Open rates for transactional emails – order confirmations, shipping notices and the like – run more than double that of any other type of email. What’s more, they reach hotline buyers, the best-performing segment on anyone’s house file. Yet astonishingly, most companies overlook this prime marketing opportunity.
To be effective, follow a few simple rules:
• Keep the focus on the transaction, not the commercial message. Treat the commercial portion as a “P.S.” that takes no more than 20% of the email.
• Use the commercial space to make an offer or suggest additional products – but keep the content relevant to the main transaction. If, for instance, you’re sending an order confirmation for outdoor furniture, don’t include an offer for a tiller.
• Don’t include commercial messages in emails dealing with problems, such as notices of shipping delays or communications about customer service issues.
Here’s an effective idea for companies selling plants: Email customers about a week before your intended ship date to inform them when to expect their order…and invite them to add to their order any time in the next three days. It’s an effective approach that hardly anyone uses!