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Susan DeMatei
March 11, 2013 | Email Marketing | Susan DeMatei


Statistics, and Direct Marketing

This week we’ll dive into two of my favorite things and see what kernels of wisdom we can find for ourselves.

Fact.  Spam averaged 74% of all emails sent during Q3 of 2012.
(Source: Commtouch)

By spam I am assuming they mean unsolicited email, not marketing email. But still that is a lot of clutter to dig through your email box.

What can we do? Make our messages short, clear and jump out to the recipient.

Here are some emails from other industries that have stood out to me recently.

I got this after shopping at Talbots. The very next day. And, I bought a pair of pants on sale – nothing to get too excited about. But they made me excited, and feel appreciated.  I also appreciated the nice, clean design.  Just a short note to say Thank You.

With definite points for cuteness, this Zulily email stood out to me as one of the most creative Social Media requests I’ve seen. Nice design, good graphics and very nice calls to action on why I might want to engage with the brand on other platforms.

I’m all for simplicity..but *yawn* on this one. It’s springtime and you’re a garden catalog! You wasted a great opportunity to inspire me with images of your products or flowers or, well, anything.

Woof. Way to set up an automated customer service email to help remind me when I need to do something – and be clean, clever, and respectful of my time in the process. Two paws up.

Fact:The average adult receives 41 lbs. of junk mail a year.


On this one, I’m pretty sure they are talking about all non-personal mail – so that is a wine club invitation, holiday mailing or catalog.  Some of the same rules apply to the real mailbox as your digital one, but here, things like format and paper quality also come into play.
Here are some recent examples that caught my eye.

Can anyone tell me what my discount is? And on what day I need to shop? I’ve read this several times and still don’t get it. The conflicting information and the garish colors and font explosions send this mailer in the circular file for sure.

A magazine (of sorts) from my Realtor with all sorts of decorating tips in it. AAA does this sort of thing as well where they package information for their customers in helpful magazine-like formats like an extended newsletter. In something with a very long shopping cycle like a house or car insurance, it is prudent to stay in front of your customer and these are helpful and clever uses of direct marketing for that objective.

I got this months ago and still have it on my desk. I opened it because it is on thick board (the back is red) with letterpress. While I know they really want me to come in and buy makeup, I love the fact that I got an invitation to do it. (The Sephora VIB program overall is an excellent loyalty program to watch.)

Fact: Only 20% of businesses running mail campaigns track metrics to gauge the performance of their mailers.


(Source: Pitney Bowes)

Above all, track what you do so you can learn from it!  You can bend many rules and try crazy things as long as you do that.
Happy selling!

P.S.  It’s a good thing I comb through all my email and mail for things like this.  I just got an email from Fed Ex in Nigeria that they’re holding 3 million dollars for me as soon as I send them my bank information!  How lucky can you get?


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