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Wise use of e-mail needed today

Today, let’s forget about political sound bites and address an enemy more calculating than Al Qaeda and more sinister than Iran. I mean spam and e-mail. I mean I canít wait to receive my daily offers to get my free credit report, start eating healthier, help a scam in Nigeria or enlarge a certain part of my body!

Maybe itís just me, but it seems like anyone who wants to hit my computer with some offer I donít want can beat all the blockers. I used to get just a few unwanted e-mails a day but it seems these days I spend as much time hitting ďdeleteĒ as clicking through.

Whatís happening? Clearly, spam and the use of e-mail for newsletters and the like are growing faster than airline cancellations. For example, the Washington Post recently reported AOL blocks more than 780 million spams daily. Thatís an incredible 100 million more messages than it actually delivers!

Spam now accounts for nearly 50 percent †of all e-mail and the reason is easy to understand Ė itís so cheap and easy. The only limit is the number of e-mail addresses one can buy. Essentially, the costs are fixed so blasting out volumes is easy. Moreover, statistically, even a 1-in-100,000 response rate could turn a profit. So blast away!

If you think Iím suggesting dealers stop using e-mail, Iím not. To the contrary, today e-mail is a key promotional tool. In spite of the volume on the internet these days, dealers should be using this tool. It works. Creative use of e-mail to promote special events, sales promotions, new product introductions and other useful information can be particularly effective in reaching customers and prospects. A key is to make it exciting and informative so recipients want to open all e-mails coming from you.

To that end, Associations Now magazine recently reported on an e-mail marketing† study by MailerMailer of some 300 million e-mails sent out by 3200 companies. Here are four tips from what the study found:

1.†Forget Fridays! E-mails sent on Fridays had the lowest percentages of opens and click throughs.
2.†Love Mondays! E-mails sent out on Mondays had the highest open rates.
3.†Tuesdays, Too! E-mails sent out on Tuesdays had the highest click through rates.
4.†Short is Sweet! E-mails with subject lines of less than 35 characters outperformed those with longer subjects lines.

Comments

3 comments on “Wise use of e-mail needed today

  1. Harold L. Baltes

    I don’t use e-mail in the way you are suggeasting… but I do use it for estimates, and contacts with the customer regarding damages/repairs more than expected, etc. I have the customer OK extra repairs by email – that way there is a ‘paper trail’ so to speak… when some of the customer end up NOT wanting to pay for something they OKed to begin with. It works well in court – if/when that happens. This is one of the drawbacks of working on older units – compared to places that, ‘don’t work on anything 10 years, or older’.
    It’s almost impossible to be in business without a computer any more. I would also like to use the computer to solicit more business, but as an owner/operator, I don’t know when I’d get it done! This year has actually been a busier year than any of the other 29 years I’ve been in business! New sales are almost nonexistent – but the repair side of things has skyrocketed! I have more business coming from farther and farther away – more than in the past! One more thing… I do not advertise – other than business cards…
    Keep up the good work! Harold L. Baltes, owner The Prop Shop

  2. Larry Rains

    Email is a great tool but as you state needs a careful balance. Often inspired by the results of initial mass mailings a business may feel considerable pressure to increase the amount of blasts that they are sending.

    You hit the nail on the head with a focus on keeping “emails exciting and informative so recipients want to open all e-mails coming from you.”

    A careful use of a CRM Customer Relationship Management system can help your business create emails that are highly tailored to specific groups of customers. Additionally, these systems can help you grab the recipients interest by customizing the message sent.

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