Industry Eye: Case Study - Green Valley Pecan Co. Is Nuts About Its Revamped Marketing Database
“We were mailing catalogs to people who were deceased, or spouses who had lost their significant others,” recalls Deborah Walden, Green Valley Pecan’s director of marketing and sales. “Now, we’re not only saving money on postage and printing, but we’re also able to mail catalogs to solid customers who are going to make that purchase and come back.”
Green Valley Pecan now tracks purchase channel, geography, email address, key purchase months, purchase history, etc., all enabling it to communicate better with its customers.
“We wanted to be able to expand that current database to acquire email addresses,” Walden says. Now the company can determine what kind of customers are shopping with it, their demographics, where they live and their income levels, among other factors. “We’re just trying to segment in ways to be able to sell to them more efficiently and cost effectively — creating relevant offers and benefits,” she adds.
Noting the cost benefits of acquiring and marketing to customers online, as well as receiving orders online, Green Valley Pecan has made a concerted effort to increase its presence there. “As of last year’s annual planning cycle, Green Valley Pecan has reallocated a lot of its investment from traditional media to online media,” says AIR Marketing Vice President Frank Baselice.
Green Valley Pecan uses email to contact its current and past customers more frequently to maintain top of mind and boost sales. Those email messages are driving customers — web traffic is up 50 percent this year over last — to the company’s redesigned website.
Improved navigation, implementation of e-commerce best practices — such as seasonally adjusting the homepage to keep it fresh and current with special holiday offers — and improved shopping cart functionality — e.g., enhancing the size of product shots on the checkout page — have combined to draw more customers to the site and increase online orders.