Why marketers need to stop fretting over email open rates

If you’re still fretting over email open and click-through rates to drive conversions, you're barking up the wrong marketing tree. Instead, we should all be figuring out how to implement AI into our long-term strategies, argues Oli Bridge, growth manager at Bonjoro.

The average open rate for email is just 22-24%, according to MailChimp. That means for every 1,000 people receiving your marketing email, only 240 will open it. Even worse, with an average click rate of 2-4%, only 20-40 people out of 1,000 are actually engaging with the content you have spent valuable time and money creating.

Which begs the question – is email the best way of engaging with your hard-earned leads?

In an era dominated by inbound, any marketer is handling huge volumes of data. The trick now is about finding, sorting, and using the right data, and personalising the experience for those customers that matter.

Identify your anonymous browsers

Your relationship with a specific customer begins before they have even provided you with their email address. Before you even know their name.

The technology already exists to not only identify anonymous web traffic, but also uncover which visitors are the right fit for your business.

Much like the Hogwarts Sorting Hat, this allows marketers to pick out qualified opportunities already in the consideration phase of their journey, then surprise them, and only them, with personalised content, delivered through Live Chat, or by dynamically updating a company’s homepage for each new, anonymous user that visits. Is there a more efficient way to filter qualified leads swiftly through the sales and marketing funnel?

Guillaume Cabane, former VP of growth at Segment, led this conversation at Dublin’s SaaStock conference. Cabane’s vision is to create personalised experiences that delight people, even before they have actively engaged with your brand.

This includes the ability to send physical gifts, like a cup of coffee, to prospective customers, based on a combination of intent and location data. His response to the spam issue here is great: “It’s still spam, but at least you can drink it!”

Using AI to take predictive lead scoring to the next level

Rather than wasting time worrying about how to get a lead to open an email, by working with the right data, we can identify and prioritise the leads most likely to actually end up in a sale.

AI and predictive analytics decrease the noise for marketers and sales teams, helping identify the leads that best fit a customer profile more accurately than any human by using in-app behavior and demographic data.

I heard last week how one B2B company used predictive analytics to land one of its biggest accounts ($10m+) ever, because the AI system it was using (Madkudu in this instance) had correctly identified a random web visitor from India as a key opportunity, based on a collection of seemingly arbitrary data points.

Just a few years ago this visitor would have been completely anonymous. We now have the tools at our disposal to identify, and interact with that person. Sure, an intelligent human could make the same judgement given enough time, but not thousands of times every day.

Just like email once revolutionised the industry, technology continues to change the way we connect with consumers. But rather than seeing these changes as threats, marketers should instead embrace the opportunity to step forward and connect with customers in new and more engaging ways.

Here at Bonjoro we’re helping our clients hit that very same sweet spot between automation and personalisation. We’re not shunning email altogether, rather enhancing the way it’s used by businesses as a tool for customer engagement. On average our customers experience open rates of 77%, and click-throughs of 47%, which shows the enormous power of personalised video content.

But the truly exciting part is that, like personalised Live Chat and AI driven predictive lead-scoring, Bonjoro is driving a much deeper customer experience. It humanises the brand’s interaction with the customer, resulting not only in a huge impact on bottom line, but more vitally increased customer loyalty and word of mouth.

Business in the modern age happens at scale. Big data is here to stay, and any successful business worth its salt is going to have to learn how to implement solutions like these. And those who do it best will be more human, more personal, and more connected to their customers than ever.

Oli Bridge looks after growth at Bonjoro.


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.