Next Sell Customer Retention Effort Wins Repeat Business for SmartBargains

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This year's eTail award for best e-mail marketing went to SmartBargains.com for exhibiting the most innovative use of e-mail marketing in its Next Sell Customer Retention campaign.

The online discount retailer worked with e-mail services provider E-Dialog,  Boston, to create a campaign that is directed at first time buyers.

"The initiative was to go in and send something much more targeted," said Dan Schutzman, vice president of direct marketing for SmartBargains.com, Boston . "The e-mail has less items than our normal weekly e-mail, but it has had a better response rate because the items are personalized to the shopper."

The Next Sell Customer Retention program is an automated series of messages sent to recent buyers. The first is triggered about 10 days after a purchase. The program delivers relevant and complementary product recommendations based on the customer's latest purchase and near real-time inventory monitoring.

The program has seen a 50 percent increase in revenue-per-recipient and a high rate of future purchases.

SmartBargains was able to send such targeted messages by harnessing the E-Dialog analytics and reporting system that measures who is shopping and how they are doing it. This was followed with the platform's time triggered e-mail ability.

"Not only is sending relevant information important, but sending it in a timely manner after purchase is key," Mr. Schutzman said.

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