Email Marketing Plan of Attack to Increase Holiday Sales
Many retailers are worried about the dire state of the economy and are forecasting meager holiday sales. But don’t let their doom and gloom attitudes get you down. You’ve got email marketing on your side!
Here’s a great plan of attack for using email marketing to supplement your sales during the holiday – and beyond.
Focus on growing your list.
Try to capture email addresses at every stage and every location. Get permission from warm leads, prospects, customers, even vendors to add their names and email addresses to your mailing list. Invite your on-line customers to join your opt-in list when they make a purchase.
If you have a brick and mortar location, ask your retail customers for permission to send email. Provide an incentive for joining the list that coordinates email with your brick and mortar customers, such as a 15% off coupon for in-store purchases.
Take advantage of order transactions, such as email receipts, shipping notifications, upsell offers, etc. to invite your customers to join your mailing list.
Look for ways to improve.
Email marketing is not a set-it-and-forget-it activity. Every time you send a campaign, set aside time in the future to review the campaign and measure its performance. Map out possible improvements for the next campaign. And watch for warning flags, such as extremely low open rates, delivery issues to a certain ISP, excessive bounces, etc. These problems need to be addressed immediately.
Watch for list fatigue.
You may be tempted to over-send this holiday season in a desperate attempt to increase insufficient sales. But be careful with this tactic. You’re not the only retailer feeling the strain; as more and more retailers send more and more email messages, it’s easy for your readers to become inundated and stop opening your mail altogether. Keep an eye on your open and click through ratesin addition to your unsubscribe rates.
Help your readers and yourself through joint ventures.
How can you help your readers get all their holiday shopping done? Is there an item or service that piggy-backs on what you already sell? Why not create a few joint venture partnerships with complimentary providers and develop a complete, one-stop shopping area for your busy readers. You can send out partner mailings and messages and make it easier for your customers to purchase the other items you know they’ll be needing.
Most importantly – start NOW.
Don’t wait for the first snowflake to start planning your holiday email marketing. Take time this week and put your plan together. Once the busy shopping season arrives, you won’t have time for graphic design and article writing and being creative. Your competition is already planning their holiday sales campaigns, you better not wait any longer.