Expresso Tips and Tricks
Communicating by email offers important benefits to companies and their customers. It’s immediate, convenient and easy, with people already spending more than 5 hours a day on personal and work emails, according to a 2018 Adobe study. For companies, no postage or printing costs mean emails are less expensive than mailed communications and it’s easier to track open rates and other key engagement metrics.
Momentum is building for more digital communications including email. The pandemic has made people more comfortable than ever using self-service portals, mobile phones and other digital options for receiving and paying bills. Recognizing this shift, the Consumer Financial Protection Board is close to finalizing rule changes that will allow certain compliance and collection communications now required to be sent by mail or Certified Mail® to be delivered electronically.
Choosing the right email
All customer emails are not created equal. Expresso’s versatility allows you to develop and distribute different types of email communications that best suit your purposes and need for maintaining privacy and security while delivering consistent and impactful communications:
- Message-only email. With this email, your primary message is contained in the email itself as opposed to simply linking to a PDF document. Message-only emails can be fully designed using the latest HTML responsive-design techniques and include logos, color photos and more. Our clients use this email type to confirm vacation reservations or medical appointments, for example.
- Standard email. This email type can still contain messaging in the body of the email, but the primary communication is viewable via a link to a PDF document that is managed through Expresso and is identical to its hard-copy counterpart. Vacation ownership companies often rely on it to send annual notices of homeowner association meetings.
- Secure email. It’s like a standard email but requires customer authentication when clicking the PDF link (e.g., view document). It is most often used for sending more sensitive customer communications such as billing statements or compliance letters. The authentication value is passed in the file to Expresso (e.g., account number or zip code) and when entered by the recipient, the PDF will display in their web browser.
Expresso has a robust HTML editor for creating emails and other email capabilities that streamline electronic communications for companies and deliver a great CX, including:
- Personalize information in the body of the email.
- Present variable information in the email subject line sourced from your file.
- Send real-time emails, such as confirmations for vacation reservations using API connectivity in place of traditional batch file processing.
- Design emails with full color and graphics and the latest in responsive HTML that automatically re-size for smaller mobile screens.
- Include a variety of links that drive customers to your website or payment portal, adding value to the customer experience and simplifying the customer’s payment experience.
- Apply appropriate levels of security to protect customer privacy and personal information.
- Include opt-out links to insure compliance with anti-spam laws.
The process for creating emails in Expresso is in many ways similar to developing letters using document templates. Both tap into the existing data integration, business rules and content library that are the core of Expresso’s CCM functionality.
Document templates can be endlessly reused, with the fields placed in the same zones and populated with data, content and rules. Email versions are more flexible since exact placement on the page is not a requirement. That said, emails often require more “versions” as opposed to document templates that can be configured for many types of communications.
Because many of our clients send customer emails from Expresso as well as other systems, they often choose to manage email preferences themselves. But Nordis also makes it fast and easy to manage opt-out from Expresso.
When Expresso is used for both print and emailed communications, clients can set up an automated workflow so that any emails that bounce, are unopened, or the customer does not click the view document link after a certain number of days will automatically generate and mail a hard copy of the same document.
When clients are managing channel preferences, they simply update the information in the customer record and data sent via Expresso for producing and distributing digital and paper customer communications.
Tips for email success
- Always include an opt-out or unsubscribe option when legally required.
- Keep it brief and to the point. Add links for more information.
- Put the most pertinent information toward the start in case customers don’t scroll down.
- Personalizing the subject line (Mary, we’re looking forward to seeing you at ABC resort) improves open rates.
- Avoid words that can trigger spam filters, such as prize and contest. For more, check out Hubspot’s Ultimate LIst of Email SPAM Trigger Words.
Please contact our client success team for help making the most of your email programs.