E-mail Strategies and Tactics Exposed: An Insider’s Look at Exceptional E-mail - This month: Amazon.com
Each month, I will evaluate exceptional e-mail communications and share my thoughts on what makes them great. This column will dissect real e-mail campaigns and highlight the individual components that make them work so well.
In the e-mail I discuss for this column, Amazon.com uses knowledge it has about my past purchases with collaborative filtering. This technique produces personal recommendations by computing the similarity between my preferences as well as others to make timely recommendations to increase my purchasing frequency. As many retailers will tell you, past purchase behavior is the best predictor of future purchases, and the performance of these campaigns nearly always validates that belief.
Amazon.com is a great brand to benchmark. It’s an impressive and powerful program and one that has on many occasions encouraged me to purchase. The graphic below (click here for a larger version) highlights the various winning components of Amazon.com’s effort.
Test personalization. It’s obvious Amazon.com knows a lot about my purchasing behavior and taps into that knowledge to build a highly customized and relevant communication stream. But the communication fails to use my name and lacks basic personalization in the greeting.