How To Use Email Tagging in Your Marketing Campaigns

What is email tagging and how does it work?
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If you’re not using email tags in your marketing campaigns, you’re missing out on a valuable opportunity to segment your audience and measure performance. By adding tags to your emails, you can also track engagement and even automate follow-up messages. If you’re not sure how to use email tags, don’t worry — it’s easy! This article will help you get started.

What are email tags?

Email tags are labels you can assign to your contacts that help you keep track of important information, such as which products they’re interested in, what content they engage with, or even how they found out about your brand. Knowing this data can be very useful when planning future marketing campaigns. 

Next, we’ll show you how to use tags to create a more personalized email campaign.

The benefits of implementing tags in a marketing campaign

Tags can be extremely beneficial to any marketing campaign. By allowing you to segment your audience and target specific demographics, tags can help you with:

Organization

You can sort and label your subscribers to make more sense of your contact list. By tagging different subscribers with different interests, you can send more targeted content. This results in a higher email open rate and click-through rate, which means more engaged subscribers.

Segmentation

One of the most important aspects in email marketing is email segmentation. By using tags, you can easily segment your email list and send targeted content to each group. This can be a huge advantage in terms of deliverability. When you send content that interests your recipients, it’s more likely to be well-received and less likely to be marked as spam.

Triggering

Triggering is the process of using specific criteria to send emails automatically based on subscriber behavior. Tags can be very helpful in tracking subscriber activity so you can trigger emails accordingly. For example, if you have a tag for “opens most emails,” you could send that subscriber more information about your product or service. If you have a tag for “clicked on sale ad”, you could send that subscriber a coupon code.

Types of email tags

There are several types of email tags that can be used to segment your email list. Here are some of the most popular:

Product

Customer purchase history, preferences, and desires are all possible uses for product tags. Use this data to segment your email list and deliver targeted communications. For example, if you know a customer has purchased a product from your store, you can send them an email with a special offer on that product.

Using product tags can also help you upsell and cross-sell products. If you know what products a customer is interested in, you can send them emails with recommendations for similar or related products.

Sign-up source

Sign-up source tags help you keep track of where your subscribers came from, whether it was an advertisement, a blog post, or a marketing campaign of another type. This information is essential for understanding which marketing efforts bring you more clients.

Without sign-up source tags, you would have to manually sort through your email list to try and figure out where each subscriber came from. This can be time-consuming and difficult, especially if you have a large list.

Action

Action tags are a type of email tag that can be used to track customer interactions and engagement. By tracking these interactions, you can better understand what your customers want and how they interact with your emails. This information can then be used to improve future email campaigns. For example, if you see that customers are clicking on a particular link, you may want to include more content about that topic in future emails.

Status

You can send tailored emails to contacts depending on their level of engagement. Status tags categorize recipients by how involved they are with related activity and add an extra layer of detail to segmentation. 

Some possible status tags you might want to use include:

  • Customers who have engaged recently
  • Those inactive for the past month
  • People who haven’t made a purchase in two months
  • Your most loyal customers.

Interest tags

The easiest way to label your contacts might be through their interests. This allows you to show them content they’re passionate about and keeps them coming back for more. Simply inquiring from your subscribers will give you a better idea of what they like. 

You could ask them to choose from a list of topics, or have them answer a short survey. For example, if you find that one part of your list enjoys a particular type of content, then you can tag those contacts and show them even more of what they like.

How to create an email tag and use it in your campaign

Creating an email tag is not complicated and only requires a few steps. We’ve written a detailed guide on how to assign a tag to a contact, using the Selzy service as an example. 

Categorize your subscribers into groups

You can use email tags to organize your subscribers into categories or groups. This is especially useful if you have a large list of subscribers. 

How to add tags while importing contacts

After you select a contact list from your file, click Add tags. Input a desired tag and press Enter. You can repeat this process for multiple tags — simply press enter or separate each one with a comma.

Tagging contacts while you import them

Assign a specific tag to each contact

To create an email tag for an individual address, log in to your email service provider and navigate to the list of Contacts. Then, go to the Tools section → Tags. Create the tags you need.

Tags in Selzy account

Next, return to the All contacts section and select the desired contact. In the Actions section, select Update Tags.

Adding a tag to a contact
This is how adding a tag to an email address in Selzy works

Choose a tag and save the changes.

Tag selection

You will now see a specific tag next to each contact. 

Email tagging

Now, by selecting the relevant tags when creating an email campaign, you can target specific groups of subscribers and make your campaigns more successful.

Mass tagging

You can add tags in bulk to all the addresses in your contact list. First, mark the entire contact list.

Mass tagging in Selzy

To update tags for all selected contacts, click the Actions button on top and select Update Tags from the drop-down menu.

Tag updating

After that, you can select from one of the available tags or generate your own.

Tags list

Create multiple campaigns in a single list

You are not restricted to a single automation series per list with email service providers. You can use tags at any point during a sequence, which gives you more flexibility. Multiple campaigns per list also allow you to trigger specific campaigns based on subscriber behavior using web forms or landing pages. 

For example, if someone fills out a form on your website, they could be automatically added to a campaign that’s relevant to their interests. If they’re already subscribed to your email list, they’ll just start receiving the new campaign – no need to resubscribe them manually. 

Let’s assume you’re using a lead magnet, the Guide, to collect subscribers on your thematic blog. Adding these subscribers to your list would trigger a Welcome campaign, as you can see below. This campaign is associated with the web form you used and tagged with “Guide”.

Setting up tags in am email campaign

Every six months, you also run a challenge in order to generate leads and get people on your main list. Your existing subscribers are able to opt-in as well, even though the effort is mainly focused on gaining new leads.

Let’s use your ESP to do it! Create a new campaign called “Challenge.” This campaign should be triggered by a certain tag “Challenge”.

Tags creation in Selzy

We’re ready to go further. But now make sure that people who fill out the signup form on the landing page (promoting the challenge) get to the contact list with the appropriate tag.

Encourage your current subscribers to visit the landing page and fill out a form, and if they provide their email address, they’ll get the same series with Challenge content. Thus, creating a new list for every new series is no longer necessary.

Email tagging ideas and best practices

With hundreds of ways to personalized emails using tags, where do you start? Here are some ideas for tag-based emails to send highly targeted messages.

Send a welcome offer

What could be more appealing to potential new subscribers than a welcome email with a significant discount? You can use tags to identify people who have recently joined but haven’t bought anything yet. To encourage these consumers, give them a discount to get them into a buying frenzy.

Welcome email with discount code
Source: Really Good Emails

Bring inactive subscribers back

By tagging customers that haven’t interacted recently and automatically sending them an email, you can bring their attention back to your brand. This is called a re-engagement email. It reminds the recipient of why they signed up for your emails in the first place with the option to unsubscribe or stay on the list.

One of the most important things you can do to ensure successful re-engagement emails is to keep list hygiene. This means regularly removing invalid addresses, bounced emails, and spam traps.

Take a look at the re-engagement email example below. By sending something brief and sweet, you let your subscribers know that you saw their inactivity and were concerned enough to contact them.

Re-engagement email example
Source: Really Good Emails

Use a reward system to give loyal customers a reason to come back

Is there someone you know who always opens your emails and clicks on every link? Or maybe somebody who’s recently made a large purchase from you? You can show how much you appreciate their business by tagging them, and then offering a special reward.

For example, the Noom company urges its subscribers to come back to get the custom plan for up to 90% off.

Starbucks email campaign
Source: Really Good Emails

Recommendations tailored to customers individual interests

A great solution to use product tags is by sending your contacts personalized product recommendations. For example, Cole Haan sends item recommendations to its customers based on their preferences.

Product recommendations email
Source: Sendlane

In addition, you can tag customers according to the product’s category or price. It allows you to better identify those people who are more likely to spend lavishly on your products and services. 

For example, someone who buys a $1000 course from you is more likely to become a customer when you launch an expensive coaching service. By segmenting your customers in this way with tags, you save time by marketing only to those who are most interested instead of trying to reach everyone at once.

Final thoughts

Tags can help you with organization, trigger relevant emails on a schedule, and save you time by automating your email marketing tasks. 

You can use several types of email tags to segment your email list: 

  1. Product tags to track customer purchases and preferences.
  2. Sign-up source tags to help keep track of where subscribers came from.
  3. Action tags to track customer interactions and engagement.
  4. Status tags to indicate the recipients’ level of involvement. 

By using tags, you can segment your list and send specific messages to different groups of people. For example, you could send a welcome offer to new subscribers, or a special discount to those who haven’t interacted recently. You can also use tags to send tailored product recommendations to customers based on their individual interests. 

What email tagging strategies do you use?

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