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How well do you really know your subscribers?

Recently I was fortunate enough to speak as a panelist at a Networx Brisbane event where I got to share my thoughts on why direct marketing is still the best. It was a great night shared with some really cool people.

A popular theme discussed on the night was the importance of building relationships with your customers and prospects. This is something I am particularly passionate about as it’s an area I think many email marketers fail to recognise the importance of.

Effective email marketing is more than just design, content and offers. You can send a beautiful email with an amazing offer, but it’ll fail almost every time if you have a poor relationship with its recipients.

If you want to capture people’s attention and retain their interest over time, you must have a strong relationship with them.

With email marketing, this begins with having the right information in your database. You can’t send relevant, interesting and engaging messages to people if you know nothing about them.

This is often a lot easier said than done though as most of the time subscribe forms are short and ask only for an email address and a first name. Therefore its important email marketers build subscribers’ profiles over time in order to nurture meaningful relationships with them.

So how exactly do you do that?

It sounds like hard work but there are actually a few simple things you can do beyond the point of subscription to help build your subscribers profiles.

You can listen to what I had to say on the matter via this short panelist debrief interview.

Plus, here are some additional tips I’d like to share with you:

Harness the power of welcome emails
This is the email immediately sent to a new subscriber after signing up. Welcome emails tend to have the highest open rate of all emails and are great at getting your email relationship off on the right foot. Use this as an opportunity to ask for additional information from the new subscriber and tell them how you’re going to use it. Eg. So you can send emails most relevant to their personal interests and preferences.

Always include an update profile option in your emails
It’s important that subscribers know how they can update their details and preferences, so be sure to include a link to an update profile form in all your emails.

Use surveys and dedicated update profile campaigns
These are both great ways of obtaining additional information from subscribers. For best results, offer incentives for subscribers to provide more information about themselves.

If you have a story to share on how you built up your database profiles over time and would like to be featured on this blog, please contact me at

 Posted by:
Matthew Johnson
EDM Specialist 
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