Learn about setting up and managing a subscription center

Struggling to communicate with your subscribers? Let them tell you what communications they want and how often they want to hear from you. Learn how to create and manage a subscription center to develop an appropriate cadence and process.

Do you often see requests from prospects asking how to unsubscribe from your emails? Are your email campaigns going to spam? Do you ever feel like you struggle to communicate with your subscribers and find your global unsubscribed list growing? If so, you may be lacking a competent subscription center. Using Marketo, you can create a subscription center to manage processes between you and your subscribers while also giving your subscribers options to create their own preferences within the center.
Managing email subscriptions in a subscription center lets you go beyond the standard unsubscribe page and give more choices to your audience. Instead of only giving people the choice to opt-out entirely from your list, you can invite them to subscribe to the communication types they want. They can get rid of emails that they don’t want and you get to keep sending them the kinds of content that they do want to receive. Building a subscription management system will increase your active and marketable database as well as help you stay compliant with privacy laws. A subscription center helps you establish a healthy communication cadence with your subscribers and provides an easy way for your subscribers to manage their communication preferences. Using this center allows you to cater to your specific market segments and develop a communication strategy that works to ultimately prevent global unsubscribes. From your customer’s perspective, that can also customize their subscription to a pattern of communication that is appropriate for their interest and needs. Therefore reducing the amount of unsubscribes from issues such as too many emails or topics that are irrelevant to specific customers. Additionally subscription management processes can help those who have double opt-in laws in their countries.
Creating and managing your subscription center correctly allows you to showcase your offerings in terms of the types of emails customers may want to receive and at what frequency. This can help you to make further inferences about the preferences for each customer or market segment. From this information, you then have the opportunity to alter your current email campaign programs or even create new programs to target the new segments that may have developed. Additionally, the subscription center can help reduce unsubscribes and spam complaints by providing alternatives for those who may be unsubscribing for reasons beyond your control. All in all, appropriately managing your subscription center will positively impact deliverability and your relationship with your audience.
Marketo comes with a standard unsubscribe page that gets deployed as soon as you turn Marketo on. This page helps you conform to the minimum legal standard for unsubscribing in most countries. However, you’ll need to build out your subscription center in order to truly manage this process. For example, you may want to provide options to specifically opt-in or opt-out of the content such as newsletters, event invitations, webinar invitations, solution-specific content or blog posts. And for visitors who aren’t interested in any of the content you are offering, you need to provide an unsubscribe all option.
Before you build your subscription center, you need to develop the overall mailing strategy for your company that your subscription center will support. In doing this, there are several key issues you need to consider. Determine if you want to use an explicit or implicit opt-in. Do you want subscribers to explicitly opt-in to every type of communication they receive from you? Or do you want to go the implicit opt-in route where the user is automatically opted-in to all your communications whenever you capture their information? Implicit opt-in is commonly used in B2B marketing because it requires the least amount of effort on the part of both the company and the customer and can quickly lead to a big list. However, there are risks. For example, you’re risking that your messages will be considered junk mail since the recipient didn’t explicitly ask for it. If you decide to use an implicit opt-in strategy make sure that your intentions are clearly stated in your privacy policy. You also need to comply with all spam regulations, based on the location of the recipient, not of the sender. Determine how you will handle cases where the user didn’t register themselves. For example, how do you want to handle leads that are input by sales or lists you get from trade shows? Which content do you want to automatically subscribe these leads to? Determine which emails will be considered operational. Operational emails are handled differently since they are outside of normal opt-in policies. You need to determine which emails are operational and which are not. Typically auto responders and other emails requested by leads such as receipts or webinar confirmations are considered operational. This would ignore subscription settings, just like it would ignore unsubscribe and would go to any person that requested it. Determine email frequency. How many times a week do you want your audience to receive content? Do you want to provide this flexibility in the subscription center? Another option might be to allow your audience to pause their subscription if they simply need a break. Now that you know what a subscription center is, let’s go into Marketo and set one up. -