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    Thursday, June 12, 2008

    Five Questions to Ask During Your Mid-Year E-mail Review

    This is a quick summary (with some of my own thoughts thrown in) of an article of the same name by Karen Gedney. Karen's article was originally posted on The ClickZ Network, June 11, 2008.

    Review your e-mail marketing schemes with your clients at least once per year to make their service better and change with the market and technology.

    When doing the review, ask the following five questions:

    1. Is it Time to Switch to Some New Metrics Beyond Open Rates and Click-Throughs? Click through rates (CTRs) are good, but they don’t tell the whole story. Most importantly, they don’t count how many people are completing the form, making the purchase, etc. “My recommendation would be to keep tracking open rates, but start calculating the response rate -- the number of people who took the main action you desire divided by the number of people who received the e-mail message.”

    1. How are Your Landing Pages Performing? If poorly designed, people might not respond due to design clutter, unclear instructions, broken links, etc. Start tracking abandon rates to get a good idea of how many view the landing pages, start the process, but then stop for some reason. Design a good, clean landing page that works then stick with it. Keep good accessibility standards to keep it simple and working.

    1. How can you Increase the Average Purchase Amount and the Number of Purchases? Increase sales by up-selling, cross-selling, and repackaging old products in new ways. In economic downturns, try to increase small purchase and impulse buys. Break down big items to small-ticket items. Offer monthly payment option, etc.

    1. Can you Make Your E-mails More Relevant to Your Primary Market? Meet your best clients IN PERSON. Get to know your demographics. More women than men? More old than young? More of one industry than another? You can’t market well if you don’t know who you’re marketing to!

    1. What Marketing Campaigns are on the Agenda for the Rest of the Year? “Most e-mail marketing departments are reactive. They wait for assignments to come to them--usually last minute. And as a result, the quality and effectiveness of e-mail campaigns suffer. See if you can get a plan for the rest of the year from your marketing colleagues and your internal clients so that you can create new templates now and put new e-mail features such as customer reviews in your e-mail creative.”

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