email marketing

Top Digital Marketing Courses in India

  • Rohit Uttamchandani
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  • 10 May , 2020
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    • 9 min read

With the Indian internet population at over 550 million users (as of Jun 2020), the digital marketing industry is growing. With the industry showing an enormous projected growth potential and an expected paucity of trained professionals, many students, graduates and young professionals are looking to get on the digital marketing bandwagon. Owing to Covid 19 there are even more Indians spending time online. This has led to choice in terms of digital marketing courses and training institutes in India.

To cater to the growing need for these courses, a number of training companies, institutes and universities have started various Digital marketing courses and social media marketing courses. There are tons of books written on Digital Marketing and YouTube Channels covering digital marketing. Based on our experience in digital over the last decade, here is a guide on some of the best institutes that you could choose from. Since this is an extensive article we've split it into sections to make it easier for you to navigate and read through.

Our top three picks would be DigiGrad, UpGrad (on the executive side) and Udemy (for an affordable option). There are also many free digital marketing courses, to get started with.

  1. Criteria for evaluating digital marketing courses
  2. Online Digital Marketing Courses in India
  3. Online Vs Classroom courses 
  4. Classroom and Offline Courses 
  5. Executive Programs on Digital Marketing
  6. Global Online Digital Marketing Courses

Short Video Guide on how to select the right digital marketing course in India:



Criteria you should use for evaluating digital marketing courses and institutes

Before opting for a digital marketing course online or offline, here are some pointers to evaluate the desired institute or course structure.

  • Certification: Certification is no substitute for skills learned and hands-on industry experience but, nevertheless, can add to the CV of a fresher making an entry into the field or for a professional looking to make a career switch. Opt for certification courses recognized by various educational bodies and corporates.
  • Course Curriculum & Faculty Expertise: Gauge the Institute or the course offered based on the curriculum, faculty expertise, training modules and relevance to the current industry trends & practices. A program being run by a digital marketing agency themselves is very impactful.
  • Reviews and recommendations: Check for reviews and recommendations from industry experts & former students through Google, online education portals or discussion forums. Reach out to alumni on LinkedIn for their direct feedback, where feasible.
  • Placements: Explore the institute's placement opportunities or institutional tie-ups for live projects & hands-on experience on acquired digital marketing skills.

Here are some of the popular websites/companies/institutes offering Digital Marketing courses which will save you a considerable amount of time in research if you're looking for one for yourself. If you are looking for social media marketing courses in India, please visit this link.

Online Digital Marketing Courses in India from Institutes

DigiGrad

DigiGrad is an initiative of Social Beat (a Google Premier Partner and a Recommended Facebook Agency) to impart quality digital training in an online and classroom setting. Priced at INR 30,000 DigiGrad offers the Certificate Program in Digital Marketing that is tailor-made for marketers, entrepreneurs and freshers alike. It is an IIM alumni initiative with Harvard-style Case Study based Learning Methodology and live classes with a small batch size of less than 50 students per batch. Their integrated 12 weeks rigorous learning program has 7 advanced training modules and includes practical application-oriented modules. It also offers specific programs relating to Digital Adverting, Social Media, SEO and other digital marketing streams. As its an initiative by a digital agency, they guarantee a live project and offer internships and projects at Social Beat and with India’s top brands.

Manipal ProLearn

Manipal Global Education Services is from the parent company of Manipal University, that offers online and classroom-based courses on digital marketing. Their online certification program spanning 100 hours of learning covers various aspects of digital marketing such as SEO, SEM, ORM and Analytics. Their PG Certificate in partnership with Manipal Academy starts at INR 95,000 - though its a long program (200 days) whereas the Certificate program starts at INR 55,000.

Digital Vidya

Digital Vidya is a leading Digital Marketing training company and one of the first to launch Social Media Marketing course series in India. Since 2009, they claim to have had participation from over 20,000 professionals and students, from over 10,000 organizations and institutions. Digital Vidya also offers Digital Marketing (CDMM), Mobile Marketing (CMMM) and Social Media Certification programs (CSMMP) in association with V-Skills, a Govt. of India initiative. Their programs are priced at INR 50,000.

Simplilearn

Simplilearn is one of the leading platforms for online training and professional certification programs. They have around 30 courses in digital marketing that provide hands-on experience in various Digital marketing domains. Priced at INR 60,000 they are accredited by OMCP, these courses are aimed at helping working professionals & aspirants stay ahead of the digital curve with relevant skills.

NIIT

NIIT offers a post graduate degree in digital marketing and branding, seems to be designed for freshers. It guarantees 3 interviews and is priced at INR 70,000. The duration of these courses is 6 months. They used to offer this program offline but now moved it to digital - possibly owing to Covid 19.

Internet & Mobile Research Institute

Internet & Mobile Research Institute, headquartered in Bangalore is a full-service international digital media training centre. IMRI conducts a one-month Executive Programme course in SEO, PPC advertising, SMM & Web Analytics, a six-month Professional Program In Digital Marketing (EPDM) and a one-year Graduate Program for aspirants to jumpstart their digital marketing career and it aims to be more experiential than classroom training.

AIMA

The All India Management Association (AIMA) has an AICTE approved 1 year program. The pricing is INR 31,000 per semester and for the full program it is probably INR 93,000. The major digital marketing tools covered in this course are email marketing, SEO/SEM, pay per click, affiliate marketing, digital display, mobile marketing, online video and social media analytics. Spread over a period of three months, this online course is divided into 6 modules.

Affordable Courses

There are many free digital marketing courses and affordable recorded courses from platforms like Udemy, which covers the basics of digital marketing. Even Coursera has some excellent programs. If you are a student then MyCaptain has some useful programs starting at INR 2,800.

How to choose between Online and Classroom courses for digital marketing

Online Courses are generally more convenient for most people, especially working professionals as they can be attended from the comfort of one's home/office Also, with technology having improved, online instructor-led virtual classrooms are as good as actual classrooms, with webinar software allowing for both peers to peer interaction as well as student-teacher interaction. Webinar recordings are also available for those who miss out on sessions. Classroom programs would only work best for you if you are the personality type that prefers learning in a classroom environment or if you're not too comfortable with learning in a live webinar format.

Classroom & Offline Courses for digital marketing

Here is a list of institutes which conduct classroom courses but owing to Covid 19, many of them may not be fully operational yet.

DMTI

Digital Marketing Training Institute conducts a Post Graduate Program in Digital Media Marketing in Mumbai. The course is a one-year, full-time program that focuses on the strategic and practical aspects of Digital Marketing. They have an active placements cell as well which helps course participants get jobs in the digital marketing space.

EduPristine

EduPristine is one of India's leading training providers for international certifications in Finance, Accounting and Analytics. They also conduct digital marketing classroom courses in 11 Indian cities. The course covers 60 hours of digital marketing classroom training over 12 Sundays. They also have a 48-hour online course spread over 6 weekends. On completion of the course, the participants are awarded a Certificate of Excellence in collaboration with the "Microsoft IT Academy Program".

DSIM

The Delhi School of Internet Marketing (now acquired by DigitalVidya) conducts an all in one advanced digital marketing live classroom course for working professionals, business owners and job-seekers, at their training centres in Delhi and Bangalore. They conduct an online instructor-led course as well on weekends. However, they do not seem to offer any digital marketing certification for participants who complete the course.

Digital Nest

Digital Nest conducts an Advanced Digital Marketing Training Course in Hyderabad. The course includes 48 hours of classroom training with weekday/weekend classes. They also conduct workshops/seminars and webinars for corporate bodies and educational institutions.

Social Samosa

Social Samosa, one of the most popular social media news and information portals in India, conducts workshops and seminars on the basics of Social Media, Facebook and Twitter marketing in Mumbai. These one-day sessions can serve as a primer for those who want to gain a basic knowledge of the space.

IIDE

Located in Mumbai, the Indian Institute of Digital Education offers two courses on digital marketing and full stack programming. The digital marketing programme is designed to give freshers a robust introduction to the world of digital marketing and help professionals intensify their existing knowledge of all things digital. The programme is divided into a 6-month with classes conducted thrice a week, and independent certification courses conducted for three hours over one week.

The full stack programming course is an exhaustive 6-month program that gives students a profound understanding of the technical and practical aspects of web development and coding.

Executive Programs & Management Development Programmes on Digital Marketing in India

Most of the courses listed above are best suited for students and working professionals. If you are someone in a fairly senior role who has more than 5 to 10 years of work experience under his/her belt, then it might be worthwhile considering doing an executive digital marketing course.

It's surprising to see that not many business schools in India are offering executive or management development programs around digital marketing. The few that do exist have been showcased below and we have tried to find a mix of programs that focus on digital marketing, e-commerce and analytics. If you have attended any of these programs please do leave your feedback in the comments below.

Upgrad

Upgrad offers course across many streams. One of the streams is marketing where MICA has partnered with Upgrad for the PG certification in Digital Marketing and Communication and covers social media marketing, content marketing, branding and marketing analytics. Its a pretty long program at 6.5 months. Starting from INR 87,750 and going up to 1.25 lakhs it is one of the most expensive online course available. Some of the interesting aspects of this course are certifications from MICA case studies, projects and one on one mentoring with industry experts.

TalentEdge

TalentEdge provides a Specialised Executive Programme in Digital Marketing from MICA, Ahmedabad, ideal for early beginners and working professionals. Priced at INR 70,000 for a 4.5 month program, they claim to have reached over 8,00,000 registered learners who have benefitted from the live lectures, case studies and content structure designed by MICA faculty & industry experts. Apart from this, TalentEdge also offers an Executive Development Program in digital marketing from XLRI at INR 80,000 for a 6 month program. The executive development program is a course for marketing managers who wish to understand the nuances of digital marketing techniques and tools to execute a campaign. Talentedge offers over 250 courses across different areas and while they dont specialize only in marketing programs, they do have good university tie ups.

Amity Future Academy

Amity University started its online avatar called Amity Future Academy and launched the Post Graduate Diploma in Digital Marketing Strategies in collaboration with Wharton University. Priced at INR 1,55,000 it is a pretty steep price point, especially considering the faculty is not from Wharton. It is a 12 month program with 13 modules including brand strategy.

Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore

IIM Bangalore has a programme called "Digital Marketing for Business Growth" which they conduct mutiple times in their academic year. The programme aims to give an overview of digital marketing with a focus on the different social media marketing channels, search engine marketing (both search advertising & search engine optimization) and digital analytics. So it aims to give an overview of each of the key elements that can enable brands to get better engagement, leads and conversions. It also touches upon analytics and what metrics can be used to measure the performance of the digital campaigns.

Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow

IIM Lucknow does seem to have a programme on Digital Marketing by renowned Professor Moutusy Maity. She has done extensive research in e-commerce, m-commerce and CRM so the quality of the programme is likely to be very high. She has worked in the Industry (at Nielsen) and handled clients like PepsiCo and Eveready Batteries so she would definitely bring a practical experience to the table. We are yet to receive more details on the programme from them so we shall update it here shortly.

Great Learning

Great Learning, from the house of Great Lakes Institute of Management has a PG Program in Strategic Digital Marketing. It is a 6 month module with a 4 week capstone project, with mentoring from faculty of Great Lakes. The course is a blended model with recorded content as well as live mentoring. The pricing is only on request.

Indian School of Business, Hyderabad

ISB Hyderabad has a 3-day executive program titled "Digital & Social Media Marketing Strategies" priced at Rs.1,50,000 + GST. It is specifically targeted for professionals and leaders in the marketing and strategy domain. The program aims to give an overview of digital and social media marketing and how to get ROI from the medium.

Global Online Digital Marketing Courses

Jellyfish Training

Jellyfish is a global leader in training around programmatic advertising platform - Google Marketing Platform (GMP) and its components, Campaign Manager, Display and Video 360 (DV360), Search Ads 360, Google Analytics 360 and Optimize 360. Its a pretty advanced program and the subscription is INR 42,000 per month and its meant for users who already have access to the GMP platform. Here is an article on the basics of programmatic advertising and DV360 case studies to help you get started.

HootSuite Social Media Certification

Hootsuite, one of the most popular tools for social media scheduling and monitoring has Hootsuite Academy, which offers a social media program at USD 199, which is worth exploring.

Hubspot Academy

Hubspot Academy offers a free Inbound Marketing Course & Certification marketers, entrepreneurs and students. They also conduct classroom training but only in the United States.

Conclusion

If you are a self-learner keen on understanding the digital marketing space, there are various youtube channels, digital marketing blogs, articles, books and real-time case studies available online. You can also join relevant LinkedIn groups to participate in discussions & connect with industry experts.

All said Digital marketing is a field where just taking courses or following the industry trends alone will not make one an expert. Maximum learning can only be gleaned from actual hands-on, on-the-job experience. Hence, the success of these courses will eventually depend on the quality of digital professionals they send into the industry and how well they execute the acquired knowledge & digital skill sets. If you are looking out for digital marketing careers in India, check Social Beat out.

Have you taken up any of these courses? Please share your experiences with us in the comments!


Google introduces AMP for emails

  • Ayesha Rafeeq
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  • 13 May , 2019
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    • 3 min read

Page loading speed and mobile-friendliness have been among the most important Google ranking factors. To combine the two, Google has worked towards making mobile pages load faster with the help of an open-source framework which is called AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages). AMP is considered to be one of the best ways to build good web pages that rank on Google and drive higher organic traffic. With the success of mobile AMP, Google developed other versions like desktop AMP. The most recent innovation with AMP involves a platform people spend a considerable amount of time on: the email.

AMP in email is offered by the Gmail Developer Preview. This helps developers in creating a more engaging and interactive email experience. Here are some of the advantages of AMP for email.

Faster actions

Completing actions with the help of AMP will be much faster, like sending RSVP for an event, scheduling appointments, or simply filling up a questionnaire within the email message.

AMP helps in keeping information of the email relevant and content accurate so that emails don’t become stale. This also makes it easy to keep information updated. A simple example would be confirming an account on a website, with the help of AMP for Emails one can access the confirmation page instantly without having to open a new tab. This makes the overall process more efficient and time saving. This new update also offers a preview for websites like Booking.com and Pinterest within the email.

To optimise your page for a faster load time check out Google PageSpeed Insights.

Benefits for SEO

AMP-powered email has potential that can be beneficial for email marketing, because the engaging content can increase CTR while also generating more interest when compared to a regular email.

Content marketing benefits from this update, as users can receive and access content on their email itself. This again improves the users experience making going through emails a more pleasant experience. This holds true even for users accessing emails from their mobile device.

To make the most of your email campaigns, check out our blog to know more about How to build a strong email marketing database.

Third party content

Companies are working on creating new customer experiences by using AMP for emails. Adding this functionality to emails helps in eliminating the need to open a new tab to finish the task; instead it can be done within the email itself.

The new format of AMP for Emails is supported by Google’s Gmail, Microsoft’s Outlook.com, Mail.Ru, Verizon owned Yahoo Mail to list a few while it is open to other providers as well. With security and protection of personal information becoming increasingly critical lately, Google has taken several measures to safeguard this.  This is why companies creating dynamic emails will need to seek approval from Google first.

Companies which have already started supporting this format are:

  • Booking.com
  • OYO Rooms
  • Freshworks
  • Pinterest
  • redBus

The format supports AMP features like carousels, lists and forms among others, while also including the standard HTML markup for email clients supporting AMP. Google has brought in other partners who will also support the AMP for Email on their respective platforms as well. Some of these partners include:

  • SparkPost - a platform for email delivery and analytics
  • Litmus - a tool that helps in designing and marketing of emails
  • Twilio Sendgrid - an email and marketing tool
  • SES and Pinpoint - tools by Amazon used for email and marketing

AMP for emails is a much needed update for emails making them more engaging and interactive. This update for emails opens up opportunities for content creators as well as advertisers to roll out fresh content for email marketing.


How to build a strong email marketing database?

  • Natasha
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  • 8 April , 2016
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    • 8 min read

Email Marketing is one of the most actively used marketing channels. But every now then, we get queries that question the effectiveness of email marketing. Many feel its passé while others equate it to spamming. The truth is email marketing has never been more alive than it is today.

The dynamics of emailer marketing is changing fast but basics shall always remain the same – if you share something valuable with your audience, they are likely to engage with your content. Purchasing a database does not work anymore. Brands need to develop their own database of interested customers or potential customers who are more likely to engage with your email. Emails to your curated database is a personal, dependable and a direct way of reaching out to your audience.

'Out of all of the channels I tested as a marketer, email continually outperforms most of them'

- Neil Patel (Co-founder, KISSmetrics)

In this article, we have listed down useful ways in which you can develop your own email marketing database.

1. Newsletter Sign-Up

Make your email sign-up form visible on relevant pages on your website, more importantly the Blog page. Use either an embedded form or a Call-to-Action for people to click through to a dedicated sign-up page. Make sure that it’s in a prominent spot above the fold. The info about the possibility to sign up for the newsletter can be also placed in a pop-up window.

 

 2. Make the email sign-up easy

If you have a sign-up form on your site, make sure it’s easy to fill.  Make it straightforward and resist the temptation to collect lots of demographic & lifestyle information at this stage. It will get in the way of collecting those email addresses. Always remember Short and Sweet is the King!

3. Create great content for your subscribers

Good email content deepens the connection with your audience – it could be a powerful subject line (which get your messages opened); your unique voice (which gets your messages read); or niche-specific content your subscribers would find useful and shares with others (which inspires referrals and word-of-mouth). What works is “value exchange” — your valuable information for your prospect’s valued time. Your subscribers need to know they can trust you and that you’re not a self-promoting spam-bot.

4. Multiple Call-To-Actions: Give readers a good reason to subscribe

We all need a little incentive to hand over our email address, but we don’t need too much if we feel an affinity with the brand. Try these…

- Offer a discount off their first purchase

- Explain what they’ll get: special offers, private sales, hints and tips, magazine articles…

- Show them what they’ll get (see our recent articles, news, reader offers etc)

 

 

5. Placement of the sign-up form

You’ve built the perfect form. Now where to place it? Will more people see it on the ‘Contact’ page or ‘About us’ page? Should you keep the newsletter signup on your homepage? Or put it in the sidebar too? Decisions, decisions! Here are some top places to try placing an email signup form (or two or three) on your site:

  • Top menu bar
  • Header of your site
  • In your top performing page
  • Sidebar
  • At the end of a Blog or Tutorial
  • Footer of the content
  • Popup/popover
  • Your bio/About Me page

6. Improve your website speed & user experience

Like a lot of other issues when it comes to websites and e-commerce, speed matters because Google says that it matters. On 09 April 2010, Google’s Webmaster Central Blog announced that, “We’ve decided to take site speed into account in our search rankings.” In other words, faster web pages will rank higher on search engine results pages (SERP) than slower sites.

7. A Gated Homepage

A gated homepage is when a person has to enter their email address on the homepage in order to gain entry to a website’s content. One a person does so, a cookie is kept on their browser so that they don’t have to fill in their email address again to get access. But it is not always appropriate to Gate your homepage. You should have a lot of in-depth content which people are dying to read for them to give their email address. The right time is important too! To find the right moment, you want ‘yes’ answers to questions like:

  • Will the lead benefit from having a direct conversation about this?
  • Have you earned the right to contact this lead about your products?
  • Does A/B testing show a stronger conversion rate requesting lead info now?
  • Does the content on your site address product implementation?
  • Does the content answer a question we usually get while engaging prospects?
  • Does the content answer a question we get often from current customers?

8. An exceptional Landing page

Your landing pages should focus on one main detail and that’s converting visitors into subscribers. Whether you’re asking for contact details in exchange for a discount, a free webinar or something else that the subscribers would like to have, you are bound to get more to sign up. The Design of the Landing Page has to be exceptional too. Your subscribers are only as great as the landing page that get them.

 

 

9. Add Social Sharing Buttons

If you don’t have social sharing buttons there’s a likelihood that your content won’t get shared. Someone might want to share the content with a friend but by the time they open up a new window and sign in to their social network, they will get distracted and forget about it completely. Don’t take the risk. Add share buttons so that blog visitors will stay on your site longer. Support your present subscribers to share and forward your content by including an "Email to a Friend" button. That way, you'll access a fresh network of new people who sign up for your emails. Do not forget to incorporate a "Subscribe" button as well in the footer.

 

10. Correct usage of words – A/B Testing helps

“Subscribe” is up there with “Register” as an Internet no-no! Remove the words “subscription” and “subscribe”. The term implies a commitment and worse, money. Do away with any “Submit” or “Sign up”! Use first-person language instead – Try out phrases like “Sign me up” or “Send me updates.” Tell people exactly what they are getting by subscribing. Hint: It’s not a weekly email.

11. Lead Generation Ads on Facebook and Twitter

Online networking and social media marketing are useful tools to improve your online leads from which you can derive the email addresses of your potential subscribers. Build relationships with your target market via some of the popular social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus.

 

 

12. Facebook Offers to the Rescue

You can host a Facebook contest or giveaway either on an application tab or on your Facebook timeline. However, if you’re hosting the promotion on your Facebook timeline, it’s next to impossible to collect emails. Hosting your promotion from a Facebook Offers App is the best approach since your target audience will have to fill in their email address to redeem the offer.

13. Create Engaging Social Content

A combination of audio and video marketing using rich media can greatly improve the number of subscribers you get. Studies have shown that people like and share content that is mostly Emotional or Funny. You can share the content on your social media pages and drive fans to your website.

Do not miss the opportunity to showcase your website / content links at the right place – for example, your video on YouTube can have your website link in the description. You can also create Cards to drive more traffic. The Subscription part then depends on the last mile conversion on your website.

14. Try and leverage the following Power Tools

 

 a. List Builder by SumoMe

List Builder by SumoMe is for those individuals who want to seriously build their email list at a fast pace. The List Builder uses an email popup form to invite new visitors to join your email list, thus helping you get more subscribers. List Builder contains many features that help make it to the top of our list of email building tools. It’s A/B testing, no branding policy, fantastic templates, display controls, conversion tracking and multiple-popups will easily help you take your email list to the next level.

 

b. Welcome Gate Plugin

Welcome Gate is another great tool for building a list but this one works a bit differently. Why? That’s because it directs every new visitor to a well-designed landing page without showing a popup. Visitors are only redirected to the Welcome Gate page when they go to your home page. So if someone comes straight to a blog post through social media or any other source link, it would not be shown. A cookie keeps a track of this so the visitor will only see the Welcome Gate page once in their lifetime. After quite a lot of testing we came realized this plugin is more effective and powerful than other similar plugins.

c. ManyContacts

ManyContacts is an easy to setup pop-up bar that sits on top of your website and helps to convert visitors into qualified subscribers. It was designed to help owners of all kinds of websites to increase their conversion rate through the collection and qualification of contacts. It also has a platform where you can easily export emails with details of each of your subscriber (email, device used, location, etc.), which you can add to your email archives.

d. OptinMonster

OptinMonster utilizes opt-in forms as a part of an endeavor to transform your visitors into subscribers. The plugin gives out of the box integration with a popular email marketing service which makes the setup exceptionally easy. The business page of the plugin brags a 1 minute setup time and we can definitely acknowledge that. But you will need to spend more on customization and creation of forms based on your site design and goals.

 

 

e. UnPop

A WordPress plugin that pops up in a place on your blog that grabs the attention of your readers without blocking their view of your content. Your visitors can open and close the pop-up whenever they want. It works well with any WordPress theme and is integrated with all of the popular email services: Mailchimp, Aweber, GetResponse, Office Autopilot and Infusionsoft.

f. Zopim Chat

There are probably thousands of visitors that come to your site every year and that never contact you. Increase the chances of gaining a new lead by using live chat to automatically reach out to your potential customers that visit your site. The best part about Zopim is that you don't have to lounge around on the PC throughout the day. By utilizing a programmed trigger, Zopim can naturally send every guest a message following 10 seconds of being on the site saying something like “Hey – do you have any inquiries I can help with?” In the event that they react, they will also be asked for their name and email address which is a win-win situation.

 

 

g. WooBox

Numerous people have Facebook pages where they engage with fans by posting offers, running contests or uploading photographs. But this can be a pretty can be tedious task for an individual. That is the place an online networking promoting plugin like Woobox can offer assistance and help you take care of all this engagement seamlessly with its page tags. For marketers there is a twofold advantage here. Not just are you enhancing your online networking presence, but you are getting the email address of all those who redeem an offer or take part in a contest.

 

Digital Marketing Experts around the world have reiterated the effectiveness of emailer marketing. So you should not miss an opportunity to effectively connect with your audience. Get going!


Inbox by Gmail – The Future of Email

  • Abhishek Kumar
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  • 18 March , 2016
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    • 4 min read

In the age of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, Google is taking significant steps to ensure that emails remain a relevant mode of communication. It has not only succeeded till now but seem well set to revolutionize email communication across the world- Inbox by Gmail makes emails not just communication messages, rather a personal assistant of sorts.

  • Have you spent your time searching for your travel ticket in a heap of emails
  • Are you troubled by the enormous amount of emails you receive in a day promotions, social, newsletters and of course, business emails
  • Do you manually spend a significant time assigning your emails into different folders or tags
  • Google Research suggests 80% of searches on Gmail look for a fact in the email rather than the mail itself

Features under the spotlight

The Inbox by Gmail is your personal assistant to help you manage your emails (read work) better. Here's what is there in store for you:

Smart Reply

The Smart Reply feature, which was rolled out for the Inbox App in November last year, has recently made its way to the Web version. Under this, Gmail would suggest three quick reply options. The reply options are dynamically generated based on the content and nature or the received email. The options selected by you are fed into the system to improve future response suggestions similar to the Spam filters.

Bundles

Inbox scans your incoming emails and sorts them into different buckets. All seemingly important mails go into your inbox while others get placed into different bundles or folders: Trips, Social, Finance, Updates, Forums, Promos and Low Priority. You have the option of deleting the entire bundle at once or mark as Done.

Snooze

You can use this feature to snooze the message to a particular date and time when you intend to work or action the message. You just have to open the message and tap the snooze option it gives a pop up to select the scheduled time for the message to reappear.

Smart Reminders

Are you into the habit of maintaining unread emails in your inbox just to remind you to do a particular thing? Now say goodbye to those unread emails. You just need to tap the Remember To field before the email subject line and type in the reminder. Based on the content in the email, Inbox also suggests the reminder options.

Pin It

You can pin the messages on top of your inbox even after it's placed into a folder or bundle. This will act as a reminder to reply to the mail or action the point.

Undo

Now you don't need to regret accidently clicking the Send option Inbox gives you the option to Undo the sent mail. The only catch is that you have got a 15 sec window for the same.

Limitations of Inbox by Gmail

With all the handy features waiting to be explored, Inbox does have its own limitations:

  • Lack of a universal Inbox makes it cumbersome to switch between multiple Gmail accounts.
  • No option to mute a mail thread
  • Machine Learning-based model makes it imperative to train your App. You will have to spend the initial few days navigating through some wrongly bundled mail or not so close replies.
  • Last but not the least, the most obvious disadvantage is that it works only with Gmail accounts

Artificial Intelligence for Communication: Potential Impact for Marketers

Inbox by Gmail as a concept is built entirely on the premise of Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning. For new users, it seems to be a regular app they use but in hindsight, this is an experiment that will govern how people communicate in 2025. Right from smart replies to email sorting, every single concept is geared towards making Inbox do the hard work for you. That will mark the transition of Gmail from an email service to a full-fledged Personal Assistant. It's worth taking a look at its potential impact for marketers.

  • Marketing Emails would still be useful. But it would entail a paradigm shift in the way marketing is done. The fight to Stay on top of the inbox will give way to a marketing format to be present where & when your consumer wants to see you.
  • It's not that consumers do not like promotional emails. They love offers and promotions but get irritated when either it jumps in at the wrong time or too many spammy mails make it difficult to find your important mails. With Inbox in place, it will allow customers to browse through Promotion bundle when they are actually looking for offers.
  • Inbox specific Call-to-Action will become important. For example, Snooze Mail feature can be useful for retailers to provide in-store offers that make consumers Snooze the message for their next visit to the mall.
  • Its machine-learning based so the way your content engages with the consumer will be important. If the interaction behavior of your messages varies differently in comparison to other mails in the Bundle, Inbox will surely provide more focus to your message. The whole idea of machine learning and artificial intelligence is geared towards this to help you perform your work better.

11 ways to make email marketing work for you

  • Nandita Raman
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  • 25 January , 2016
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    • 5 min read

Want to maintain a good relationship with your customers and clients? The best way to do that is by constantly keeping in touch and updating them.  Email is perhaps the easiest way to do this. Email marketing is the best resource for both start up and established companies, especially e-retail ventures. According to studies, the total number of worldwide email accounts is expected to increase from nearly 3.9 billion accounts to over 4.9 billion accounts by the end of 2017. In a 2015 study from BlueHornet, over 77% of consumers buy products and services from marketing/advertising emails at least once a month or more. So make sure you include email marketing as part of your marketing plan. Here are a few tips to make email marketing work for you. We also have a detailed checklist for emailer marketing.

1. Make it personal

Personalization increases response rates tremendously. Whatever be your vertical, your customers would rather want an email personalized to them than a bulk mail. Use names in email messages to grab attention. Make sure you spell the names right. You don’t want to send out an email with the wrong spelling. Tools like Mail Chimp make it easy to do this. You can read about their “Merge Tag” feature here.

2. Use interesting subject lines

People get a lot of emails every day and most of it goes unread. In order to get the attention of people, you need to write catchy subject lines.  Make sure the subject line is not too long either. As per Marketing Sherpa, subject lines with 9 to 10 words are the most ideal. Mailchimp also has some tips on Subject Lines.

Food Panda, an online food order website/app has mastered this concept well.  They promoted a ‘Buy one, Get one free pizza’ in a unique way.  The challenge for them was to make people open the same email with the same offer and same creative one day after another. So they used creative subject line such as:

  • Pizza, Oh! Pizza, I love you, Pizza
  • All you need is Love &…. PIZZA!
  • Invite your friends today – It’s Pizza Night again!
  • Did someone say free pizza?
  • Pollard’s throwing bats, we’re throwing offers!

 

3. Send a welcome email

If you have a prospective client or a new client, it is a good idea to send them a welcome mail. Introduce them to your brand and tell your story with the very first email you send them. If you start with sending new customers promotional emails, you won’t develop a lasting relationship with them. It is the first email they receive after subscribing so it is important to make an impression that counts. According to Yourstory.com stats, subscribers who receive a welcome email show, on average, 33% more long-term engagement with that brand.

If you are using wordpress, Gravity Forms can be an effective tool to send out automated emailers to new customers or new leads.

Here is an example of an ecommerce company, Nykaa that got the welcome email right. The brand not only gave all the information required but also personalized every email.

4. Write exciting content

People do not want to read long boring copies on their emails. So open your email with compelling text or some great offer.  It is also a good idea to send them useful content from your blog that they might be interested in. Not all the time do your clients want to know about offers and products so make your copy easy to scan by using short sentences, simple language and bulleted lists.

5. Create a comprehensive data base

In order for your email marketing to be successful, you need to have a strong database. Build your own consumer database by gaining consumers’ permission through your website.  To build this, you can use tools such as SumoMe’s List Builder, which help in converting one-time visitors into lifelong readers and email subscribers.

6. Know your spam rules

The biggest problem about email marketing is the risk of spending all that time in creating the mail and it ending up in the spam folder. So before you start sending emails, read up on the SPAM rules. In India, there is no law as such but the closest thing that regulators have come is certain provisions in the IT Act. Under section 79 of the IT Act, Internet intermediaries must take care and diligence with regard to the services they provide, which read together with section 43A of the Act (compensation for failure to protect personal data from theft), can ‘indirectly bring into play a data privacy law’. To know more, read this article, which gives you more details on the dos and don’ts.

7. Have a strong Call to Action (CTA)

When it comes to email marketing no email is complete without a Call To Action. Always include a CTA button in your mailers. Customize the CTA to your audience and provide multiple links throughout the email to make it easy for users to take action. A CTA button will increase click-through rates by making it clear to the reader what the next step they should take is. So while designing, make the CTA button prominent and use enticing words on it to encourage your readers to click

8. Social links 

Adding your social media accounts in your emails is a great way to promote your social media platforms.  It will give you a chance to expand your community and connect better with your subscribers. Do not stop with just connecting with them; make sure you engage with them actively on social media.

9. Make the email responsive to all devices

Considering that many users will be opening the email on their mobile devices, you need to make sure that the email is responsive to all devices – similar to your websites. This is a common mistake we see in emailer campaigns where a promotional image is sent out – but these images are not responsive so the text becomes illegible.

10. Test

Different devices display emails differently. Send a test email to your friends and colleagues with different devices and test it out before you send it. Test reveals design mistakes and can predict whether or not a campaign will get caught in a spam filter. You could even set up accounts with a few different email services for easy testing.

11. Use email service providers

Email service providers are ideal for sending bulk emails. You can build email templates, personalize emails, send and track your campaigns on a larger scale. Here are two most popular service providers in the market that you can use:

Mail Chimp

MailChimp is the best tool for email marketing campaigns. They have a strong policy against spam and offers strong analytics package, full auto-responder functionality, and makes it easy to build, track, and segment campaigns of any type. Mailchimp accounts start at Free for up to 2000 subscribers.

SendGrid

SendGrid offers tools to make it effortless for developers and marketers to craft, segment, test, and successfully deliver emails.  It is a cloud-based email infrastructure that eliminates the need to build and maintain a system in-house.

Email marketing is a vital step in creating the perfect lead nurturing strategy. For more information on how to create a customised lead nurturing plan for your brand, don't forget to check out our in-depth video


Infographic: Email Campaign Checklist

  • Rohit Uttamchandani
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  • 3 January , 2014
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    • 2 min read

12 Salient Points you shouldn’t miss before you hit the “Send” button on your Email campaigns:

Even tiny errors in your emails can have a big impact on their Open and Click Through Rates. Most mistakes can be avoided if we adopt a Checklist approach to sending each email. So, we’ve put together an Email Campaign Checklist with the most important practical points which need to be checked-off before the email is good to go. We usually recommend using Mailchimp or Sendgrid for sending out emailers and tracking its results.

Subscriber list:

1. Has your distribution list been revised and cleaned of opt-outs and complainants?

From & Sub lines:

2. Does your “From" line include your company name or brand?
3. Is your Subject line clear, catchy and answers the reader’s question “What’s in it for me?”
4. Have you checked that no spam trigger words used in subject line?

Copy (Text and Content):

5. Have your Emails been personalized with correct names? Improves open and click-through rates.
6. Have you used Headings with short paragraphs, bold and bullet formatting to enhance Scanability?
7. Is your Call-to-Action, if used, strong and strategically positioned?

Important Details:

8. Is the Unsubscribe button/link clearly visible and working?
9. Is the link to web-based version (View Emailer on the Web) clear and on top?
10. Are all links working and have custom parameters been added to track in Google Analytics?

Images:

11. Are all images alt-tagged with correct links?
12. Have you checked the Image-text ratio? (Ideally 50/50; 80/20 acceptable for E-commerce e-mailers)

If you’ve answered “Yes” to all these questions, you can go ahead and send the email.

For any queries on your email marketing campaigns or if you wish to optimize them, please contact us and we would be glad to help.


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