Forbes.com, HP drive online courses through e-mail

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Forbes.com and Hewlett-Packard's used e-mail to promote a joint, online business Learning Center and saw course enrollments increase by 1,537 percent.

Following the launch of the program, Forbes.com implemented a comprehensive e-mail marketing campaign powered by Silverpop. Upon completing a Learning Center course, students receive a survey to help improve course offerings. They also gathered feedback regarding satisfaction levels and found that 23 percent of survey respondents reported a recent HP purchase, and 50 percent said they were more likely to make a purchase following their Business Learning Center course.

"This is an excellent example of full life cycle marketing," said Elaine O'Gorman vice president of strategy at Silverpop, Atlanta. "They really took it the extra mile with not only targeted messages, but also used a number of transactional cross sell marketing."

The online business learning center was developed to provide online content to members in order to drive brand loyalty and e-commerce revenues, the Business Learning Center offers courses, white papers, how-to guides and tech tips designed to strengthen users' skills in such areas as small business management, personal finance and technology.

In addition, 90 percent of survey respondents said they would enroll in future courses, while 84 percent would recommend the Business Learning Center to a friend.

Forbes.com sent two e-mails - the first was a dedicated e-mail to existing Forbes.com members and others inviting them to explore the Business Learning Center. Those registering received an enrollment confirmation e-mail providing a personalized welcome message, links to detailed course descriptions, enrollment procedures and FAQ. Then, those who enrolled were sent an additional e-mail offering them the chance to enter a sweepstakes to win HP notebooks, pocket PCs and laser printers.

"I love to see partnerships between two brands like these that have a value offer to each other's customer base," Ms. O'Gorman said. "This is a good example of trust transfer, or making an introduction from one brand and easing that transition to the next. List buying can be tricky, but this is an example of how it can be done right."

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