As a regular user of email, you will, by now be aware of Gmail’s new Priority Inbox feature.
Still in its BETA phase, but available to all Gmail users, it automatically sorts your inbox into (1) Important emails and (2) everything else. A ‘service’ which has been met with mixed reviews by email marketers. Whilst my own thoughts were pretty negative at the start, I have done some checking within the industry and am beginning to see the positive side. Mainly it will separate the wheat from the chaff and make it easier to focus on quality client leads and client-relationships.
So, how do you proceed to ensure that you gain from the process?
1) Emails, by their very nature, are direct and personal, which is why it is the ‘weapon of choice’ for building customer relationships. The benefit of a priority inbox means that for those of your customers who interact with you and your brand campaigns, your emails will be given a higher ranking, further enhancing their trust of your brand in their inbox.
2) The long term effect being that Generic messages simply will not get through which makes it even more important that the content of your newsletter is personalised and relevant to your readers and loaded with value. Use the available tools to test, segment your lists and to set up autoresponders for your campaigns.
3) The Gmail subscribers who are recipients of your email will need to be able to identify your emails very easily if you want them to keep opening. So your business name and/or brand will have to be highly conspicuous in the ‘from’ name, the subject line or the pre-header. That will ensure that, if you’re campaigns are already successful your Gmail subscribers will be quickly aware if your emails are being marked down and re-set you as an important sender.
4) You will need to concentrate some effort to ensure regular response from your subscribers to prevent your emails from slipping into obscurity. Encourage them constantly to interact and engage with your email newsletters. Make sure that all of your emails carry a very clear call to action, preferably one that encourages engagement, such as clicking a link, replying, or submitting a comment.
Put simply, Gmail’s priority inbox has changed the email marketing landscape, whilst the benefits of email marketing remain as solid as ever. It will force you to be better at email marketing which should reward you with an even greater ROI as quality campaigns will be the ones that bubble to the top of Gmail inboxes.