n Include your toll-free number. Your toll-free number (if you have one) should be prominently featured in every e-mail. I just completed a not-so-scientific survey of my favorite direct marketers’ e-mails in my inbox. Many don’t include their phone number; some do, but it’s in small type buried at the bottom of the e-mail; and only a few have it front and center. One great example is The Wine Enthusiast. Its toll-free number is featured in the upper right hand corner of every
Why is this important? I’ve seen results from studies in which marketers created a separate toll-free number to track e-mail orders, and up to 20 percent of revenues were generated via the phone. That’s a hefty percentage. Some of your customers and prospects still prefer that personal touch, particularly if they have a question about your product or service.
An additional point for those of you who may have a toll-free number that doesn’t begin with 800: Not everyone realizes that other phone exchanges are toll-free. In these cases, it’s a good idea to point out that there is no charge to call.
n Support direct mail on the Web and with e-mail. For example, Brooks Brothers has a great strategy in place to support direct mail. If its catalog is slated to arrive on a Monday, its Wednesday e-mail features the catalog cover—and its Web site homepage also features the catalog.
To extend the shelf life of its catalog, the following week’s e-mail might feature an image from the back cover of the catalog followed by an image from one of its spreads.
n Use e-mail to promote retail locations. The simplest way to do this is to include a store locator feature in e-mails that link to the Web site for information, maps and in-store events.