E-mail Marketing: Communicating Effectively
#4 Keep ‘em wanting more.
Use e-mail judiciously—once a week is a good rule to follow. If it is a question of sending out two e-mails with three offers each vs. one e-mail with six, opt for the latter. Too many mailings clog an in-box and lead to fast deletion.
JC Whitney, a catalog marketer of after-market automobile products, launches five to 10 offers at a time. Not every consumer gets all the offers because they are matched and delivered by personal preference. This assures no unwanted pitches. JC Whitney’s results are typically 2 percent to 5 percent click-throughs per offer, 15 percent to 30 percent click-throughs per e-mail and consumers returning to the site for a multitude of shopping interests.
#5 Collect e-mail addresses any which way you can.
Gather e-mail addresses at every opportunity. Direct mail reply cards should have a place for customers to list their e-mail addresses. Capture e-mail addresses when customers place orders over the phone. Talk to an e-mail list broker. Leverage your expertise in harvesting addresses for your print catalog and apply the same techniques to broadening your e-mail options.
Many catalogers may be hesitant to go after e-mail addresses aggressively for fear it will label them as “spammers.” However, when you have acquired a new batch of addresses, you can avoid the spam label by simply sending out a short e-mail invitation to check out your personalized e-mail “newsletters,” “update” or “specials.” In the invitation, be sure to stress to the new recruits that they will not receive additional information from you unless they choose to opt in.
We generally see sign-ups from this invitation process in the range of 10 percent to 20 percent.
Catalogers are also finding value in maintaining two or three levels of opt-in lists. The basic list comes from those who check a box for notices on future specials. This feeds into an opt-in list with preferences. The top-end lists are those with the opt-in on preferences plus individual buying or response traits.