Dos and Don'ts of E-Mail Marketing

WHITE PLAINS, NY — With nothing off limits, panelists and attendees at yesterday's fourth annual MeritDirect Business Mailers Co-op & E-mail Marketing Conference Town Hall session covered a range of e-mail topics.

“When you look at publishers, having an e-mail list has become the rule, not the exception,” said Rob Sanchez, senior vice president of list management services at MeritDirect. “Initially, there were a lot of concerns. People were concerned over the privacy of their subscribers, and there was a pretty skittish approach to it. Now, it's the rule.”

Sanchez tackled what things list owners do or don't do involving their e-mail that produces complaints.

“You want to identify the relationship right off the bat,” he said. “You don't want to give the person an opportunity to have to hunt around and find out who it's from. Full disclosure and branding is the most important thing that we see to keep those complaints down.”

He also covered a question regarding text vs. HTML.

“We see on the majority of list rental orders that HTML is the way to go,” he said. “They almost look like print ads so there's a lot of branding.”

Panelist Ruth Stevens added that HTML introduces the ability to look at the interim open rate as well as improve copy and offers.

Reggie Brady, president of Reggie Brady Marketing Solutions, said it's having a major impact both on prospecting and retention. She also addressed whether response rates are dropping for e-mail because of the clutter.

“Yes, it's absolutely dropping,” she said. “BTB is a lot luckier than consumer.”

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