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Deliverability impacts more than inability to communicate with subscribers

We recently completed our 2015 email data quality trends research with 200+ research participants who came from a variety of company sizes and industries. The research study to took a comprehensive look at what poor email deliverability costs an organization, the challenges associated with email collection and email database maintenance, how companies track email marketing success, and different ways to improve subscriber interaction.

Last week we had three of our email industry experts discuss the research and share their insights on our “Email data quality research: Roundtable on industry trends” webinar.

The roundtable focused on four topics: 2015 email trends, common deliverability problems, customer email challenges and dealing with email data quality. Here are some of the key points that were discussed:

Over half of all customer interactions involve more than one channel or brand touch point.

Spencer Kollas, VP of Global Deliverability from Experian Marketing Services, discussed the significance of collecting accurate email data and challenges marketers face when it’s inaccurate. With emails being the primary identifier for digital channels, it’s important that marketers can trust that their email database doesn’t contain harmful or malicious email addresses.

64 percent of companies say the biggest challenge they face with data collection is human error.

Sarah Herlihy, Product Marketing Director at Experian Data Quality, illustrated this fact by sharing an example that we are all familiar with—checking out in a busy retail store where the store associate is trying to capture contact details for stores loyalty program or e-receipt. It’s easy to mistype or miskey an email address when associates are rushing to get customers checked out. There are countless other examples where human error can occur, like on websites, kiosks or hand-written contact data that is difficult to read.

Marketers can manage their email databases proactively and reactively.

With email volume increasing more than 16 percent over the past year, it’s important to have a strategy with a multi-pronged approach. Two examples included marketers being proactive by validating new email addresses at the point of capture and reactive by removing hard bounces from their campaigns.

Email deliverability impacts more than just inability to communicate with subscribers.

Spencer shared common consequences of poor deliverability that marketers face, such as inability to communicate with customers, poor customer service, lost revenue, regulatory hurdles and unnecessary costs. He then went into the other consequences that are not foreseeable and often forgotten about, including low deliverability rates, blacklisting and sender reputation.

Validating emails is crucial for re-engagement campaigns.

Holly Prescott, Premier Customer Account Manager at Experian Data Quality, shared a customer’s story. Her client moved to a new company that had a database full of inactive subscribers. He wanted to do a re-engagement campaign, but was faced with managing the inactive subscribers. He knew that validating the old email addresses was a critical first step for any successful re-engagement campaign.

After his company validated their emails, they were able to verify and segment their database, send a re-engagement campaign to those validated addresses, and provide personalized content based on that segmentation. They were able to reintroduce their brand, personalize it to their subscribers, and remind customers why they were so awesome. At the end, they doubled their conversion rates, in terms of, event signups and dramatically decreased their opt-out rates.

To wrap up the webinar, Spencer, Holly and Sarah answered roundtable and attendee questions including:

  • A lot of organizations are focused on getting to the inbox—and this is true for B2B and B2C clients—in your opinion, what is the most important factor for getting to the inbox?
  • Everybody preaches tracking email marketing efforts, but few actually follow their own advice or are able to do it themselves. How can organizations start tracking email success if they have no idea where to begin?
  • What do you guys think—from your interactions with clients—are the big things to pay attention to in the coming year on email?

To hear the answers, check out the full webinar recording and view the slides from the presentation below.