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3 Proven Ways to Build Lasting Customer Relationships with Email Marketing and Salesforce Marketing Cloud

Customer Relationships with Email Marketing and Salesforce Marketing Cloud

Some interesting facts:

What conclusions can you draw from these facts?

This article is all about #3.

Email marketing is a great way for brands to build lasting relationships with potential and existing customers and garner their loyalty. In fact, email marketing is the key driver of relationship marketing.

Follow along to uncover the secrets of relationship marketing with email and Salesforce Marketing Cloud (SFMC)!

What is Relationship Marketing in Salesforce Marketing Cloud?

Relationship marketing is a customer-centric strategy where brands focus less on selling and more on building close, long-term customer relationships that consistently generate beneficial outcomes – both for the brand and its customers.

Thus, the aim of relationship marketing is not just customer acquisition, but also customer retention and customer satisfaction. This is an important distinction between traditional marketing and relationship marketing.

Relationship marketing recognizes and acknowledges that it’s far harder to retain an existing customer than acquire a new one:

Further, 95% of customers say that brand trust is an important driver of brand loyalty. And to garner this trust and loyalty, you need to invest in relationship marketing. Here’s where email and SFMC come in.

Now that we have clarified the meaning and importance of relationship marketing, let’s take a look at some strategies to help you set up a well-functioning relationship marketing program with SFMC.

And as we have seen above, building strong customer relationships starts with…

What: Knowing and Understanding Customers

How: Map Customer Journeys with Journey Builder

It’s impossible to forge a relationship with customers if you don’t know them.

Who are they?

Where do they live?

What do they do?

What do they prefer/like/dislike?

What are their needs and aspirations?

How can your brand meet their needs?

And how can you communicate to them that you can meet their needs?

The answer to the last question is obvious – through email marketing!

As to the other questions, the answers lie in getting to know your customers and making an effort to understand them. And this starts with mapping their customer journey. By visually mapping every interaction they may have with your brand, you can gain valuable insights about them, leverage this data to improve your email marketing, and thus build a relationship with them over time.

SFMC Journey Builder is a powerful tool to build holistic, multi-channel customer journeys and engage with them throughout the journey with personalized, two-way campaigns. With Journey Builder, you can also:

All in all, Journey Builder can help you build relationships with customers via email marketing from a very early stage in their journey.

What: Impress and Delight Customers with Awesome Email Messaging

How: Create Valuable, High-quality, Personalized Content with Email Studio and Content Builder

SFMC provides many powerful tools to power up your email marketing content. For instance, with Email Studio, you can design and send all kinds of targeted email marketing campaigns.

You can start with welcome emails.

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Banfield starts off every new customer relationship on the right foot. This welcome email is cute, informative, and includes an attractive discount – all great ways to attract a subscriber’s attention, and open their hearts and minds to an ongoing relationship.

And then nurture your budding relationships with regular and personalized:

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This automated abandoned cart email from Pacsun is a great way to touch base with subscribers and show them, “Hey, we miss you!” Result: it boosts conversions and keeps subscribers coming back.

Take advantage of all the features that come with Email Studio, including:

You can even track how each email campaign performs to understand whether you’re on track with your relationship-building goals.

Content Builder is another awesome tool in SFMC to help you nurture customer relationships through email and email content. Consolidate all your email resources in one location, and use them to create professional, responsive emails.

Use readymade content blocks to create mobile-friendly, responsive templates, and reuse these templates with different relationship marketing campaigns. Not only will you save time, you will also impress subscribers with the quality of your email design and copy.

You can also create hyper-personalized emails with dynamic content to win the competition for the inbox , build meaningful subscriber relationships, and even create loyal superfans.

You can even add personalized videos to templates to increase click-throughs by 200-300% and retention rates by 35%.

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Adding a video to its onboarding email enables Vimeo to delight new users and set the stage for a strong ongoing relationship.

What: Make Customers Feel Seen and Heard

How: Create Targeted Subscriber Segments

If you send out generic messaging to every subscriber, they will know. And they will get mad. But if you send out personalized messaging that’s targeted to a particular segment – or even better, hyper-targeted to a particular sub-segment – they will know. And they will love it!

A one-to-one relationship with customers requires that you connect with them on a one-to-one basis. This requires segmentation, which is easy with SFMC and Email Studio.

Segmentation is crucial because people tend to ignore non-personalized commercial emails but respond better to personalized emails containing information that’s relevant to them. This includes information like:

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SFMC really walks the talk on personalization with this email that addresses the subscriber by name, and uses warm, second-person language to connect, engage, and convert.

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Fitbit’s birthday email is not about selling its smart fitness tracker, but about making the subscriber feel special on their birthday, and encouraging them to adopt a healthier lifestyle. And who wouldn’t want to engage with a brand that cares about their health?! 

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This loyalty email from Fitbit is “salesy”. However, it puts the offer front and center, clearly showing the brand’s intent to reward the subscriber for their loyalty.

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This email from Target catches a subscriber as soon as they abandon their shopping experience. With tailored “price alert” messaging, it attracts a user and shows them that the brand cares enough about their needs to stay in touch.

SFMC offers a rich data model, powerful insights, and user-friendly tools to help you segment your audience. For example, you can create data filters or SQL queries in Email Studio, identify relevant criteria to segment your subscribers, and then target each segment with the right message at the right time. You can also leverage SFMC’s Einstein AI features like predictive scoring to connect with audiences based on what they will do next.

The better segments you create, the more targeted your emails, and the stronger your customer relationships. And for this – SFMC is your friend.

A Final Word

In a world where people are busy, overwhelmed with information, and stingy with their loyalty, it’s hard for brands to build, nurture, and grow customer relationships. But the effort is definitely worth it! Fortunately, you have powerful technology and techniques at your disposal to do just that – Salesforce Marketing Cloud and email marketing.

We hope you found these strategies useful. For more advice on how to maintain strong customer relationships through email and SFMC, talk to the experts at Email Uplers.

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