Holiday Email Best Practices for Financial Institutions

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☑ Are the recipients the target audience of the email?

Similar to sending your emails to engaged recipients, you want to be sure they’re also the target audience to receive the email’s content. The more targeted you are with who of your audience you want to engage, the higher the likelihood that they will open, click, and convert as a lead. They’ll recognize the message is personalized and tailored to their needs and demographics, which boosts your financial institution’s credibility and helps build trust with your audience. After all, 88% of consumers say they’re more likely to shop with brands that deliver personalized and connected cross-channel experiences.

Yes, there are the business-wide newsletters, promotional offers, and company events that you want everyone to see. However, put yourself in your customer and prospects’ shoes: they’ll pay more attention to your emails (and financial offerings) if they know it will have value specifically pertaining to them. Are local branches doing a holiday gift drive? Send emails to customers within those regions. Consider generational gaps and life events associated with each; first-time homebuyers are more likely to be millennials, while those preparing for retirement lean toward baby boomers. Treat them the way they expect to be treated, just like if they were to walk into an in-person consultation with you.

☑ Is this email part of an intentional strategy?

This is particularly important as email marketing gets more sophisticated and predicted engagement has more weight in the deliverability outcome. Tied into the above checkbox about sending to your target audience, you simply have to be intentional with your strategy about who gets what email when–and seriously, it’ll show during the fight to the inbox when you’re competing against less savvy marketers using the good ol’ batch-and-blast approach.

If you’re sending an email to a prospect, you need to know where in the customer journey they currently are to provide them with the most relevant, valuable information. Did they use your holiday budget calculator? Instead of outright pushing your financial products in the follow-up emails, keep the content information-focused and relevant to holiday budgets with sprinkles of how your business can assist them, like with a debit card that offers great cash back rewards at favorite retailers. If they click for more information about that debit card, you can set up your marketing automation platform so that triggers the next email to have more emphasis on the offering.

It’s equally important to recognize where in the customer journey your current customers are, too, so your emails can continually keep them engaged. Did someone start an application for one of your holiday loans, but didn’t complete it for whatever reason? Send them a reminder email and invite to connect if they have any questions about the process or loan. [Did you know only 17% of banks and credit unions have an application abandonment campaign, but up to 97% of consumers abandon loan applications? There’s an opportunity to shine!]

How about new customers? Emails they receive will be structured around onboarding to the financial institution, including introductory information, welcoming sentiments, website and resource navigations, account management, and how they can get the most value out of the financial products they now have. Subsequent emails can include holiday-inspired upsells that draw on their engagement activities from these onboarding emails, and assist with building their persona made up of digital breadcrumbs.

As you aim to move your targeted audience through the funnel and closer to a product decision, it’s essential to know where they currently are in the journey to best deliver the right content at the right time. Remember: deliverability is increasingly more dependent on recipients’ predicted engagement–the better strategy you have to engage them, the better response with engagement, the better placement in the inbox.



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