How to Tag Your Subscribers for Better Results: Best Practices

30.03.2017

The effectiveness of your email marketing depends largely on your ability to send quality content to your subscribers.

In reality, however, it’s much more than just sending quality content - it’s about how to segment your email subscribers and send targeted information to each one of your lists based on their interests, to deliver optimum value.

One of the best ways to segment your email subscribers is using tags.

What are Tags?

Most email marketing automation tools and CRM systems allow you to tag each of your subscribers in a way to segment them into a specific lists based on their interests or any other criteria. This is an important part of your email marketing process which critically influences the outcome of your email campaigns.

According to a study by MailChimp, segmented email campaigns had a higher open-rate (14.37%) than non-segmented email campaigns. Moreover, they also had higher clicks (64.78%) and lower unsubscribe rates (8.98%) than non-segmented campaigns.

Courtesy: MailChimp
Courtesy: MailChimp

 

The bottom line is when you tag your email subscribers based on their interests, it’s easier to segment them and, as a result, you’re able to send more personalized content, delivering better value to your subscribers.

Such personalized campaigns mean you truly care about your subscribers rather than take them for granted. Indeed, this translates into better response rates and higher marketing ROI.

Tagging Mistakes

Creating better tags for your email lists is key to segmenting your subscribers. Many businesses, however, tend to underestimate the importance of tagging their subscribers, and use tags without careful analysis. Without any patterns, tagging can actually add to your confusion, especially when you’re dealing with a huge number of email subscribers.

In other words, each tag should have a clear purpose, reflecting a unique pattern in your email lists.

How to Create Tags for Subscribers

Creating unique, concise and explanatory tags is an art and requires lateral thinking. Based on the dynamics of your subscribers, you may create many tags to categorize and list them. However, avoid creating random labels that may leave you wondering why you created them.

One of the best ways to create useful tags for your subscribers is creating specific labels in ways that will make sense to you in the long run.

Here are some tag labels that can help you segment and manage your subscribers easily. The examples below only serve to offer insights into how you could possibly tag your subscribers based on some characteristics. In other words, you could create tags which may be different from the ones demonstrated below.

So, let’s take a look.

Customers: This could be a parent tag category for all your subscribers who are current customers. Based on the specific characteristics of your customers, you could use other sub-tags. For example, based on membership types of customers, they could be tagged under basic, premium, gold etc. Similarly, based on the business history of your customers, you could use tags such as ‘payment issues’ or ‘star customers’. Tagging your subscribers this way will help you come up with content that is most appropriate for your target segment.

Prospects: Much like customers, you could also use a parent tag category for your prospective customers. Let’s just call them “prospects”. Furthermore, if you want to split them into different segments based on the type of campaigns or lead source, then you could use tags such as ‘cold prospects’,  ‘contact form’ and ‘free report’. This will help you approach each segment of prospects differently and design content that is more aligned with their intent.

Subscriptions: You could also tag your subscribers based on the type of content they have shown interest in. For example, you could use tags such as blog updates, monthly newsletters, weekly newsletters, podcasts etc. This will help you send content to your subscribers judiciously.

Events: If you’re receiving subscribers via events such as Twitter chats, live events or AMAs, it’s wise to use tags to spell out their lead source and segment them appropriately. If you host events specific to their interests, it’s going to drive value for those subscribers.

Final Thoughts

Successful email campaign specialists use tagging wisely to articulate their messaging and deliver optimum value to their customers. As studies have found in the recent past, personalized email campaigns can deliver almost six times higher transaction rates. But, shockingly, a staggering 70% of brands fail to use them. As a business, therefore, your competitive edge lies in your ability to use tags and segmentation to great effect.

 

What are your most effective tricks in terms of using tags in your email marketing?

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