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How search and email acquisition campaigns benefit both channels

Concept of digital marketing

Search and email are good marketing partners because they make each other more productive. Add a layer of “big data,” and you have a firm foundation for digital marketing success.

Take email acquisition, for example. Instead of just going it alone, email and search teams should partner up on PPC ads to build email acquisition.

“Email + search” not “email versus search”

Why spend a few bucks on a PPC campaign to acquire new customers through email when your website has opt-in forms all over it?

Because it can deliver a higher-quality stream of customers: people who are truly interested in your brands but might not discover them any other way.

The email address allows you address each consumer individually using data –preferences, behavior or transactions plus data you buy from a third-party provider that shows what your customers do beyond your boundaries.

Acquiring a customer’s email address is even more valuable than connecting a click-through to that customer. Plus, it’s easier than unwrapping an individual identity from cookies and other identifiers.

That’s why acquiring a large base of high-quality email addresses is so important and not something you can leave to chance.

How to set up a PPC acquisition campaign

The goal is to acquire email addresses from search customers who click on your PPC ad offering discounts, freebies or other enticements to people who opt in for your emails.

Build ads using specific keywords, such as “deals” or “coupons” for your brand. Then, build a custom landing page tied to that ad. This is the key component of this campaign. You’re selling your customers on what they’ll get in exchange for their email addresses:

  • Tell customers what to expect and when, such as like daily sales alerts, weekly tips and tricks, company/brand news or whatever would appeal to your customers.
  • Post a sample of your best newsletter.
  • Show the benefits: VIP access to special events, special content or discounts just for subscribers, etc.
  • Provide a form that collects more than just name and email address. It could be birth date, mailing address, postal code, preferences – anything that fits your brand and would let you start segmenting and targeting messages immediately.

Don’t break the budget

Start with three search campaigns keyed to terms such as “discount,” “deal,” “coupon” or whatever works for your brands. Your custom landing page can serve all three campaigns. Test it with a daily cap of maybe $50, and see what happens.

Even if only one or two people sign up every day, your experiment hasn’t failed. Adjust your campaigns based on what you’ve learned. Try different keywords, ad copy and incentives. Review your landing page. Does it reflect the language in your search ads? Use responsive design so that the page works as well on a mobile phone as it does on a desktop computer.

Benefits: higher quality customers, better data, more insights

Once you acquire enough customers this way you can start experimenting. What would happen if you were stop emailing a segment of the subscribers you acquired through search?

Hold out a random number of customers as your control group, and experiment on the rest.

Study the customers you acquire via search to see if they yield different results from people who subscribe after a conversion (purchase, download) or by opting from your homepage or some random page on your site. Track what they do. Do they buy? Browse? Click on your emails or ignore them?

This is how B2B marketers operate, by the way. By adopting their tactics, you can become more precise in your targeting, content, calls to action and analytics. In other words, when you know more about each of your customers, you market better, use resources more wisely and generate better results for your company.

Quality beats quantity

Data informs how you identify your customers and how you use that data to target them. Without accurate information, you have to work much harder. That’s why genuine email addresses are so important in this giant data universe.

Email is at the center of that universe. It holds the key to the future of advertising to identifiable consumers. Address quality has to beat quantity because quality has so much more extension, and quantity does not.

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