Internal Marketing: Why it is Important and how to Apply it Successfully
Published on 7 February 2019 | Author Lisa Marie Lindemann0
One question might pop into your head immediately: Why do internal marketing at all? The answer to this question is very easy but yet convincing. Internal marketing can serve a lot of purposes. i.g. you can improve your internal employer branding or do a multilevel mailing streak for on boarding new employees. With the right implementation, this can strengthen your staff retention and turns your employees into your own Influencers and brand ambassadors that carry a positive image of your business for everyone to see. If email marketing is conducted with a professional email marketing technology, you have the advantages of a central archive, the possibility to automatise and individualise your communication or of controlling editors from different departments and giving them different rights and access. A few more advantages and use cases of internal email marketing are listed in our post: “ 5 Reasons for Professional Email Marketing in Internal Communication“. To show you the way to hit it off with internal email communication we will give you a few tips on how to implement it easily.
It’s all about the length and frequency
First the obvious: It’s important for you to keep it short in your internal messages and get right to the point so that your employees can filter the important content quickly. This means that messages shouldn’t take longer than two minutes to read. To make it a bit more concrete: you should stay in a range between 400 to 500 words so that it is more likely that your colleagues read you mail completely and actually process and keep the info provided. The more you increase the words, the less people will read the full message.
The same applies to your subject line. Few words show the subject at first sight. Your employees have enough workload already so you want to communicate fast and efficiently so they can use their time and work productively.
To gather high attention for your messages you should keep in mind not to send too many of them. Similar to the word count the frequency of messages should not be too high so that no one gets annoyed. A certain regularity can be handy. A possibility is to send messages once a week. Studies have shown that this is the frequency that gives you the best opening, reading and reaction rates. By establishing the regularity your employees might even be expecting your message and they start to plan a little accordingly.
The essential is, however, to really keep your messages short and on point so that the interest won’t fade halfway through the text. This means you can even send more than once a week if you keep it interesting, relevant, and focused.
Find the right timing
There are several studies about finding the right time to send marketing messages and to realize the hightes opening rates. But the general conditions for internal email marketing are different. With your internal campaigns you shouldn’t follow the model of your external newsletter sending time or other marketing campaigns which focus on your customers. When it comes to optimising the sending time of external marketing mails, the best time to send your mail is in the evening after rush hour, or on weekends. Additionally, Mondays should be avoided because the working week starts and people are stressed and tend to get annoyed by marketing messages.
For your internal campaigns you can almost rely on the opposite conditions. The beginning of the week, meaning Monday but also Tuesday, seems to gather the highest attention on internal marketing campaigns. Furthermore, you should consider a sending time early in the day when people start working. This is when they are still focused and are more attentive than by the end of a working day. On top, most people check their mails first thing in the morning and if the email is already in their inbox they will open it immediately. When it comes to the end of the week the attention for internal marketing decreases which can be linked to employees leaving early on Fridays so they won’t see the message until Monday or just in general to decreasing focus. Another reason could be the pressure to finish important tasks before the weekend and so things with lower priority can easily be overlooked. At the beginning of a week, people organise their tasks and go through all input so internal marketing will not be overlooked that easily.
Ideally, you already know the best sending time for your cause or can now decide on it and make it a regular time. With professional marketing automation technology you can even find out the best sending time for your staff mailing list, certain departments, or even individual employees and let the sending be initiated and conducted automatically.
Designing a Campaign
Even though it’s your internal email marketing you shouldn’t neglect the segmentation. Not every information is important for every employee. Which criteria you use to sort out recipient groups depends on your content. For example, you could organise them depending on the department they work in, by qualification, or even by personal attributes like family status or a certain behavioural pattern (often depending on workflows).
After you have segmented your recipient groups, naturally you have to create the content for the recipients and build the email. For this there are mainly two options:
- You can send messages which contain mostly visual language, meaning the content is mostly photos or images (graphics etc.). These should consist of at least 50 percent visual images. Text should only be used as the explanatory tool. Photos and images in general are eye catching and can be used to guide the attention of your readers. Matching images can also provide instant information about the subject of your message and the reader doesn’t have to go through a lot of text to get your point. Rather graphical mails create emotion and involve the reader. Also, mails with mainly graphic content are most suitable for promoting internal activities, events or for introducing new employees.
- Another possibility are plain text messages. The content of such may seem more serious to the reader because it is the same style as in usual business mails. This kind of message is required if the occasion demands seriousness, as for example the change of workflows, data protection guidelines, or general guidelines, or if you introduce new internal concepts in detail.
In general the results of email campaigns show that graphic mails have the best opening and reading rates. If you have a complex content to share and text is inevitable you shouldn’t put pictures on top because that can distract from your actual point.
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