SOURCE: Bronto Software

August 07, 2008 10:42 ET

As Economic Concerns Grow, Retail Marketers Must Act Now to Plan Successful Holiday Email Marketing Campaigns

Bronto Software Urges Retail Marketers to Establish Trust With Customers, Test Campaigns and Re-Mail to Maximize Revenue From Email Marketing

DURHAM, NC--(Marketwire - August 7, 2008) - Today, Bronto Software released holiday planning advice to help retailers maximize holiday revenue with email marketing campaigns despite the current economic situation in the United States. With the holiday season fast approaching and increasing revenues top of mind, Bronto Software executives urge retail marketers to act now and develop email marketing plans this summer. According to Bronto Software, establishing trust with customers, testing campaigns and re-mailing are key to cutting through the competitive noise and increasing ROI during the holidays.

Today's economy, gas prices and other factors are expected to contribute to more online shopping this holiday season than ever before. A recent New York Times article points to decreasing in-store sales and increasing online sales for major retailers, including Gap, Victoria's Secret and J. C. Penney. Considering that commercial email volume increases dramatically between October and December, Bronto Software advises that marketers establish trust with their customer base now, and secondly, deliver extremely relevant and useful email offers in order to engage with this increased online audience.

According to a 2007 report from the Email Sender and Provider Coalition (ESPC), 75 percent of consumers based their decision to open or delete a message on the "from" and "subject" lines. With trust a key factor in getting marketing messages noticed, clicked on and read, Bronto Software advises retailers to pay attention to frequency and permission best practices.

"The opportunities to reach and engage shoppers online are more promising this holiday season than ever before," said Susan Wall, director of marketing for Bronto Software. "However, with the increase in online shoppers this holiday season, it's important to remember that drastically increasing the frequency of email marketing messages isn't necessarily recommended, since it can lead to broken trust or reduced relevance. Retail marketers should keep in mind that they should probably re-establish trust and permission if longer than one month's time has passed between marketing messages."

As is true for any time of year, testing email campaigns helps marketers identify the messages, subject lines, layouts, timing and other factors that affect campaign performance and customer satisfaction. With numerous opportunities to engage with consumers through email, the holidays are the perfect time to gain valuable insight into customer preferences that can carry retailers through New Year's and beyond.

Re-Mailing = Relevance and Revenue for Baby Supermall

To increase the relevance of campaigns, Bronto Software urges retail marketers to take advantage of email tactics such as re-mailing, triggered messaging and campaign optimization. Re-mailing gives senders a "second chance" to reach their customers by automating slightly tweaked versions of the original offers, sent only to those recipients who did not open the first time. One of Bronto Software's retail clients, Baby Supermall, recently achieved a 150 percent increase in revenue through re-mailing, and on average their re-mails generate up to 50 percent of the revenue that was generated from the initial email.

"Re-mailing with the assistance of Bronto Software will certainly be incorporated into our holiday email marketing campaigns for 2008," said David Suby, vice president of IT for Baby Supermall LLC. "It allows us to exercise control over the factors that lead to email messages not being opened and to hit our customers with the right message at the right time."

For more tips on holiday email campaign planning, visit: http://bronto.com/knowledge/whitepapers

About Bronto Software

Bronto Software provides successful email solutions to more than 750 online retailers, interactive agencies and marketing departments around the world including Trek Bicycle, Johnson & Johnson, Duke University, Shopatron, Discount Dance and Blooms Today.

Bronto Software offers extensive reporting, unparalleled deliverability through a partnership with Return Path and seamless integration with other online channels. Founded in 2002, Bronto Software remains dedicated to helping its customers become better email marketers by delivering proactive customer support and educating clients on email marketing best practices, standards and tactics for success. For more information, please visit http://bronto.com.

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