Florist's Traffic Blooms from Mailer

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KaBloom Ltd., a retailer and e-tailer of fresh flowers and plants, saw a response rate of 3 percent to 3.5 percent on a direct mail campaign it tested earlier this month.


The privately held company -- whose last reported earnings in 1999 were $2.5 million -- is relatively new to direct mail, but KaBloom intends to use the drop to determine whether direct mail will have a place in its marketing mix in the future.


"We're using [this mail piece] as a test" for all KaBloom stores, said Marty Kozar, vice president of marketing at KaBloom, Woburn, MA. "We were happy with the results we got. We're still gleaning the results and analyzing them further, but there's definitely potential that we could be doing further drops."


The 9-inch-by-6-inch postcard hit roughly 8,500 mailboxes in late May. It offered recipients a dozen free roses with the purchase of $10 or more at the open house of the company's 6-month-old Brighton, MA, store June 1 and 2. Recipients were mostly women age 25 to 54 whose annual income is $50,000 or more. The postcard beckoned recipients to "Eat! Drink! Learn how to arrange beautiful bouquets," and it reminded them to enter the store's Flowers-For-A-Year give away.


The Brighton store is the 33rd KaBloom shop in the greater Boston area, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Cape Cod in Massachusetts.


Eighty percent of the mailers were sent to names on rented lists, while the remainder were mailed to members of KaBloom's loyalty program. Marketing services firm Orsatti and Partners, Boston, designed the piece and handled list brokerage.


The mail piece was the only promotion, other than in-store signage, used to alert the community about the party.


KaBloom, which has had a commerce-enabled Web site, www.kabloom.com, since the company's inception, advertises in The Boston Globe and on the radio. It also began using TV ads this year.


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