The Inkredible 5: Contextual Emails from Yahoo, Hyatt, and More

The Inkredible 5 Winter 2015It’s that time again – Movable Ink is excited to announce that the latest edition of The Inkredible 5 is now available. In the Winter 2015 edition of The Inkredibe 5, we explored how five different brands are using contextual email marketing in really innovative ways to build customer experiences through the inbox and provide truly personalized experiences.

In this lookbook, you’ll learn how:

  • Hyatt Gold Passport personalized emails for every rewards guest
  • Yahoo Travel hosted live voting directly wihtin the inbox
  • Udemy included GIFs in email campaigns that were specific to different mobile devices

Download the eBook to take a look at these Inkredible emails and more.

See the Inkredible 5!

The Apple Watch: Marketing’s Big Chance to Redefine Responsive Emails

Responsive emails are about user behavior, not just design.

When marketers think of “responsive emails,” we usually think of emails that are optimized for mobile. Basically, if you can easily click something from a smartphone and it looks good, then it’s responsive.

A lot of the time, that’s as far as responsive design efforts go. The reality, though, is that customers who check email on their smartphones are likely doing far different things than customers who are checking email on their home computers.

Responsive design according to mobile device is great, but responsive design according to mobile behavior is better.

That’s why the Apple Watch is our chance to redefine responsive email. Whatever the adoption rate for this watch, it shows that screens – and our relationship with them – is going to keep evolving. For mobile emails to stay relevant, they need to provide utility at every touchpoint, from laptop to television, from phone to watch.

And to redefine responsive emails, we need to first redefine email.

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Email Marketers Need to Pay Attention to the Apple Watch Announcement – Here’s Why

The Apple Watch could mean big changes for email marketers.As with every Apple event, the Apple Watch announcement is – deservedly or not – one of the most hyped tech conferences of the year. Smart watches have been done before. They haven’t performed too well, either. There are serious questions about whether the Apple Watch will be a success or a failure, if it will redefine wearable technology or turn into another Google Glass.

But, if it’s possible, let’s put aside that debate for a second and focus on something else: the impact that this kind of wearable technology is going to have on email marketing.

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[eBook] Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Contextual Marketing

Contextual Marketing eBook

The definition of contextual marketing has changed over the past few years. As technology has gotten more sophisticated and the opportunities for digital marketing have grown, the meaning of customer “context” has transformed.

Contextual marketing should do two things: enhance the customer experience and provide utility. By creating marketing that builds an experience and ultimately proves to be useful and engaging, brands can redefine the digital marketing landscape at a time when it’s proving to be less and less effective.

To define contextual marketing – and show how companies are using it in mobile apps, emails, and websites – we wrote an eBook all about it: “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Contextual Marketing.”

So if you’ve been wondering what contextual marketing actually looks like in practice – and how you business can get started with it – download our eBook! In it, you’ll learn:

  • Why digital marketing is broken today
  • How companies like Google, Amazon, Pandora, and others have used context to build their businesses
  • What a true contextual marketing engine looks like in action, courtesy of Uber, Nickelodeon, and Starbucks
  • How it’s possible to create a contextual marketing experience in emails

Download “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Contextual Marketing” today!

6 Ways You Can Increase Email Sign-Ups on Your Website

Here's how to increase email sign ups on your website.

Companies are constantly looking for ways to build their email list, but if you’ve been on most corporate websites, it sure doesn’t look like it.

Email sign-up boxes are often tucked in the corner of the website, hidden away, while Facebook Pages and Twitter are embedded front and center, prompting people to “Like” and “follow” the brands on social channels.

If you can’t get people to sign up to your email list in the first place, you won’t be able to get ROI from your email marketing efforts. But how can companies increase email sign-ups on their websites and other digital properties?

Here are six ways that can help:

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Vince Vaughn’s Stock Photo Experiment: Proof Marketing Doesn’t Have to be a Bummer

The Great Vince Vaughn Stock Photo Marketing Experiment

Stock photos. You love them, you hate them. You love to hate them. Maybe you just hate them. Whatever your personal feelings, there’s no arguing that stock photos are everywhere. Businesses depend on an infinite wealth of visual content to create content marketing resources – from eBooks and presentations to blog posts.

So what do you do if you’re creating a marketing campaign to try and connect with your average stock photo user? Or just anyone who’s a connoisseur of goofy stock photos in general? Well, if you’re the team behind ‘Unfinished Business‘, a movie starring Vince Vaughn, you create your own.

By joining forces with iStock by Getty Images, the ‘Unfinished Business’ team created a series of stock photos with Vince Vaughn and the rest of the cast that are freely available for use and download, with a small snippet advertising the movie. This is content marketing at its finest – and proof that marketing doesn’t have to be a bummer.

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The Terrible Truth About Mobile Shoppers

Mobile shopping statistics show a hidden secret.For the past few years, we’ve heard that it’s “the year of mobile.” Companies are frantically building mobile-first strategies and websites because so much traffic is coming from mobile devices. Our own research has previously found that more than two-thirds of email opens occur on mobile devices.

There’s no doubt that people are browsing websites from tablets and smartphones. Last year, comScore found that mobile visits (mostly from apps) account for 60% of total web traffic. Organic mobile traffic is lower, at about 30% of total web traffic as of last year.

But does that mean that desktops are getting replaced by mobile? In the world of eCommerce, it looks like mobile devices are shopping companions, but desktops remain the shopping destination. Black Friday 2014 is a great example – while IBM found that mobile traffic accounted for about 50% of online traffic on Black Friday, mobile sales accounted for only 27.9% of total online sales.

So, really, more than two-thirds of online sales occurred on desktops during Black Friday last year. That shouldn’t be a surprise – at the beginning of 2014, research showed that desktops were converting at about a 50% higher rate than mobile devices.

The reality is that the “year of mobile” is always going to mean the “year of multiple devices.” And that has big implications for email marketers.

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#SherpaEmail Summit 2015: Making Emails Human with Data & Design

A team of Movable Inkers flew to Las Vegas for the MarketingSherpa Email Summit this week. We attended a lot of different conferences and met some clients (Finish Line won the B2C Email Campaign of the Year and gave a great talk about hyper-targeting), partners, and industry peers along the way.

We’re always interested in hearing what fellow email marketers are thinking. At EEC 2015, the prevailing theme was about deliverability.

At #SherpaEmail, there was a decided focus on data, testing, and getting email to dynamically respond to customer context. That was great news, because we’ve been thinking a lot about how brands can use contextual marketing not to just build campaigns, but enhance and create customer experiences.

Here’s a round-up of what people saw, learned, and discussed at #SherpaEmail:

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Customers Have Major Trust Issues with Digital Marketing – Here’s an Infographic that Proves It

Customers don't trust digital marketing from brands.Marketers might have noticed there’s something amiss in the digital world when it comes to connecting with consumers and actually getting their attention. A lot of customers don’t engage with marketing messages in any digital channel. In fact, most of the time, they’re outright ignoring them.

As marketers, this probably shouldn’t surprise us. If you pay to promote something that interrupts someone’s experience, you’re going to see low engagement.

On Facebook, for example, B2B marketing posts perform poorly because they’re not relevant to the context of what most Facebook users are doing at that moment.

Research really bears this out: everything from sponsored search results to the average time spent on a website indicates that customers no longer trust most marketing messages.

We made an infographic to show the extent of digital marketing’s trust issues:

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[WEBINAR] Expert eCommerce Email: Advanced Segmentation & Contextual Marketing

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Almost every email marketer knows the advantages of segmentation.

It’s pretty simple – when you send an email, you want to make sure that you’re sending it to people who are actually interested in the content.

Retailers are constantly trying to segment customers based on purchasing behaviors and demographics, but that can mean hours and hours of crunching data and comparing different customer profiles. Consequently, a lot of companies still settle for broad segments based on region, products or loyalty, rather than an individual preferences and behaviors.

But in a mobile world where customer needs and preferences are changing all of the time and mobile apps have introduced new kinds of personalized experiences, traditional email segmentation strategies can only go so far. Now, it’s advanced segmentation and contextual marketing that will set retailers apart in the inbox.

Movable Ink and Custora are hosting a webinar, “Expert eCommerce Email: Advanced Segmentation & Contextual Marketing”, that will help marketers take their email campaigns to the next level. Topics covered include:

– Why advanced segmentation is crucial for retention and acquisition

– How to get data out of silos and build predictive customer profiles

– How contextual marketing can help reinvent digital marketing efforts

– The different ways brands are using advanced segmentation and contextual marketing today

Custora and Movable Ink are hosting “Expert eCommerce Email: Advanced Segmentation & Contextual Marketing” on Tuesday, March 3 @ 1-2pm EST and Thursday, March 5 @ 4-5pm EST.

Register Today!