Interview with Tink Taylor
Founder & President @dotmailer

dotmailer is a marketing automation platform with email at its core. Since 1999, they've been empowering global marketers with the tools and services that make it easy to get outstanding results. They now have offices in London, Manchester, Belarus, New York, Sydney, Melbourne, & Cape Town.
What is a multichannel marketing strategy?
So that really is around using more than one channel, I would particularly say three channels to truly be multi-channel. I judged many awards over the years of the Direct Marketing Association actually judge the multi-channel email category and their definition was it must use more than three channels. So this is where your dovetailing in whether it's email, or social, SMS, push, offline, print, TV, radio you're using them in a combination to drive an uptick in terms of your results. So there are lots of really simple examples. You may seed maybe a competition on social that has a link that drives into a landing page on your website that has an email marketing sign up. All of those things are key ingredients to the success of the overall campaign by using technologies and different strategies along the way.
What is the dotFamily?
As a business leader I've always been very very strong company culture and over the years we've built a fantastic team. And not only do we work incredibly hard but we play incredibly hard and we actually go out and socialize outside of work. And I think a lot of people chip in and help each other in a work scenario because they're such good friends outside of work as well. I can certainly vouch for myself and say there are lots of people in Dotmailer that are not only not only colleagues but be friends for life and breeding that kind of culture is really important. But passing that culture back to the team and saying this is the acceptable standard I thought was also quite key, I've sort of left the mothership in the UK and I've moved on. I live in North America, and spend a lot of time in Asia and Australia these days. As our growth continues globally at DotMailer say this whole company culture thing continued. We had a lot of things have been made and certainly the business we had a lot of other products that were dot-something, dotcommmerce, doteditor and so on and so forth. So the whole team to start they call themselves the dotfamily because they really do look after each other in a work and a social environment. They are very proud of the term. It's not something that a term that I coined and it's really something that came from within which is absolutely a pleasure to see. Great question.
What is the most important tip you can give to entrepreneurs getting started with email marketing?
Are there so many tips I can give from testing to creative, to making sure that your call to action is clear and obvious. But I think all of that kind of stuff counts for nothing if you don't have a good permission-based list to mail. So my number one tip would be looking at absolutely all avenues about how you grow your list. Do it organically and permission-based, don't be tempted to short track or fast track that and go out and buy data. First of all, it's not responsive. That data has been sold many many times that cause you potential deliverability issues because of people on these lists get many emails and they complain and that's one of the things that an ISP like Hotmail, G-mail and what have you will look at, will look at the number of complaints. So avoid that. And obviously nowadays with things like GDPR, with Castle in Canada, things like data protection that's starting to look like it's coming in the US. It's really important that you get your own lists, look at all strategies whether that's on or offline, you know competitions, ask at every single touch but there was another question about what to do offline. From checking into a hotel it annoys me if they don't ask me for my email address, or buying a product in a store and they don't ask if I want an e-receipt and you see that annoys me because they are touchpoints your customers. And if you are doing social media and you're driving to downloads of white papers or competitions every time you're in front of a customer it gives you an opportunity to build your list and do it in the right way by asking if they want to opt-in and give them the correct permission statement. So go out there and build your list. That's the number one tip.
Why is it important for email marketers to understand data regulations?
Well having worked in this industry for a long time I've been part of many best practices which are based around data regulations and facts. Most of them go over and above what the regulations were at the time. I think nowadays I mean everybody is now an expert in things like GDPR because we have all received all these e-mails and cell phones that we carry around so as not anyone in the world doesn't know about data regulation right now whereas I think that was very different some time ago. We've also seen Mark Zuckerberg being interviewed. You know what's going on with Facebook nowadays. Everyone's aware, even my mom is aware that they hold a lot of data. So really for a marketer it's too important to demonstrate to your consumers that you value their data your looking after it and you're doing the best you can with that data to make it safe secure and you're using it in a smart wise and necessary only way. The reason why it's important now especially under GDPR we're seeing huge fines as a potential for getting it wrong. Yeah I think it's 4% of turnover or 20 million euro fine that it's possible, we see other data laws around the world such as Castle in Canada has been huge, huge fines have been big fines down in Australia as well. And we're seeing an increasing call for data legislation in the US not only driven by Facebook we it as a potential for a Californian law. So when your email marketing it's really important to know where your customer comes from because the law that persists is the one in terms of the geographic location of where the recipient is based so you need to know what those rules are and where your customers live. Otherwise, the penalties could be quite severe.
What do you find to be most rewarding about being a thought leader in your industry?
I think one of the most exciting things about being a thought leader in the industry is the ability to be able to give back. You know I've been doing this for 20 plus years now and being able to impart my knowledge and wisdom and experience to all those people I meet and greet or speak to various different events whether that is in the world is really empowering and actually knowing that they're very engaged and listen to everything you say is I think it's fantastic and very rewarding. I think the nice thing about being a thought leader is the process of getting known, obviously, you have to be immersed in your industry and to do that. In my experience I've done that by joining several government bodies and people like the Direct Marketing Association in the UK and also in the US and further afield in Australia and I've been part of various different councils and award systems there and through that I've met many of my peers at many of my competitors. So on a day to day basis if we were in a pitch up against each other that's a different story. But it does mean that on a very personal level I've become very good friends of many of my peers and industry people move around. It's always good to know who the movers and shakers are. But it also means we can have a deep and honest conversation about industry trends threats to our particular industry as a whole rather than our personal businesses. So I'm very fortunate to be in a position where I've met a great many of eclectic people that all help become thought leaders and drive the industry as a whole.
What offline strategies can you recommend for startup founders hoping to grow their email lists in an organic way?
Well I think that's quite simple, I think you look at every single touch point you have with a customer or potential customer prospect and actually see are you using that opportunity to actually collect email address and remember whenever you're collecting email address you must be doing it under the right data regulations and make sure that you have a process document a permission statement that you are using at a time record that new GDPR. Now you'll need to say be able to evidence when where and what the statement was. So make sure you record that but some really simple examples it's in my daily life. I might be phoning a company for some support, it would be perfectly acceptable for me to be asked for what my email address is for future communications making sure again that's done in the right possible way. When I go to a new hotel, I travel often, when I check in, It's okay to ask for my email address so make sure go for your customer journey and your prospect's journey. Every time you're talking and meeting to someone whether that's a trade show, over the phone, etc etc you ask the question. When was the last time you went into a store and they said do you want a receipt for this, again people are collecting email addresses as a point of sale. So every time you're in front of a customer ask the question make sure you're doing it the right way and make sure that that right away is actually covering you under the Data Protection Act.