How to Leverage a Data-grown E-mail Campaign
By Steve Trollinger
Many of us are deluged by a proliferation of unsolicited e-mail. It's annoying. Every morning I log in to my e-mail via the Web and delete, without reading, almost every one of the more than 50 messages I received the evening before, then download the messages I do want.
People all over the country duplicate my routine. Like me, they're throwing out perfectly legitimate e-mails from companies like yours, targeted to buyers and information requesters who've opted in to receive them. It's the baby and the bathwater—both are getting tossed.
Not every message gets deleted, mind you, but only those that are most relevant are making the cut. How do you make a message relevant? Look at your data.
Data-grown e-mail campaigns (like data-based mail programs) should address an opportunity or problem in the marketplace. Each piece of this type of campaign—from the offer and tenor of the message to the creative presentation, contact strategy development, target segments and mail dates—should be driven by the data.
So how do we get data-grown e-mail campaigns? Here's how:
1. Collect and organize data.
2. Use the data.
3. Analyze the data.
Collect and Organize Data
Most companies that process online orders request e-mail addresses to confirm the order has been processed or shipped. It's amazing how many companies assume they have permission to market to that customer as well. When collecting data, make sure that an e-mail address intended for solicitation is accompanied by an opt-in for marketing messages.
Once permission is established, make the data accessible. Some order entry systems designed to send out the confirmation e-mail actually will house the address with the order, not the customer. The e-mail address is treated as transaction data rather than customer data, creating problems when it's time to put together an e-mail campaign.