13 Multichannel Marketing Tactics (of 35) to Improve E-Marketing Profitability Tomorrow
Strategy No. 11: Know Email Productivity
"Almost every company I work with either significantly overstates or significantly understates email marketing productivity," because the metrics used to track email success — open, clickthrough and conversion rates — often don't reflect shopper reality, Hillstrom said. According to Hillstrom, customers often receive an email, see it in Outlook and visit the website later to buy something.
To accurately assess email's impact, Hillstrom advocates using email mail/holdout tests to measure the medium's true incremental value "beyond the click."
Strategy No. 12: Merchandise + Email
"Segment your housefile into groups of customers based on merchandise preference," Hillstrom advises. "Then develop an email strategy with customized panels allowing variable merchandise presentation. Or at least have multiple versions of email campaigns targeted to customers with specific merchandise preferences."
Hillstrom said this effort can increase results by 20 percent or more.
Strategy No. 15: Investigate Other Business Models
Bubbleroom.se is a Swedish website that doesn't engage in any traditional marketing. Instead it has "six product managers read 2,000 blogs a day," according to Hillstrom. "The company identifies [fashion] trends, designs [and sources] products [based on them] and has them delivered from China in two weeks! Thirteen thousand paid bloggers earn 8 percent of their orders if customers click through their blog, which are syndicated on the Bubbleroom website. Thirty percent month-over-month growth."
This sort of nontraditional business model is something Hillstrom feels all marketers need to be aware of. "There are other ways to get customers to engage and shop."
Strategy No. 16: Merchandise Paths
"Know the paths customers take as they move from a first to second to third purchase," said Hillstrom. He's found that new customers tend to buy existing products they know they can trust, while repeat customers tend to buy new products. In other words, each customer's purchase habits evolve over their lifetime. Your contact strategies should evolve accordingly.
Strategy No. 18: The iPad
"Own an iPad? Seriously. Go buy one, now," said Hillstrom. "Has there ever been a device more tailor-made for a digital catalog? You flip pages with your index finger, tap an item you want and execute a one-click purchase, potentially without ever visiting a traditional website. The iPad can be a mobile mailbox" for the delivery of marketing materials.
Strategy No. 20: Marketing = Humans
"In every multichannel forensics project I’ve worked on, customers who have actual contact with live human beings have increased long-term value over self-serve online customers," said Hillstrom, who considered this the third most important message in his 35 strategies. "While it might be expensive, do anything possible to make your business warm (i.e., human) instead of cold, templatized and algorithmic."
Strategy No. 24: Map the Future
"Thoroughly understand how customers are likely to evolve over the next five years, and use this behavior to reduce marketing expense among segments," said Hillstrom, noting that this has been his most popular client project in 2010.
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