But more important than the actual mailing pieces themselves was what we built into the program from a content standpoint. We went to the Yankee Group, a strategic consulting firm in Boston, and worked with it to develop a whitepaper on why these telecommunications companies need to look at the triple play: the value proposition; the business metrics; and what kind of revenue they could look to if they deploy it. It was a third-party objective paper that didn’t sound like we were just hawking to them. The second whitepaper we wrote ourselves, describing where Ciena comes in and how we can help.
TM: What results did you achieve?
JC: The direct mail piece had a 6 percent response, versus the industry standard of 1.5 percent or 1 percent response. The people who responded were at least 50 percent to 60 percent senior executives—CEOs, VPs, senior directors of engineering and operations.
Since this is an integrated program, there were other pieces we did, including webinars and advertising. The response rate on the webinar lists was 20 percent. The second touch e-mail we did with the direct mailer that wasn’t part of the webinar program actually lifted us 2.4 percent.
We reached exactly who we wanted and gained entry into new accounts. We’re driving leads to the sales force now, and they’re totally committed to the process.