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What Bill Murray taught us about email marketing

It’s February 2, which means… it’s Groundhog Day!

Even if you don’t care about Punxatawney Phil or believe the weather is actually affected by whether or not he sees shadow (c’mon Phil, we’re counting on you, buddy), Groundhog Day holds special meaning for fans of the other star of the day – Bill Murray.

If you’ve never seen the classic 1993 film “Groundhog Day,” here’s the basic premise: Bill Murray stars as an arrogant weatherman who, while covering the annual Groundhog Day event in Punxsutawney, finds himself in a time loop, repeating the same day over and over again until he finally gets it right. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll learn something important – when you find yourself stuck in what seems like an endless cycle, you have to really shake things up to get out of it.

As email marketers, we understand that feeling all too well – it’s incredibly easy to fall into a rut when it comes to your design, content, and sending habits. Here are three ways email marketers can find themselves in their own version of Groundhog Day, and what they can do to break out of it once and for all!

1. Sending the same type of content over and over

Tell me if this sounds familiar: Each month, a brand compiles some sort of newsletter or e-blast, they send it out to all of their subscribers without any kind of tailoring, and repeat.

But here’s the thing: People like variety. And if all you do is send the same type of content to your subscribers again and again, they’re going to get bored with your brand and stop opening your emails or, even worse, unsubscribe.

Change things up by segmenting your subscribers and sending those groups more targeted, relevant messages. And try adding a few automated emails to the mix – welcome, birthday, and thank you emails are surefire hits. Your subscribers will thank you with long-term loyalty and a significantly lower churn rate.

2. Not watching your analytics

There’s an incredibly simple way to get valuable, rare insight into the mind of your audience: Listen to them.

You’d be shocked how many marketers, after sending out their email campaigns, never go back and look at their analytics – open rates, click rates, breakdown of desktop vs. mobile, most popular email client, etc. – or what their subscribers clicked on.

Not staying on top of where your subscribers are or what they respond to is essentially shooting yourself in the foot as a marketer. Paying attention to their preferences and adjusting accordingly is the fastest way to lift subscriber engagement and conversions. It’s a no-brainer.


3. Never refreshing your design

We’re all about brand consistency, and if you have an eye-catching template that looks great on any size screen, you’re already ahead of the game.

But it’s still important that you take the time delight your subscribers every once in a while – especially when launching a new content series, on special occasions like holidays, or when you start promoting a new product or service.

Changing things up can be as simple as adding an element of surprise (like an animated GIF or a video) or even trying an entirely new custom template. You’d be shocked how effective a simple makeover can be for boosting your success rates.

Have you recently found yourself in an email rut? Tell us about it in the comments, and we’ll channel our inner Bill Murray (and, you know, use some of our email marketing expertise) to see if we can help!