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To all the readers that have managed email campaigns during their careers; what is the value associated with re-engaging your inactive recipients? Is the opportunity cost enough to make you consider a new retargeting strategy? Many companies rely on outbound marketing techniques, such as email campaigns, as one of their primary marketing channels.

MailChimp, one of the largest email campaign platforms, recently released statistics on their open and click rates across 46 industries. The open rates across all those industries ranged from 14.76% to 28.49%, where click rates fell between 1.34% and 5.24%. It’s clear why some direct marketers will continually think back and wonder, “what else could I have done?”

So what does that mean regarding retargeting strategies?

It just means a large percentage of customers are not engaging with most of these email campaigns. Marketers need to consider those clients who continuously miss these opportunities because they may be refusing to participate with all email campaign – rendering the channel ineffective.

As marketers, the main question we want to ask is: how can companies efficiently retarget and engage these customers?

How To Retarget Emails And Segment Audiences

Companies who participate in direct email campaigns work with EMM or CRM solutions to manage the campaigns, extract leads, and store 1st party data. However, to accurately segment all this information, data needs to pass through a Data Management Platform (DMP). First, analysts need to extract recipient information related to the targeted audience from their EMM or CRM. In the case of email retargeting, the analyst would want to look at the no-open and the no-click recipients. Once extracted, a DMP can align that information with 1 st party audience data like login information, cookie data, IP and Mac addresses, device IDs, custom tagging – just to name a few. After the DMP has aggregated the data types (1st and 3rd party data) into appropriate segments,  DSPs will start real-time bidding for ads with different publishers that match those segment criteria.

Another means to acquire this information is to leverage 3rd party providers like LiveRamp to access additional audience data. These vendors will match the recipient emails with their 1st and 3rd party audience data. Once that data is matched, they will segment those matches and forward them directly to your Demand Side Platform (DSP). Working with 3rd party providers is a good option, but companies need to consider costs and the expected ROI.

The goal is to engage audiences across display, video, mobile, and social channels in real-time. Most importantly, these channels will now incorporate the original email message but in a more personalized manner. Similar tactics also apply for CRM retargeting strategies. Marketers may also want to reach out to their customers to upsell, advertise promotions, cross-sell, and renew products and services.

Retargeting Strategies

Once new channels are determined, companies will target those audience segments using numerous approaches. In regards to email retargeting, direct marketers should focus primarily on contextual targeting methods – as we’ve already discussed. With contextual targeting, marketers focus on using 1st and 3rd party data to create and distribute personalized ads. DSPs then select and push these advertisements out, using the user identity and the content displayed.

By leveraging Dynamic Creatives, contextual targeting will inject the customer, product or service data into different visual advertisements to help show and personalize the message. These types ads are more effective in stimulating customers because of the correlation between the content and the user’s behaviors and interests.

Additionally, companies can also push promotional advertisements to revitalize consumer interest. When using contextual targeting techniques, companies can rebrand the original email message by including personalized special offers that will entice customers to re-assess their interest.

Additional Retargeting Steps

If you go through the process and find the results still underwhelming, there are still other tools to consider. Telemarketing and direct emailing are good last results to find once all else fails. Now knowing the consumer’s behaviors, you can take this opportunity to communicate directly with them. See why they aren’t interested and get some feedback. This step is important when determining the accuracy of your campaign as well as your overall message. It will also give you a better idea of the value associated to re-engaging with future inactive email recipients.