The Press

Lock­downs show value of email mar­ket­ing

- Richard Calkin founder and ex­ec­u­tive chair­man of Web Ge­nius Business · Marketing · Business Trends · Direct Marketing · Genius

Tdemise of email mar­ket­ing has been fore­told many times over re­cent years, but noth­ing could be fur­ther from the truth when you look at the re­sults that email mar­ket­ing con­tin­ues to gen­er­ate for busi­nesses up and down the coun­try.

Email mar­ket­ing con­tin­u­ally comes out on top when re­search looks at what form of mar­ket­ing achieves the best re­turn on in­vest­ment (ROI).

For ex­am­ple, last year email met­rics com­pany Lit­mus found that for ev­ery dol­lar mar­keters spend on email mar­ket­ing, they re­ceive $42 in re­turn, or an ROI of 42:1.

That’s up from an av­er­age ROI of 38:1 in 2018 and re­flects a trend that has crept up­wards for over a decade.

Noth­ing demon­strated the strate­gic ad­van­tage of a di­rect email com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nel to your cus­tomer base bet­ter than the Covid-19 lock­down ear­lier in the year. While new busi­ness leads across over 1000 small to medium busi­ness web­sites on the Web Ge­nius plat­form were down 25 per cent dur­ing this pe­riod, mar­ket­ing emails and e-newslet­ter­swere up 77 per cent.

But you can’t wait for a cri­sis to start build­ing your email

mar­ket­ing ca­pa­bil­ity.

To reap the ben­e­fits of in­creased brand recog­ni­tion, re­fer­rals and re­peat busi­ness you need to es­tab­lish a reg­u­lar con­tact sched­ule.

One Kiwi com­pany that has been in reg­u­lar email con­tact with its cus­tomer base for nearly two decades is na­tional sports footwear and ap­parel re­tailer Shoe Clinic.

Shoe Clinic was an early adopter of email mar­ket­ing in the early 2000s and has used the tac­tic suc­cess­fully ever since. Email com­mu­ni­ca­tion is a cru­cial el­e­ment of the com­pany’s cus­tomer loy­alty pro­gramme, al­low­ing an on­go­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nel to be opened up with the vast ma­jor­ity of in-store pur­chasers.

Shoe Clinic direc­tor Hamish French says that as well as keep­ing the brand in front of cus­tomers, email mar­ket­ing is es­pe­cially ef­fec­tive when the com­pany’s 19 stores around the coun­try run pro­mo­tions.

‘‘When­ev­erwe send a mar­ket­ing email out to our data­base, the in­crease in store traffic and sales is very, very ap­par­ent right across the coun­try,’’ says French.

‘‘And be­cause we have a di­rect chan­nel to our ex­ist­ing cus­tomers we are able to com­mu­ni­cate our key mes­sages when­ever we need to.’’

French says thiswas es­pe­cially ben­e­fi­cial over lock­down, once Shoe Clin­icwas ap­proved as an es­sen­tial busi­ness.

‘‘Over lock­down many Ki­wis were get­ting out there run­ning and walk­ing, so be­ing able to re­mind them by email they could pur­chase shoes on­line was very valu­able – both for us and for our cus­tomers.’’

While there is no ques­tion about the ben­e­fits of email mar­ket­ing, the amount of work in­volved can present a bar­rier for time-strapped small to medium busi­nesses.

It takes time and fo­cus to cre­ate the use­ful content re­quired, as well as man­age the data­base and make sure ev­ery­thing com­plies with an­ti­spam laws.

The way around this po­ten­tial ob­sta­cle is au­to­ma­tion. Us­ing modern email­mar­ket­ing soft­ware you can cre­ate a se­ries of email news­let­ters based around the main prod­uct and ser­vice themes of your busi­ness and set these up to go out au­to­mat­i­cally at reg­u­lar in­ter­vals.

These news­let­ter edi­tions should mainly pro­vide valu­able, use­ful, orig­i­nal content for your cus­tomers but can also in­clude calls-to-ac­tion, such as prod­uct of­fers, links toweb­site content and in­cen­tives to re­fer friends.

 ??  ?? While there is no ques­tion about the ben­e­fits of email mar­ket­ing, the amount of work in­volved can present a bar­rier for time-strapped small to medium busi­nesses.
While there is no ques­tion about the ben­e­fits of email mar­ket­ing, the amount of work in­volved can present a bar­rier for time-strapped small to medium busi­nesses.

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