve weak spots in email campaigns
- Leverage behavioral insights to design future deployments
When healthcare professionals see that your email messages consistently address their unique needs and interests, they begin to trust your voice. Over time this builds loyalty, which in turn increases your share of voice in your target market.
Similarly, testing your calls to action (CTAs) lets you identify the wording, color, and placement that get the best response. The results may also apply to other channels. For instance, the color that is most effective in your email CTAs may be equally effective in social media. As you continue to fine-tune these elements of your digital campaigns, you’ll drive greater brand engagement.
Determine the Best Frequency
In the health system environment, knowing how often to email specific audiences is critical. When you send too few emails, they may go unnoticed or quickly be forgotten. When you send too many, you risk annoying your readers.
As you complete more deployments, you’ll begin to recognize the best frequency. If analyzing your email data reveals that you usually get feedback – either opens or click-throughs – you can probably send more. But if those metrics are decreasing, it may be time to back off.
Regardless, it’s important to offer valuable content in every deployment. If you don’t have enough quality content to support frequent emails, it’s best to limit deployments until you do.
Time Deployments Right
The time of day and day of week you choose to deploy an email will influence your open rates. The ideal deployment window varies depending on who you’re trying to reach, so we recommend reviewing your data by specialty and other segmentation criteria to determine when you get the most opens and click-throughs for each of your audiences.
The combination of consistent, thorough testing, and a detailed understanding of your audience’s frequency and time/day preferences will help you achieve your goals of increasing share of voice, driving brand engagement, and multi-channel optimization.