A key challenge for email marketers today is to set yourself apart from the noise of the busy inbox. Brands need to deliver value to their customers; whether it’s in the form of discounts, tips or useful information.
Ask yourself – are you part of your customers’ conversation? Do you send emails that merge with a hot topic or event of the day? This is where real-time email marketing steps in.
Earlier this month, Bradley Wiggins attempted to break the current world record for the longest distance cycled in one hour on a bicycle from a stationary start.

Science in Sport identified the event as a great promotional opportunity, targeting a real time email campaign to promote a competition that would run throughout the duration of Bradley’s world record attempt. The email also included some information and advice supporting the event and promoting relevant products as a themed package.

The email lead to a dedicated landing page that featured a countdown clock that ended when the record attempt had been completed, creating an urgency to enter the competition.

What’s great about this type of campaign is that you can send out a relevant follow up email. What happened during the event? What were the highlights? … (Cue relevant product promotion).

Email marketing allows you to rapidly distribute timely messages which can increase your online results, boost sales and generate that all important ROI. So what should you be aware of when creating real-time campaigns?

Timing is everything – The key to success is in the time of the send. Prepare in advance for relevant upcoming events, possible scenarios and final outcomes. If you’re going create a buzz, you’ll need to send out your campaign at the optimum time for conversions.
By sending before or during the event you are likely to spark interest and slot right in to your consumers’ conversation. If you send a campaign too late, you run the risk of becoming irrelevant and drowned out by others who have beaten you to it.
Know your audience – It’s easy to get carried away when you’re creating real-time email campaigns. Resist from targeting events that aren’t relevant to your brand. They usually won’t help you sell and you risk annoying your subscribers. Only target an event or date that will actually aid awareness for your message.
Added value – Always include something that will reward your audience. Agile campaigns are the perfect time to run competitions, offer a discount or launch a new product – you have their attention, don’t waste it!
Get creative – The more specific and targeted the promotion, the more urgency you will create. Including a countdown clock is a great way to indicate a time responsive offer. You can take this one step further by featuring agile creative to control what the subscriber sees depending on the time the email is opened or clicked.
2015 is packed with national sporting events, festivals, annual holidays and celebrations for email marketers to target, so get creative. Tap into the moment and watch your engagement soar!