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Better Results with Direct E-Mail Marketing Approach


December 4, 2000

ONLINE marketing via websites works best by using fewer banner ads andadopt direct e-mail marketing approach, says Permission.Com chiefexecutive officer Alan Fung. He said direct e-mail marketing achieve better results as it focuses onspecific audiences.

"The yield click-through rates of direct e-mail marketing can go as highas 10 per cent, considerably higher than the 0.5 per cent that banner adsyield," he told Business Times in Kuala Lumpur. The sort of e-mail marketing being referred to here is permission-basedmarketing where the user consents to receiving the mail. This should bedistinguished from the more common random e-mail marketing that mostInternet users find intrusive.

"Many heavy users of e-mail feel "overwhelmed" by the amount ofunsolicited e-mails they receive each day. And so marketers who adopt thisapproach will have to do better then entertaining messages to make readingit (e-mail marketing) worthwhile," he added.

Permission.Com (www.permission.com.my) is a company that specialises inpermission-based e-mail marketing services — helping marketers reachtheir target audience effectively through e-mail. Fung said to be successful, e-mail marketing must have actual value-addand it must be able to deliver custom messages and forge deeperrelationships with customers. "Banner ads are not able to achieve this, and random e-mails are oftendiscarded.

The only way is to send e-mails to consenting customers," headded.

Though banner ads seem to be the branding medium of choice now, Fung isoptimistic that direct e-mail marketing — e-mail messages offeringproducts and services sent directly to consumers' inboxes, will soon bethe favoured advertising medium.

20 per message, it arrives immediately, can be tracked and the responses often come quickly.

"Although I do not think e-mail marketing is going to kill direct mailbecause some products are simply not suitable for e-mail, I think everyadvertiser will soon add direct e-mail as part of its media mix," Fungsaid.

Currently, a total of five to seven per cent of the RM500,000 spent ononline ads are spent on e-mail marketing.

The figure is expected to doubleor even triple in next six months.

Permission.Com collects e-mail addresses with customer profiles and mostimportantly their permission to send e-mails. The compiled database isthen marketed to advertisers who carefully select their target recipients.

"We have a pool of some 250,000 names belonging to Permission.Com andaggregated from other companies. In the event the names from othercompanies are used, we work on a profit sharing basis.

"Our mission is to empower our clients to acquire and retain customersand establish profitable customer relationships through our suite ofscalable e-mail marketing solutions".

© 2000 TransData Corporation

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