Our E-mail Addiction - 2
The bottom line was selling books, but ultimately we were in the business of acquiring customers who wouldn't only buy the series we were selling at the time, but other stuff as well.
Acquire a customer and you gain share of market; the next task was to increase share of wallet.
E-commerce is no different. Do you want to sell stuff or acquire loyal customers? If you're a charity, do you want a quick gift or a loyal donor who'll give and give and give over the long haul?
Old Marketing and New--Similarities
The similarities between marketing by snail mail (or off-the-page advertising) and e-commerce are many. The old Ed Mayer formula for success--40% lists, 40% offer and 20% everything else--probably holds for electronic media.
Other rules also apply:
* "The prospect doesn't give a damn about you, your company or your product," said Seattle guru Bob Hacker. "All that matters is: 'What's in it for me?'"
* Put another way: "Always listen to WII-FM."
These rules are inviolate regardless of the medium. The prospect immediately must see and feel benefits--as opposed to being inundated with product features--or you'll be punished by the oblivion mouse click.
Old Marketing and New--the Big Difference
In the old days of snail-mail ordering, huge delays--weeks and weeks--existed between sales message, order, delivery and payment.
* In e-commerce, the action can be instantaneous. E-mail in inbox ... click ... sales message ... click ... order ... click ... credit card info ... click. Done. If the product or service is delivered by e-mail (special report, Bob Woodward book to your Kindle, downloaded software program, etc.) there's instant gratification. If not, just spend a few bucks extra to get the product the next day.
The Question That Determines Format
Many young Turks who've come into online marketing without the benefit of real-world marketing experience regard the number of e-mail addresses to be so huge and the cost to reach them so cheap that they, in effect, throw eggs against the wall and hope some of them stick.
The result is ineptitude and, in some cases, out-and-out spam. Spam gums up inboxes and generates ill will, but also garners enough response to let them e-mail another day.