Three components that lead to e-mail success

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Measurement, relevance and integration remain the three keys to e-mail campaign success. Performing this kind of “MRI” allows you to examine your marketing effectiveness.

Quantifying the incremental production of a campaign should be the first step any company takes toward evaluating the effectiveness of its marketing mix. I've seen cases where as much as 20% of marketing expenses did not meet expected ROI hurdles. Dollars marked for such expenses can be re-allocated or eliminated altogether.

Implementing appropriate direct channel control groups, coupled with hold out regions in media, radio and TV can also effectively measure incremental production. This allows companies to accurately evaluate the impact of integrated campaigns upon their ROI. It's important to note that many conversions from e-mail campaigns do not click through the actual e-mail, but come through the call center or from a separate Web visit.


It not only improves response rates; it enhances the brand by eliminating the perception of spam. Relevant campaigns involve some type of “triggered” action by the customer.

I've seen up to five times the response rate from “triggers,” even when compared to highly targeted campaigns that have been segmented with a model. For example, financial services companies receive information about consumers when they quote, apply, borrow, pay and invest on their accounts. Examining the subsequent transactions that occur when customers perform these triggers can yield insights that identify additional opportunities.

Requesting “pay off” balances for a loan might lead to additional disposable income for investing or for a purchase, such as a new car. With out-of-stock situations, offering substitutions for a discount or providing an incentive for waiting on the re-stocking of the original item can capture up to 50% of potential lost sales.


A significant portion of e-mail acquisition does not come directly from the e-mail itself. Leveraging a campaign's visibility in call center interactions can lead to easy cross-sells, as the call center is an ideal source for capturing and storing the “triggers” in conversations with the customer. These triggers can then be used to populate banners and messaging on your Web site when these customers visit. Integrating customized landing pages that better transition the e-mail can yield double the conversions over merely linking to existing pages.

Measurement, relevance and integration enhance perceptions of your brand. Using them as basic components of your effort can only improve the performance of your e-mail campaign.

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