Email personalization has become more than just a marketing trend—it's now an integral part of any successful email marketing strategy. Personalization has proven to be an effective tool in establishing meaningful connections with customers, increasing engagement, and driving conversions.
But..the power of personalization involves more than simply including the customer's name–it's about delivering personalized content that aligns with their preferences, behavior, and experience with your business.
This guide will review everything you need to know to send out the most effective and engaging personalized emails.
What is Email Personalization?
Email personalization is the tailoring of email content specifically toward individual customers. Instead of sending generic, one-size-fits-all messages, businesses add customized content to make each email feel unique and valuable to the customer.
But, personalized email marketing isn't just about addressing your customers by their first name. It's also about creating specific content that reaches and responds to your customers' needs and buying behaviors, whether that’s by sending product recommendations or congratulating them on reaching a customer milestone.
It can be a great strategy for boosting engagement, improving response rates, and creating a more positive customer experience.
Benefits of Personalizing Emails
Personalizing emails offers significant benefits for businesses aiming to effectively engage their audience and drive better results from their marketing efforts.
Higher Open Rates
While average email open rates clock in at 19.7%, personalized emails lead to open rates of almost 70%. The email's subject line is your first chance to add personalization.
Mention a recent purchase, introduce them to a new product you think they’d enjoy, or at least address them by name. Making your consumer feel immediately valued can get those emails opened up quickly!
Personalized emails make your customers feel acknowledged and valued, encouraging more interactions and a stronger connection with your brand.
Interactive touches like special offers or personalized videos can increase the likelihood that the customers will click from the email to your site or related content.
Consumers are six times more likely to complete a transaction with personalized emails than generic emails.
Personalized reminders, such as emails reminding customers about items left in their shopping carts, can help nudge consumers towards completing their purchases and influence them to finish their transactions, increasing your business revenue!
Personalized emails that include videos achieve a click-through video rate of 38%--compared to only 12% without videos. This effective marketing strategy makes your content resonate with your audience on a deeper level.
Personalized Email Marketing Examples
Instead of generic email blasts, savvy businesses use personalized email marketing methods to engage with their customers There are endless opportunities to add personal touches to your emails, ranging from subject lines to CTAs.
Basic Email Personalization
Let’s take a look at the most basic level of email personalization.
Personalize Emails with Names
Similar to calling out someone's name to get their attention, the subject line of the email is the first thing to catch the consumer’s attention.
Using the customer's name in the subject will immediately grab the customer's attention and including it in the body of the email can make the experience feel almost like a conversation.
Custom fields in emails can include specific information collected from customers, such as their job titles, location, past purchases, and more. This information allows marketers to add text to personalized emails that address each customer's unique needs and interests.
One way to use custom fields is by mentioning the customer's last purchase and suggesting items similar to the one that was purchased, like:
“Hey, [customer name]! We hope you’ve been loving your [past purchase]...and we think you'll love this too! We're having a sale on towels and linens next week from July 8th-15th and we’re giving [percentage off] to all our current customers!”
The custom fields in this example include the customer’s name, their past purchase, and what percentage they can get off their upcoming purchase.
A subject line is a marketer's first opportunity to get the customer to engage. It requires thoughtful consideration and creativity.
While you can include the customer’s name, you could also mention the name of the product purchased, recommended products to the customer, or seasonal events.
Experimentation through A/B testing can be a helpful way to find the most effective subject lines for your audience. However, remember effective subject lines are just one component of a successful email—they should also be paired with an engaging email body, clear CTAs, and compelling preheader text to maximize results.
In personalized email marketing, calls-to-action, or CTAs, are used to elicit a specific response from the recipient. Whether it's "Shop Now," "Learn More," or "Sign Up," CTAs guide customers on what to do next, any steps to follow, or any action to take.
Personalized CTAs can increase email campaign effectiveness by narrowing the message based on user behavior, preferences, or demographics. For instance, if a customer is interested in a particular product, the email can include a CTA like "Grab your favorite towel set,” or “Ready to shop, [Customer first name]?”
Send From a Real Person
A personalized email from a marketing team member–or the company CEO–makes the receiver feel important and part of a community. Emails without any sign-off, or are signed off by the name of the company, are impersonal and less likely to engage the recipient.
Sending an email from a person can humanize the email and develop a more personal connection with the recipient.
More Email Personalization
Ready to up your email personalization game? Try these more advanced steps toward personalization.
Milestone emails are marketing campaigns that call out specific accomplishments by the customer. They can celebrate important events or acknowledge significant actions in customers' journey, such as their first purchase, first anniversary as your customer, or acknowledgment of their loyalty to your brand.
"Congratulations *customer name*! You've made your first purchase with us! To celebrate, here's a 10% offer for your next purchase. Buy yourself something cute ;)."
Milestone emails show the customer you’re paying attention to them and that you value (and will reward) their business.
You’ve probably received many product recommendations in the past, but that’s because they’re work! These emails involve recommending products or services to customers based on their purchasing behavior, search history, or preferences that they’ve shared with a business.
Businesses can analyze customers' past interactions and preferences to suggest products they are more likely to purchase. This streamlines customers’ shopping experiences and makes them more likely to convert.
This kind of email can be discounts or deals unique to customers' interests, behaviors, or purchase history. When the special offer matches the recipient's needs or preferences, they're more likely to engage with your email and make a purchase, which drives conversions and increases customer loyalty.
You might want to send a special offer to prevent abandoned shopping carts. An email might include content like:
"Hey [consumer name]! We see that you've got something in your shopping cart! We think [product] would look great on you, so here's [percentage] off if you purchase it today!"
You not only addressed the consumer by their name but also mentioned the product that was in their shopping cart. Even if the discount is store-wide, offering it directly to a consumer who’s on the fence is much more effective.
It's also helpful to communicate the value and exclusivity of these special offers within the email subject line or preheader text to tease the offer and increase open rates.
Advanced Email Personalization
Advanced personalization offers consumers a more immersive experience and more opportunities to engage.
Personalized Video Emails
Whether it's a customer testimonial, product demonstration, or personalized thank-you note, personalized video content can significantly enhance the email experience. Personalized videos can increase email click-through rates by 250% –and get ten times more viewer engagement.
Personalized videos are videos customized to each recipient. specific product recommendations based on their preferences, or other personalized elements. However, recording and sending a completely personalized video to every potential customer is not a scalable email marketing strategy.
Ideally, your personalized videos can be automated and generated in real time, creating a highly targeted and personalized experience for the viewer. For example, Tavus, an AI video generator can convert one recording into as many as you need. You can programmatically fit Tavus videos into any existing workflow so individuals automatically receive real-time, personalized responses–at whichever touchpoints you choose.
And guess what? You can improve the effectiveness of all the personalized emails above with a video. Walk through their milestones with a video or make their special offer extra special by sharing it with a note.
By adding videos to your personalization email strategy, you get the many benefits of this engaging, attention-grabbing medium. And with Tavus, all it takes is recording one video, and then the AI does the rest.
Insight emails are a great way to show consumers how much they've used your platform, product, or services. You can show consumers how they've improved their productivity, routine, skills, and more.
This can help grow your relationship with your consumers. If consumers can see how they've benefited from your company's products or services, they'll continue doing business with you.
Take a look at this insight email from National Grid on energy usage.
This personalized report card addresses receivers by name, refers to their past and current energy usage, and then adds more personalized details in the body.
Triggered Emails Based on Touchpoints
You can also set up triggers to send out emails automatically as a response to specific action a customer takes with your brand.
The triggers could be anything like a website visit, a product purchase, cart abandonment, signing up for a newsletter, or browsing a specific product category, to name just a few.
They match the customer's immediate context and respond to their actions almost in real time, providing a personalized user experience. As a result, triggered emails tend to have higher open and click-through rates and can effectively drive engagement and conversions.
However, you can have a lot of customers that are triggering a lot of touchpoints. In order to reach all of them at the right time, you’ll need to be able to scale your personalized email outreach.
Let’s say you need to send a follow-up email for a purchase. You need to record each video talking to the consumer about their transaction and what to expect when they receive their product. If you have one, or even ten customers, that’s doable. If you have 20, 30, or 3,000…how can you send all those videos?
With Tavus, you can easily generate thousands of those follow-up videos–from just one recording. For this scenario specifically, Tavus users can set up a trigger to generate a video after a purchase is completed. Tavus updates the dynamic variables of each video with whichever data you want it to use from the purchase, from the customer’s name to the product they brought to a related product they may want to buy.
Without any further input from you, every single customer receives a follow-up email that looks like it was recorded by you right at that moment.
Personalized Email Marketing Strategies
Here are a few different personalized email marketing strategies that you can use to help your business grow!
Accurately Segment Audiences
Accurate audience segmentation is a fundamental step for successful personalized email marketing. This strategy involves dividing your email subscribers into smaller, more specific groups based on various characteristics or behaviors to send more targeted, personalized content.
Several factors can be used to segment audiences, including:
- Past purchases
- Email engagement levels
- Interests and lifestyle
While audience segmentation is helpful, the ultimate key to personalized marketing is 1:1 marketing. One-to-one marketing is a strategic approach that focuses on tailoring marketing efforts to meet the needs of each customer.
This approach recognizes that every customer is different, and that generic, mass marketing messages–or even segmented marketing messages–aren’t as effective in today's business landscape where everyone is competing for milliseconds of attention. Segmentation doesn't allow you to create closer relationships because you're splitting your consumers into groups and marketing to those specific interests, not the consumer directly.
Choose Scalable Solutions You Can Automate
You need to be able to scale your email personalization strategies. You can make a perfectly personalized email that converts 100% of the time…but if you can’t quickly send it out to your entire audience, then it won’t have the desired impact.
To help scale, consider marketing software like email marketing platforms that offer list segmentation, automation workflows, and A/B testing capabilities. As your database grows, these features will be paramount in managing and analyzing your campaigns effectively.
Marketing automation tools allow you to deliver personalized email content automatically based on triggered responses or specific customer behaviors. These tools can help streamline your marketing processes and significantly increase efficiency, especially as the volume of your emails increases.
The best tool for ultimate personalization and scalability? Tavus. With Tavus, you can send thousands of high-definition variations after recording just one video. Now that is scaling.
Collect Data but Respect Privacy
When it comes to personalized email marketing, data collection plays a crucial role. It allows businesses to get to know their customers on a deeper level and send them more targeted, specific content.
However, as important as data collection is, it's equally essential to respect user privacy. In a world where data breaches and misuse of personal information are common concerns for customers, businesses must prioritize privacy and data protection. This involves obtaining clear consent from users before gathering their data, being transparent about how this data will be used, and storing it securely to prevent unauthorized access.
By showing that you value and respect their privacy, you can encourage them to share more information because they know it will be handled responsibly. This balance between personalized marketing and privacy is key to building strong, long-term customer relationships.
Use the Best Email Personalization Tool
Personalized email marketing is one of the most effective ways to build customer relationships. You can connect with customers by sending them unique subject lines and video content, recommending products, influencing purchasing decisions, and more.
Of course, email personalization tools like Tavus will make your life much easier.
Tavus offers you the highest level of customization options. You can select any variables you'd like to personalize in each video, incorporate CTA links, select a dynamic video background, and much more.
This extensive personalization allows you to generate distinctive and compelling content that connects with your audience and increases conversions.