Email Experience Council Declares Start of Holiday Email Marketing Season; Releases 'Roadmap' for Email Campaigns
August 29, 2007 — The Email Experience Council (EEC), the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) vertical working group that’s focused on the email marketing industry, today announced that the holiday email marketing season for retailers has begun. Along with the announcement, the EEC released “Ring-Cha-Ching, Hear Them Ring: The Guide to Gearing Up for the Holiday Email Season,” a 15-page report that discusses retail email marketing trends and practices from the past holiday season.
According to DMA Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Ramesh A. Lakshmi-Ratan, PhD, “The holiday selling season is absolutely vital to the profitability of most retailers and other business-to-consumer marketers, and companies’ Web sites and email marketing are playing increasingly vital roles in reaching holiday sales goals.”
Dr. Ratan noted a DMA survey conducted last December found that 21.9 percent of those marketers surveyed had experienced an increase in their 2006 Cyber Monday sales compared to the same post-Thanksgiving Monday in 2005. “Many of those sales were the result of commercial emails,” he added.
“Retailers rely on email to drive a significant amount of sales as well as traffic to their stores. However, what I like best about this new EEC report is the relevance it brings to other verticals. This report should be seen as a best practices guide for anyone sending emails during the third and fourth quarters,” said Jeanniey Mullen, EEC founder and executive chair. Mullen is also a senior partner and executive director for email and digital dialogue services at OgilvyOne worldwide.
“Long before retailers hang any wreaths or tinsel in their stores, they send out emails promoting their Christmas deals to their subscribers — lots of emails!” said Chad White, the EEC's director of retail insights and editor-at-large, founder of RetailEmail.Blogspot, and the guide’s author. “Last year we tracked more than 2,000 emails from nearly 100 top online retailers during the fourth quarter and released daily reports on strategies, tactics, and trends via RetailEmail.Blogspot. Based on those reports, the EEC has produced this helpful roadmap to the email holiday season so retailers and other companies can better formulate their campaigns this year.”
“The EEC’s ‘Guide to Gearing Up for the Holiday Email Season’ provides a wealth of actionable ideas for email marketers of all size and experience levels,” says Robb Walters, Costco Wholesale Corp.’s ecommerce director. “Presented in an easily digestible format, it offers specific ideas, examples, and results from last years’ holiday campaigns by some of the largest retailers in the online space. By leveraging the best practices it suggests, any business can easily improve its fourth-quarter results. It is a must-read guide for any email strategist, and I highly recommend it.”
Here are some of the metrics and advice from the guide, which is available in the EEC’s Whitepaper Room:
· The guide includes discussions and examples of the “12 Phases of Christmas,” the 12 strategies that retailers use at different points in the holiday season. Those strategies include promoting e-gift cards and “buy online, pick up in store” services.
· Last year major online retailers increased their email volume by 47 percent on average during the holiday season.
· Seven of the eight biggest retail email volume days of the year occurred in the weeks before Christmas last year. Those days included Cyber Monday (November 27) and all three “Echo Mondays” (December 4, 11 and 18) — the Mondays that follow Cyber Monday. Interestingly, two of the three Echo Mondays were bigger email days than Cyber Monday, which is billed as the biggest online sales day of the year.
· Email volume should peak in the second week of December this year.
· Twenty-nine percent of major retailers promoted e-gift cards in their emails during the eight days ending Christmas Day.
· Just as some online and multichannel retailers promote Thanksgiving Day sales to get a leg up on offline competitors whose stores are closed on that day, some will also begin their post-holiday sales on Christmas Day and promote them in their email campaigns.
The guide can be purchased for $99 by visiting the EEC’s Whitepaper Room at http://www.emailexperience.org/Login-Whitepaper-Room. EEC members may obtain the report at a discounted rate.
About the Email Experience Council
The Email Experience Council (EEC) (www.emailexperience.org), the Direct Marketing Association’s vertical working group that is focused on the email marketing industry, is a global professional organization striving to enhance the image of email marketing and communications, while celebrating and advocating its importance in business, and its ROI value. The EEC is committed to regularly conducting a broad series of email initiatives for a variety of organizations that highlight the positive impact and importance of email as a marketing tool, communications vehicle, and branding device. Additionally, EEC members are setting the standards for email through Marketing Roundtables. The EEC members are representatives of other trade organizations, agencies, advertisers, technology partners, clients, and companies focused on the potential of email marketing via mobile and other digital devices.
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