FanBridge Blog

Your go-to source for smart fan marketing

Team FanBridge

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One of the biggest struggles of email marketing is always figuring out what to send to your fans.  Sometimes it can be tempting to just say, “Screw it,” and skip sending an email.  While it’s entirely up to you, it’s important to know the risks associated with skipping a regular email campaign and the benefits of sending frequently.  We’re here to give you some extra motivation and keep you informed!  Here’s why it’s important to regularly send a campaign to your email list:

 

Sender Reputation

 

Yes, that’s right.  Did you know that how often you send can affect your reputation as a sender?  How does that happen?  Well, a couple of different reasons.

 

Firstly, your subscribers’ engagement with your emails is important.  The more they receive an email from you, the more their email client (Gmail, Yahoo, etc.) knows that you can be trusted as a sender.

 

Additionally, bounce rate is a key factor in whether or not you are viewed as a trusted sender.  The bounce rate is the percentage of email addresses  on your list that were invalid.  Basically, for one reason or another, we couldn’t reach their inbox.  If you haven’t sent to your email list in awhile, you could have a higher bounce rate than normal.  That’s a sign to email clients that you don’t have a good list or follow best practices, and you could end up in the spam folder.

 

Sales

 

Always remember that email has the highest ROI of any digital channel.  People are far more likely to click through to purchase something from an email than from social media.  If you make money from streaming content, clicks from emails stream content twice as long as clicks from social media.  If you’re looking to boost revenue in any way, sending an email is always a good idea.

 

Stay Top of Mind

 

The subconscious is a powerful thing.  Even if you don’t have a very important update, and even if your subscriber doesn’t open every single email, they will most likely still see your name appear in their inbox.  Even a subtle reminder that you’re around and promoting your work helps.  They may not take action right then, but when they need to buy a gift or when they want to buy tickets to an event, your name may pop up sooner.

 

Your Fans Want to Hear From You

 

Lastly, and most importantly, your fans always want to hear from you.  Even if it’s not an important update, they’ll be excited that you thought to keep them in the loop.   Sharing your life, even the dull moments, with your fans is an easy way to build that relationship.

 

3 Email Marketing Resolutions for 2016 & How to Keep Them

 

How to Stay on Track

 

Has it been awhile since you sent an email?  Cleaning your list might be in order.  Here’s some steps to take to help prevent your email campaign from accidentally hitting the spam folder:

 

  • In your FanBridge account, head to the Fans tab and select Search and Manage
  •  If you search your list using Undefined FanRank and Date Added Before, you can find the old email addresses that have never opened an email from you.  Use your own judgment when searching for Date Added.
  • You can place these in a different group to send to less often, or remove them entirely.  Either way, they’re not doing you any favors staying on your list.

 

Now that your list is clean, maintenance is key.  First, we would recommend setting a weekly or monthly reminder to send an email to your fans.  Want help?  You can set up a google calendar alert on the FanBridge logout page.

 

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Of course, setting a reminder isn’t always enough.  Even if you plan to send a newsletter, you need to plan what you’re going to send.  We can help make it easy with our Template Tool and integrations with SoundCloud, YouTube and Spotify, but you’ll still need to have the material!  Sometimes it works best to plan out what to send in advance.

 

Why We’re So Excited About SoundCloud in Emails

 

If you don’t have any new projects or merchandise, make sure to keep in mind, once again, that your fans want to hear from you anyway!  Plus, you’ll stay in that top of mind position, even if it’s not an important update.

 

What should you send?  Tell your fans what you did that week.  Did you play an interesting show?  Are you preparing for a project or event?  If you did nothing, tell them what you watched on Netflix.  Go on a House of Cards rant.  It’s still an opportunity to make a connection and continue building that relationship.

Email MadLibs!  What to Send During a Slow Period

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Team FanBridge

Earlier this month, we talked about the social media marketing trends we see on the horizon for 2016.  This is important to keep in mind as we discuss how it affects email marketing in 2016.  Email and social go hand in hand, so we’re going to walk through some of these social trends and tell you how you can use these ideas for email as well.

 

INFOGRAPHIC: 2016 Social Marketing Trends

 

Animated GIFs & Cinemagraphs

 

As we mentioned before, marketing is becoming increasingly visual, which includes increasing usage of animated GIFs and cinemagraphs.  Use of animated GIFs in emails saw a 26% higher click through rate!  If that’s not reason enough, we don’t know what is.

 

What is a Cinemagraph?

 

A cinemagraph is a type of animated GIF, except only a portion of the photo is actually animated.  Check out this incredible example (which was used in an email campaign) from Mr. Porter:

 
email-marketing-mrporter-cinemagraph
 

As you can see, the man’s hand and glass are moving, the flame is flickering, but nothing else.  Not even a shadow moves in the rest of the photo.  Cinemagraphs, while more subtle than a fully animated GIF, demand more attention from the viewer to figure out what they’re looking at.  Your eye is immediately drawn to the swirling glass.  Behind the glass is the jacket for sale.

 

How do I Make a Cinemagraph or an Animated GIF?

 

There are a lot of great online resources to create a GIF.  You should already have a video file ready to convert, and then you can use a tool like giphy or ezgif to convert the file and optimize it.

 

For a cinemagraph, there are less tools available, and it’s a bit more technical.  First, you’ll need to make sure that the video you’re converting has been recorded on a tripod.  If you don’t, your cinemagraph might come out like this:

 

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Cinemagraph Pro is an excellent tool to use once you’ve recorded your video.  Simply add the file, then use the mask function to select which parts of the video should remain moving.

 

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As you can see, the results can be quite stunning:

 

Daniel’s Violin. Moving image by @ericitaphoto #DanielParkMusic #Cinemagraph #Violin #Music #LasVegas A video posted by Lawrence Creative Group (@lawrencecreativ) on

 

 

How do I add these in an email?

 

You can add an animated GIF the same way you add a photo to the email campaign!  A few things to keep in mind:

 

  • Make sure the file format is .gif
  • The file must be less than 2MB in size
  • An email is only 600px wide, so no need to make your GIF any larger than that

 

How should I use a GIF or Cinemagraph in an email?

 

Any movement in an email campaign will draw the eye.  The question is, what do you want the eye drawn to?  The obvious answer is that you’d like the reader to click through to another page where they consume content, or perhaps make a purchase.  Your GIF should be in support of that action.  Here’s some of our favorite examples:

 

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Want to hear more about Social Trends & Email?  Subscribe to our blog updates!

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Team FanBridge

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FanBridgers are always finding new ways to WOW us!  Miracles of Modern Science released an awesome new 360-degree virtual reality music video today for “Jimjams,” and they made sure to send an email to their fans about it.  It’s one thing to see FanBridgers who communicate so well with fans, but it’s another to see FanBridgers jump so willingly into unfamiliar territory like virtual reality to give their fans an incredible experience.

 

Miracles of Modern Science went above and beyond to impress their fans, and we had to give them a shout out!  Also included in their email: best ways to watch a 360-degree video and a shout out to their Patreon supporters!

 

READ ALSO: FanBridge & Crowdfunding

 

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Check out the VR video below:

 

 

We had so much fun playing around with this and watching from all different angles.  You almost HAVE to watch it two or three times!  This is a highly engaging video that MoMS fans will love, and it’s why 360-degree video has become as popular as it is: it WORKS.

 

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Want to learn more about social media and video trends in 2016?  Check out our infographic!

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