The email tools available to marketers today can provide reams of information on subscriber behavior, including opens, clicks, conversions and shares. This info can be really valuable and provide insights into how effective your newsletters are, what topics you cover, how frequently you should be contacting your audience and more. But there's another way to get this insight; ask subscribers what they want directly.
I recently got an email from GE Appliances soliciting my preferences. I had no idea they had a preference center, or even which emails I was getting from them. I probably signed up originally as part of contest for a new stainless steel range or some other promotion. The creative was simple, with one call to action: visit the new preference center and select which emails I want to get from GE Appliances. They show and mention that there are samples of each newsletter, which is great.
Once I clicked through to the landing page, there were seven newsletter options, each with a visual depiction and a link to a sample. It also told me how often the newsletter is sent for five out of the seven. One thing that was confusing to me was that each newsletter had a radio button for subscribe or unsubscribe. Some were already ticked, but some had neither choice selected. So I assumed that for newsletters where the subscribe button was selected, I was not currently subscribed and vice versa. For the newsletter with no option selected I had to assume I was not currently subscribed.
At the bottom of the page they have some options for which topics or products interest you and the link to unsubscribe from all emails. Overall, I think it's a solid program, and one that's important for a company like GE, because a purchase of a new range or dishwasher may only happen every 5-10 years, so keeping up to date with subscriber needs, and offering newsletters the give an added engagement point, like recipes, keeps the relationship going even when the customer is not in the purchase cycle.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this campaign, and preference center best practices or missteps you've experienced. Just leave a comment!
Liz Lynch, senior marketing communications specialist