Paige working at a laptop, curating to build the best email audiences for our clients

Email is still one of the best ways to communicate with and market to your audience. It remains an essential communication tool used by the majority of the population and is how most customers prefer to receive communications from brands. However, email’s strength as a marketing tool depends on the quality of your audience list. An engaged audience is interested in your newsletters, with a substantial portion opening, reading, and clicking them. The key is building that perfect subscriber list. We’ll explain the proven strategies for building your best email audience list in this blog.

A Visible and Present Email Signup

You might only just be starting your email newsletter and need to build your subscriber list or you’re looking to grow it to a more substantial following. To get more users, you will need them to voluntarily sign up and explicitly consent to receiving your emails. Provide an email signup that is always accessible to users. The standard place to put an email signup is in your website’s footer. This will provide a visible but unobtrusive signup form on every page of your site. No matter what page a user visits, they can see the option to sign up. Another option is at your point of sale (POS) online and in-person. Your online checkout can include a simple checkbox where users can provide their consent to receive email signups. As customers check out in your brick-and-mortar store, you can similarly provide an opportunity for them to sign up by offering digital receipts.

A Website Popup

Another standard method for collecting emails is a website prompt that offers users an email signup form. This ensures every visitor learns about your email list in case they do not see the form in your website’s footer. Be sure to delay this popup to at least 30 seconds or one minute after someone has been browsing your website. Also, the popup should be easily closed and not obscure the entire webpage. If a popup is too immediate and obtrusive, it will only annoy new visitors to your website. Imagine someone asking you to buy a car before getting a test drive or even seeing the interior. Give users a moment to recognize your business’ value proposition so their interest is piqued. They will then be more likely to want to sign up for your newsletter when prompted.

Enticing Sign Ups

It can help to incentivize users and customers to sign up to your email newsletter. A prevalent but effective strategy is to provide a one-time discount to those who subscribe to your newsletter for the first time. This is great for those already browsing and/or shopping on your site, where the footer and popup can notify them of this discount. To attract other users, we recommend hosting a giveaway or contest where signing up to your newsletter is a requirement for entry. With an enticing prize, users will happily agree to provide their email. Note if you are a service-based business providing a discount will also work, or alternatively, you could provide a sampling of what you provide, such as a free template or one module of a course you provide.

Collect Pertinent Information for Your List

You want to make your signup process simple and fast, otherwise users may abandon it and never join your list. However, there is some essential information you want to collect. Besides the necessary email and explicit consent, you will also want to collect their first and last name. This will help specify the customer in your email system, and you will be able to automatically send emails personalized to their first name in the body text and subject line of future emails. Such personalization gets their attention and can increase open rates by up to 50%

Further Personalization for the Best Email Audience

More information about your email subscribers will allow you to craft even more personalized emails. This can include automated communications, such as product recommendations. You don’t and can’t collect that data from the start. Instead, that is information you can gather based on their purchases or browsing behaviour on your website. Email platforms can connect to your ecommerce to unify this information. Another method for obtaining some more of this information is to provide voluntary surveys that help you collect valuable information. 

The Best Email Audience is a Clean Email Audience

A lot of this has focused on growing and expanding the information in your email list. However, a bigger email list is not always better. Be sure to regularly clean out your email audience of any disengaged members. Subscribers who don’t open or click your emails will negatively impact these rates, but more importantly, won’t give you a proper sense of what email content is resonating. Set up automations that both sunset and try to win back these subscribers. In either case, you will have a reengaged subscriber or cleaned your list to be more effective.

Constant Maintenance

All these strategies are essential to building your best email audience. Just like the perfect garden, the truly best email list needs to be constantly maintained with sowing, fertilizing, pruning, and weeding. If you’re wanting to start email newsletters, expand your audience, or set up crucial automations, contact us about our expert email services.

Dasha working on a website at her laptop with a coffee.

Privacy protection is a growing issue for legislators in many countries, and Canada is no exception. With digital platforms and tools able to collect more information than ever before, countries need to be sure that users’ data is being collected and used in an ethical and safe way. Currently, Canada is drafting a series of acts for protecting personal information and data, including the Consumer Privacy Protection Act (CPPA) to replace the PIPEDA. While it is still only in its second reading, it will likely be enacted this year with minor changes. User information and data are vital tools for marketers, so they need to understand this new privacy landscape. We explain how privacy regulation is becoming more prominent and what marketers need to know and consider.

A Surge in Data and Privacy Regulation

In recent years, there has been a wave of new digital privacy regulations with a slew of acronyms. One of the first major acts was the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in 2018. Since then, many members of the EU also revised or are drafting their own privacy acts. Outside of Europe, Canada is just one of the many nations revising and updating their own digital privacy legislation. Australia is also drafting its own, while India is currently voting on the Digital Personal Data Protection Bill (PDPB). Brazil passed its own Brazilian Data Protection Law (LGPD) in 2019. In the U.S., numerous states have enacted and are currently drafting their own legislation.

Privacy Legislation in Other Provinces, States, and Countries

All those different acts are important for marketers and businesses. If operating and potentially collecting data from users internationally, they need to be sure they are following that nation’s privacy laws. That’s still something to consider even when working within Canada. Most places in Canada are subject to both federal and provincial law. While the federal government is still currently working its way through the legislative process for the Digital Charter Implementation Act, 2022, individual provinces like BC and Quebec have already passed and updated their own provincial legislation in anticipation. This is a similar situation for the EU, where each member can have its own privacy legislation in addition to the GDPR, e.g. Germany. It’s slightly different in the U.S., which has no overarching data protection and security law. Instead, individual states, such as CaliforniaVirginia, and Colorado have enacted their own privacy laws. 

Most of these data protection laws are being drafted with similar considerations for individual privacy. However, different countries and regions may have important differences or restrictions/allowances for certain industries. If a marketer is ever working with user information from these areas, it is best that they familiarize themselves with any specific requirements. 

Platform Regulations and Policy

These national, provincial, or stated requirements exist alongside any additional privacy policies set by other companies, such as Apple. Many of the platforms used for marketing, such as MetaGoogle, or Klaviyo also have their own policies about how data is collected and used. In turn, those platforms must also follow legislation, or else face serious fines. While breaches in these policies might not result in legal action for a business, they can result in their suspension or removal from the service. That can severely impact a company’s marketing opportunities as well as their and a marketer’s reputation.

What Does This New Privacy Landscape Mean for Marketing?

The CPPA is meant to protect users and ensure their right to control their information. If marketers are already treating user data with the care it deserves, then they will see little changes to their current strategies. However, there are some specifics of Canada’s new CPPA that marketers should remember:

  • Valid Consent: A primary concern of the CPPA is that users must provide valid consent for their information to be collected and used. This still includes the idea of “implied consent”, but only in instances where the information is necessary.
  • Plain language: One of the biggest facets of the CPPA is clear communication. Whenever requesting consent, a business will need to include a full explanation in “plain language” that details what, how, and why information is being collected, stored, and used. Thankfully, communication and writing in plain and clear language is a standard marketing expertise.
  • Revoking Consent: The CPPA will require that users can easily revoke their consent at any time and have their data disposed. Whether that information was collected via a website, through email, or on social media, marketers and data managers must be prepared to remove that information.
  • Explaining the Algorithms and AI: Since artificial intelligence and algorithms are becoming more advanced, the new CPPA will require organizations to be transparent about how user information is being used with algorithms and more complex learning models to generate content such as personalized messaging.

How the New Legislation Helps Marketers

Those new requirements might make data collection more difficult and affect your metrics. However, it will also help marketers navigate this new privacy landscape. Once legislation passes, the Privacy Commissioner of Canada will create a new accessible list of best practices. This already exists for previous acts, such as the Digital Privacy Act. These parse through the legislation to provide guidelines in clear and directed language for how marketers and organizations should follow the new legislation. This is valuable for marketers since it is a comprehensive list for their own reference. These best practices are also great support documentation to show clients what the requirements are and why.

The Changing Landscape of Privacy

This new legislation in Canada and other nations are creating a new privacy landscape. However, most of it will be familiar territory to marketers already following these best practices and collecting and using data information honestly and ethically. When the CPPA finalizes later this year, we will have a full sense of its requirements and specifications. For now, if you want to ensure your marketing and data collection is prepared for these oncoming requirements, contact our marketing team.

Mother and daughter making valentines day crafts. Marketing ideas for Valentine's

Valentine’s Marketing

Valentine’s Day is a big day for romance and marketing. These are also the two arenas where clichés only lead to eye-rolls instead of undying affection. Romance and marketing need to be inventive and authentic to get attention. Valentine’s Day is one of the first holiday opportunities in the new year for business marketing, but it also means every business is advertising around it. When so many businesses are trying to woo customers, you need to stand out to really charm them. Here are five tips to break away from those eye-rolling Valentine’s clichés and start planning original ideas.

Be Original and Make Your Business Creatively Romantic

Often when people imagine Valentine’s Day, they think of restaurants, candle-lit dinners, and flowers, but romance takes countless forms. Originality is the essence of charm. Imagine how your business can fit into romantic plans or a date, and have your marketing inspire novel romantic actions or gifts. Maybe certain products or Valentine’s packages can make a heartfelt gift or be the basis for a cute date. Have fun with it: new pajamas for a night away, bikes for a couple’s ride on the trails, or a board game for an intimate night at home. Be creative and market to the experiences and emotions of moments your business’ products/services can create. Even a gift card can be made romantic for partners to share a shopping spree date.

Market to their Original Relationships: Friends

Valentine’s is typically for romantic partners, but not everyone will be spending the holiday with their sweetheart. Friends, however, are no less important loved ones in our lives. You can include marketing that inspires shows of affection between friends. Our friends provide valuable emotional support like our partners, and it’s also nice to show them care and appreciation. Galentine’s Day on February 13 has recently become a more notable day for women to shower each other with amicable affection. It’s perfect if your business primarily caters to a feminine demographic. If you are looking for a more gender-inclusive option, you could go for the similarly punny “Pal-entine’s Day”.

Embrace Their Own Valentine

Along with partners and friends, everyone should have and show love and care to themselves. You can market services and products for those who are looking to or should give themselves that much deserved affection this Valentine’s Day. Along with marketing for platonic relationships, this strategy lets you reach customers or clients who may otherwise feel rejected or dejected during the holiday of love. Marketing that emphasizes their individual value and sympathizes with their possible loneliness helps motivate them towards acting on that original self-affection.

Be Their Valentine

Your marketing doesn’t just have to focus on customers and clients showing love to those important in their lives. Your customers and audience are valuable to you and your business, so Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity to show them some of your own love. Be their Valentine with special promotions or discounts. Create social media posts that acknowledge and thank your community. Be sure that those displays of affection or gratitude are authentic and in line with your brand so they feel sincere. Front-facing the human element of your business in this marketing will further ensure those Valentine’s posts create a real connection.

Combining These Together for Something Truly Original

One of these strategies alone will help you create some original Valentine’s marketing for the well-trodden holiday of love. However, using a strategy that only targets romantic partners, friends, or singles will exclude the others. Combining multiple of these strategies will allow you to reach and acknowledge most if not all your community and potential customers. Use multiple strategies together to create a fully original affectionate marketing roster that can pull on everyone’s heartstrings.

Originality is the Essence of Marketing and Romance

With these strategies you can bring some spice to your marketing this Valentine’s Day. Demonstrate how your business can play a vital role in your customers and community showing each other affection along with showing your own. Want more original strategies and ideas? Contact Rosewood’s marketing team for help creating novel and effective marketing.