In the old days - before the internet - we sent advertisements by mail and we called it Direct Marketing. Now it is called e-mail marketing because the advertisements are sent out as e-mail. Email marketing is therefore structured broadcasting of news,
offers, tips and tricks in email form.
In the old days, advertisements lived until the paper was thrown in the bin, today an advertisement can live forever online - in fact, a three-year-old advertisement can continue to gain new customers!
The emails that are sent out can be plain text - that is, just like when we write an e-mail in our email system - or they can be what are called html e-mails, which are emails with pictures, graphics and links. Each broadcast is called a campaign. Email marketing campaigns can be divided into 3 steps:
The message in the campaign needs to be edited and the layout needs to be decided - so should it be a text email or an html email?
In this blog article you can read more about content and the use of links to generate traffic to the website (seo) - so how do you get the big and long-term benefits of email marketing?
Who will receive the campaign? all created customers or must there be a selection?
The actual broadcast of the campaign to the recipients' email address.
Email marketing can be done manually via one's email client, but it is very time consuming and therefore over the last 10 years hundreds of ESP (Email Service Provider) platforms have been developed. Unfortunately, most require IT skills, which few in the SME segment have. The good and resource-saving thing about ESP platforms is that all three steps are set
in system and automated to some extent.
Now I would like to mention a case story from November 2020 - that is, while much was still closed under Corona. I was given the task of coming up with a draft of a digital strategy for a larger car dealership in Denmark, and email marketing was one of the elements in my draft. The IT manager denied they could handle email marketing to begin with and thought it was too time consuming for them. Here is the story of what email marketing can do in a car dealership:
A car shop with car sales and workshop has customers in the database who have bought the car and afterwards get it serviced but also customers who only use the workshop and customers who buy a car once due to a good offer. In addition, a car dealership receives a lot of email inquiries from potential customers who ask questions or ask for an exchange price.
"Customers" can be divided into
A. customers who have bought the car and have it serviced at the workshop,
B. customers who only have the car serviced at the workshop,
C. customers who have bought a car and
D. potential customers from leads.
In the car dealership, as in all other companies, you have data on customers who, on closer inspection, have not shopped for a long time. They may be lost in a special context or they may be lost because the contact is not cared for / maintained. The latter has happened to many companies in all industries under Corona.
My draft Online strategy for the car business had 4 objectives that e-mail marketing should solve:
1. ALL purchasing customers must be retained as far as possible.
2. Lost customers should be recovered if possible.
3. Automated follow-up must convert 50% of the inquiries from potential customers (leads) - ie get them to act.
4. More customers must subscribe to service and wheel change.
The car dealership had 2,754 registered customers with e-mail addresses and they could be divided into:
Group 1: customers who have bought a car and currently use the workshop for service. = 1,112
Group 2: customers who have bought a car but do not use the workshop. = 788
Group 3: customers who currently use the workshop. = 488
Group 4: new potential and lost customers. = 366
The following email campaigns are planned to be defined:
I. One-time campaign with an invitation to resume the collaboration and some really good offers. Sent to group 4 once. The purpose is the achievement of objective 2.
II. 4 annual newsletters with info, tips, tricks and offers on cars and services. Sent to everyone in the groups. The purpose is to achieve objectives 1 and 4.
III. 2 annual invitations for wheel change with discount which only applies to a certain period. Sent to all in groups 1, 2 and 3. The purpose is the fulfillment of objectives 1 and 4.
IV. 2 annual invitations to the season check - one around holiday check of the car before summer vacation and the other before the frost sets in. Sent to all in groups 1,2 and 3. The purpose is the fulfillment of objectives 1 and 4.
V. Series of four follow-up emails which are sent to group 4 subjects at 14-day intervals, i.e. up to two months after they have been contacted for the first time.
Statistically, one knows that the response is 1-5% so when 366 lost customers receive an email, between 4 and 18 of them will interact.
If we imagine that the car dealership receives 1000 inquiries a year from potential car buyers, then the follow-up campaign will
convert between 10 and 100 to paying customers.
And now it becomes visible why an ESP platform is needed. In the car dealership, we are talking about four annual news emails and four annual invitations, which must be sent to at least 2,388 recipients, i.e. almost 20,000 emails in total and in addition approx. 4000 follow-up emails!
I hope you now understand what email marketing can do and that you can relate the potential to your own business?