AI In Email Marketing: 5 Benefits + Tools You Should Know
Pop culture has portrayed artificial intelligence as this intimidating technology taking over humans. Or as this awe-inspiring far-fetched idea straight from the future. But the future has arrived, and how! Businesses and tech companies are pushing the limits of artificial intelligence. They are experimenting with creative applications of AI in the business landscape. One such is the use of AI in email marketing, and that’s what we will discuss in this blog.
Email marketing is decades old. The first-ever email marketing campaign is reportedly from 1978. This was even before the internet and search became a thing. We’ve seen how disruptive technologies arrive and replace traditional methods. But email marketing has managed to stand the test of time.
However, with the introduction of every new technology, email marketing has evolved. It is now easier to optimize the approach, automate the process and improve the effectiveness of email marketing campaigns. Can we say the same with the introduction of AI in email marketing? What aspects of email marketing can AI make better and how? Read on to find out all the answers.
- AI in email marketing – 3 challenges AI can help overcome
- Unleashing the potential of AI in email marketing – 5 tips and tools
- Transform your marketing email strategy with AI email marketing tools + a Kimp subscription
AI in email marketing – 3 challenges AI can help overcome
To understand where a new technology like AI can be helpful, let’s talk about the common email marketing challenges that businesses face.
- High bounce rate – this refers to the percentage of emails that do not get delivered. Higher the bounce rate, the more the chances of your mail being marked as spam in the future. Validating the emails in your email lists and updating the lists from time to time helps prevent both hard bounce and soft bounce.
- Low open rates – when most of your emails go unopened, again the chances of your email being marked as spam increases. Low open rates can occur due to improper personalization, bad subject lines, and outdated email lists. This could also happen when you send out too many emails or if the emails are consistently irrelevant. Average open rates are expected to be higher than 20.94% but this also depends on the industry your business belongs to.
- Poor engagement – when your email lists are not segmented, personalizing the content for your audience becomes difficult. And generic content might not bring the engagement you expect.
Most of these challenges can bring down the effectiveness of an email campaign. Considering the fact that almost 89% of marketers consider emails the main source of lead generation, it’s important to overcome these common email marketing challenges. And AI can be of help in that.
Unleashing the potential of AI in email marketing – 5 tips and tools
You are investing a lot of time, money, and effort into creating the most efficient email marketing strategy for your brand. From choosing the right colors to creating designs that convert, you pay attention to several things to help your marketing emails convert better.
As you work toward fine-tuning your marketing emails to suit your brand and campaign, you should also be sure that you are sending out these emails to the right people at the right time. And that’s where you can feel the strength of AI in email marketing. The following 5 areas are where AI can help.
1. Email personalization
Personalization is a broad term that’s loosely used in several places in email marketing. When you dig deeper, you know that personalization helps increase open rates and click-through rates. With your email campaigns converting better, the sales cycles are shorter and the cost-effectiveness of your email marketing strategy is better as well.
The more the number of parameters you consider for segmenting your audience demographics for email campaigns, the better. In fact, businesses aim not for personalization in email marketing but for hyper-personalization.
While it is possible to manually interpret historic data and take measurable steps for personalization, AI makes it simpler. So, one of the main uses of AI in email marketing is personalization.
With AI you can sift through larger volumes of data and make decisions based on more parameters beyond superficial demographic identifiers.
For example, the email marketing tool provided by Optimove helps personalize your email campaigns. This includes customization of the content based on previous email interactions and real-time personalization for specific campaigns.
Lyne.ai is another tool for leveraging AI in email marketing. It helps send personalized cold emails in order to improve response rates. Moreover, cold emails often fail because they are irrelevant to customers. Lyne helps process prospecting data and personalize subject lines for better open rates.
2. Email segmentation
We spoke about the personalization of aspects like the subject line and the content of an email. But email segmentation comes before that. From the bulk of email ids you have, you need to appropriately segregate your audience into groups based on parameters like:
- Basic demographics
- Lead maturity level
- Email interaction (previous instances of opening emails and clicking them)
- Purchase history
- Prior spending patterns
This is one other potential of AI in email marketing. With AI-powered tools, you can monitor nuances like the sites the respective users visit and the actions they take, their browsing and purchase history, combined with basic demographics like geographical location, gender, etc. And with all these observations, the email lists can then be segmented for better email targeting.
All these functionalities are possible because pattern recognition is one of the capabilities of artificial intelligence. AI can identify patterns that the human eye sometimes misses especially considering the massive data volumes in email lists. Moreover, AI can also help make real-time changes to these lists based on any change in customer behavior.
For example, the AI-powered tool, Sendinblue helps segment your email lists for more targeted email campaigns. It does this by evaluating socio-economic traits as well as purchase behaviors of the users in the email lists. This helps both in relevant targeting and retargeting.
Using AI in email marketing to better segment your email lists brings the following benefits:
- Save time by leaving the tedious email segmentation task to AI
- Save money by not targeting large groups that might not really be interested in a particular campaign
- Improve conversions by sending emails only to relevant consumers thus increasing the chances of these consumers taking an action.
3. Maintain email list hygiene
When it comes to email marketing, most brands think about ways to gather relevant email ids for cold email campaigns and list segmentation for targeting. But there’s one crucial step that comes after all this and this step is often overlooked – email list updation.
Maintaining the list hygiene involves rechecking the gathered email ids for invalid ids, unsubscribed users, and risky ids that can affect the email campaigns.
These are important markers because when ignored, they lead to an increase in email bounce rates which in turn affects the performance of an email marketing strategy.
While these checks can be made manually, automating them by using AI in email marketing saves time and effort. Moreover, these checks can be done more frequently and automatically to keep the email lists up-to-date at all times. This way, when you have a major campaign coming up, your list will be ready and relevant.
For example, NeverBounce provides bulk email list clean-up. In addition to cleaning and downloading your existing email lists, you can use the tool to quickly execute real-time verification of registered ids from various sources like registration forms, newsletter signups and more.
Based on the set parameters and rules the tool can also automatically remove invalid emails and therefore reduce the chances of your email budget being wasted due to a dirty email list.
Xverify takes the list cleanup process one step ahead by instantly verifying email ids, identifying their quality, and narrowing down temporary email ids. The tool can also automatically block set domains and provide detailed reports that make it easier to understand your updated email lists better.
4. Email content creation
Sales representatives reportedly spend about 21% of their workday drafting emails. They need even more time to personalize these campaigns and tweak them based on the audience segments. With the use of AI in email marketing, this huge chunk of time can be spared.
Data shows that about 347.3 billion emails are sent and received daily. And your marketing emails are competing with these billions of emails. So, for your email to stand out, it should have a catchy subject line and engaging content. Both these are easier to achieve with the help if AI-powered email content creation tools.
These tools also help personalize your email copies for various audience groups. Small changes or big – these tools ensure that the content feels relevant to the target audience segment.
For example, Phrasee is one such generative AI tool that helps create email content for your marketing campaigns. An additional benefit here is that you can also achieve consistency in the tone of voice so that all your emails sound like your brand and therefore help in building your brand identity. Therefore they help nurture better customer relationships without your emails sounding generic.
With the right copy, you also need the right graphics in the form of images and videos to have your audience hooked. To keep them coming back for more.
A Kimp subscription is just what you need for designing on-brand visually memorable email graphics.
5. Scheduling your emails
Sometimes you have the right content and the right segments for targeted campaigns and yet your emails do not perform as expected. Something as simple as the time of delivery of these emails can affect the performance of your email strategy.
Yes, there is an “optimal time” to send your emails. And this varies based on different target audience segments and different geographic locations, industries, and so on. For example, data shows that 53% of emails are opened by users during typical work hours (between 9 am and 5 pm).
While this is just an overview based on a broad dataset, monitoring your email campaigns and the instances where customers open your emails and interact with them will provide more accurate inputs. Otherwise, most of your emails end up getting delivered when your target user is not online. So, by the time the user gets back online, there are several more emails shrouding yours.
The use of AI in email marketing helps avoid these hassles.
For example, if you use HubSpot for your marketing email management, Seventh Sense is a machine-learning-powered tool that helps optimize the delivery of your marketing emails. Based on the email triggers and other rules, this tool can help schedule your marketing emails for optimal conversions and engagement.
Tools like these ensure that the personalized emails delivered to your carefully segmented audience lists are also delivered at the right time for better open rates.
Transform your marketing email strategy with AI email marketing tools + a Kimp subscription
To sum it up, for better returns on your email marketing investment you need:
- Better segmentation of email lists
- Regular updation of email lists
- Content that converts
- Optimal scheduling of the emails
- And accurate testing for improving your approach
While all these manage to get your emails noticed by your audience, the content of your emails determines if a user progresses from there to the next step. In other words, the conversion depends on the content. This includes relevant and easy-to-understand copy as well as clear visuals that help break down the content into easily consumable sections.
At this stage, we’d also like to highlight the fact that your emails are not stand-alone parts of your marketing strategy. They need to work in harmony with the rest of your marketing materials like digital ads and print ads. That’s when beyond conversions your emails also help shape your brand image.
For this, you need your email graphics to play the part accurately. They need to be consistent with your promotional assets and also need to align with your email copies perfectly.
If you are looking for an easy way to achieve this, choose a Kimp subscription. A single monthly bill covers all the promotional graphics for your brand.
Register now for a free 7-day trial of Kimp subscriptions.