All About Email - The Last Word in Email Publishing

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Innovate or die!

The economic recession of 2009 has changed many things. It has had a pronounced effect on result driven email marketing - mainly downwards.

Shocked by the downturn, and the impact it had on their income and asset values, many consumers entered 2010 with a new set of values - based around the principle of economising.

Even in my house, we vowed to make 2010 the year of economise without compromise - which in layman's terms meant drinking good red wine only once a week instead of the previous every day approach.

Email marketers who had been doing very nicely with their weekly emails, found very quickly into the new year that sales generated by emails were down, thus disproving the old adage "if you do what you did, you'll get what you got"

Consumer spending patters and motivations are simply not the same as they used to be, and any retailer who ignores this and just hopes for a return to the old ways will be found out.

To adapt your retail strategy to meet the new market, and to try and boost demand for your offerings, there is a need to innovate in the way you sell them.

Of all retail channels, email is surely the best suited to this - the ease, and low cost of changing your emails, the volume and way in which content is presented etc is great. Compare it to a store refit, even a website redesign.

Email also allows much smarter and more personalised marketing - use these capabilities to the full. Segment your database, and don't be afraid to try different approaches for different segments. It costs nothing, it produces quantifiable and instantaneous results - results you can learn from and amend your future outreach accordingly.

A client and I had a reasonably strong difference of opinion recently over a subject line for an immediate call to action email - I suggested we split her database down the middle and see whose line got the better opening rate.

As it happens, she did - 39% to 35%. The point is, we knew instantly - not so much about the respective merits of our creativity, but in fact more about what sort of subject line motivated her database to open their emails.

So for 2010, for retail email marketers, if you do what you did, you'll get less than you got.

Innovate - don't be afraid - and with email you have the perfect medium.