Salesforce interactive email: what it is, why you need it

Nov 14, 2023

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Salesforce Interactive email. That’s email that lets a reader take an action in an email that triggers an event without leaving that email. 

Let’s compare: with regular email marketing, you send an email with the main goal of getting a user to click the link to a specific landing page to complete an action. 

Interactive email marketing examples

Interactive email can be incredibly sophisticated!I love this idea of sending new products intro email: Instead of linking readers straight through to your products section on your website, they could have a look at a bit more in the email through an image gallery with drop-downs that hold more information about each product. So prospects will be making a more informed choice before clicking through to the landing page.

Something that looks like this…

Salesforce interactive email
Source: Stripo

Or, in a more sophisticated interactive email example for products, you could create product image hotspots and offer more information if the email reader rolls over the hotspot.

This interactivity will delight Gen Y, and this extra info will boost sales from Gen X. It’s nothing short of brilliant.

Another interactive email marketing example: In today’s world where online reputation is absolutely everything, instead of giving the user a link to fill out a review for a product they just purchased, you give them the review form directly in your email. Less clicks and more likely to be completed.

Measuring email results

In terms of overall results: this leads to increasing conversions rates with a strong focus on user experience, cross client support and accessibility.

Interactive email content increases the click-to-open rate by 73% and adding videos to your email content can boost click rates up to 300%.”

States Martech Advisor based on research among early adopters of this technology.

Interactive Emails comes with a new metric to track: in-email clicks of links and buttons.

Interactive email boosts average spent

One of the interesting things that early adopters have seen is sometimes the actual click through rate might drop a little bit for an interactive email. But the conversion rates will be higher because the user is getting more information out of the email. When they click through, they are more qualified users so they convert higher – maybe a few less might click through, but these are people we would expect to drop off anyway.

Early adopting luxury brands more sales resulting: “The conversion rate might not change too much, but the average spend is going up.” according to Mark Robbins, one of the interactive email experts from Salesforce in a recent interview.

Get more reviews

Another example, according to Mark Robbins from Salesforce, Rebel saw 2x as many responses on reviews in emails vs. links by email leading to a review landing page. The rationale is that the question is different: rather than asking to complete the survey, you ask the question instead.

Interactive email examples - forms

Specific benefits

Salesforce Interactive Email is all about creating results of various kinds:

  • Collect more customer Data — reduce friction by embedding reviews, progressively profiles and lead forms in email
  • Use Data to Drive Personalisation — Respond with personalised content or kick off action in sales cloud and service cloud
  • Increase Engagement –– Enable users to take action direct in the inbox with compelling interactive content.
  • Boost results.

All this extra data, from the forms etc, gets collected in a Data Extension (DE) in Salesforce Marketing Cloud. This DE can then be used for each use cases.

For example if you have a lead form, you can use Journey Builder to put this data into Sales Cloud, to action on those customers. Ditto for service information into the Service Cloud. Low ratings can automatically create a case. High ratings can trigger a thank you response.

4 Interactive email use cases

The applications of interactive email are obviously far reaching, from starting the purchasing process in the email, to filling out a review form, to requesting customer service, etc.

But summing it all up, there are basically four interactive email use cases:

  1. Progressive Profiling
  2. Reviews
  3. Lead Forms
  4. Service Forms.
Salesforce interactive email example of product carrousel or slider.
Interactive product catalog in email

Interactive email templates

Salesforce Marketing Cloud has a set of interactive email templates – one for each use case, plus a blank one leaving all to your own creativity.

Salesforce Marketing Cloud even offers you the change for ‘FallBack Content’. Anyone in email design is familiar with this: Microsoft Outlook’s email challenges! To this day, Outlook causes HTML email design rendering issues. So with this FallBack Content feature of Marketing Cloud, this will not be a problem and everything will look correctly to a reader even if their email client is not yet ready for Interactive Email.

How does interactive email work?

Interactive email is a new take on the way you can code emails. It requires email design, and HTML and then a lot more, behind the scene. That was what the pioneers had to deal with.

Today we have Interactive Email now as part of Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journey Builder. This area of Salesforce enables us to set up new and creative ways to engage with specific target audiences.

Is interactive email for you?

Probably. Specific best practices that CloudAnalysts could help you with:

  • Ideation — Improved strategies for campaigns with interactive email. We help you think through where Interactive Email concepts can be best leveraged.
  • Design – Interactive experience; Static fallback; and Landing pages.
  • Implementing Interactive Emails in Salesforce Marketing Cloud— Creation and set up of Interactive and Static content blocks, and Landing page.
  • Create a Data Strategy — How will you use the data across journeys, personalisation, cross-cloud implementation?

Get results with Interactive Studio for Marketing Cloud: contact us for a free consultation and discussion of your use cases to generate higher sales, offer better service or help you develop a strategy to realise long term value from this new technology.

Interested to learn more?

We would be very happy to help you.

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