3 Birthday Wishes for Marketers
It's my birthday and, if you're reading this on May 19, 2015, my employer and I are giving me the present of a day off of work. I'm giving you the present of loyalty program tips you can use to retain your customers.
After all, you probably have their birthday information in your database. Experian says 76 percent of marketers collect birth dates, but only 35 percent send out "Happy Birthday" emails. It's a shame, because the research shows: "Birthday emails enjoy three times the transaction rate of regular, promotional mailings (.09 percent compared to .03 percent, respectively)."
Combing through my email, I have an offer for a free dessert from Ted's Montana Grill or a free food item, drink or 15 percent off of online merchandise from Starbucks. That's in both my work and email inboxes. Plus, there's nothing in my social folders. I even searched in spam in the digital channels. Then my work and home physical mailboxes are empty of these marketing messages. (Full disclosure: I believe I ended up on Ted's list while researching the case study listed as related content.)
I'm not fishing for well-wishes here — I'm simply illustrating a lost opportunity that I and many other loyal customers represent.
Some marketers are known for their birthday wishes. Years ago when she was a Glamour editor, Tracey Lomrantz Lester told of Anthropologie's birthday discount for customers during one of her many television appearances. On Monday, Anthropologie's site says it still offers the discount and Lester's since become the senior editorial director at Gilt.com.
Marketing guru Heidi Cohen provides the following birthday marketing tips on her blog, with a special entry for President Barack Obama's 50th birthday in 2011:
- Give Customers Coupons/Discounts. In direct mail, dress them up like birthday cards. Marketers can also use other options, like email, SMS, social media and print ads.
- Create an Invite-Only Event in Their Honor. An online meeting, or a cake-filled gathering will work.
- Donate to Charity in Their Honor. "Customers like businesses that support charities, so integrate your birthday promotions with a charity that's related to your business," Cohen suggests.
What other birthday-related marketing tips should I have listed?
Please respond in the comments section below.