Marketers have more channels than ever before to reach customers–from social media to digital advertising to new mediums like voice-enabled devices and beyond. It can be difficult to know what to prioritize, but according to our recent State of the Connected Customer Report, customers prefer email. That’s why it’s no surprise that email is the top ROI driver for marketers–for every $1 a company invests in it, the return is $42.
Today, we’re excited to introduce new Marketing Cloud email innovations, including several Einstein features, interactive email integrated from our Rebel acquisition and productivity updates for marketers to more efficiently personalize email campaigns and improve customer engagement. Let’s dive deeper into each.
Einstein Innovations Deliver New Levels of Personalization Across Email Content and Journeys
Marketing campaigns can take up to two weeks to develop and deploy. Copywriting takes up the most time for the majority of marketers, followed by email conception and planning and graphic design. Innovations in marketing automation are speeding up the process, and now artificial intelligence (AI) can optimize everything across images, copy and optimal send-times to improve customer engagement. Our latest Einstein innovations help marketers work even smarter, freeing them from mundane, time-consuming tasks so they can spend more time creating campaigns that will resonate with customers.
· Einstein Content Selection: Automatically recommends which visual assets to use throughout every part of an email, personalized to customers based on their preferences and behaviors. Marketing emails have different images and content that are placed strategically to get a customer to take action. Einstein Content Selection takes the guesswork out of what images to use and where to place them.
· Einstein Copy Insights: Uses natural language processing (NLP) to find the best words and phrases to include in email subject lines, text messages and social media copy to attract customers and encourage them to interact with marketing messages. Developing enticing subject lines, text messages and social media copy can be a guessing game. Marketers will be able to get insights about what copy is landing with their audiences and receive recommended replacements to optimize their messages.
· Einstein Messaging Insights: Notifies marketers when email journeys or messages are underperforming or overperforming and recommends actions to improve the effectiveness of email campaigns. For example, Einstein Messaging Insights can share an alert when the open rate for an email campaign is lower than expected. The feature presents correlated factors contributing to low performance, such as a lack of personalization in the subject line. It also recommends actions to take like adjusting the send date to boost engagement.
“Email plays a huge role in the customer experience–starting with understanding our customers through deciding what we should be talking with them about. Salesforce’s AI-powered content selection feature allows us to curate highly personalized conversations within our marketing emails,” said Tim Delles, Senior Manager for Email Strategy and Innovation at Orvis. “We’ve been able to rethink our approach to email as we continue to think outside the box.”
New Interactive Email Transforms Email Into a Two-Way Channel For Customers to Share Feedback Without Leaving the Inbox
Customers love interactive emails. They’re personalized, dynamic and engaging. For these reasons, creating interactive email experiences is a top email design trend. But what is interactive email exactly? Interactive email allows customers to take action directly within an email, versus being sent to a website, mobile app or other digital channel. Now, marketers can turn emails into an extension of their website or app–gathering customer feedback through surveys, polls and more while removing friction from the conversion process and enhancing the customer experience.
Last fall, Salesforce acquired Rebel, a leader in interactive email. We’re thrilled to announce that Rebel’s technology will soon be integrated into Marketing Cloud. Available in Pilot early next year, marketers will be able to leverage the new Interactive Email feature when building personalized email marketing journeys with Email Studio and Journey Builder to drive engagement.
“At Rentpath, we take pride in presenting our customers with rental options that they are most interested in,” said Shanna Thompson, Email Marketing Manager at Rentpath. “With Salesforce’s interactive email technology, we are able to better understand which properties a customer prefers after viewing them. By making it easy for customers to share their comments without ever having to leave one of our emails, we are able to get instant feedback and apply it right away.”
New Productivity Capabilities Help Marketers Easily Troubleshoot and Deploy Email Campaigns Faster
One reason building and deploying email campaigns can be time consuming is that they are often developed from scratch–even when they can occasionally be templatized, such as with recurring event promotions. Another reason is because campaigns take time to check for accuracy, which is often done manually. The following two new capabilities allow marketers to create their own email marketing journey templates, and enable them to easily test and validate campaigns to eliminate errors that can lead to customer attrition.
- Journey Templates: Marketers can now create journey templates to share across the organization to quickly build and deploy campaigns. For example, a marketer whose company has similar events taking place throughout the country can use the same journey path and content, but apply it to a different audience at a different time. And with Einstein, marketers will be able to create smarter journey templates with recommended content, text or journey paths as campaigns are deployed.
- Testing and Validating: Getting a marketing email with poorly formatted text, the wrong name in the greeting line or a terribly irrelevant offer is a sure way to lose a customer. With new testing and validating features to help troubleshoot email marketing journeys, marketers can quickly make sure that their campaigns are flawless before deploying them. Testing and validating automatically identifies errors and what needs to be adjusted prior to activating a campaign, such as a missing name associated with an email address.
“At United Way, we bring together people, nonprofits, businesses and governments to fight for the health, education, and financial stability of their communities. Email is an essential tool in reaching these groups, as well as donors, and engaging them with rich and personalized content,” said Amy Floryan, Director of Digital Engagement at United Way. “With Salesforce Marketing Cloud, we’ve revolutionized our email marketing strategy, achieving a 90% increase in open rates targeting new donors and a 42% increase in click-to-open rates targeting new leads. Now, with new Journey Templates, we’re able to save time on implementing campaigns and reduce human error by being able to copy pre-built Journeys and share them with our local United Ways around the world.”
- See the behind-the-scenes story: How Salesforce Innovates in an Unlikely Place: The Inbox
- Check out the Marketing Cloud demo featuring some of our newest innovations here
- Learn more about our new Marketing Cloud Einstein features on Trailhead
- Learn more about our productivity features here: Journey Templates & Testing and Validating
- Learn more about Salesforce for Marketing here
- Learn more about Salesforce Einstein here
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