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6 Tips to Personalize Emails

Feb 8, 2011   |   1 min read

Knowledge Center  ❯   Blog

Here at Rapleaf, we’ve been thinking a lot about personalization lately. Companies from retail sites to travel sites to email service providers are constantly thinking about how they can offer their customers a more personalized and, therefore better, experience. A recent study by ForeSee Results finds that email still rules in driving traffic to retail sites, leaving search and social media behind.

So how can you personalize your emails and delight your customers? MarketingProfs offers three tips:

  1. Ask subscribers how they’d like to be addressed. “Michael” or “Mike” can make a big difference.
  2. Make sure your list is clean. If the first name of your customers is misspelled or is an initial, it will show up in the email and you will lose points with the customer.
  3. Do not use a subscriber’s name more than once or twice in the email. It will sound weird and unnatural if you use it more often than that.

It’s always a good idea to ask the customers about their preference, but you cannot ask them about everything for fear of annoying them. Often, companies have to guess the customer’s preference based on her search behavior on the site, past purchases on the site and engagement with emails (opens, clicks, visits). You can also try to learn as much about your customers from 3rd party sources such as using Facebook Connect or accessing Rapleaf insight on people.

We recommend taking email personalization to the next level:

  1. Tailor email to the customer’s age and location. We hope you would speak differently to a 24-year-old from San Francisco than a 50-year-old in Kansas City.
  2. Tailor email by the customer’s home ownership status and interests. Is he a home owner who loves gardening or a renter who is an avid backpacker?
  3. Tailor email by the presence of children in the household. Speak differently to doting moms and dads who work hard to provide their children with the best resources they can.

What kinds of tips do you have about personalizing emails? Leave us your tips in the comments!

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