I heard the buzz recently about Fashion and You and decided to join after I got an invite via Vogue India newsletter advertisement. Fashion and You claims to be a shopping club which is by invitation only, a concept similar to Cocosa in the UK. The brands Fashion and You sells online have a high aspiration tag. It’s early days for this concept to take hold in India but it’s interesting and these are interesting times that we live in. Here are my thoughts on their email marketing in India. Read the rest of this entry »
I have mentioned before about giving your readers the option of controlling the frequency of emails. This is good for 2 reasons:
- If readers know when they can expect an email they are less likely to hit delete or spam button (even if they have subscribed to your emails), or unsubscribe
- It helps you plan your campaigns and their content better and brings in email schedule discipline
Ideally it would be great if your CRM system talks to your email marketing system and you can configure your recipients based on their daily, weekly or monthly, quarterly frequency requests. This might involve some database jugglery to fine tune your audience.
However email frequency by itself has no meaning. What it also means is that the content of your weekly, monthly, quarterly emails needs to be different. So if you are one of the companies that have one size fits all model, here is a simple way you could change that and at the same time give your readers the option they sorely need.
If you send daily emails to your list, simply creating a weekly summary of the top stories and a monthly “best of the month” will give you added flexibility.
On your sign up form you can then give these options to your readers. Assuming that you can add /import this “frequency” field to your email marketing system (almost every vendor should be able to do this) you can then send the weekly campaign to only those readers who had selected this field. This is a simple example. You could have last minute offers, once in a blue moon special deal with partners, or a something newsworthy that you might want to communicate. This involves a review of all your content, categorizing it and putting in place a discipline of which type of email falls into what category.
This is not difficult to do; the real question is however is how involved are your readers to give you this level of engagement? That is the stuff of building brand loyalty. Email marketing can be a great tool to give you insight into how engaged are your readers.
I like to shop at Metro Shoes and when their store opened in my home town I was thrilled (shoes and women, what can you expect?). I found their website and quite liked it; It’s got a pleasing design, it’s simple to explore and has lotsa white space. When I signed up for their newsletter I got a nice welcome email. Here is a quick glance of all the good things about their emails (and some suggested improvements).
Read the rest of this entry »
This is often a hotly debated question. How many emails are too many? Should you send a newsletter on some handy tips daily? Would a fortnightly email better serve your purpose? Will readers get tired if you send a newsletter a week? The answer to that question is, you guessed it, it depends. If you are an online news aggregator / publisher then perhaps a daily news in the inbox makes sense to your readers, a kind of quick scan of the top stories. If it is a weekly magazine an email giving a snapshot of what’s in the magazine every week makes sense, a fashion house could send a monthly email on the trends in fashion and so on. So it really depends on what your readers want. What should be one of the goals of your email marketing team is that at some point in your email marketing maturity level, you should give the option to your readers to select the frequency of the emails.
Here is an example of an automated process going totally wrong on the frequency of the emails. www.moneycontrol.com has excellent financial portfolio monitoring services. I happen to be their subscriber but of late my visits to the site have dwindled. Usually I would get a daily email with a subject line that informed me if my portfolio was up or down and by how many Rupees e.g “Your portfolio is down by Rs. 322”. Now in a bid to lure me back they want to remind me that I have not been tracking my portfolio. This is the result:
A daily portfolio tracker email may have made sense but, without that this automated process has simply made me hit the trash button. A good solution would be to reduce the number of emails, save on the email delivery costs and give a much better content packed email once a week perhaps. However doing this involves a lot of back-end processes. It may not be rocket science, but putting a layer of intelligence above the scheduled task that sends out pre-formatted emails to the database of portfolio holders requires some efforts. I for one am convinced that the benefits far outweigh the costs. MoneyControl is one of the very few websites that give an option of subscribing to various types of emails.
One step further, with customized frequency of emails, and this service might go from good to great.
An example of deliberate low frequency emails, a once-in-two-months pace is followed by Tata Mutual Fund e-Intellect newsletter. It usually discusses and simplifies an economic issue. There are many more newsletters that fall in between such frequencies. Indianmoney.com and Equitymaster are some of the examples of weekly email newsletters.
There is no one right answer to how frequently you should send emails. If you do not have a system of asking the readers for their preference of frequency, you can at least be consistent in your timing but be sure not to dump your email everyday in their inbox.