Behavioral data can be defined as follows: All the different types of data we can collect about user behavior, both on and offline. They can originate from an ad, the user’s behavior on a website, social media activity and so on.
Therefore, it’s safe to say that behavioral data is a goldmine that has been in use for quite some time now and for a good reason: It can boost conversion by showcasing actual problems and studying that data can lead to actionable solutions to said problems.
And if you don’t believe me, here’s what a study conducted by McKinsey & Co. found:
The problem is, though, that data analysis and the use of behavioral data is something that has just started to take off, with marketers thinking that this is meant to make automation easier and not meant for them to use as well:
The stat above shows everything all too clearly: Marketers used to think that basic segmentation is the way to go, whereas behavioral targeting seemed to be a shady realm that only the brave marketers dared to walk in to.
But on the other hand, nowadays we can’t think of what every marketing effort would be like, without said data: From how to create a landing page to the most successful email marketing campaign of your life, behavioral data should be there to help with your conversion rate optimization efforts.
But how can you utilize user behavior and the data that comes with it, and turn it into the most fruitful thought you’ve ever had?
Let us begin…
1. Behavioral email: What is it?
Behavioral emails are those that are sent in an automated, targeted manner. This targeting is based on what actions they took across your brand’s various platforms: From social media to your website’s “about” page.
But why would this be of use?
Behavioral data and emails curated with that kind of data as a guide, pretty much use a prospect’s interaction with your brand and give you a pretty clear picture and an almost set course of action.
This means that the “product”-ie the emails-you are going to send out, will be timely, relevant and straight to the point, in relation to what each prospect needs at any given time.
The benefit, in this case, is pretty clear: Instead of shooting an email in the dark and praying for some opens, instead of segmenting with unclear data that could be of low value, you can leave it up to your prospects to take action: The emails they’ll receive will be ones that fit their actual needs, based on what your data dictates and not what your marketing team wants them to check.
Basically, with behavioral data, you’re allowing your marketing plan to work on a one-on-one basis and not a kind-of-sort-of-thought-of segmentation process or email segmentation cases that may not work.
This can be especially beneficial for all brands both conversion-wise and financially, seeing as they won’t have to waste resources-the data will be right there!
2. Why would you need to send that email?
Not all actions can be of use and not everything calls for an email.
What is important, is to sit down and determine which actions call for an email, seeing as the “one for each” thinking will end up looking like spam-or, best case scenario, being a little too much.
For example, in most cases, checking out the “About” page doesn’t really cut it as an action that’s email-worthy.
But what about cart abandonment? What happens when someone is checking out your products? Maybe a little email with a little discount will cut it.
Incomplete profile on your platform? Well, this is one of the most common cases and, honestly, one of the most profitable as well.
You see, the whole point is to send the email while they’re hot, and behaviorally targeted emails do just that: They won’t let you forget what you saw or the page you were browsing.
On the contrary, they’ll re-engage and act upon what you’re suggesting.
The main trick here is to make the prospect think that nothing is unexpected or out of the ordinary, which is not something a plain ol’ newsletter can achieve at this stage.
Some examples of these types of email are the following:
- Assuming that a prospect has signed up for a freebie-from content upgrades to free samples, it could be anything-they’ve also signed up (without realizing it of course) for a transactional email. Like this:
- Let’s say that it’s been a while since the last time someone logged onto their account on your platform. You can do it like Twitter and not let them slip away again:
- They signed up for a free trial but never proceeded with a purchase… Hmm, tough one. But perhaps the email below will inspire you:
These are only three of the cases when you could-and definitely should!-send an email based on behavioral data, seeing as the above three prospects took some action but left unfinished business behind.
You can send your behavioral emails for more triggers as well, you’re the one to decide after all. But here’s the first question: How are you going to make that decision without making a blunder?
3. Collect, analyze, proceed
Here’s where some techniques that you may not have thought of, come into play.
I’m not going to talk about A/B testing yet if that’s what you think, we’ll get on that later. Right now, I’d like to tell you how to collect and utilize data through one of the most useful methods available at this stage: heatmaps or scroll maps.
These tools are, more or less, methods of data visualization and they can help you see what interests your prospects more. So, here we go:
The scroll map above is one of the most useful tools in terms of checking what interests those that view your website and/or landing page. The reds are what your prospects spent more time on and the blues are what your prospects just scrolled through.
A heat map is like that:
The behavioral data a heat map visualizes the hovers and clicks of a user on your webpage.
What does that tell you?
That in order to use the data in the way you need, you can utilize data visualization methods. So, if you’ve got 80% of your visitors showing a preference to your FAQs, for example, you should send them a behavior-based email that will mention the answer to the most popular question(s) and perhaps will be asking the visitor if they need to know more.
You see, email capture tools are fantastic and all, but you need to keep the leads interested, and there is no better way to do it in that case, than using behavioral data.
Now, think of utilizing those methods on your email: You can use a heat map to see what you can do to improve your email marketing game itself, rather than just using those to create it.
Through a heat map, you can see what content is the one that gets the most attention and which part of the email itself is the one to place your CTA button or link on.
Obtaining that kind of information will pretty much give you the opportunity to A/B test as well and A/B test pretty successfully, seeing as you’ll be able to check the data and make the correct decisions without checking each and every parameter separately.
However, this does not mean that it’s okay to test more than two (at most!) parameters at a time!
4. Conversation time!
So, let’s say that you’ve sent that email and you’re all good to go.
By sending an email, you’re pretty much opening up a conversation. By using behavioral data, you’re striking up a conversation with someone that actually wants to talk to you.
Pro tip: Check the best times to send your emails!
That someone wondered what it would be like to place an order just to check the shipping costs. Make sure they won’t forget.
That someone needed to sign up for your email, just to get your free e-book. Make sure that they will complete their profile.
Maybe that someone signed up for a free trial. Make sure that they purchase the actual product by sending a behavior-based email.
All these tactics make the email hyper-personalized and super relevant. Which, in turn, shows an email that is pretty darn hard to ignore.
The main reason behind this is the fact that behavioral data make for a hyper-personalized experience that stems from the behaviors of the prospect.
Unlike a landing page or a clever copy somewhere around the web, a highly personalized email is like someone knocking on your door and calling your name.
And calling someone’s name elicits an immediate response. So, use the same principle for your email marketing efforts as well, and you’ll see your conversion skyrocket in no time especially if you are doing a lot of referral marketing.
Email marketing is here and strong as ever, mainly because you can use it in any way you want, combining all the tools you need and it’s cost-effective.
And behavioral data will help you boost conversion through your email marketing efforts in no time!
As well as help you push your leads down the funnel!
So, what say you? Did you find this article to be of use?
Tell us in the comments and, as always, share the knowledge!
Téa is a content writer working for email marketing software company Moosend and an obsessive writer in general. In her free time, she tries to find new ways to stuff more books in her bookcase and content ideas-and cats-to play with.