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06 May

Guide to Collecting Data on Customers to Use in Email Marketing

Stripo / Blog / Guide to Collecting Data on Customers to Use in Email Marketing

Personalized offers in emails have already replaced generic promo emails. Probably, because they increase conversion by 10-14%. Or because we all treat our subscribers with respect and want to provide them with only relevant content.

To build one, you need to know users’ preferences, interests, and lots of other useful information about them.

In this article, we will tell you how to collect data for using in email marketing, and how to use it for building newsletters that your consumers find relevant.

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Why collect customer data?

Let's take a look at the main reasons why collecting email subscribers’ data is crucial here.

Reason 1 — to make your emails more personal

To make the connection with the client stronger, it is important to create a sense of personal communication through email. Simply addressing by name in subject lines makes your clients feel appreciated and increases OR by 26%.

Data Collection for Email Segmentation_Addressing by Names in Subject Lines

You can also address by name in the email body.

To do so, you just need to add merge tags in emails.

Data Collection for Email Marketers_Adding Merge Tags in Emails to Address by Names

Add merge tags to address by names in emails
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Reason 2 — to make the email more relevant

Just addressing by names alone in the email body won’t help. Make sure your content is relevant.

For example, knowing the gender and location of your subscribers will be of substantial use, as well as knowing the product items your customers have already bought from you.

Email Marketing with Data Collection_Personalized Offers

(Source: Email from Gap)

Reason 3 — to celebrate clients’ birthday and milestones

Congratulate the clients on their birthdays with a holiday email, offer a discount or a gift — to do so you need more data about the clients.

Collecting Data on Customers for Email Marketing_Congratulating Customers on Birthdays

(Source: Email-competitors)

Reason 4 — to increase customer engagement and conversion

You can create an email that will be interesting to customers and will encourage them to take action: Go to the website, make a purchase, or at least open and read the email to the end.

What data on customers to collect?

For building relevant offers, you need to know customers’ preferences and interests. For example, if a company sells pet supplies, information about what pet your clients own will be very useful. And if you happen to know what your client's pet eats and what accessories it prefers, communication becomes much more pleasant and useful.

1. Customers’ personal information

  • name, phone number, email;

  • demographic data — gender, age, date of birth;

  • geographic location;

  • information about the job —position, possibly the name of the company;

  • profiles on social networks.

2. Psychological portrait of the client

  • Client’s family data

This sub-clause includes the marital status of the subscriber, the presence of children. Also, it will not be excessive to find out about their ages.

  • Hobbies

If one of your clients is fond of dancing but has no craving for drawing, it is unlikely that he or she will benefit from the message about a fresh supply of paints and canvas in your store. Find out what hobbies your clients have, and, relying on this information, start new email dialogues with them.

  • Life style

Find out how subscribers spend leisure time, what products they prefer more and why.

  • Desires and needs

Satisfy the desires of your clients. It's a simple formula. Therefore, you need to know what the clients want, maybe what kind of improvements you should add to your product. So, you’ll get additional information, you’ll prosper and the number of positive reviews also will grow.

  • Problems

We need this information to solve some kind of consumers’ problems. We have the right to recommend our clients our math courses as an ideal choice for their kids, if they, as parents, worry about kids’ academic performance in this area.

The more information we know about the client, the better. This makes it easier to offer what the subscriber needs and talk about additional services.

3. The client’s attitude to the brand

For quality communication with clients, we need to know what they think about the company. This includes the way they describe it:

  • opinion about the service, the value of the company, and about the product itself;

  • measurement of the NPS index ー an indicator of the attitude of the audience to the product.

Data Collection for Email Marketers_Asking Users to Review Your Company

To know how to build one with Stripo, please refer to this blog post of ours.

4. The way customers interact with the brand

Collect segmentation data for your emails:

  • information about transactions (track the number of purchases, amount, date of order, etc. Perhaps the client made a return of a certain product, which you should also be notified of);

  • activity (with what frequency and at what time a person usually visits the site, what products are most often viewed, etc.);

  • the quality of communication with the company (at what time and how often the client contacts us, communication channels, statistics of clicks and responses);

  • information about support requests, complaints.

Ways to collect data on customers 

Now that you know what customer data you need to collect to improve your email marketing, we need to find out how you do that. You don’t ask all those questions at once, as you may scare them out.

Therefore, let's understand the ways of collecting data that won’t harm your relationship.

1. Regular registration form

This form invites customers to share contact information about themselves: first and last names, phone numbers, and email addresses. This form is clear, simple, and does not make potential clients suspicious — a great starting point for collecting email subscriber data: You get an email address to send the emails the client needs, and their names to start with addressing by names.

Important! According to the GDPR, CCPA, and just moral standards, we must ask users consent to send emails/notifications and use the received information. The users must tick the "I want to receive emails" checkbox. Only then we are allowed to send emails to them and start collecting data on customers for email marketing. 

Even if the data is needed for the good of customers, for example, to send a selection of cosmetics suitable for the age specified in the form.

Collecting Data on Customers For Email Marketing_Registration Form

2. Free offer

Everyone loves free workshops, courses, or checklists. Offer the client to enroll in such a course and get the information you need. Yes, the clients again fill in the fields of the registration form, but now you know exactly what interests them.

Collecting Data on Customers for Email Marketing_Free Offers as Incentive for Sharing Contact Information

(Source: Optinmonster)

Offer an alternative to registration — login through social networks. Many ESPs provide some information about clients’ preferences on the condition that you provide their social media addresses.

3. On-site surveys

In this way, not only can you find out data on customers but also learn what they think about your company. Add questions so that it doesn't look like an interrogation. Gently ask about their age, marital status, interests, whether they like your emails, and how many emails per week they are willing to receive. 

Some brands like Ikea ask these questions in the registration form. People share this information because they trust the company.

Data Collection for Email Segmentation_Extended Forms

(Source: Ikea, registration form)

If your company is not that famous yet, try asking those questions in emails.

4. Survey emails

Right, we can use email marketing to collect customer data.

It is important to understand that a survey email where you want to find out clients’ age, height, gender, and preferences should be sent no more than 1-2 times a year. And as a rule, it should be done in a separate email, where you briefly explain to customers what this data is for. The same concerns emails where you want to find out users’ interests in life.

Email Marketing With Data Collection_Getting to Know Users' Interests

(Source: Email from WWF Wildlife)

If you need to find out the opinion of the client about you, then the most traditional way, perhaps, will be just a trigger email after a purchase, a visit, contacting support, and so on. Such an email is sent immediately after the client's request / after receiving the ordered goods. It should contain just a few questions.

Collecting Email Subscribers Data_Asking for Users Opinion

(Source: Email from Email on Acid)

For more information about surveys in emails, see our "Survey email invitation" blog post.

5. Welcome emails

It might happen that for the first promotional email you need to collect a lot of data about the clients, but you decided not to scare them with questions in the form. So do it through welcome emails. To build trust and get to know your potential customers better, don't use the “Hi, thanks for subscribing. Goodbye". Here you will neither tie up communication nor remain in their memory.

Consider a series of 2-3 emails, where you will ask a couple of clarifying questions to create a portrait of new subscribers.

Data Collection for Email Segmentation_Survey Invitation Emails

(Source: Email from Really Good Emails)

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6. Asking users to share their dates of birth with you

You may ask for info like this just by sending an email. No need to wait for any particular reason or any special event. Just send out a short email where you ask users to tell you when you can congratulate them on their birthday.

Collecting Data on Customers_Inviting Users to Share Their Personal Info

(Source: Email from Nike) 

7. Your ESP

Your ESP stores users’ personal data like age and preferences. Also, it stores data on user behavior like purchase history, etc.

Having all that information, you can build various segments

If you are now thinking about switching to a new ESP, we’ve reviewed the world’s TOP ESPs for your convenience. Check them out.

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Review of Top 10 Email Services Providers Read

8. Google Analytics

Google analytics in addition to your ESP also stores data on users’ purchases and their interactions with your brand.

It is reasonable to use both tools for collecting data for your email marketing.

9. AB testing

In our Email A/B Testing blog post, we covered the benefits of these tests and ways to run them.

For sure, they are crucial for your email marketing especially when you want to find our user's preferences. 

The results of such tests help you provide those email content, design, and value offers that are very likely to interest your customers.

10. Interview

Meeting customers online face to face is probably one of the best ways to find out what exactly they think about your tool, what they like, and what they are missing. And, of course, what they are looking for in our products/services/tool. Such interviews help you improve your products.

Send interview invitation emails to your customers and schedule 30-minutes calls with them. Don’t make those interviews long.

We hosted a few interviews with those clients who have been with us for over a year. During the call, clients would share what they like and dislike about Stripo. Their answers encouraged us to develop a few new options that would make our tool even more convenient for our clients. 

We have published users’ interviews and success stories on our website. Please, find them here.

How to use the collected data for your email marketing?

Now that you already possess the necessary information on your clients, you have the opportunity to personalize and group this information to make your newsletters truly effective.

Way 1. Email segmentation

First, let's understand the meaning of this term.

Segmentation is the division of the audience into groups. We perform this process based on the user data. Their genders, lifestyles, interests, location, etc. affect which segment every person will be in and what messages they will see.

Email meant for women:

Data Collection for Email Segmentation_Email for Women

(Source: Email from Ecco)

Email meant for men:

Data Collection for Email Segmentation_Email for Men

(Source: Email from Ecco)

We cheer for saving time. We, at Stripo, have released the "Display Conditions'' option so that you do not have to create a lot of emails for all segments for one email campaign. How does it work? You create just one single email, add elements to it that will be displayed only to recipients of certain segments.

For more information on how to enable Display Conditions with Stripo, please refer to the “Things You Didn’t Know That Stripo Actually Can” blog post, the “Display conditions” section.

Way 2. Personalized offers

You do know what your customers are interested in? Or your customers asked you when some products will be back in store?

Email Marketing with Data Collection_Email Digests

(Source: Email from HubSpot)

Way 3. Congratulations on the holidays

Do you know your client’s dates of birth? Great! Congratulate them on their very special day. By the way, Birthday is not the only reason for such an email campaign. 

Email Marketing with Data Collection_Congratulating Users on Special Events

(Source: Email-competitors)

Milestones are also a good reason to reach out to customers and show your appreciation to them.

Final Thoughts

To successfully develop your promo email campaigns, you need to learn how to collect and skillfully use customer data. Each of the points in this article is based on the use of data collection for email marketers.

Stripo's mission is to simplify your workflow. Using our service, you can create unique emails based on our templates in a matter of minutes. We hope our article was useful to you and now you know how to make your newsletters even better.

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