Alan Rosenspan's "Improve Your Response"
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
Ive just returned from a three-week consulting job in Australia,
and I want to get back to sending out my newsletter in a somewhat
more abbreviated form.
Current newsletter wisdom is to send people short excerpts of articles,
and then allow them to click to get more information. This is an excellent
technique, but unfortunately beyond our technical expertise.
However, I will be sending out shorter newsletters and offering
you the option of e-mailing me for what Paul Harvey calls "the rest
of the story
All the best,
As the Vice President of the New England Direct Marketing Association,
I get to hear some terrific speakers. Our recent meeting featured Reggie
Brady of Reggie Brady Marketing Solutions and Shar Van Boskirk, Associate
Analyst at Forrester Research.
Both spoke about the latest trends and developments in e-Mail marketing, and I have summarized some of their ideas for you.
1. Dynamic Personalization
Barnes & Noble.com markets events, such as book signings, authors lectures, by personalizing their e-mails automatically.
According to the zip code in which you live, you receive announcements of special events in your area. They never tell you theyre doing this it just looks like its coming from your local area store.
2. e-mail and DM
You can use e-mail and direct mail in a variety of innovative ways. (1) To announce a mailing. The message here is "Look for this in your mail." This helps cut through the clutter. Key technique: use HTML that includes a photograph of the envelope you are mailing it will help them recognize it more easily. (2) To remind them that you mailed them, a week later.
Key technique: put in an additional or extra special offer in the e-mail.
3. e-mail appending services
e-mail lists are hard to find, however there are some companies that will take your direct mail or customer list and append e-mails when available for about 50 cents to $1.00 a name. Plus you pay only for those names that they can match.
Key technique: Once youve done this successfully, try the un-matched
names with a completely different company, since they probably have access
to different e-mail lists.
4. e-mail for Retention
As the glut of e-mail continues, its becoming harder and harder to use e-mail for acquiring new customers. However, e-mail can be an excellent tool for retaining and growing the ones you already have.
According to Jupiter Research, three times as much money was spent on Customer Retention over Customer Acquisition. And that trend will continue to grow.
5. Time-sensitive offers
Offers have always been an effective technique in e-mail. (In fact, in my newly revised 101 Ways to Improve Response, I refer to e-mail as "an electronic offer delivery system.") And time-sensitive offers encourage people to respond immediately and not postpone their decision.
What kinds of offers work best? Jupiter Research evaluated different
offers, and asked people which ones would make them respond. Here are
the three top offers:
6. Viral marketing
Some experts recommend you add a viral component to every e-mail you
Research done by Jupiter Research shows that nearly 70% of all respondents
are willing to pass along information to colleagues. And the average forwarding
rate of an individual e-mail is from 4-7%.
Key technique: Include a visual or graphic next to the words, "Please forward to a colleague." You can show a picture of an arrow or an envelope that looks like its moving.
7. Rich Media
More people are able to access rich media every month and it can be a very effective way to present information.
However, you dont have to use it all the time. Keep it for special events and announcements, and times when you need to add a visual element to your e-mail.
Key technique: Dont design it so that it starts playing automatically. Let the customer or prospect start it themselves. This gets them involved, and also lets them decide when they want to view it.
8. Start a Profile Page
MySybase.com is a program weve worked on with Sybase. It allows customers and prospects to personalize their e-mail experience with Sybase.
The idea is to direct customers or prospects to a "Profile Page" where they can register the following information. (1) What specific products and services they are most interested in, (2) How often they would like to hear from you, and in what form. (3) Anything else you think might be important.
The benefit is that your prospects and customers get involved; they are much more likely to open your e-mails; they are much more likely to respond because theyve chosen to receive it.
9. e-mail "conversations"
Sending out individual messages and measuring the response may not the best way to do e-mail.
It may be smarter to develop an e-mail campaign or "conversation." This is defined as "A series of e-mails tailored to customer motivations and sequenced to guide them through the buying cycle."
It involves multiple contacts; asking for information; developing a true dialogue with your prospects or customers and then measuring the aggregate response to the entire campaign.
Would you like more information? Both of their presentations will be available at www.nedma.com in the next 10 days.
Ive just finished re-writing my booklet, 101 Ways to Improve Response, and it occurred to me that there are many rules for direct marketing
but none that I know of for direct marketers.
And so even though I agree with David Ogilvy that "rules are for
the obedience of fools, and the guidance of wise men (and women)"
I would like to set down 7 rules for direct marketers.
By the way, if youd like a free copy of our newly revised 101 Ways to Improve Response now with a short e-mail section please let us know, and well be happy to send one along.
© Alan Rosenspan & Associates