Aaron graduated with his Masters in Business and a concentration in Marketing from New York Institute of Technology. With more than eight years in email marketing, Aaron has worked on both the vendor and client side, having worked at Staples and The Children’s Place and managing programs for Marriott Hotels, Sprint, Hilton Hotels and Nestle Purina. In high school, Aaron hosted a live weekly sports TV show which garnered the highest ratings for its channel and won multiple Best Show awards. This live entertainment experience should come quite in handy during his presentation at EiQ next week!
BW: What was your path to email?
AH: I have always had an interest in marketing since high school and continued my education in it throughout college. I was fascinated by the psychological elements of customer behavior and why people buy certain things over others. My first job out of college was with a marketing agency working closely with clients helping grow their email marketing program. I had no idea what email marketing was at the time, but the job offered two weeks of training in San Francisco so I figured why not! Ever since then I have been hooked on email and heavily involved in email marketing strategy and innovation.
BW: Why do you believe in the channel?
AH: I think email is unique in that the level of effort to get a campaign live and out the door is minimal compared to other marketing channels. Results are immediate and can update in real time. I am a big proponent of analytics and having the data do the talking in terms of performance and results. Email is always on the forefront of technology and pushing the boundaries of intelligent customer marketing.
BW: What is the coolest or most innovative thing going on in email?
AH: I think the coolest think in email right now is personalization – the ability to tie in a customer’s past performance allows for highly relevant content embedded into the email, which then increases all KPIs. The 1:1 component is truly unique and if a company can master that it allows for endless possibilities within email and fits in perfectly with my motto of “sending the right message to the right person at the right time.”
BW: What do you want non-believers of the channel to know?
AH: Email is a great way to reach your audiences, but you need to be smart about it. I hear all the time in my job “let’s just send an email, it’s easy and quick.” But what people may not realize that there is a cost to sending an unwanted email. Customers are very passionate about their brands and a bad email can cause an unsubscription, which is costly.
BW: What is your favorite email that you receive and/or what brand does email really well?
AH: Some of my favorite brands that I always open are for Delta/Hilton Hotels and Dicks Sporting Goods. I enjoy the Delta emails because they are concise and to the point and aren’t trying too hard. Their emails creatively look really cool and their SkyMiles summary emails are one of the best I have seen. For Hilton, I am slightly biased having worked on their email program in my past, but the visual images used are top notch and really make me feel like I am there and that always helps when looking to book a hotel. Dicks really focuses on the sale and not so much on the creative element. The email is big and bold so it’s simple to find the CTA and click.
BW: Why does EiQ matter and why should anyone attend?
AH: I have been to many email marketing conferences and after each one I always came out feeling slight disappointment. Some of these conferences focus too much on the location and night activities rather than the actual conference. Don’t get me wrong, both of those are key factors (will always look for opportunities to visit New Orleans or Vegas) but the content feels secondary and I come out without any tangible takeaways. For EiQ, I am excited about this day and agenda. I think the team did a tremendous job putting together an all-star lineup that focuses on a broad array of email-related content and relatable sessions that people can connect with. I think this will be relevant for new to email marketers as well as some of the seasoned vets.
BW: What are you looking forward to at EiQ?
AH: I am looking forward to the opportunity to speak and represent Staples and share our success stories. I am also eager to hear from the other amazing speakers and pick brains regarding email! This is a unique experience for me to learn from others in similar roles and companies all focused on email.
BW: What are you looking forward to experiencing in Atlanta?
AH: This will be my first extended trip to Atlanta so I’m excited to experience the southern lifestyle! My wife is planning on joining me down there and we are extending our stay through the weekend. I am big American history nerd and love sightseeing American cities rich in culture like Atlanta. The nice weather is also an added bonus coming from the Northeast.
For more information about our EiQ speak list, agenda and vision, click here.