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Email marketing strategy: I trigger, you trigger, he...

Hey friend! Do you like email marketing? And you want to improve and optimize your email campaigns again and again? What matters to you most is the open rate or the click rate? I understand you...

Design, email subject, personalization, code quality, address file, are all determining elements in the optimization of these rates. Do you know that other criteria also count for your recipient? The knowledge of the sender, the interest of the subject, the interest for the promotion in the object, to be already customer...
How can you professionalize and optimize your campaigns?

I need to think about the quality of our email campaign strategy... And now I need to change my underwear.

Dear friends, dear compatriots, it is (perhaps) time to think differently about email marketing and to think about our strategies and methods of sending campaigns. If email marketing is an effective tool (often even more effective than social networks)However, it cannot remain as it is and must be constantly renewed to remain efficient (responsive design, animated gifs, videos, typospersonalization, segmentation...). In application of article 49, paragraph 3 of the Constitution, I have therefore decided to commit my responsibility to propose a new emailing strategy!

Beware of easy models running out of steam

The current typical and common process of a campaign is as follows: News or product(s) to promote? I prepare my content, I think about the design, and I send my campaign on a reliable and quality basis, respecting as much as possible the best opening hours... Well, I'm summarizing here, so let's summarize... Ok. Now, let's forget about all that and let's go back to "from scratch" as we say. It's going to shit in the fan.


"I propose that we take off and blow up a nuclear charge. There at least we'll be sure of the outcome!"

Ellen Ripley, Aliens the Return

Let's reconsider things, let's put ourselves in the place of the recipients. Take you, for example! Yes, you there, in front of your screen (or your mobile, that I can't know) What factors will influence you to open an email? Well ok, I can't know your answers, so I will give you my opinion (vanity, definitely my favorite sin) : For my part, I open an email of course if the subject interests me, but I mostly open an email... (suspense) When I open my mailbox and the email is the most recent! (ah well, all for that...)

"Sid, I don't know what the idea is, but it's not a good idea!"

Manny to Sid, Ice Age 3

This is where it all comes in: Rather than scheduling a campaign, testing and testing to decipher the best days and times to open or click, why not think of it this way:

Step 1: I send a first campaign, named "Scouting campaign (yes, that's the only synonym I can think of for "scout"). This campaign will have as its main objective the opening of the email. This is like the "trigger" of my diabolical plan! Everything is in the object and in the name of the sender therefore. You have to find the right words to create suspense, arouse curiosity and encourage the recipient to open the email.

Step 2: The email is opened: All, and I mean ALL, of the useful data is sent back to the ESP, which automatically sends a second campaign, complete with content, in which real products are presented. Okay, too many kisses, no need for that, let's get down to business...

"A man of experience should never stray into the concrete. The abstract remains the soul of business."

Michel Audiard, When the pheasants pass

Michel, I agree with you, but our readers might leave if I don't address a little concrete subject! So...

The "Starboy" company (no, the musical news has nothing to do with this choice) has a very large number of shoe partners. It has a varied customer database, composed of various ages and genders. The company has about twenty stores in France (ah well I was a scriptwriter for George Lucas so you know, storytelling, it knows me!).

Step 1: Starboy sends the scouting campaign to its customers with an enticement to open, "Ready to be classy?" or "It's us, Starboy, your favorite shoe company!" (in my CV there is also "writer for the Toudoux" toilet paper, soft and strong at the same time).

So, the content of this mail : logo + title like "We've got something special in store for you. Check out the last email we received to see?". Small particularity of this mail: it will send back geolocation data (you'll understand what it's for right after...).


This first email can also be used as a double opt-in and to clean up your customer file for a very first campaign (while we're at it, why not I feel like saying!).

Case 1: the email is not successful (Bounce): this already allows, depending on the type of bounce, to do some cleaning in the database if it is not already done. Let's take advantage of it, all the hardbounces are deleted, and we play Mr. Clean!

If it is a softbounce, no problem, we go directly to the second case.

Case 2: the email is successful but not opened. No return is sent, and nothing happens. But no reason to worry, we go to scenario 3 (yeah, if you want, step 2 is useless but I try to consider all the possibilities, I do this for you !)

Case 3: the email is (finally) open : All the data useful to Starboy are then sent back instantly (geolocation when possible according to ISPs and webmails, opening time, consultation support, et cetera, et cetera...)

"There is no such thing as ideal and perfect content because it depends on too many parameters."

Guillaume Eouzan @guillaumeeouzanThe book "Webmarketing" published by Eni in 2012 (yes, because quoting films is fine for five minutes, but it's important to be serious...)

Well, I'm going against this statement (at least in the idea, after the practice is something else!) Now, the main course, the next step: automatically (and immediately), a new hyper personalized campaign will be sent.

Inside, a different content according to the civility, the age of the recipient, but also according to its geolocation (promote the nearest "Starboy" store)in relation to the time of reception (specify if the store is open, closed, if it is about to close, if it is crowded or not, the current promotions, the most sold products in this store...)in relation to the weather outside (depending on the weather of the day of sending, propose adapted products)in relation to the consultation medium (then allow yourself some carousels in HTML/CSSeffects, typos, shading, hovering, etc. web fontsgifs, animated gifs timers(e.g., responsive, pixel art or css3 depending on the webmails, email software, or resolution of the medium consulted).

In short, everything becomes possible and the content is entirely thought out according to the instant data. And if it's immediate, there is, dear friend, not only a good chance that the email will be opened immediately (if the recipient was checking his mailbox 30 seconds before, there is no reason not to open it... at least that's what I'll do)But above all, there is a good chance that the content will really interest him!

The wildest dreams of every graphic designer and mail developer (#emailgeek in short) become possible and hyperpersonalization can go as far as the sender's name (if you are addressing a teenager, a senior citizen: choose the sender's first name accordingly).

"I know I have a problem, but give me a chance! I'll show you my frontline job, in slow motion!"

Ace Ventura, Ace Ventura, detective for dogs and cats


Summing up: we no longer think of a mail campaign by saying to ourselves: "well then I take into account all the constraints of design, code, support (increasingly limiting the creativity and innovation in email by the way) and I will promote a little bit of everything (even if it means ending up with sometimes endless, unbearable news, with products from different targets but mixed), and we'll see how it goes."

"Luck is not a factor for me."


From now on, we harvest a lot of behavioral informationThe content of this email will automatically and completely adapt to all the data collected instantly.

Of course, this requires a lot of work on the data, on the declinations and variables, and the most complicated will be to find an ESP that could of course respond to the task... But I think that this is where the revival of email marketing lies! If opening does not always mean reading, it is possible with this method that the trend is reversed. As Guillaume Eouzan said in his book: "Imagine a mailing promoting a Paris-Djerba flight sent to people in Marseille: it wouldn't be very relevant!  The click-through rate can only be improved, and the same goes for the conversion rate.

Is emailing, which used to be a fast tool in its implementation, still really fast? For sure, when you have just read all this, you say to yourself: "He's a cute kid, but now I'm going to spend hours and hours programming my campaigns! Has the kid thought about that?"

A quick reminder: is database segmentation still necessary? The targeting of email content is automatic, which is a significant advantage. Moreover, if the penetration rate remains low on certain targets such as seniors, this could also change since the content is adapted accordingly.

Don't forget that the day or time of dispatch is no longer relevant. reason for being... The first campaign is sent out without taking this criterion into account, since from now on it's the day and time of day that counts. (minute / second J) of the scout mail that will direct the day and time of sending the key campaign.

However, it is always preferable to send the scouting campaign at the beginning of the month to encourage sales.

"I'm sorry Dave, I don't think I can do this..."

Hal 9000 to Dr. Bowman, 2001: A Space Odyssey

Now, the rest of this proposal is to be thought about: what about the recipient who does not open this second email in the instant? The promotions will then no longer be relevant, and the same goes for products targeted according to the weather, for example? Unless these criteria are still images hosted on the server, and modified on the server automatically according to the data... The url of the image remains the same, only the image itself is replaced automatically on the server according to the data.

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