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The pandemic changed the paradigm of brand engagement. Post-pandemic, Brand Keys set out to determine what the new marketplace normal looks like and found a simple solution to winning consumer attention: listen to your customers.
As one of the first research groups to focus on customer loyalty, Brand Keys is a global research consultancy that specializes in loyalty. Brand Keys provides analytics and support for brands who want to develop loyalty programs and increase interaction with their product or service.
Mark Johnson, Loyalty360 CEO, spoke with Robert Passikoff, Founder and CEO of Brand Keys, about the company’s recent study on trends in customer loyalty, email marketing, and how to bridge the gap between customer desire and brand delivery.
Effective Engagement Over Email
Brand Keys looks at the ways brands engage with various consumers. To learn more about this engagement, they conducted a study on consumers and company emails. Post-pandemic, companies reevaluated their email marketing campaigns and looked to Brand Keys for analytics.
“They [brands] were concerned that—since the raison d'être for email is to build relationships—too many emails were destroying relationships,” says Passikoff.
While Brand Keys initially investigated this issue in 2018, the pandemic changed how brands used email marketing, with many drastically increasing the number of emails sent. Knowing a social and economic crisis would drastically shape results, the research company decided to wait until the pandemic ended and the market had time to return to normal before resuming the study.
Brand Keys found that, while the market stabilized, it did not return to the normal from pre-pandemic. “The market normalizing is a different normal, it’s not even a new normal. It’s a weird new normal,” says Passikoff.
What the Research Showed
Brand Keys hoped to determine whether too many emails would negatively affect loyalty toward the brand. Interestingly—while the bulk of brands were negatively impacted—there were a few brands that increased loyalty by sending a lot of emails.
This outcome reinforced Brand Keys’ notion that there is no set number of emails to send. Instead, businesses looking to increase customer experience and engagement need to focus on sending the right kind and number of emails their audience needs. In order to accomplish this goal, Passikoff tells businesses to “listen to your customer.”
What is the Right Kind of Email?
While there is no perfect number of emails to send, Brand Keys’ study did find there are specific kinds of emails that result in positive reactions or negative reactions. The company determined there are three kinds of positive email—Replies, Good News, and New News—and one kind of negative—No News.
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