Compelling Content, Downloads Top Performing Email Marketing

Whether you market in the B2B or B2C space, you likely use email as a primary tactic for lead generation. When used properly, attribution can be tracked from the email open rate to the site visit, and eventual appearance in-store or on your client list. In fact, in 2017, 205 respondents representing Business to Business marketing professionals named email as their top lead generation tactic.

So what should your email include in order to perform better than your competition? With surveys, trivia, or games and loyalty programs at the bottom of the list, many of the ideas that once served you well are becoming obsolete.

Compelling Content for each
Stage of the Buying Process

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56% of respondents named compelling content as the number one priority of any email campaign. Your customers will grow to trust that opening your communications provide a benefit. This may take time and dedication, but loyal clients are well worth it.

Downloadable Content

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Offer the material they just read as a download. But be sure you aren’t just restating already consumed content. The download should be more illustrative, provide further insight, or some other element to surprise and delight the audience — rewarding them for their click and print.

Audience Segmentation

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Not everyone cares about every topic, and your audience should be able to opt in or out by sharing their preferences. You don’t want to send an existing client the introductory offer, or the new client the 20% off for the item they just purchased. Know who you are messaging, and be sure the content of the email is relevant to him or her.

Automations

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Emails should be sent to your clients based on actions they took, or “triggers.” Take the thank you email, for instance. The completion of a transaction should always trigger a message of genuine gratitude for their business, without the hope of something in return.

80% OF MARKETERS IN NORTH AMERICA NAME LEAD GENERATION AND BRAND AWARENESS AS THEIR TOP REASONS FOR CONTENT MARKETING. Begin with these tips for your email campaigns, and measure the results. You’ll find what others have found — that compelling content curated for your exact customer will build trust and the feeling of “special.”

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Your Biggest Marketing Challenges

If you are like most marketing professionals, you know that the list of challenges is long and sometimes overwhelming. As life-long practitioners of the craft, we seek ways to make things easier, better, convert more readily, generate more sales. We champion brands, strive for awareness, and pain to grow engagements. But we aren’t alone. From a North American survey of marketing pros, here is their list of challenges. Maybe it mirrors your own.

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Source: Statista

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How Much of Your Budget is Digital?

In December of 2016, just 25% marketing budgets averaged 70% of their dollars to digital efforts. 11% of those polled responded their budget less than 10% digital. Yet nearly half of the marketers cited content development as a leading tactic in their marketing.

80% of marketers in North America name lead generation and brand awareness as their top reasons for content marketing. But it isn’t enough to develop compelling and engaging content if you don’t take steps to bring your audience to it.

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Ensure that your website is mobile friendly. The smartphone is the preferred access point for 87% of users. If your site can’t be easily viewed and your content easily found while in line for coffee, the site and its architecture needs work. You must build the foundation for your business first, and that foundation is your website.

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Use pixels wisely. A re-messaging pixel is simply a device for finding someone that visited a page of content a second (or third) time. What you re-message these visitors with should be consistent with content they read, and over time introduce new topics and calls to action. These re-messages can drive your audience further down the funnel, introducing concepts or products that will pique interest. But don’t lean to heavily into this budget. Dial the re-messaging up too high, and your audience may be served multiple messages from you on the same page—wasting your precious dollars.

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Social Media is a great place to start if you haven’t dedicated much of your budget to digital. With it you’ll learn how to target an audience, set a budget, and even list-match. These concepts can be expanded more broadly in digital display messaging, as you (and your budget) are ready. But don’t expect to “post and run.” Social media is a long play: you can’t disappear for weeks at a time. You must pay to play in this space, though you can start very small.

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Open the digital floodgates. Sync your social media efforts with your digital display ones, using your learnings about what is most engaging. Segment audiences that you know have a propensity to convert, and experiment with frequencies to influence them to do so.

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Whatever your budget, recognize that when used properly, digital can dramatically reduce the amount of waste in your marketing spend, by highly targeting your exact audience and serving messages in their natural internet travels. Lower cost per acquisition? Check.

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Digital Healthcare Marketing Strategies that Really Work

Constant change has become the norm for healthcare marketers these days, and that trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down as a new administration will inevitably mean changes to the healthcare system. That being said, there is one trend that isn’t going away in digital healthcare marketing, and that’s the focus on the patient. Healthcare has made the shift towards a value-based system, and healthcare organizations depend on patient satisfaction to not only maintain their current patients but to get referrals and gain new ones.

The good news is that organizations that promote themselves digitally will benefit from the increasing consumer involvement in healthcare. Providers are at an advantage, because health is one of the most important topics in people’s lives, and digital marketing is facilitating an exchange of information between these providers and their patients. But what are the best strategies for reaching patients? We’ve outlined some of the most effective ones below:

Storytelling

The goal of many healthcare organizations should be to focus on brand awareness, as well as gaining and retaining patients. The best way to do this is to draw patients in by framing your healthcare facility as a caring and engaged organization. Your story needs to be about putting the patients first. These days, patients are turning to the internet to research their healthcare. By consistently providing them with up-to-date information about diseases and conditions, treatments and procedures, and the doctors and health care professionals in your organization, you can engage the patients that are out there researching. In addition, healthcare marketing is cyclical and should focus on what the patients are experiencing throughout the year. During Mother’s Day, you can run maternity stories, weight loss after the holidays, flu shot information in the winter, and men’s health around Father’s Day. Of course, healthcare organizations need to keep in accordance with HIPAA, so focusing on general and educational information should be the priority.

Video

Don’t forget – content doesn’t just mean the written word. Video marketing is extremely effective for healthcare organizations. Creating videos to post along with your content can greatly enhance your content marketing strategy: according to a study by Moz, posts with videos receive nearly 300% more inbound links. Consider creating patient education videos that explain a complex subject in a short but compelling way, or interview doctors in your office to bring the human factor to your healthcare organization. Make sure to post these videos on your website and share through social platforms like Facebook and YouTube.

Social Media

Engaging with patients means that healthcare organizations need to take it one step further than just posting information on a website. That being said, social media is an important component of healthcare marketing. In fact, 90% of adults 18-24 say they would trust medical information shared by others in their social networks, while 41% of all patients say social media impacts their choice of healthcare providers. Replying to patient concerns in a timely manner is important for healthcare organizations, and encouraging patients to provide feedback on their experience can be an effective social strategy. Healthcare providers should be using social media as one channel to amplify their story. Another great way to use social media to the benefit of a healthcare organization is by creating groups and forums where patients can discuss various aspects of the healthcare field. Keep in mind though, that social media is only effective if it is consistently managed.

Website and Search Engine Optimization

All websites these days are at the mercy of search engine algorithms, and healthcare organizations are no different. If you want your organization to be discovered online, you need to have your website content optimized for that purpose. So what does that mean? In terms of Google specifically, there are two primary metrics: relevance and authority. Relevance is a measure of how relevant your website content is to your business. This used to only be measured through content related to keywords and back-end tags and meta descriptions, but the algorithm has gotten much more sophisticated and can now understand the content as it is related to the intent of the search. Authority is the measure of how trustworthy and valuable a page is based on rankings that include how many times people share or link back to content, how well the site runs, and if it is optimized for mobile usage. In basic terms, the best way to optimize your website is to make sure the content you create to tell your story is valuable, up-to-date, and of good quality.

Email Marketing

The truth is, email marketing is still the standard for business reaching their audience, it just needs to be done in the right way. The best email strategy is a targeted and personalized one that reaches the right audience with the right message. Use personalization techniques that enter in recipient’s names when sending, include a catchy subject line, fill the email with relevant and useful content for the readers. It always goes back to the story and making sure that the patient is getting quality information that aligns with your brand.

By using digital tools to communicate relevant information and educate your patients, you will inevitably build relationships that will help you retain your current patient base and build a community of well-informed and engaged patients that are loyal to your organization.

Developing Healthcare Strategies

Every day, hospital and healthcare clients are running dozens of parallel tracks with their marketing strategies, each with its own purpose, but feeding the overall goals of the institution. At Advance 360, we understand that these plans need to be integrated and in sync to deliver results for our clients.

As such, we segment our strategy and campaign to mirror these parallel tracks within the organization — each with their own key performance indicators that dictate performance success;  from positioning the institution’s expertise to customizing the message, targeting different geographies and audiences.

Learn how we’ve crafted successful campaigns for our healthcare partners.

PRACTICUM: AN ILLUSTRATION ON HOW STRATEGIES ARE BUILT

Client: Community Hospital 

Statement of Need, Provided by Client: The hospital, employing 1100 staffers, was suffering from years of disjointed marketing, high turnover among the c-suite staff and vanishing public trust; all of which was punctuated by the lowest employee engagement scores that the institution had experienced, creating poor morale. Not surprising, market share was slipping and profits dropping.

Research and Analysis: We performed a scientific sentiment analysis to understand public perception and trust for the brand and also identify their top competitors for consumer mindshare. We also implemented web, social media and SEO audits, along with an intensive review of creative. Analysis was performed
on employee communications including email open rates, engagement numbers were researched extensively and we analyzed trends over the past five years. Workflow in the Human Resources Department and Marketing Department were reviewed and the onboarding of new physicians was studied. We built a market share analyzation tool to show dips in performance and emerging trends in real time. Six branding workshops with all levels of hospital staff were performed, and sentiment collected. Analysis of influence-able areas (noted from market share tool) was scrubbed against population data to identify priority service areas. Material researched by third party firms over the last 12 years was studied and cataloged.

Findings: The hospital had hundreds upon hundreds of incredibly talented front line staff that were all present for the right reasons. But, long-term unrest around an unstable leadership team had taken its toll on morale and the vast majority were disenfranchised. Service lines that were found to be a priority by the board were confirmed by Advance 360 as those that would create the lift required: neurology, oncology, orthopedics, general surgery. Physician on boarding contained numerous disconnects between new and old staff. An understanding of the “why” of the people inside the hospital and the hospital itself was established. Sagging recruitment had to be revitalized. The website experience contained unfriendly user experience, and the SEO tactics employed fell short of best practices. Paid search was nonexistent. In short, every piece of the hospital’s work was in need of refreshing. Our work needed to be precise and swift, and generate a lift of 7% revenue growth overall (a number determined by the board of directors.)

Action Plan:

  • Advance 360 developed a strategy and campaign for three key segments: internal (staff), external (public) and recruitment (public / conquest) including:

Internal

  • New templates for employee communications and emails.
  • Agenda flow, and production of the annual all staff meeting.
  • Internal staff interviewed and featured in social media, the staff section of the website, and publicly in front of peers.
  • The “speak up” program was revitalized.
  • Infographics and other creative elements were generated to tell the story of the hospital’s community engagements.
  • Employees were pixeled using communications and contesting, and remessaged all of the above information with a purposeful frequency.

Recruitment

  • Website was built to accommodate new traffic.
  • Landing pages established by posted job.
  • Job postings retooled and new placements made.
  • Other community hospitals of similar size were targeted with display campaigns as “feeder locations” for staff.
  • Creative established, using diverse imagery and positions, and placed appropriately to the audiences. In nearly all cases, “high tech” images as well as “emotion/staff subject matter” were A/B tested to maximize impact.
  • Materials were developed for the on boarding process to create the necessary lift.

External

Each service line was assessed and materials developed to achieve the desired lift, for a blended revenue gain of 7%. These included, but were not limited to, infographics, video, whitepapers, sponsored content, articles, blog entries, social media vignettes and photo galleries. Doctors were featured. Overlap with the staff videos from internal campaign were reused in a public sense, based on the service line for which the staff person was employed. Display campaigns were developed with emotion, credibility and logic touch points in mind, and A/B testing was deployed in nearly every instance. Nothing short of a “collection of goods” describing the assets of the hospital, the talents of the staff, procedures that could be provided, and each and every piece pixeled, placed and analyzed.