This debate over personalized emails vs. bulk emails is an important one. After all, the decision that you and your colleagues make will significantly impact the way that you communicate with prospects and clients. Not only that, but all of us have time restrictions and time constraints. We need to make decisions on how we can best spend our time — including how we communicate with our audiences.
For these reasons, it is important to think about how to best optimize your emails. Email optimization, especially when it comes to adding personalization to your emails, can have a huge impact. It is such an important part of day-to-day business operations that you need to think about how you can incorporate them into your marketing work.
In this post, I want to further go into this debate over personalized emails vs. bulk emails. I think that in the end, the debate is somewhat illusory. Yes, you need to send both of these types of emails. Along with this, using a tool like Dubb, you can send semi-personalized emails at scale. In other words, you don’t necessarily need to choose whether you want to send personalized emails or bulk emails. Instead, you can do both.
A Persistent Question
At Dubb, we are obsessed with all things marketing. Yes, video is our bread and butter. Every day, we create our own video content and discuss the power of video marketing to accomplish business goals.
While it may not be well-known, an essential part of video marketing is email. Email marketing is powerful in and of its own right, but you can multiply its power by creating and sending video emails. Video emails are powerful in that you get to both leverage the power of storytelling and send your stories through a medium that we constantly check. To put it another way, you can build deep, personal connections with your audience members by reaching them through video emails.
I could talk about video emails all day. But putting those specific emails aside for a few moments, I often come across the question of whether we should be sending our emails in bulk or whether we should be sending our emails in bulk. All of us are trying to optimize our email metrics, whether they are open rates, reply rates, or something else. Not only that, but we are trying to use our email marketing work to hit our sales numbers and accomplish our business goals.
Some Key Considerations for Both Personalized and Bulk Emails
Because of this, we want to be clear about which emails we should be consistently sending. Ultimately, the choice is yours.
As I will discuss below, Dubb can go a long way in solving this dilemma of personalized emails vs. bulk emails. But before getting to that, there are some key considerations to keep in mind — whether you are sending bulk emails or personalized emails.
The first thing that I recommend is that you personalize your subject line. This is whether you are sending a bulk email or personalized email.
The good news is that personalizing your subject line isn’t rocket science. It doesn’t need to be overly complicated. In fact, one of the most powerful things that you can do is to include the recipient’s first name in the subject line. It may seem super simple, but using that recipient’s name can go a long way in building long-term relationships and even making sales.
First, it shows that your company has taken the time to personalize the message for that recipient. That isn’t nothing — especially with so many of us receiving spam in our inboxes. But not only that, but you are tapping into our inherent need to be recognized. As Dale Carnegie once famously said in How to Win Friends and Influence People, the most beautiful name in the English language is a person’s name. Hearing our names being spoken or written by another person (including a company) generates positive feelings. We are more inclined to listen to that message, whether it is just a brief check-in with that customer or a “hard sell” to purchase that product or service.
A Great Hook
So along with personalizing your subject line, I recommend that you provide an enticing hook in your message. Ideally, you are including a hook that your recipient hasn’t heard before. That hook should speak to them in some way.
For some people, offering your value proposition can be an extremely effective hook. This type of audience member may not have heard of your product or service before, so delving into how your company can improve their life can be a terrific hook.
On the other hand, a great hook can be an offer to purchase your product or service. Whether that offer is discounted or at full price, a hard sell or firm offer can be a great way to get your recipient to take action from your email.
An enticing hook can even be a specific data point. For example, you may share a specific data point showing that your product or service can help your recipient solve a major problem in their life. If you lead with that hook, your reader is going to be much more likely to engage with your message.
These are just some of the examples of hooks that you can leverage. Undoubtedly there are more. The bottom line? I highly recommend that you include a hook in all of your email messages. They will certainly help you accomplish your email marketing goals.
Thinking About the Body of Your Email
From here, I’d like to talk about the content of your email. Specifically, the issue is whether you should email everyone with the same exact message or whether you should personalize the content of those messages.
That same exact message can be something like, “Hi there, just responding to your previous message. I love your idea and think it’s fantastic. We should connect to discuss further.” On the other hand, you can include an entirely personalized message for each of your recipients.
There is no bulletproof answer here. In fact, I think the answer is that we need both. We need to be sending both and each has its own place in your marketing work. Generally speaking, bulk emails can be more effective at the top of your marketing funnel. When sending those mass emails, you want to ensure that people have opted-in and that they are looking for this information. As prospects travel toward the bottom of your funnel, personalized emails become more effective. This is because you often need to provide a more personalized touch when you are trying to make a final sale.
The problem with personalized emails or videos, however, is that they can take some time to make. In some circumstances, they can take a long time. This is because creating video content can include everything from shooting the actual video to editing that video. Using a tool like Dubb, you can make this process significantly easier. These time commitments do exist. It’s hard to get around the fact that bulk content is going to be much quicker to send than personalized content. You could do 50 per day or 100 personalized emails or videos per day, but it may take up more time than you’d like.
All of that being said, there definitely is a place for personalized messaging. Really, the return on investment can be absolutely massive. Like I said above, this is especially true if you are sending video emails. When you are sending a video, there is a huge impact. Personalized videos get so much more traction than your standard campaign videos. As I referenced earlier, this is because of the personal nature of these videos. Their inherent qualities will make them more effective. They will get you many more opens, replies, and conversions.
So therein lies the dilemma when talking about personalized emails vs. bulk emails. Personalized emails are effective, but many people find the time commitment to be too burdensome. However, sales is really relationship-based right now. We’re really not trying to burn and churn through prospects. We want to create long-lasting relationships with our prospects and clients. Going even further, we are trying to create fans for our business and companies. These fans can not only support your business now, but they can support it for years to come.
The Power of Semi-Personalized Messaging and Video Emails
So how do you settle this debate of personalized videos vs. bulk videos?
Ultimately, the key is to find a balance and make your email campaigns semi-personalized. To do this, you can include things like semi-personalized text and smart tokens that let you auto-populate the recipient’s first name and company name. Basically, you will want to follow the tips and recommendations that I mentioned above. This includes things like personalization tokens and names in subject lines. But that being said, you don’t need to create a completely unique message for every recipient. You can certainly do so in special circumstances. However, with semi-personalized messages, you don’t necessarily have to.
In these messages, you can include things like important information about your product or service, news about an upcoming product launch, or even helpful tips and advice on how to get the most out of your product or service. The choice is yours, but with semi-personalized messages, you will want to keep the content somewhat broad. Yes, you can segment off members of your audience through an email marketing tool. Doing this lets you group audience members based on certain attributes, which can then help you make more tailored messages. Still, however, don’t feel the need to make each email hyper-personalized. You can still get a similar effect by leveraging segmenting, creating a valuable message for that audience segment, and using the easy personalization tools that I mentioned above.
To add to that, you want to include videos in your semi-personalized email messages. By doing this, you can get the most results out of that message.
Talking over a video, I can more freely communicate what I’m trying to say. This is especially true when you are creating a personalized video. It is very easy to speak directly to the recipient through video. You can say something like, “Hey, first name, company. I know where you’re working, I know your problem, I know your job role, I know everything about you because I have done my homework. I can solve that problem for you.” This is a message that can really resonate with a member of your audience. Better yet, your viewer gets to see your face, read your body language, and hear your tone of voice. This makes it more likely that they will trust you and purchase your product or service.
I think that getting more responses to your email marketing campaigns has to start at the value level. Semi-personalized videos and email campaigns make you think about a long list of questions that you should consider before sending your content.
For instance, ask yourself: what is it that I am truly emailing and why should the recipient click on it? Think about the last ten emails that you opened. What was the subject line? What was in the body? What was the context of that email? What is it that the person was providing or offering to you?
Ultimately, personalization (and even semi-personalization) requires effort. It requires research. You may need to research a specific prospect’s social media presence (like their LinkedIn profile). It shows that you have put in the work and allocated the time to learn something about them. But even if you aren’t sending out a hyper-personalized video message, semi-personalization requires you to think about these things. They go a long way in building relationships and generating more sales.
Don’t Forget a Call to Action
Finally, when you are sending personalized emails or bulk emails, you are going to want to include some type of call to action (“CTA”). The CTA is an important feature in this personalized emails vs. bulk emails debate because it gets your audience, whoever they may be, to take some additional step or action. An example of this on a Dubb action page can be seen below:
CTAs are a terrific idea in essentially any content that you make. This is because you are taking the lead and directing your audience to complete some action that you want. In other words, instead of reading your email or watching your video and then moving on, you can lead that audience member further down your sales funnel.
The great news is that there are so many different CTAs that you can use when sending personalized or bulk emails. Using a tool like Dubb, you can incorporate CTAs like the following:
- Schedule a meeting on your calendar: This is an especially powerful CTA for those audience members at the bottom of your sales funnel. After reading your semi-personalized email and watching their respective video, that audience member can quickly book a slot on your calendar. At Dubb, we have integrations with many of the most widely-used calendar services (like Calendly or Book Like a Boss), letting you easily offer this CTA to your audience.
- Reply with video: Reply with video is another great CTA that lets your audience members leverage the power of video. Instead of needing to type out a lengthy response to your email and video, that audience member can record a video of their own. This is also a great way to gather video testimonials, which you can then use in your own marketing work.
- Communicate through Facebook Messenger: Facebook Messenger may not be at the top of mind when communicating with audience members, yet it can be a great CTA. Some of your audience members may find it more convenient to communicate through Facebook. Giving them this opportunity through a CTA may make them more likely to respond to your video and start a conversation.
- Download a white paper or eBook: This can be a great CTA if your video or email content is more at the introductory stage. In other words, if you are sending content to the top of your funnel, your audience may want to learn more details about your product, service, or how your company solves common issues in their lives. Directing their attention to a white paper or eBook can accomplish that goal.
- Make a purchase: This is one of the most exciting CTAs that you can offer. Whether you are selling a product or service, you can include a CTA button that lets your audience easily make that purchase. This is most valuable at the bottom of your funnel, but there may be circumstances where you want to include this CTA earlier in your audience relationship.
These are just some of the CTA options that you can use with Dubb. There are countless others. At the end of the day, CTAs can be your closest ally as you try to build customer relationships and drive sales through email and video marketing.
Capitalizing on This Top Sales Email Strategy
So when thinking about this debate of personalized emails vs. bulk emails, I hope you can see that there are plenty of nuances. There are certainly pros and cons to both personalized emails and bulk emails. And as I discussed, there is also a third way of sending semi-personalized emails to your audience. You have all of these tools at your fingertips, so I encourage you to take advantage of all of them.
Along with that, I encourage you to take advantage of Dubb. Dubb offers a whole host of tools that can help you with your email and video marketing campaigns. If you are using Dubb, you can send actionable videos on our platform so that you can get real results from your message. You can boost email opens and engagement with features (like our GIF previews) and instantly drive conversions with our action pages.
Originally posted at Dubb on December 2020.