Tag Archives: email marketing

The Email Marketing Faceoff: Obama vs. Romney

According to StrongMail, the email marketing campaigns of President Obama and Mitt Romney are weak.  When it comes to implementing a good quality email marketing strategy, none of these two parties came out with the upper hand.

StrongMail is an email marketing provider for big name companies like MasterCard, Sony, and AT&T.  The marketing experts at StrongMail analyzed emails by both parties from August 11 to September 10, using the same analyzing system they do for their clients. The two campaigns were praised for their specific viewpoints, but Obama’s campaign contained more professionalism. In an overall email marketing analysis, they were found to lack in many important areas of email marketing.

StrongMail discovered that the content of both emails appealed to their respective markets, often times advertising their need for donations or volunteer efforts. It was found that Obama’s emails were more targeted towards avid digital technology users, which are mostly people who are under the age of 40. Even though Obama did win the professionalism battle, they went through a slight discourse when one of his subject lines was “I’ll Be Damned,” after his party celebrated out-raising the Romney campaign in August. The content of Romney’s emails was something that was seen in the ancient email marketing days. It was text-heavy. After Obama gave a speech in September, his party sent out emails with less than 50 words asking for donations. Romney responded with a 275-word critique of Obama’s speech. Good email marketing is not word heavy and it should get straight to the point with consumer benefits or offers. For example, Obama offered Obama items with free shipping in return for donations. Incentives are always good!

Neither one of the campaigns put data to good use. Both campaigns had a high immediate delete rate. For anyone who opened an email from either candidate, 1.5 immediately hit delete for an Obama email and 1.3 for Romney’s. In Romney’s situation, this was due to the fact that they didn’t have a target audience, nor emailed at the right time. As far as Obama goes, his party was emailing donation requests to people who already donated. There was no personalization on either side.

When it came to actually pumping out emails, for every email Romney sent, Obama sent 20. According to StrongMail, there was just a larger list of democratic voters. In this situation bigger was not better because Obama received an extremely high spam rate. About 93% of Romney’s emails made it to inboxes compared to Obama’s 85%. However, Obama’s average open rate was 10.7% compared to the 6.4% of Romney’s.

When it is all said and done, what really matters most is whose name is put on voter ballots, but could email marketing play a big part in determining who is more fit for presidency in the next four years? Being technologically savvy and keeping up with digital trends is important, after all.  It shows intelligence and both parties had their flaws.

Only five more days until Election Day!  Who do you think will win?

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What Do Marketing and Beautiful Women Have In Common?

You see a beautiful woman at a party. You walk up to her and say, “I am very rich. Marry me.” That’s DIRECT MARKETING.

You are at a party with a bunch of friends and see a beautiful woman. One of your friends goes up to her and pointing at you says, “He is very rich. Marry him.” That’s ADVERTISING.

You see a beautiful woman at a party. You go up to her and get her telephone number. The next day you called her and say, “Hi, I am very rich. Marry me.” That’s TELEMARKETING.

You are at a party and see a beautiful woman. You get up and straighten your tie, walk up to her and pour her a drink. You open the door for her, pick up her bag after she drops it, offer her a ride, and then say, “By the way, I’m very rich. Will you marry me?”  That’s PUBLIC RELATIONS.

You are at a party and a beautiful woman walks up to you and says, “You are very rich.” That’s BRAND RECOGNITION.

You see a beautiful woman at a party. You walk up to her and say, “I am very rich. Marry me.” She gives you a nice hard slap on your face. That’s CUSTOMER FEEDBACK.

You take a shower, shave and put on some clean clothes. You go to a party. Everyone in the room smells bad. A beautiful woman walks up to you and gives you her number. That’s INBOUND MARKETING.

The lines above were written by Carole Mahoney.  I thought it was funny (as funny as marketing can get) and decided to make up a few of my own about online marketing:

You see a beautiful woman at party.  You make friends with everyone else in the room and they all tell her “He is very rich.  Marry him.”  That’s LINK BUILDING.

You see a beautiful woman at a party.  You pay someone to go up to her, point to you and say “He is very rich.  Marry him.”  That’s AFFILIATE MARKETING.

You are at a party and see a beautiful woman.  You get her name, find her on Facebook, message her and say “Hi, I am very rich. Marry me.” That’s SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING.

You see a beautiful woman at a party. You go up to her and get her email address. The next day you email her and say, “I am very rich. Marry me.” That’s EMAIL MARKETING.

Hope you enjoyed that.  Stay tuned for future comparisons!

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What Email Marketing Does That Social Media Can’t

ImageThe picture above is my cat, Penelope.  As you can see, she’s a huge fan of social media (particularly YouTube).  She may not be able to type, but she enjoys hissing and making chirping sounds at her cat and bird friends online.

With online marketing methods such as social media rapidly growing more popular recently, some have been quick to declare email marketing dead.  That declaration cannot be more wrong, and some of these people may end up kicking themselves for undervaluing it.  Evidence that email marketing is alive and still necessary lies in numbers and the benefits that only it offers.

While social media is an important method that is not to be ignored, one of its biggest disadvantages is that it is not as clean, targeted and direct as email marketing.    Here are some of the ways that social media cannot even compare:

Email lists are easily segmented.  You can post a message on social media, and everyone will receive the same thing whether they’re interested or not.  There are no one-size-fits all customers, so luckily email allows you to segment and send the right messages to the right audience.  If people are actually interested in the emails you send them, they will welcome them, reducing unsubscribes and raising conversion rates.

There’s proof in numbers.  You can post a message on Facebook or Twitter, but there is no way of knowing how many friends or followers will actually see it.  Not only do email lists usually have an audience larger than a typical list of friends or followers, but it is possible to see the number of times your email was viewed and clicked, as well as the percentage that didn’t make it to a reader.

Email continues to provide the highest ROI.  It requires very little time and money to send a targeted email to a specific group of customers.  Top marketers have been surveyed and studied many times throughout the growth of social media, and the results always prove that email marketing still returns the greatest return on investment.

Social networks fade, email is forever.  How often do you still check your MySpace?  Have you ever neglected Facebook in favor of Twitter, or vice versa?  Unlike social media, where people migrate from one trendy network to another, email addresses rarely change.  People may create a secondary email address and use their older one less often, but they are still likely to check it from time to time.

It’s a one-on-one conversation. Social media is a dialogue.  A single post suddenly turns into a group conversation with dozens of responses, and sometimes nobody even buys anything.  With email, all you have to do is send a message directly.  Unless the customer is buying something, or has a question before making a purchase, you don’t have to spend another minute taking further action.  Just send and move on with your day.

Longer visibility.  On Twitter and Facebook, new messages have a very short life due to the rapid rate that others tweet and post.  Your post is likely to only be seen by people who happen to be online and looking at their screens at that moment.  An email remains visible and available in an inbox until the user chooses to open and read it.

With that said, social media is still an important marketing strategy that should not be ignored.  But while you are posting and tweeting, let’s not forget that it is important to continue building your email lists as well.

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