4 Email Hacks to Improve ROI, Short & Long Term  | Agital
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4 Email Hacks to Improve ROI 

Short & Long Term 

This is not just a post about email marketing. This is a post about how to leverage your best customers to grow your business. Who knew something as ubiquitous and unassuming as an email address held the secret to your business success? 

Today, there are countless ways that consumers can interact with your brand. Some ways have direct monetary implications and others are more qualitative. Leaving a review, sharing a referral, posting on social media—these interactions all indicate positive engagement.  

So, how can you leverage positive customer engagement to maximize your customer lifetime value and lead generation for the greatest impact? That’s what we want to help with.

To start, we’ll share four solid methods for improving your short- and long-term ROI that happen to integrate perfectly into your email strategy

1. Harness Customer Positivity With Reviews & Referrals

Reward your most valuable contacts for positive behavior with a loyalty program. Not only will incentives bring your one-time customers back for subsequent purchases, but you can also use them to fuel your organic growth by rewarding customers for leaving reviews and making referrals to your business.  

At a base level, reviews build credibility for your brand and offerings. You can display reviews on your website, share them on social, feature them in paid ads, and of course use them in your marketing emails. If the customer shared a picture with their review, even better! User-generated content (UGC) can be highly influential in a potential customer’s purchase journey. 


If you want to actively request customer reviews or client testimonials, consider a couple of things: 

Who should you reach out to with your request? 

You are more likely to get a positive review from customers who have shopped with your brand multiple times already and who do not have a recent return or canceled order, or an open support ticket. Create an email list of all your contacts who fit these criteria and a persuasive message to inspire them to participate.  

Don’t forget to include the link to your review site of choice, as well as any incentives and instructions that might be helpful for your reviewers. 

What will you do with negative and neutral reviews? 

You probably shouldn’t use negative reviews in your marketing materials, but you can still put them to great use. Hearing straight from real customers about what they did not like about their experience with your brand is incredibly valuable. Like inexpensive market research, bad reviews provide insight into your weaknesses and opportunities for improvement.  

Take negative feedback back to your internal teams, look for trends in the data from multiple reviewers, and incorporate improvements into your future business plans. Ensure your team responds publicly and politely to any negative/neutral reviews that are shared publicly. You can also reach out privately to ask for more specific feedback or to offer something of interest.  

Properly addressing a negative review can turn a mediocre or poor experience into a positive one for a customer. You may even win a dissatisfied customer back, along with their whole network of potential customers.  


A positive customer review is great, but it is even better to get a customer referral. A direct line from one happy customer to your next potential customer comes with a high conversion rate. To ask for referrals, start by reaching out to the customers who left 4- and 5-star reviews, thanking them, and asking them to please share their experience with someone else.  

Yotpo has found that implementing this tactic yields a 25% boost in referrals! 

2. Pave Your Customers’ Complete Path to Conversion

You may be saying, “I still need to get contacts from the ‘potential customer’ bucket into the ‘actual customer’ bucket before I focus on collecting reviews and referrals.” But don’t fret, conversions are the bread and butter of email marketing. 

There are many paths that consumers may take on their purchase journey. Some consumers are more methodical and need to take the time to research your brand and products before purchasing. Others will be more spontaneous in nature, and more likely to buy on impulse.  

Understanding the buying behavior of your target customer will help you craft an email marketing strategy that drives conversions. While your target audience may skew toward one audience type more heavily, you will likely have a range of consumer buying behavior.  

Therefore, you will still need the content in your emails to address the full spectrum of buying behavior. As a starting point, cover all your bases. Create emails geared toward each major touchpoint in a purchase journey. This would likely include: 

  • Email Subscriber Welcome 
  • Cart Abandonment 
  • Post-Purchase Follow-Up 

By taking a strategic approach and paving each step of your customers’ journey—from awareness to conversion and even referral—you create a virtuous activity cycle that continues to feed new qualified leads to your business while nurturing existing customers. Talk about marketing efficiency! 

3. Embrace & Optimize Email Automation

It’s best to set up automated emails that will be triggered when each major customer interaction takes place. Automated emails are highly advanced to enable personalization on a mass market scale. Automated emails are where the right message, the right people, and the right time all converge.  

With the right automation, your audience is selected based on their behavior, utilizing first-party and zero-party data. Your system gets notified right when a user takes a high-intent action, so it can reach out quickly, and depending on which action is taken and other profile data, the system knows what type of message to send automatically.  

Automated emails can be passive money-makers, a huge benefit to your business, but they are only as good as the triggers and messages you set up. You can set rules to ensure the right person receives the right message variation at the right time.  

Setting up automation properly will also help you notice if you don’t have the right (qualified) traffic visiting your website, because you won’t have many automated emails getting triggered or sent out. Of course, emails that do not get sent can’t be opened, clicked, or used to drive conversions. So, next we’ll go over how to grow the right audience for your business. 

4. Target Your Best Contacts With Proper Segmentation 

What value does an email address have? Well, that depends. Not all email addresses (or the people they represent) are equally valuable for your brand, which is important to understand when you are deciding how much money to invest in specific marketing efforts. So, how can we assess their value?   

Turns out, there are many indicators of value. Most value assessments focus on revenue-related metrics like dollars spent and number of purchases made. One key indicator is customer lifetime value, or the total amount of money a customer spends with your business during their time as a customer. Regardless of which metrics you use to assess the value of your contacts, you likely have access to data that can help you mitigate risk and maximize your marketing performance. 

If you have been doing business for a while, you probably have identified ideal customers and kept track of certain details about their interactions with your brand. In a perfect world, you even have some form of customer data platform (CDP) to ensure all customer touchpoints are documented and shared with your internal teams. Your customer history might include information such as: 

  • The customer’s first purchase. 
  • How many times they have purchased from you. 
  • Any positive reviews they may have left for your brand. 
  • Any open support tickets they may have. 
  • Whether they follow you on any social media platforms. 
  • Whether or not they subscribe to your SMS marketing.  

All this data has value under the right circumstances, especially when used to shape your target customer profiles and segment your contact list for highly customized and relevant communication. For example, if your goal is to leverage your current contacts to expand your customer base, you might be tempted to contact your full email list. But CAUTION—blasting your whole list will lead you down the wrong (and unnecessarily expensive) path.  

Instead, you should segment your full audience based on engagement metrics and only target your most valuable contacts. Once you create a segment of your most engaged contacts, you can use it for lookalike targeting in your paid ads. There are two critical variables that help determine how successful your segmentation will be: 

  1. Your tech stack (indicates the integration and accessibility of your data). 
  2. Your data quality (what data you have, how much you have, and whether it is in a usable format).  

If you have basic information like purchase history (how many purchases, how much money spent, AOV, etc.) and email history (opens, clicks, subscriber status, etc.), then you already have plenty of rich data to use for segmentation. Beyond that, you can also create segments of people who were engaged in the past but have recently disengaged, or new contacts who have not made a purchase yet. Use these types of audiences for retargeting ads on your paid channels. 

Do not forget to utilize exclusion options. If certain profiles are already die-hard customers, you may not want to pay for them to see your ads. Another use case would be if you know that a customer has already purchased a specific product that you are now heavily promoting, you can exclude them from seeing further ads about that product. All these tactics will improve your conversion rate and help you spend your dollars more efficiently. 

Full Circle: Improved Short- & Long-Term ROI

Email has proven over the years to be a vital component of any thriving and rapidly growing business. It typically generates the highest conversion rates of any marketing channel, and as an owned medium, it gives you significant control over your messaging and branding. Best of all, email empowers you to build connections with your customers at scale. 

The work you put into your email marketing channel will become more valuable and more efficient as your audience size grows with healthy, high-quality contacts. (This is not just sheer volume.) If you implement the targeting tips and tactics outlined above, you will begin sending more qualified traffic to your website. You will increasingly attract the types of profiles you want to convert to email subscribers (not junk emails from purchased lists or data scraper tools). 

At the end of the day, having high-quality, consented email profiles to communicate with is a strong business advantage. For the best results, don’t forget to invest in email lead generation specifically—from lead gen ads on social to signup forms hosted on your website and opt-in boxes at checkout. Your best next step is to get some lead gen efforts up and running, so you’re not leaving too many opportunities untapped. If you’re ready, we’d love to help. 


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