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Sheri Hebbeln
 
September 30, 2014 | Email Marketing | Sheri Hebbeln

Intriguing Content Makes the Email Marketing Difference

Developing a strong email marketing campaign can be essential in generating attention for your online wine store. An oft-cited statistic by the Direct Marketing Association is that promotions through email have an astounding 4,300 percent return on investment. However, throwing out even a splashy message that gets some attention from your customers doesn't guarantee that they'll read it and be inspired to shop where you are. More to the point, there needs to be a reason why your emails matter to wine lovers. It is thus important to show a compelling form of content, since that is the pitch that determines whether the consumer will actually click through.

A comprehensive strategy
There are a lot of factors that determine whether an email message actually performs to the level of sales that you're trying to develop. Marketing firm Eloqua notes three particular points from a strategy should develop. One is the context of the content. In other words, what purpose does the message you send serve to consumers? Are they being reminded of previous purchases, or are they simply getting updates on what's happening at the winery? Two is the timing of what is being sent out. At what stage of shopping are they in? Is the information seasonally appropriate? For instance, are ideas for good whites to pair with turkey for Thanksgiving being sent out in early November? The content has to be shaped based on the situation.

The third and most important aspect, though, is creativity. That factors a lot in the development of the message, simply because you can't rehash old messages and expect them to deliver the same results. According to Copyblogger, being creative means targeting the subject line and information that is specific to your niche. In the wine industry, that last part isn't particularly hard. It's just a matter of correlating any message to relate to what blends you make and what grape varietals you grow, as well as what you're doing different in the tasting room.

Keeping it personal, yet relevant
There has been a significant amount of talk regarding personalization. This form of marketing uses your customer's purchase history, demographics and personal habits to make recommendations and suggestions. That alone can make your content interesting enough for consumers to respond and shop at your site once again. According to research by Temple University, 98 percent of consumers responded positively to this form of promotion. However, there are limits to tailoring personal emails. For one, you should avoid addressing your customers by name in the email. The same research reported that 95 percent of those surveyed reacted negatively to their names being used. The reason is that such personal touches scare consumers because they think their privacy is being taken away from them. If the name is done wrong, it may even make them believe you're not a legitimate winery but some form of spam or phishing email from which their identities could get stolen.

Another point of making content interesting to read is relevance, as suggested by Marketing Sherpa. This is answering the question of why your customers should read your emails in the first place. There are a few ways of going about the matter. One is to utilize your blog posts and remake even a portion of them into an email message to be sent out to customers. This can be great for people that don't always frequent your website for updates but do read your emails. Another is to take advantage of social media and post pictures and positive reviews from Facebook or Twitter to get people excited. Finally, there is always creating an original message that is specific to your email readers.

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