How to use ClickDimensions to Increase Engagement & Improve Data Quality
Great! You've implemented ClickDimensions to connect your email marketing with Dynamics 365, but what happens next?
If you've recently gone live with ClickDimensions and received introductory training, or are just about to, consider what insights you want to gain from this integrated solution.
There are so many possibilities to use and report on the email data that flows into Dynamics 365 and at the outset it can feel both exciting but also a bit daunting to understand how best to work with this.
Email marketing priorities and goals will always differ but shared success criteria will surely be increasing email engagement and improved data quality.
As part of our ClickDimensions onboarding process, we help customers develop a success plan to help marketing teams consider how they want to manage this newly connected data.
Here are just a few suggestions to hopefully assist you in progressing your project to quickly discover new insights and achieve your emarketing goals.
The ClickDimensions Sent Emails list shows the latest recipient actions in response to marketing emails.
Consistent with any Dynamics list view, this can be customised to fit individual user requirements.
This lists the total number of opens and clicks from each recipient on a single email send, includes an aggregated score as well as the associated contact record.
At a glance, each row item references the campaign, the email send date and when the most recent action was tracked (modified on).
Consider how you want to adapt this view, and how many different variations will be useful.
For example, this could include a combination of:
- Filtered views enabling individual account managers to stay informed by easily seeing the recent email opens and clicks for their customers
- A listing of non-customers so the most engaged prospects can be quickly identified
- Creating views for different types of email campaign. For example, list views for event based emails, or email sends that reference a series of automated campaign messages.
- Filter this list to only show Send Email records that score above a defined figure to highlight which contacts are most receptive.
Before using the automated ClickDimensions Lead Score feature in a list view, consider if you want to customise this from the default scoring values.
This feature automatically awards points when recipients actions are tracked. This includes each time an email link is clicked, when a form is posted, or when a web page view is tracked.
Review these values to make sure leads scores are representative and meaningful that will help everyone see at glance who the top prospects are from each campaign.
ClickDimensions displays open rates, click through rates and other campaign metrics within the email statistics frame rather than a field in CRM.
This is adequate for reviewing performance on an individual campaign but marketing teams also need to assess and compare results across multiple campaigns.
The good news is that Dynamics 365 fields can be quickly configured to read Email Sends data to automatically calculate these values.
On any ClickDimension Email Send record, we can roll-up how many emails were delivered, the current total of unique opens, a running total of resulting clicks, how many bounces occurred and an unsubscribe total.
These figures will be measured against how many campaign emails were sent. Using Dynamics 365 calculated fields, marketing teams can then instantly see the percentages for these metrics in a searchable field as shown below on:
This data can now be tracked in a Dynamics dashboard enabling marketing users to see at a glance the key performance metrics on recent campaigns:
These calculated rates can be used in a list view, applied to a Dynamics 365 chart, or analysed in Power BI.
As an example, below we can see that the email open rate across all campaigns has been progressing well but a dip has been seen in the most recent month:
ClickDimensions rolls up every email action to the associated contact record. From these records users can quickly see detail such as which URL an individual has clicked, and how frequently they've opened these marketing emails.
The next step should be to interpret this data across the entire database to identify where action is needed.
Once contacts have received a series of ClickDimensions emails it will beneficial to have some fields that will report their engagement level.
These will automatically roll up data across all tracked emails. Some examples on the contact form could include:
- Date of most recent email open / click action
- How many days since this action
- Total number of marketing emails sent
- Total tracked imprints (email open or click)
- Engagement score comparing total imprints with emails sent
As an example with the figures populated, for the contact below we can see an impressive 90%+ engagement rate with the most recent action / imprint tracked 3 days ago.
To analyse the engagement across multiple records and understand where action is needed the next step will be to use these new fields in a personalised contact list view.
Some examples of Dynamics 365 views that we've created have included:
- Contacts with high engagement scores e.g. 80%+
- Filtered view of non-customers with high engagement metrics
- Listing contacts where no recent email opens or click actions have been tracked for x months
- Report contacts who haven't looked at any of the x most recent emails
For contacts and prospects who are frequently looking at email content these views provide useful insight to improve reporting, co-ordinate actions and help sales and marketing work more closer.
As featured earlier, with ClickDimensions helping to chart the fluctuations in open rates we'll naturally want to see an upward trend.
Limited success will be the likely if there are a high proportion of contacts in our audience who never look at these messages. Or, if we are continually emailing people who've not opened our messages for many months.
Even if these contacts had previously opted in, it isn't a good practice to repeatedly send messages if they aren't being read. Also, from a GDPR standpoint it perhaps suggests there is no longer a legitimate case for continuing to process this personal data...
The difficulty has always been to easily identify these non-responsive email address across multiple campaigns stretching back over several months. With ClickDimensions is embedded within Dynamics 365, this is now significantly easier!
Unengaged contacts drag down campaign performance stats and may suggest potential issues with relevance of content and data quality.
With clear visibility to see which recipients never look at your emails, and those who haven't done so recently, follow up actions can be taken to either remove these email addresses from further campaigns - or perhaps try a reactivation campaign to prompt some action.
In both cases, this will support efforts to improve CRM data quality and maximise campaign engagement rates.
Reviewing Emails Bounces
ClickDimensions will automatically suppress any email delivery to a contact where a hard bounce has been reported. This will include bounces due to an invalid recipient or DNS failure.
These issues might be the result of a typo when the email address was entered, or perhaps the company is no longer trading.
Whatever the reason, marketing admins should have a dedicated view within Dynamics 365 that lists recent hard bounces. From this obviously errors can be spotted and corrected, and suspect contacts can be highlighted in readiness for possible record deactivation or deletion as appropriate.
It will also be beneficial to have a similar view for soft bounces that are tracked.
In most instances these are out-of-office responses requiring no further action. However, if ClickDimensions tracks 5 soft bounces within a 3 month period it will stop sending to these addresses.
Depending on how frequently you email this threshold could potentially result in emails to valuable customers and prospects being blocked because they've been on extended leave or due to other absence.
Although the 5 soft bounces within 3 months control can't be adjusted, marketing admins can unblock addresses if they consider them to be still valid and where there is justification in continuing to attempt to deliver future messages.
Through another contact list view, repeated soft bounces can identified by contact name prompting action to potentially unblock, investigate bounce reasons or remove these contacts from further marketing lists.
Email list quality will often degrade rapidly so actively keeping on top of email bounces is one simple, recurring activity that will help preserve value.
These are just some of the ways to demonstrate how ClickDimensions email data can be used to improve data quality and increase the success of future campaigns.