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Email Marketing with Video

Clever marketers are combining their tools to offer stronger email marketing campaigns

Ready for an online marketing mash-up? Try video email marketing, a new strategy attempted by only the most daring marketers.

Video email marketing combines three online marketing disciplines: email marketing, landing page design and promotional online video. Each have their own best practices and undefined grey areas, and their combination provides an alluring challenge.

Using video in email can be risky, as Julian Scott notes in this DMNews article, but the following guidelines will have you selling your wares through video in no time.

First of all, never send a video as an attachment to an email or embedded in an email. Most users are smart enough to only download email attachments from the most trusted senders (like their mothers). Also, an email with embedded video will likely have deliverability problems.

With that said, the following guidelines should afford you good deliverability and provide your users with a good experience.

Use links to video landing pages — Again, never send the video within the email. Instead provide a link to a landing page that plays the video. This also allows the user to decline viewing the video, which cuts down on your campaign’s annoyance factor.

Use calls to action — Good marketing messages invoke a response from users, and your email marketing video should be no different. Have the video describe a product from a page that easily lets users “learn more” about it or “order it now.”

Exploit video’s viral nature — Your video could generate some viral buzz if it’s entertaining. Be sure to add “send to a friend” and maybe a commenting mechanism to encourage users to share.

Choose video software wisely — Your video should be able to pause, stop and have its volume adjusted, otherwise it is guaranteed to annoy some users, and users don’t buy products when they are annoyed.

The above are good starting guidelines to beginning a video email marketing campaign. Other undetermined factors that you should test are:

Video length — is it a matter of seconds or a matter of minutes?

Content style — should it be funny and cute or straightforward and informative?

Landing page design —Should there be a few pages of text about the product, or just links to learn more about it? Should it have an order form? Should it have anything other than the video and a button to order?

Link delivery — should the link to the landing page be in a promotional email, editorial email or an email describing the video?

As the above questions illustrate, sending promotional video via email is mostly uncharted territory. Any marketer that can make video email marketing campaigns consistently deliver a high ROI should be considered an online pioneer, forging a path into the unknown.

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