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Edition 20

Don't pick on my tea towel

I've got an embarrassing confession to make!

I have a display tea towel.

Just in case you're wondering how this "display" variety might differ from the everyday garden variety tea-towel, allow me to elaborate.

My display tea towel does (I'll admit) look just like a normal tea towel - theoretically it could dry dishes and it does hang on the handle of my oven.

But let me tell you, the similarities end there.

It is not for grabbing things out of the oven with, it is most definitely NOT for wiping your hands with and whatever you do, (gasp!) use it to clean spilt apple juice off the floor with your foot!

My display tea towel merely adds a cheery dollop of bright red and white polka dot aesthetic appeal to my kitchen AND gives my husband Jayson a blatant opportunity to pay out on me again whenever the mood strikes.

You see, I'm a bit of a homewares nut and particularly love any opportunity to amp up the beach house theme of our almost completely renovated home in Binningup.

With all of this in mind, you could understand exactly how delighted I was when recently contacted by the owner of a stunningly stylish homewares (online and offline) store for some email marketing help.

Yipppeeee skippeeee!!!

Keen to manage the campaign herself, this savvy business-owner (aka Samantha) was just after some direction to get things off the ground.

I thought the process I guided her through, might give you that extra bit of steam to kick off your own email marketing efforts.

Before we start, there's something else you need to know about me.

I used to be a newspaper journalist, so I ask a lot of questions.

And this is how I got things underway for Sam, I asked her A LOT of questions.

The answers would help us develop the format, style and direction of her campaign.

I asked her about the Personality of her business, her dreams for its future and the demographic of her major client base (age, gender, interests, address, career).

Then I asked her who her favourite clients were.

These were the people we would imagine we were addressing when crafting her emails.

Success with email marketing demands highly relevant information presented with a personal touch.

There's absolutely no point trying to meet the needs of a rather generic client profile in one email.

Better to be highly relevant to a small group of people, than pretty uninteresting to a big group.

OR, if you want to get really fancy, you can start dividing up your client list into separate interest areas and targeted emails for each group - it's called segmenting.

My final question to Sam as she figured out the bones of her campaign was:

"Does that latest range of summer napery also come in red?".

Sorry! No of course not. It was more along the lines of...

"What do you want to achieve with your email marketing?".

Then I gave her these suggestions to get the ball rolling:

  • Acquire new customers
  • Generate direct sales
  • Educate potential customers about your store
  • Build trust and confidence among buyers/suppliers
  • Build long-term relationships with customers/suppliers
  • Support retail and offline sales
  • Encourage word-of-mouth advertising
  • Increase brand recognition
  • Drive traffic to your website

The answers to all of these questions helped Sam figure out some of the specifics of her campaign like how often to mail, what format (e-card or e-newsletter), what language, what info?

Are you struggling to get the ball rolling on your own email marketing strategy?

Drop me an email outlining your struggle and I'll send you some food for thought.

Or better still, maybe there's something friends or family always pay out on you for. Email me about that too!

Brown Mouse Communications helps small business owners build trust and win sales through high quality, individualised email newsletters.

© Copyright 2008 Brown Mouse Communications

All rights reserved. You may reproduce this article by including this copyright and if reproducing electronically, including a link to www.brownmouse.com.au

Check out our previous editions

Why not check out some of the previous editions of Mouse Mail!