Ebookers.com to Expand E-mail Newsletter to 10 European Nations

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Ebookers.com, a U.K.-based online travel firm, said last week it has hired e-mail marketing outsourcer Exactis.com, Denver, CO, to help the portal expand its e-mail newsletter campaign across Europe.

In the short term, the deal enables ebookers.com to deliver a standardized, bi-monthly e-mail newsletter for U.K. users who have registered to receive information on special promotions, travel tips and company news. More significantly, the new partnership will allow ebookers.com to develop similar newsletters for its operations in nine other European countries.

"We're in 10 countries with nine different languages that will require 10 completely different newsletters in the local language and with local content. And we're growing at a rate of 3,000 registered users per day," said Jennifer Evans, marketing manager at ebookers.com. "We knew that when we decided to expand in such a way, we would need a system in place to be able to control and manage it and grow with us."

Prior to the partnership, ebookers.com internally delivered just one, text-heavy, e-mail newsletter. The two companies have since developed an HTML version and delivered three newsletters to ebookers.com's U.K. members, which, according to Exactis.com, total around 160,000. Evans would not confirm any of ebookers.com's membership figures but said the company's registered user list for all of Europe was "substantially larger" than the number provided for the U.K.

Evans said the French division will be the first to develop its own bi-monthly e-mail newsletter, with ebookers.com providing the HTML templates, French associates will write the content and Exactis.com will provide delivery services. After that launch is complete, the portal will look to build customized e-mail newsletters for Ireland, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark. With such a broad network, Evans said it was imperative to find an e-mail specialist who could handle a high delivery volume across different time zones.

"We don't have to worry about some customers getting [newsletters] in the morning and some getting it at night," Evans said. "They'll all get them at the same time."

While Exactis.com already operates a London office and counts big name British firms such as the Financial Times and The Economist as clients, the ebookers.com deal gives the e-mail marketers a stronger presence in continental Europe.

"In e-mail marketing, [ebookers.com] is probably pushing the envelop in terms of really sending and marketing to different countries and different languages," said Greg Schneider, vice president of marketing at Exactis.com. "This will help with our visibility and exposure in different parts of Europe."

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