March 12

The major benefits and risks to personalisation to transform your marketing email campaigns

A mere 2 million email accounts existed in 1985. By 2001, there were 891.1 million (Chittenden & Rettie, 2002). By 2019 5.6 billion email account would have been active (Statista, 2018). (2018) reported, there are 247 billion emails sent every day. The importance of email marketing is highlighted with how often we use it to communicate.

So, it is important that emails stand out and go to the right people. Making the wrong choice when it comes to marketing emails can lead to a business’s email being blacklisted and blocked (HubSpot, 2018). 

Email personalisation

Ryan (2016) defines personalisation as a way of engaging with customers on their own terms. Postma and Brokke (2002) add to this and state personalisation is sending the right message to the right customer in order to increase effectiveness if communication.

Chaffey (2016) teaches customer engagement is a method to increase the amount of time to attention a consumer gives a brand across multiple chances. Thus, personalising an email campaign for a customer, and making it into an experience will allow leave a memorable impression.

This is a phycology backed method, it’s called the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon (Arnold Zwicky, 2006) and this is what an email campaign should aim to do (Chaffey 2016).

21% of consumers reported that they’ve received a memorable promotional email in the past two months, according to a study by Litmus (2018).

To overcome that, many brands are using email personalisation as a strategy for creating more engaging email experiences. Personalisation came derive in many forms, location, name, and even demographic.

Here’s a great blog on how personalisation can increase your customer engagement;

Now for some examples of organisations who have nailed it:

  • The Bowery Presents is great example of how to use location information to provide a customised email experience. In the email, The Bowery Presents pulled shows from New York venues for living in this area. 


  • Hawaiian Airlines; In keeping with the Hawaiian tradition of presenting someone with a lei on his or her birthday, the airline presented a gift of bonus miles, just for booking a trip within the next year.

Along to enhance the chances of a memorable email; Personalisation is the best method to use to keep emails welcoming and renewed. Putting the extra effort into this will in return increase customer retention and build a trustworthy relationship with customers according to Linda (2010).

Amazon is an example of how personalisation can be welcoming and renewed, within just a couple of days of purchases amazon will send personalised emails featuring “products similar to ……’ in this example its ‘full face plastic pumpkin masks’. 

This type of personalisation will not only convert a customer but it makes the content fresh and interesting!

The Risks!!

While these methods look impressive by companies who have done this well, Pavlov et al. (2008) argues that marketing messages are lost in background noise with negative consequences for return on investment.  Gautier (2002) strengthens the argument and discusses the difficulties in measuring the response of email marketing and states how measures such as click throughs are not effective, therefore having the budget for giveaways or spending the time in personalise can be a risk due to the nature of the difficulty to measure email campaigns.

Personalisation is a risk to individuals who like to have privacy on the internet, some could feel racked or watched, Harrison McKnight (2001) states trust is a vital relationship to have between business and consumers. The challenges facing organisations are also evident in legislation, General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) makes it against the law to track or set cookies without consensual agreements (ICO, 2018). 

If you want to learn more about consented data collection, check this out!

Chaffey (2016) teaches effective marketing involves inbound and outbound email marketing.

  • Outbound email marketing – Used to encourage trial, purchases and part of CRM
  • Inbound email marketing – Where the emails from the customers are managed

Therefore, although personalization is a massive part of creating the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon effect, outbound marketing should not be ignored.

The major benefits and risks to personalisation to transform your marketing email campaigns. If this doesn’t tempt you enough checkout this blog on benefits to personalisation from Thought Leaders, HubSpot;

There you have it, I’ll leave you with this great video!


Chittenden, L. & Rettie, R. (2002) “An Evaluation of Email Marketing and Factors Affecting Response.” Journal of Targeting, Measurement and Analysis for Marketing. Vol 11, Issue 3. pp. 90-95

D Harrison McKnight, N.L.C., 2001. What trust means in customer relationships: An interdisciplinary conceptual typology. International journal of electronic commerce, 6(2), pp.35-59.

Gautier, A. (2002) “You’ve got mail”. New Zealand Marketing Marketing Magazine. Vol 21. Issue 8. pp 14

HostPapa Blog. (2018). Benefits & Risks to Email Marketing Selection. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Mar. 2018]. (2018). Cookies and similar technologies. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Mar. 2018].

Linda, S.L.L., 2010. Social Commerce-E-Commerce in Social Media Context. World Academy of Science Engineering and technology, 72, pp.39-44

Postma, O.J. and Brokke M., 2002. Personalisation in practice: The proven effects of personalisation. Journal of database Marketing & Customer Strategy Management, 9(2), pp.137-142

Pavlov, O., Melville, N. & Plice, R. (2008) “Toward a sustainable email marketing infrastructure.” Journal of Business Research. Vol 61, Issue 11.

Ryan, D., 2016. Understanding digital marketing: marketing strategies for engaging the digital generation. Kogan Page Publishers.

Statista (2018) Number of active email accounts worldwide 2019. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 12 January 2018]

Smart Insights. (2018). A practical guide to website personalisation | Smart Insights. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Mar. 2018].

Staff, P. and Staff, P. (2018). There’s a Name for That: The Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. [online] Pacific Standard. Available at: [Accessed 1 Mar. 2018].

Todd, J. and Todd, J. (2018). Personalization: Your Surefire Strategy To Increase Customer Engagement. [online] MarTech Today. Available at: [Accessed 1 Mar. 2018].

Zantal-Wiener, A. (2018). 13 Email Examples That Totally Nailed Personalization. [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Mar. 2018].

January 8

How to audit one channel of an organization’s digital marketing presence: Twitter  

Firstly, let’s define what an Audit is:

“A marketing audit is a comprehensive, systematic, independent, and periodic examination of a company’s or a business unit’s marketing. It is designed to evaluate marketing assets and activities in the context of market conditions, and use the resulting analysis to aid the firm in planning” (Clark, 2017)

A Twitter audit is a diagnosis of your Twitter account’s performance. During a Twitter audit, you want to look at your Tweets, followers and the overall branding of your account.

The goal is to find any weaknesses or holes in your account, and potential opportunities for improvement. For social media marketers, a lot of focus gets put on growing your account, getting more followers on Twitter and increasing traffic. But unless you’re taking a second to audit everything you’re doing, it’s difficult to gauge whether you’re making the right decisions.

Here’s how to perform a complete Twitter Audit.

The process is broken down into 2 easy steps and proven methods to use:

  1. Auditing your Tweets using Dave Chaffey
  2. Auditing your followers using PR Smith’s SOSTAC®


#1 Auditing your Tweets

Let’s start by auditing your tweets with the use of one of Dave Chaffey’s channels: Social media Marketing Channel for Twitter

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An alternative method for Auditing you tweets: The 10 C’s of Online Marketing.

The 10 C’s of modern marketing was designed specifically for digital marketing by Chartered Institute of Marketing examiner Richard Gay, (2007).

Here are a few insights explained, but you can find a detailed guide here.

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Now you know the 10 C’s. Put them in to practice by applying each section to Audit your tweets and draw on conclusions from each section.


#2 Auditing your followers using PR Smith’s SOSTAC®

Knowing who’s following you will help you produce content that’s more tailored toward your audience. Sometimes when your Tweets aren’t getting as much engagement as you’d like, it’s because there’s a disconnect between what you’re sharing and what your audience wants to see. The first step in fixing that problem is analyzing who’s following you.

SOSTAC® is a planning model, originally developed in the 1990s to help with marketing planning by PR Smith. You should start by creating a plan for Twitter social media that follows the SOSTAC® structure:

  • Situation: An assessment of the current situation (both internally e.g. team capacity to manage SM channels, and externally such as competition, target audience etc.)
  • Objectives: A list of SMART objectives to be achieved
  • Strategy: A plan of how to get there based on insights about the audiences you are targeting and the content formats and types to engage your audience and hit your targets
  • Tactics: Which networks to use, how often to share content, who will be responsible, what content to share etc.)
  • Actions: Deliverables (what’s in and out of scope)
  • Control: A set of benchmarks and KPIs to help analyse results, as well to reporting against these

! Before looking at how you apply SOSTAC® at each step to create a marketing plan, my first tip is to use it to review your planning process and how you manage your marketing.

Ask yourself critically about the activities you personally and your organisation are good at. Maybe you spend too much or too little time reviewing the situation. Perhaps you’re not so good at setting SMART objectives, or developing strategies to support them or the control stage of assessing how effective your strategies and tactics are and adjusting them?

Below is a guide of the SOSTAC® planning system. Applying these to your Twitter followers can help you gain a view of the channel to identify where to enhance.


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Source: (Smart Insights, 2017)

Here is a video on how to use the SOSTAC® planning system.


To further understand your followers using platforms such as followerwonk will allow you to explore and grow your social graph. Dig deeper into Twitter analytics: Who are your followers? Where are they located? When do they tweet?

Here is a snippet of where an organization’s (Trust-hub Ltd) followers are located:


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Source: (, 2017)

Using this tool, I can understand the reach of followers are located all over the world. This audit has allowed me to conclude the tweets need to be repeated for different time zones so other followers do not miss them.


& that’s a wrap, start your twitter audit now and change your social channel today!



Clark, B. (2017). Marketing Audit.

Cleverism. (2017). How to Prepare a Marketing Audit to Shape Your Marketing Strategy. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017]. (2017). Followerwonk: Tools for Twitter Analytics, Bio Search and More. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017].

NOW Marketing Group | Marketing Agency in Northwestern Ohio. (2017). Social Media Audit for Twitter | NOW Marketing Group | Marketing Agency in Northwestern Ohio. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017].

 Sprout Social. (2017). The 20 Minute Twitter Audit. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017].

Smart Insights. (2017). The 10 C’s Digital Marketing Model | Smart Insights. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017].

Smart Insights. (2017). 10 Common Social Media Marketing Mistakes | Smart Insights. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017].

Smart Insights. (2017). Managing social media plan example template | Smart Insights. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Dec. 2017].

Smart Insights. (2017). SOSTAC marketing planning model guide. [online] Available at: [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].


November 23

3 ways to Optimise Your Email Call-to-Action to Drive Conversions

We’ve all come across a few calls to actions (or CTAs) in the past, maybe within the past hours or minutes. Whether you’re reading emails, scrolling through social, or ordering on a mobile app, every company hopes that you’ll heed its call to action.

Here are examples of what they could be:

  • Download our e-book.
  • Learn more.
  • Save your spot.
  • Register now!

Most of us are used to directing cold, spammy looking marketing emails straight to our junk folders because everyone can spot what they are. Marketers can find a way through the noise with optimising CTAs:

#1 Action & benefit oriented.

To make your CTA action-oriented, you must be mindful of the language you use in your copy and what benefits your visitors are receiving.

The more descriptive you are about the action that you want your persona to take and what they’ll get by clicking that button, the better.

Your CTA needs to reflect a benefit; an action that your audience wants to complete.

For example:

  • Stay Connected.
  • Join the Fun!
  • Let’s Talk?
  • Watch Right Now.

#2 Be honest.

Let your audience know exactly what the benefit is of opening an email.

Audiences prefer to know what they’re getting into when they click. To figure out which calls to action get the most clicks and conversions, it’s best to test out a few using A/B testing.

Risker methods might include irrelevant words, that may appeal to some audiences; for example, a new season has come around you’ve sent your quarterly email newsletter, in this you include a CTA with “click if you dare”, while this might work with some people, depending on how well the company knows its audience, it’s a bold risk. This may come across as junk mail to some users.

#3 Use a verb or action words.

The purpose of a CTA is to encourage visitors to convert. Using an action word can direct your visitors to do what you expect them to do on a landing page.

Here are 3 verbs to use to attract a conversion:

  • Build/learn/grow–  This CTA indicated you’re going to help your persona reach a professional or personal goal. We are naturally curious and want to absorb as much knowledge as possible. A CTA that implies self or professional development will build interest. This could come in the form of any content, whitepaper, blog, guide, “Build your fitness regime today”, “Grown your Twitter community: guide”, or if we’re already interested, and want to learn more: “Learn project management: best practices”.
  • Start– To start something implies you can click through to the product or service straight away. An example, a CTA on Spotify that reads “start a free trial today”, this tells me, I’ll be using the platform within minutes.
  • Join– A sense of inclusiveness is implied in this, it makes an individual feel they are about to join a community, emotional connections with your persons have a huge impact on the actions you’d want them to take. Here is an example of a “join” CTA: “Join the fastest growing network of singles”.

Beginning your calls to actions with strong action verbs will make your message pop in every email. Take a look at these two calls to actions; “E-book” and “Download the e-book” – Which would convert best? Offering a clear objective is essential as it attracts the visitor to act.

To conclude

Using effective email CTA’s can drive conversions and see an ROI, but it’s important to bear in mind these are not the only thing to consider when doing email marketing. Stay tuned as there’s more to come on effective ways to rise over the clutter.

Here are some great CTAs to view now:


& that’s a wrap, start optimising now and change your email marketing today



Salesforce. (2017). 5 Email Call-to-Action Best Practices to Drive Conversions. [online] Available at: [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017]. (2017). Cite a Website – Cite This For Me. [online] Available at: [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017]. (2017). Call-to-Action Best Practices. [online] Available at: [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017].

Wishpond. (2017). The 25 Best Words to Use in Your Call-To-Action Buttons. [online] Available at: [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017].


October 11

‘Game Of Thrones’ Finale: Nabs 16.5M Viewers

The medieval fantasy epidemic that grabbed our attention worldwide with thunderous adventure, death, destruction, and unleashed evil: G.o.T

Now earning the attention of 16.5 million of us, worldwide. It’s hard to believe back in 2011, when the show was first created, it was dismissed by SKY as ‘not for them’.

G.o.T features the fictional continents of Westeros first produced by DDB based in New Zealand, DDB strategically took on the project of plastering G.o.T worldwide; utilised Brandwatch analytics to listen to conversations around the series. DDB thrived on the market conversations, the public found a mutual hatred of the arrogant King Joffrey.

Soon enough, the series was recognised internationally, through repeated coverage. Exciting and engaging campaigns were launched to keep audiences captured in the fantasy world, conversations soon skyrocketed once the power of a tweet came to fruition. Fans used few words and pictures with the hashtag; #bringdowntheking to alter the storyline, eventually, in true media fashion, giving the fans what they wanted: the gruesome execution of the evil king was aired.



Game of Thrones Season 7 Data: Five Fun Social Media facts to Round-up the Season

SKY, DDB & Game of Thrones: A Social Media Campaign That Reigns Supreme