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📩How understanding your audience improves engagement

understanding your audience

New here? This is Inbox Hacking, a Free Newsletter for Awesome email marketers wanting to level up. Email marketing insights, tools, & tactics sent twice per week. Someone forwarded you our Newsletter? Sign up for your Free subscription. Today’s edition aims to help you increase engagement by better understanding your audience.

Morning, Inbox Hackers. Mother’s Day is this Sunday so get those templates ready to roll and make time for the moms in your orbit.

Right now though, we’re gonna find out how to get more engagement from your subscribers. Who? 

Exactly! Getting to know your audience is a big key to higher email engagement rates. Is it easy nowadays? No, so we best get to it…

🚨 Free Live Webinar – Tomorrow May 10th – Discover How to Re-engage Inactive Subscribers

Dirty Job – Understanding Audiences 

HubSpot lays out 5 challenges to understanding your audience.

  1. Targeting correctly
  2. Customer / client behavior
  3. Content that connects
  4. Measuring success
  5. Managing marketing trends

All 5 involve that dirty 4-letter word most marketers despise— data🤬.

#1 Targeting

“Surveyed marketers reported that their biggest social media challenges are consistently creating engaging content (22%), gaining and keeping followers (22%), and reaching their target audience (21%).” ~HubSpot

Oh, and social media is full of fakery. Example: Facebook took down over 90 million fake accounts (New York Times 2021). Makes targeting kinda sketchy, yeah?

With email, there’s a more reliable path to real followers. Good list hygiene ensures fake addresses get wiped off your email list.

Also with email, there are best practices proven to help you reach the inbox and your readers. No need to untie the Gordian Knot of social algorithms.

3 Email Best Practices:

  • Don’t resemble spammers in any way
  • Get explicit permission before emailing people
  • Use clear sign-up forms that set exact expectations 

#2 Behavior 

“Understanding where customers spend their time online, what they like, and what they don’t like is essential to creating effective marketing campaigns.” ~HubSpot

Parts of that are easy. What readers click on in your email campaigns shows what they like.

Key→ Don’t take offense to what they don’t click on. Listen and let this clear insight guide future campaigns.

HubSpot also recommends tools like Google Analytics, heat maps, and social eavesdropping. 

24 eavesdropping tools for you.

understanding your audience

#3 Content

See # 2. Lean into content that’s already working.

Now, what if you think you’ve pushed certain content too much? Brainstorm new angles with these 5 content alternatives for your newsletter.

Also, lean into what’s trending (more on that in a sec). Doesn’t matter if you agree that a trend will stick. Present your take to your readers. 

Example: AI is the new… EVERYTHING! Can’t ignore a topic this big. But you don’t have to agree with so-called experts who are often just soothsayers and doomsdayers.

#4 Success

If you don’t know where you wanna end up, how will you know when you get there?

Set goals so you know if you’ve reached them. 

Your emails, your choice of goals: 

  • Opens
  • Click rate improvement
  • Number of forwards
  • Survey taken
  • Sales 💲
  • Referrals
  • Sign up for loyalty program
  • Zero spam complaints

Of course, KPI talk is the number one cause of marketer migraines. This child-like explanation of KPI mistakes should help.

#5 Trends

You have to stay atop marketing trends, yet you can’t let the tidal wave of info drown you.

Some trends are all hype. Others are here to stay but still over-hyped.

understanding your audience

How can you tell which are worth digging into and sharing with your readers?

  • Notice who is doing the hyping. Media Post shares tons of survey data and always notes when the group doing the survey could benefit from positive findings. Example: Burger King finds 87% of people love double-cheeseburgers, while 12% of respondents are lying, and 1% were non-committal.
  • Also, even the hottest trends may not matter much to your subscribers. Careful to avoid shiny topics you find fascinating but won’t help your audience sell their widgets or widget consulting services.

Getting to Know Your Audience in the Trenches 

It’s work and can be frustrating if you can’t gather a ton of insights with surveys or sign-up forms (users resist forms with numerous data fields).

Sometimes you have to get creative. Maybe even get your hands and head dirty on Reddit.

Real nuggets of data could be hiding in groups like that even though users are not your subscribers. As long as they fit your ideal customer / client, you can dig up valuable insights.

Need proof that insights on your audience can be found if you dig deeper? This famous Rolls Royce ad— the key part of the headline came from a cold emotionless technical manual.

understanding your audience
Keep reading for our Knowledge Base and an easy PR hack.

Knowledge Base

⚡Knowledge is power, but first a smilin’ K9.

28-min read on list segmentation (stretch beforehand).

👀Scanner situation – how to get more of your content read vs. scanned.

Behavioral sales guru on Twitter or EZ read on Persuasion.

📊Giant stack of newsletter ideas (40) for June.

Amazon jumps into video selling.

✉Imagine how many of your emails NEVER get opened.

Could be as high as 8 out of 10.

Pretty demoralizing, yeah? 

But it does not have to be this way.

You can drastically increase your open rates with Inbox Mailers.

Users of this new tech are seeing 50% – 70% open rates consistently. 

​Plus, Inbox Mailers re-engages your inactive subscribers.

Integrates easily with your current ESP + boosts click volume too.

Don’t let your email campaigns be ignored anymore.

Book a Demo→ improve your email marketing’s bottom line

Inbox Mailers is the only email marketing tool that truly gives you perfect timing on your sends.


Self Help 

The reason the ‘self’ above is always marked out?

One: Focusing on self isn’t real helpful.

Two: Self improvement is a never-ending chase that will whip your tail

(and generate book sales).

*Preorder my new self-help guide at www… 😅

*Shout-out to Inbox Hacking Subscribers → 

🎇Bob at Strategic Marketing

❔Warman (domain unknown🙂)

Facts and Stats

  • 46% of digital marketers & ecommerce execs plan to decrease ad spend on Instagram (BusinessWire)

  • All but 7 of 1,200 people ignored a maestro playing a $3.5-million-dollar violin at a train station— because he was in plain clothes (can’t stand out when you blend in) 

  • Humans are more open to change on ‘beginning days’— searches for “diet” not only spike on New Year’s Day, but also on day-one each month, birthdays, & end of decade years (Nancy Harhut)

Bonus: 2 out of 3 marketers are using AI to… brainstorm.

*Quick reminder that as you read this, subscribers are scrolling right past your unopened email.

Some are opting out altogether.

Email lists fade away over time. 

Relax. It’s the nature of the business of email marketing.

However, you can evolve past what other mailers endure with decaying lists.

Inbox Mailers is the only email tool with true perfect timing.

Timing so perfect, your emails hit the inbox when subscribers are most likely to notice them and open them.

Schedule a Free Demo today because you worked hard for those subscribers— and they can be re-engaged.


Marketing Musings

Nothing new under the sun.


But innovation does happen. The tiniest bit can make a splash.

How do people make it happen though?

First, they learn the only thing there is to know about fear.

Then, they take risks.

Get Hacking

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It’s also today’s hack. Free publicity. See, anyone could’ve nominated a newsletter for this GURU ‘tournament’.

Find 10 similar spots, aka opportunities, to have your newsletter promoted for free.

Use your noodle, get creative.

🚨 Free Live Webinar – Wednesday May 10th – Save Your Spot to Learn How to Re-engage Inactive Subscribers🚨

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