CRM system + Email Marketing + Twitter?
Forget twitter it’s back to email marketing? Well maybe not, but a couple of things this week reminded me that email marketing is still useful and it is still used a lot.
First off was a post I caught on Larry Bodine’s blog entitled “Forget Twitter, Go Back to Email Marketing”. Now I don’t necessarily agree with the title, but there is a point in the article that I do agree with. The fact that “There is limitless opportunity for real interaction with your customers sitting right there in your email database” i.e. start using email better to interact rather than just ‘tell people’ and the fact that in most law firms CRM systems I bet there isn’t one twitter username, but there will be hundreds of email addresses.
Second was that I attended the inaugural user group for the Tikit eMarketing product yesterday (this is basically a bolt on to InterAction that manages email marketing activity) and I was surprised at the turn out. It shows that email marketing is still big for law firms.
So does the Tikit product address the direction of the blog post? i.e. the ability to react and engage with those you are mailing?
The upcoming release (v4.6) looks promising.
As well as consolidating the user interfaces of the current version and improving the technical side. There are changes proposed to enhance the reporting to generate metrics from multiple mailings and compare. So you can start to see what content is relevant to which clients. All this can be linked back to InterAction data to categorise by contact types, folders etc
These changes are setting the platform to build on the product in 2010 to allow enhanced process flows and multiple page events (allowing choices to be made by the recipient and different content delivered). There are also plans to enhance the ability for fee earners to deliver dynamic content to clients simply through the InterAction interface. There was also a session at the end on Spam. And this is the difficulty in trying to get personal in email marketing, especially if you go down the articles path of emails from partners addresses rather than “firstname.lastname@example.org”. Last thing you want is a badly formed email broadcast resulting in the partners email address being added to a spam list!
Email marketing though is still widely used and is definitely here to stay for a while, products like this are allowing you to make it more individual and relevant by track the metrics and allowing dynamic personalised content.
I did ask the “Twitter” question to the product team in a coffee break and although it isn’t planned I did get the impression that discussions about it had taken place internally. But the feeling they had was one I can see, how would you integrate twitter campaigns into CRM systems? I had an initial think on the way back and came up with:
- You could broadcast links to content and track clickthru’s, can’t really see real benefits of that as you could gain this from web stats.
- If twitter usernames were collected in the CRM system then you could @ or direct message your customers?
- Maybe you could add to the first point a tracking of RT’s of your articles and collate this information as to which twitter users are interested in what content?
But I concluded that I’m still not sure twitter is tuned to traditional eMarketing, it’s less a centralised marketing function and more an individual tool. I’m sure though there is some way to link the two, but haven’t thought of it yet. Any ideas?