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Email Experience Council Releases Retail Welcome Email Benchmark Study
Retailers’ Welcome Emails Becoming More Promotional and Engaging;
More Focused on Ensuring Future Deliverability
New York, NY, September 27, 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 the release of its second annual Retail Welcome Email Subscription Benchmark Study. The study, which examines the welcome emails of 118 of the top online retailers tracked via RetailEmail.Blogspot, identifies a number of best practices and provides benchmarks in the areas of merchandising, relationship-building, deliverability, and CAN-SPAM compliance.
“This 30-page study dissects the welcome email and examines its various elements, giving email marketers an in-depth look at all of the issues to consider,” said Jeanniey Mullen, EEC founder and a senior partner and executive director for Email and Dialogue Services at OgilvyOne worldwide. “Its findings should be extremely valuable to retailers, service companies, and other B-to-C companies who are looking for new ideas and benchmarks against which to measure their own welcome emails.”
“Welcome emails should set the tone of the program and the expectations of the recipient from an aesthetics and content standpoint,” said Kara Trivunovic, director of strategic services at Premiere Global Services Inc., the sponsor of the EEC study. “It is said that you never get a second chance to make a first impression — and that adage holds true to the email channel as well. Properly executed welcome messages actually create anticipation in the recipient for the next message.”
“Studies have shown that welcome emails have significantly higher open rates than regular emails,” said
“As the second welcome study that we’ve done, this time around we were able make year-over-year comparisons and identify evolving practices," said Chad White, the EEC's director of retail insights, editor-at-large and founder of RetailEmail.Blogspot, and the study’s author. "What we found was that there’s a clear trend toward welcome emails that are more promotional and more engaging, and that more attention is being paid to deliverability.”
The study, which is available in the EEC’s Whitepaper Room, found that 72 percent of major online retailers send out welcome emails, up from 66 percent last year. That’s a strong sign that more retailers are recognizing the value of these critical emails.
This year, for the first time, the EEC also tracked the passage of time between subscriptions and the delivery of welcome emails. While the majority of retailers deliver their welcome emails within 10 minutes of sign-up, 19 percent take more than 24 hours to deliver — with nearly a third of those taking more than a week. In the world of digital communications, that’s an eternity to wait for a welcome email.
Here are some other findings from the EEC’s Retail Welcome Email Benchmark Study:
· 58 percent of welcome emails were CAN-SPAM compliant in terms of including both a mailing address and unsubscribe method, versus 52 percent last year. Not all welcome emails need to be compliant, but considering that these are welcome emails for promotional emails, the EEC believes that they should be.
· 62 percent of welcome emails asked the subscriber to whitelist them by adding an email address to their address book, up from 49 percent last year.
· 79 percent of retailers sent out HTML welcome emails, up from 69 percent last. The remainder sent text-only welcome emails. That said, most of the HTML welcome emails were HTML “lite,” making extensive use of HTML text.
· 75 percent of the welcome emails include the retailer’s brand name in their subject lines, on par with last year. Including branding here helps the subscriber recognize the email as one that they requested.
· 32 percent of welcome emails include a discount, reward or incentive, down from 34 percent last year. That’s in line with the results of the EEC’s Retail Email Subscription Benchmark Study, which saw a move away from incentives during sign-up.
The new EEC study can be purchased for $179 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.
Members of the press may request a free copy of the study by contacting the EEC’s Ali Swerdlow at 212.790.1483 or email@example.com.
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About the Email Experience Council (EEC)
The EEC (www.emailexperience.org), the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) 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.
About Premiere Global Services, Inc.
Premiere Global Services, Inc. is a global provider of on-demand business process improvement solutions that enable businesses to automate and simplify their business processes and to communicate more efficiently and effectively with their constituents. Its Premiere Global Communications Operating System offers hundreds of industry-specific business applications within the following solutions: Conferencing, Desktop Fax, Document Delivery, Accounts Receivable Management, Notifications & Reminders and eMarketing.
About Direct Marketing Association (DMA)
The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) (www.the-dma.org) is the leading global trade association for business and nonprofit organizations that use and support multichannel direct marketing tools and techniques. DMA advocates standards for responsible marketing, promotes relevance as the key to reaching consumers with desirable and appropriate offers, and provides cutting-edge research, education, and networking opportunities to improve results throughout the end-to-end direct marketing process. Founded in 1917, DMA today represents nearly 3,600 companies from dozens of vertical industries in the
In 2006, marketers — commercial and nonprofit — spent $166.5 billion on direct marketing in the
The Power of Direct: Relevance. Responsibility. Results.