Anne Holland

Inspiration from Best Valentine's Day Marketing Test (Yes, B-to-B Can Use This Idea, Too)

Just before last Valentine’s Day, marketers at Idea Art, an
ecommerce site run by a small family owned printing firm in the South, sent an email blast to their list of 72,000 opt-ins. The offer: beautifully designed papers with which one could create homemade valentines.

Results were OK. But only just OK. Everyone blamed holiday email clutter. How could they expect a fabulous response rate with so many competing offers hitting recipients’ inboxes?

Most marketers would have heaved a sigh and moved on to their next campaign. But, the Idea Art team were too stubborn. Valentine’s Day is one of their biggest holidays. They were determined to make email work harder.

So, they whipped out a follow-up email before Feb 14. The creative was similar although not identical. The big change was the list. Instead of sending to their whole file, they sent only to the people who had opened and clicked on the last campaign … but not purchased.

Results were so outstanding that the campaign won a MarketingSherpa Award for Best Email Test of 2006. (I’ve popped links below with Idea Art’s creative samples and how you can enter this year’s Awards.)

I’m focusing on this campaign in my blog today not just because this week is Valentine’s Day, nor because this Friday is the deadline to enter this year’s Email Awards. Those two items are serendipitous.

Actually, my inspiration is an email Sherpa received last week from Michael Goldstein, who is Director Internet Subscriptions at PRIMEDIA Enthusiast Media. Turns out he’s running campaigns nearly identical to Idea Art’s (although to a completely different audience). The results are outstanding. Here’s what he told Sherpa:

“Some rough stats for you on our remail campaigns:

1. Remail campaigns (we’ve only done about 6 thus far) range from 12%-50% added production to the overall campaign (mitigated by premiums and price tests vs. previous campaigns without)

2. Open rates on remails are 4-5x higher than the original
campaign (which really makes sense since we’re remailing the people who either opened or clicked the first time around)

3. CTR is 2-3x higher than original campaign (for the same reason as above)

3. Unsub rates on remails are 30%-40% lower than the original blast

I should note that remails on a campaign are by default a much smaller select since we’re only remailing those who open or open and click. Still, if you have the means to do it with your email vendor, it’s a no-brainer.”

Thanks, Michael, for sharing your results with Sherpa readers! This indicates to me at least that nearly every emailer — including B-to-B marketers — should figure out how they can test the re-email idea.

In the meantime, here are those two links I promised you:

Creative sample and details from Idea Art’s test:

http://www.marketingsherpa.com/emaw2006/37.html

How to enter this year’s Sherpa Email Awards:

http://emailawards.marketingsherpa.com/

(Entry deadline is this Friday, Feb. 16th)

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