Cover Story: HP's Email at Work
This means recipients get four to eight articles a month in their Technology at Work e-newsletters, depending on what's available for the areas they've shown such interest in. And they can change the factors determining that through HP's email preference center.
The emails discussed so far have been designed to increase customer engagement, service and loyalty, while delivering a small amount of promotion. However, HP also uses several kinds of email to overtly direct market to customers and prospects. One such program, an opt-in promotional e-newsletter aimed at small businesses, is headed up by Krisha Andrew, HP's promotional email program manager.
"Krisha [Andrew's] newsletter," explains Nielson, "is really focused on promotions. Just putting the promotion out there and seeing if customers are interested in it, but then doing follow-up targeting if they click on offers."
A few years ago, the promotional small and medium business (SMB) e-newsletter was blasting out five emails a month, and that ran into trouble. "We were basically trying to keep up with the cadence that a competitor was sending out," says Andrew. "So we were sending out five times per month to the full subscriber base. And you know, that was initially OK. But then we found that there was a softening with our metrics … [for example] our clickthrough rates were declining."
In late 2010, this led to a total overhaul of the program. "From a look and feel standpoint, we basically committed to changing up the template, changing up the look and feel, making sure that we weren't pigeon-holing products into certain areas of the template," says Andrew. Instead of letting sales dictate what promotions ran and when, the email marketing team took on "making sure that where it made sense, to add a cross-sell or an accessory … [and] we started to remove a lot of the verbiage."