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Last Days to Exhibit at EEC11 Miami

This is the last week for you to confirm your booth space at the Email Evolution Conference 2011 - the email marketing event to attend in 2011.

We offer a turnkey pedestal system where everything is provided for you...all you bring is your laptop and marketing collateral and we take care of the rest!

The turnkey package includes:
  • 2 conference passes
  • Pedestal rental
  • Set-up and dismantle
  • Company logo and 5 bullet points printed on booth
  • 19˝ flat-screen monitor
  • 1 wireless connection
  • 500 watts of power
eec and DMA members receive a $700 discount.  Contact Ali for more details:

Here are some photos of the booths at EEC10:

EEC11 Exhibit    EEC11 Exhibit


Last 2 Days to Save $350


Register by tomorrow to receive early bird pricing for the Email Evolution Conference - the best email marketing event you'll attend in 2011!  You can save up to $350 so hurry!

Join us for:
  • 3 pre-conference workshops: email compliance, email strategy, and the future of digital marketing integration
  • Gary Vaynerchuk's keynote
  • 3 tracks with 18 expert-packed sessions
  • multiple networking opportunities (including speed networking!)
  • the presentation of a new eec award
  • and much more!

Have a question? Interested in exhibit or sponsorship opportunities? Email Ali at the eec.

See you in Miami!


The New eec Award

Stefan PollardEarlier this year, longtime eec member, senior strategic consultant at Responsys and email industry stalwart, Stefan Pollard, passed away.  The eec is establishing the Stefan Pollard Marketer of the Year Award for Excellence in Creativity and Contribution to be awarded annually.

This award will recognize an individual who exemplifies and demonstrates Stefan's most memorable and loved characteristics and who provides inspiration to others.  It will be presented on February 1, 2011 at the Email Evolution Conference, an event Stefan loved.  We are accepting nominations until Friday, December 10 so please review the guidelines and nominate a deserving email marketer.

Special thanks to the folks at for their support of the nomination submission process.

- Ali Swerdlow


3 Questions for Eloqua's Dennis Dayman

This week at our European Email Marketing Conference in London, we caught up with Eloqua's Chief Privacy Officer, Dennis Dayman.

Read on for his predictions for 2011 as well as some information on Canada's new anti-spam law, C-28.

1) What are some of your top takeaways from this week's conference?

This year's European Email Marketing Conference (EEMC) was a great success! Marketing and email professionals from all over the world came together to discuss issues and challenges they face.

For myself and others, one of the known mountains we have to climb in the European Union (EU) is required permission for marketing. Marketing itself is the same throughout the globe, but in the EU, collection, processing and transferring of marketing information can be much more "difficult" at times due the privacy requirements that surround it. This means to many here that new things like social media sharing have to have a new and different way of thinking when the uses are for marketing purposes. 

Many companies like Eloqua are global in nature and when launching marketing programs across their brands and customers, they have much more to think about than just hitting the "send" button; for example, explicit opt-in.

This week's conference really helped expose these known - and sometimes complicated - matters for global companies and how to solve them.  Lots of stories and examples were shared freely at the event, allowing others to get an idea of how to properly run a campaign no matter where you do business.

Thanks to all the participants for being so helpful to each other and participating at such a personal level. I am certainly looking forward to the Email Evolution Conference in Miami!

2) What are your predictions for compliance and privacy changes in 2011?

There are some major changes coming to the world of marketing in 2011.  Today, most of the world has some sort of privacy data protection in place, but many of the laws are being updated to keep up with changes in the industry and ways in which data is used. 

Here are some items to keep on your radar:
  • In the EU, starting in May 2011, dropping and accessing a tracking mechanism like a cookie will become illegal without explicit permission to do such.
  • US legislators might attempt another go at federal privacy legislation in 2011 which would require an opt-in to collect and process data.
  • By the end of this year, Canada is looking at putting into place an anti-spam law that will make the sending of "spam" illegal and prosecutable.

Over the next few years marketers can expect to see more privacy requirements imposed on marketing processes.  Much of this is due to the sheer volume of information being kept on individuals and this isn't something that shouldn't be feared as most of today's marketing best practices already ask you to obtain permission to collect and use data on individuals.

As these issues come up, be assured that we in the industry along with the eec/DMA will look out for your best interest.

3) Can you please provide an update on the recent anti-spam legislation in Canada?

As a quick recap, anyone sending commercial email from Canada or to someone in Canada will be subject to C-28 (formerly known as Fighting Internet and Wireless Spam Act - FISA). FISA requires marketers to get permission, either implied or expressed, before sending commercial email to Canadians.

While at EEMC this week, there was some good news that came from Canada.  Canadian anti-spam bill C-28 passed through House of Commons Industry, Science and Technology committee in 48 minutes (WOW!).  One objection was made to the short title (FISA) and it was removed from the bill. The bill now goes back to the house for a 3rd and final reading and a vote which means Canada might have anti-spam legislation by end of the year.

For more information about what is coming in the law, visit:“spam-haven" and

- Dennis Dayman
Chief Privacy Officer


Our New Cross-Channel Integration Roundtable

Thoughts from the first meeting of the Cross-Channel Integration Roundtable
co-chaired by Jeff Chamberlain of Aprimo and David Hibbs of Responsys.

The charter of the Roundtable is to explore cross-channel integration to provide education and/or information that would help eec members and the larger email marketing community in pursuing this goal.  Here are the themes to what we are trying to accomplish:
  1. Address the needs to “get started” by helping marketers understand the initial steps that might lead to integrated marketing leveraging an existing email channel.
  2. Utilize email marketing best practices to help inform what we decide to provide to the community.
  3. Look at simple tools that are easy to apply rather than just focus on deep insights or case studies that are interesting but don’t inform clear action for marketers.
Our initial group (still welcoming new members) had a discussion on cross-channel integration. I’ll introduce the team through the discussion summary.  eec Vice Chair Stephanie Miller of Aprimo kicked off the call and started us down the road to group discussion.

Challenge #1 – What is Cross-Channel Integration??

Jeff Chamberlain of Aprimo suggested that cross-channel integration spoke to presenting a marketing message via multiple communication channels to address the different needs driven by preference, buying cycle stage, etc.

Sheryl Biesman of Pharmavite pointed out the channel also refers to distribution from a CPG perspective so we need to be clear about integrating communication channels or distribution channels.

Dwight Sholes of Sholes LLC offered the perspective to focus on direct channels (those designed to directly influence action or response such as email marketing or direct mail as opposed to awareness like print ads or signage).  We accepted the fact that there is a large definition of cross-channel integration and that we would narrow down our target as we come up with different projects…which led to some discussion/brainstorming on possible projects we could do to pursue our charge as a group (trumpets blaring charge heard in the distance…). 

Here is a sampling of the ideas discussed:
  • Focus on nuts & bolts…how to get started…benchmarks…how to get it done.
  • Provide metrics for how to measure success and case studies on how it has been successful.
  • How to get it done easily.  Much of the material out there is intimidating on getting the resources (people, money) to get going.
  • Create a checklist to help people know they are addressing the right issues - a Cross-Channel Maturity Audit
  • Help people learn how to unify a single communication piece & communicate it across multiple channels.  Keep in mind how a message differs for different channels.
  • Help people test.  How to choose the right channels.  How to choose the right campaigns for testing cross-channel integration.
  • Focus on how to best combine traditional and new marketing channels (e.g. email marketing and social media, blogging and events)
  • Since we are doing this for email marketers, maybe we should investigate whether one channel (e.g. email marketing) should be the hub of your cross-channel marketing strategy.
This would force us to think through the aspects of cross-channel marketing and define some logical next steps.  It could be a good way to gather status and thoughts from others.  Let's do it!

And so there you are…our first challenge…define the aspects of a Cross-Channel Maturity Audit.  We’ll dive in at our next meeting in November.

Intrigued and want to join us?  Contact Ali at the eec.

- Jeff Chamberlain, Cross-Channel Integration Roundtable co-chair
VP, B2B Solutions Marketing


Pull the Trigger for Targeted Messages and Higher ROI

When do fewer emails mean higher ROI? When your emails are hyper-targeted and truly one-to-one. That doesn’t mean you need a huge team of people contacting customers one at a time, like the telemarketers of old.  It only requires you to tap into existing technology and know-how to make it happen.


I like to say “happy birthdays mean happy profits” because birthday emails are a perfect example of this concept. When someone subscribes to get your emails, you get their birth date along with the other data you gathered about them upon signup. That date goes into your system and on or near the customer’s birthday, depending on how you have it configured; an email is automatically triggered offering a birthday bonus of some kind, like a free ice cream cone if you work for a chain of sweet shops, or a free movie rental if you’re marketing your video stores.


These emails get a remarkably high response rate because they are so targeted…and therefore, welcome.


You’re not limited to birthday emails, however, nor are triggered emails only appropriate for B2C marketing. Triggered emails come in three types—recurring, transactional and threshold—and can be used in a variety of circumstances:

  • A recurring email can be a birthday email like we’ve described above, or could happen a certain period after a purchase, to remind a customer that it’s time to renew
  • A transactional email can be one email, like a follow up to a purchase or download, soliciting feedback, or even a drip campaign following a purchase, giving tips on how to use the product (and also up-selling)
  • As a threshold email can occur when a customer’s behavior has gotten to a certain point, say if they’ve purchased three songs from one album, you offer a discount on the album

In the past, marketers resisted moving from batch-and-blast to this kind of targeted, triggered approach because the cost seemed prohibitive. Between building the API and the software to handle the emails the technological cost made any chance of an ROI a slim one. Today, however, all top-tier ESPs and many secondary ones offer triggered messaging capabilities. That means you can make your email marketing program even more relevant without increasing your staff or IT costs.


Before we dive into the benefits and how-to’s of triggered emails, let’s review the terminology:

  • Triggered means triggered by an event: A trigger based message is one sent out in response to a certain action within an email or on a website
  • Targeted means segmented, with dynamic content, so different recipients get different email content and even colors and graphics
  • Drip marketing is a series of messages triggered by an event, such as a purchase or whitepaper download (also known as lifecycle messaging)

You’ll also need to define the event or events that trigger the website. The event might be a click on a website, time spent on a page with no shopping cart activity, a coupon download, or a link clicked in an email. Or, to return to our earlier example, it might be date driven like a birthday or anniversary.


One-to-one triggered emails have a much higher ROI so even though you’re sending out fewer emails, you’re making more money off the targeted ones. But what do you need to do to be set up for that kind of triggered email?


1.    An ESP or in-house solution that enables triggered messaging

2.    An API to automate the flow of data from your CRM or in-house database to your ESP or internal ESP

3.    A content library, so your system can take from it to place the appropriate message in each email


Also consider that these types of emails typically use a transactional delivery engine vs. a marketing delivery engine, i.e. point-to-point transmission vs. one-to-many broadcast.


The one caveat happens when you start to collect the data upon which to define your rules. Do not ask for too much. You can ask for up to four pieces of information upon sign up, but any more than that, and your abandonment rate will soar. Instead, be very clear what information you want to start out with and only ask for that (based on what you can really use). Then over time you can ask for more information, and append that information to that subscriber later.


The idea of this kind of targeted email marketing might be daunting, but it’s really not difficult given today’s technology and pre-existing services. As a result, your triggered email messaging can be as sophisticated as you want to make it, to get the most ROI from your highest value customers. For example, your system can score a customer based on behavior, such as purchasing a higher-priced item, and offer an exclusive and limited price on another item as a reward.


Marketers have to start automating their email campaigns based on customer behaviors, such as shopping cart abandonment. Companies who’ve done this have experienced higher click through rates and conversion rates, without increasing staff costs. Alternatively, automating email programs around customer behaviors with hyper-targeted messages will result in a higher email marketing ROI.


And it leads to a higher engagement index, which means more of your subscribers are engaging with your email, which in turn will give you a better standing in the eyes of the ISPs…which in turn will improve your email deliverability and get you into more inboxes…and so on and so on and so on.


Sounds pretty happy to me!

- Marco Marini
ClickMail Marketing


Speak at the Email Evolution Conference 2011!

We're excited to announce the annual Email Evolution Conference 2011 (EEC11) will be held January 31-February 2, 2011 at the Eden Roc Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida. EEC11 will bring together practitioners and decision-makers to find practical approaches to email and digital marketing challenges faced by every marketer.

Be a Part of the Event!

We're accepting speaking proposals from individuals and companies that wish to be a part of the program. Submit your most fascinating case studies or the latest "how-to" information that every savvy email marketer should have in their toolbox. Selected speakers will receive a complimentary conference pass.

We're looking for abstracts in the following areas of email marketing:
  • acquisition & retention strategies
  • analytics/landing pages
  • analyzing ROI
  • charity/non-profit
  • compliance & privacy
  • creative strategies
  • data integration
  • deliverability & rendering
  • dynamic content
  • list growth/hygiene/management
  • metrics & measurement
  • mobile marketing
  • preference centers
  • relevance
  • reputation
  • segmentation & targeting
  • social networking
  • testing
  • and more!

All proposals must be submitted by Friday, August 27, 2010.

If you are interested in exhibit and sponsorship opportunities, please contact Ali.

We look forward to receiving your proposal!

U.S. Congress Planning Broader Email & Digital Marketing Enforcement and Regulatory Power for the FTC

The recession has made citizens more attentive to scams, especially those that promise easy money or frighten people about the banking system.  This accelerates the already large regulatory agenda of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC), whose role as a “civil prosecutor” includes regulating and enforcing protections from online offers, advertising and email marketing.  Congress is also stepping up, and two major initiatives around privacy protection and the role of the FTC are in active play.

Partnering with all of us in the email industry and watching to make sure we properly self-regulate remains a key component of the FTC’s plans, says Lois Greisman, Director, Division of Marketing Practices for the FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection, who joined our annual Email Experience Council legislative update webinar on May 19th.  “Our goal is to stop fraud and scams as quickly as possible, to shut down offenders, and, where appropriate, seize assets and reimburse consumers,” she said in the webinar.

The recording of the full event is available in the eec Research Store and is free for eec members.

The U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003, which regulates permission practices for email marketing, continues to be a key anti-fraud tool for the FTC.  Greisman noted several successes in prosecuting spammers and other deceptive practices and said enforcement continues to be a major priority.  “CAN-SPAM has worked well to level the playing field among legitimate online marketers,” she said.  She also added that she was not aware of any active proposal by the FTC or Congress to expand or change the law.

However, there are two active proposals of new legislation that could have significant impact on email marketing and the email industry as a whole.
  1. Online Privacy Protection Bill A “Discussion Draft” of a bill to require notice and consent to any individual PRIOR to collecting or using personal information was released in early May in the US House of Representatives from Representatives Rick Boucher (D-VA) and Cliff Stearns (R-FL).  Industry and consumer groups alike are not happy with the draft, including the DMA.  Although it may seem at first that the so-called Boucher Bill was just about online behavioral advertising conducted by large marketers; it turns out that it’s very broad and far-reaching on privacy and data security.  During the webinar, Jerry Cerasale, VP, Government Relations for the DMA, gave a very good overview of coverage, exceptions and terms of notice.  Basically, it impacts nearly all kinds of “first party” senders as well as any other company that has access to that data as a “third party.”  It proposes coverage of an extensive list of “unique and persistent” personal data on consumers.

    “One potentially bad impact this could have on the email industry concerns the scope of covered data, including email address, IP address, and other unique, persistent identifiers,” says panelist Tom Bartel, CIPP, VP, Receiver Services at Return Path.  “If the exceptions for transactional and operational purposes and for service providers are not effective and clear, this bill could interfere with many industry collaborations.  This includes IP-based reputation systems – data that determines if email messages reach the inbox or not.  It may also impact the operation of Feedback Loops provided to email senders by mailbox providers like Yahoo! and Hotmail.  These feedback loops are a key component in how the industry keeps bad actors out of the email ecosystem."

    Both Representatives Boucher and Stearns have indicated a willingness to work with industry and have requested comments on the bill, due by June 4th.  Cerasale said the DMA will be commenting.
  2. Expansion of FTC Powers: Congress is also considering significantly expanding the powers of the FTC as part of the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (HR 4173).  There is not a corresponding bill in the Senate, although Cerasale said in the webinar that one may be introduced later this year. 

    Part of the proposed regulation would give the FTC “unbridled authority” to create rules around “unfair or deceptive acts or practices” for many industry sectors.  Cerasale expressed concern about this, and said that more checks and balances are needed.  It is also unclear how this expansion will impact emerging technologies like social or mobile, he said.

    Another part of the proposed bill increases the FTC’s enforcement powers to seek civil penalties.  “That may be helpful in catching spammers and other abusers of email marketing,” said Rick Buck, CIPP and VP, ISP Relations and Privacy at e-Dialog.  “Marketers who feel they are exempt from prosecution because they are legal under CAN-SPAM may be following the letter of the law, but not the spirit.  I encourage everyone to go beyond the legal requirements and aim to provide email experiences that are welcome and engaging to subscribers.”

    The FTC’s Greisman said only that, “We welcome any support from Congress that helps the agency be more effective and efficient.”  There are some “tools that we lack which Congress may grant us the power to use,” she said.

    A third element to this proposed legislation is on responsibility/liability of the delivery provider (broadcast vendor, ESP, MTA Vendor) if their clients do not follow CAN-SPAM or other regulations.  “This aiding and abetting aspect is very concerning,” said webinar panelist, Dennis Dayman, VP, Privacy & Online Security at Eloqua.  “Blurring the lines between purveyor and sender may place an undue penalty on others in the ‘chain of responsibility’ for all brands involved in online advertising or other online acquisition efforts, like third party email senders and publishers,” Dayman said.

Greisman also reported in the webinar that there is no significant update on the behavioral targeting protection guidelines that the FTC has had out for comment for over a year. “Nothing will happen without input from industry,” she said.  Since the mandate from the FTC has been, “self regulate or else,” the webinar panelists Buck, Bartel and Dayman had a number of suggestions for marketers to follow best practices, including:

  1. Ensure transparency in disclosure and notice of permission and use of data.
  2. Be very clear about opt out vs. opt in.  CAN-SPAM requires only an opt-out, but that is the “bare minimum,” Buck advises.
  3. Update your Privacy Policy and provide prominent links.
  4. Audit your data usage practices.
  5. Be clear on use of data in all web forms and at the point of collection/sign up.

Marketers and everyone in the email industry can support the FTC, Greisman said.  She suggests:

  1. File a complaint.  When those complaints are also referred by the DMA, they are particularly helpful, Greisman said.
  2. Make sure your opt out mechanisms are working.  (e-Dialog’s Buck recommends checking this at least annually, and preferably monthly.)
  3. Be clear about the sender and the advertiser relationships.  (Return Path’s Bartel recommends first party senders consider “framing” the content from third parties or advertisers and clearly distinguish between editorial (original content) and advertising.)
  4. Keep data clean, particularly around new sources.  (Eloqua’s Dayman also recommends care around affiliates’ use of data.)

The legislative update webinar was sponsored by Eloqua, e-Dialog and Return Path, with technology sponsor GoToWebinar.  The recording of the full event is free for eec members.  More details on these and other legislative issues important to digital and direct marketers is in the DMA’s quarterly government affairs newsletter, Politically Direct.

- Stephanie Miller
Return Path & eec


Successfully Working Remotely is A Shared Responsibility

Email marketing, like any career, is likely to include working and collaborating with people who are not in the same physical office.   If you are the remote person, you probably have concerns about keeping in touch with others on the marketing team or in your department, and if you are managing people who are remote, you have to pay special attention to keeping them in touch with the rest of the group.

In an eec Member Initiatives Advisory Committee meeting on the Career Paths project last month, we discussed the impact of this dispersed workforce, and how it affects an email marketing team.

Angela Baldonero, VP, People of Return Path, reviewed four broad trends for career development among the diaspora:

  1. Technology keeps us connected, and enables a broad dispersion of the workforce.  However, it also causes some practical issues. For example, we have an employee in Berlin reporting to a manager in California. It raises the question:  Is Skype enough?
  2. Social interaction is good for the business.  Bringing on people in new geographies can be challenging for on-boarding as well as collaboration.  It's harder for new people to be remote.  However, people who have already built relationships in a core office and then move away can be successful in a remote environment.
  3. Dispersion affects the talent development lifecycle.  For example, the key needs of top talent are relationships and recognition and it's hard for people to build relationships if they are not there.  Lots of good work happens when you are in the same room – including discussing the creative for the email campaign while you look over my shoulder, or brainstorming subject lines by the coffee machine.   Plus, it's hard to "make your mark" if you do not have access to casual interaction, and the only time you "see" colleagues is in formal business meeting situations.
  4. It is easy to confuse connections with relationships.  It's easy to have connections. It's harder to build relationships.  However, it's relationships that drive recruitment as well as career advancement. Geography supports or inhibits relationship depth and meaning.


As the group discussed these ideas, we realized that these are challenges for workforce, but also for proving the value of email marketing within the organization.  We can't earn the respect we need for resources and a seat at the table just from the numbers; the relationships matter, too.

Other impact areas:

  • Geographic dispersion and even business unit silos within the same geography also affect the collaboration and governance of different brand/business unit email programs.
  • Participation in eec meetings is a way for geographically or functionally isolated professionals to network and be educated. It's also always helpful to hear that other marketers have the same challenges!
  • Remote employees don't have access to impromptu conversations which can help your career and move your projects forward.  Baldonero quoted, "A lot of work gets done when you talk about nothing."  Relationships are not built just talking about business and trust is built when you know the whole person.  If you just talk business, you may actually have less trust, because you only know one aspect of that person.
  • Sometimes there is a perception that if you are working at home you are not working as hard.  Jennifer Carmichael of Tenet Healthcare noted, "Some remote employees work harder or longer hours because they're 'always on.'"
  • Relationships drive loyalty and the extra effort needed to get something done.  If I need help with a project or getting something run up the flagpole, it's a lot more successful to stand in that person's office, than to IM them.


In all this, we discussed that building relationships is a shared responsibility.  If you work remotely, you need to make time for making these connections since they don't happen organically. This is both the responsibility of the individual and the organization.  If a business hires people remotely for email marketing or any task, there needs to be a commitment to support this relationship building.

Some ways to build your own long distance relationships or help make it easier for remote employees to engage:

  1. Stay an extra day when you do visit the office. Make time for coffee and hello's.
  2. Corporate social networks can help facilitate information across offices.
  3. Seek out similarities – find the connections outside the office with your colleagues. This might mean taking a bit of extra time on the phone or in an email to get to know the person.
  4. Managers can facilitate team building prior to the business meetings. Build time into the weekly phone calls or hold quarterly in-person meetings that have time for socializing.   "This is a great idea that I can implement tomorrow," Carmichael said.
  5. Conferences like the Email Evolution Conference are a good way to meet new people.   However, we are all busy; we have to make time for establishing these connections.  Nancy Atwood of Anchor Computer said, "In some ways, we are victims of technology – we can work all the time and we are always connected. So the "doing the work" is taking priority over "building a network."  We invest our time in replying electronically rather than establishing a personal connection."
  6. Corporate HR or someone needs to accept some level of administrative support and education, as well as the remote employees themselves.  Be proactive. If no one is reaching out to you, reach out to your manager or the HR team, Baldonero recommends.
  7. Working long distance is a reality for most email vendor/marketer relationships. Many of these same principles apply to good account management and client service. "Think of your colleagues as clients, and that might change the way you relate to them," Atwood said.


Lastly, we discussed some things that the DMA/eec can be doing to help facilitate career growth and help us all build these relationships internally and around the industry:

  1. A member directory of names, company, industry, geography. Restricted access and "no sales calls."
  2. Local events for members to meet and network and learn from each other. Perhaps in cooperation with local DMA groups.
  3. Ensure there are strong networking opportunities prior to and during the main DMA conferences.

What are you doing to build relationships with remote colleagues, clients and employees?  What else would you like the DMA/eec to do to help the industry? Please leave your comments below or email Stephanie Miller at the Member Initiatives Advisory Committee.




Market Forces Combine to Increase Demand for Email Campaign Outsourcing

So we are deep in a recession economy, marketing budgets and headcounts are being cut, yet we are seeing an increase in requests for the outsourcing of email production and campaigns. Why is this?

Well let's take a little time to explore the variables in play here.  As marketers turn to more cost effective channels, email is becoming more popular than ever – according to a recent Forrester study the number of marketing messages for the average email user is predicted to double by 2014.  This makes the email channel even more competitive and crowded, causing a dilution of open, click and conversion rates.

The only way to genuinely attract attention and boost performance is to send more relevant and personalized mails.  To experienced email marketers this will not be news, and it is common wisdom nowadays to absolutely progress beyond broadcast (or blast) mailing tactics to attain any kind of click thru and conversion response.

There are a number of campaign types that increase relevance beyond broadcast, such as 'life cycle', 'clickstream' and 'targeted'. JupiterResearch states that these types of campaigns are up to 18 times more profitable than broadcast.  Each of these types leverage known intelligence about the recipient, whether based on a user triggered event, online behavior, or persona driven.  BUT in order to actually create a highly relevant campaign, each mail needs to be customized to each identified audience segment and ideally personalized for each recipient - both of which increase the number of steps and effort in the overall process of producing a campaign from start to finish. 

You have a choice here: do you create individual email templates for each audience segment, or minimize the number of actual email templates and leverage conditional email content for a more dynamic 'data driven' approach.  More email templates means more production effort to create, optimize and test each and every template – whereas the data driven approach needs more advanced skills/technology to design and test more complex templates. 

Are we at a tipping point?  Has the amount of extra effort, technology and skills required to execute more advanced email campaigns pushed email campaign production to a point where outsourcing makes more strategic and tactical sense?  Perhaps.  Organizations need to be competitive and need to consider ways to execute these types of campaigns.  The tremendous ROI (as stated by Jupiter) more than outweighs the additional operating cost, so each and every marketing department who takes the email channel seriously will need to formulate a strategy here.

With headcounts diminishing, outsourcing is an obvious path forward.  Having a tried and tested production team getting your mails out of the door in good time, with great quality (...under SLA), allows you to not only benefit from advanced campaign performance, but to focus your time on higher value marketing initiatives!


- Andy McCartney, Vice President of Strategic & Account Services, Premiere Global Services

Andy runs a team of email marketing gurus and specialists who help clients of all shapes and sizes with their emarketing initiatives.  Advice and service engagements are delivered in areas such as strategy, campaign production, list health and deliverability.  Andy has over 20 years of experience in marketing and services with hi-tech companies, including 10 years in business intelligence and analytics and 12 years in interactive marketing leadership roles.


Metrics That Matter: Are You Measuring the Right Stuff?

Michael Kelly, Director of Business Development at ClickMail, recently presented at the Silverpop Summit. His presentation on email marketing metrics that matter was so well received, I thought it fitting to recap it here.

Titled "Proving Your Worth with Metrics," Michael's presentation was partly drawn from MarketingSherpa's 2009 Best Practices in Email Marketing Handbook which Michael played a part in pulling together. Get Michael's presentation for a preview of some of the compelling stats and numbers.

Michael covered why to measure, what to measure, and the challenges of measuring, among other topics, including what to do with that data once you have it, and new tools for compiling and learning from that data in real-time.

But why is measuring your data so difficult? Lots of reasons, including conflicting metrics and not knowing what to measure. In the email marketing industry, we suffer from conflicting metrics because there are so many things to measure. We measure how many mailed, delivered, opened, clicked through on and more. The lack of consistency in calculating key performance metrics makes it impossible to establish industry benchmarks or to effectively compare results.

Sometimes we forget that email marketing is about more than just clicks. Email can achieve numerous significant goals beyond a sale. The purpose of email marketing is to trigger an action, not only to get a click. That action might be a forward to a friend, signing up, a visit to a brick-and-mortar store, attending an event, or simply being more aware of a brand.

And knowing all those actions are possible reactions to your email makes measuring even more of a challenge!

Again, we're back to metrics. Remember, if you can't measure it, you can't improve it.

Real danger lurks in not measuring the right factors or not measuring accurately. You could suffer lost revenue. You might not know which messages are working. And your sales team won't know what to focus on. On the other hand, there are huge advantages to knowing your numbers so you can:

  • Justify your marketing strategy
  • Prove email marketing is an integral part of your organization's marketing plan
  • Justify your budget by showing that email provides a far better ROI than any other marketing medium
  • Know what works and what to improve

    Improving click-throughs is one thing, but don't forget to also measure against your company's organizational goals. What is the point of all that email marketing anyway? There is a master goal, the big Kahuna, the big pie-in-the-sky reward your business is focused on. Make sure your email marketing measurements align with helping to achieve that goal. This might be increasing brand awareness or increasing sales.

    What we've described here is the ideal world of email marketing metrics. In the real world, they're not so easy to get. Your ESP won't be able to provide you with this kind of data, but companies have found solutions in widgets and what we at ClickMail affectionately call "reportals": online dashboards that use API system calls to access data from ESPs.

    You probably already know APIs are highly effective at automating the launching of emails, and managing the flow of data between disparate platforms. Now we at ClickMail are using APIs as a fantastic tool for extracting data to produce actionable reports.

    To read about two organizations that have benefitted from the metrics possible with "reportals" and how your business might take advantage of a similar approach, request a copy of Michael's presentation.

    Until next time, remember to measure - it's the only way you can improve!

    - Marco Marini, ClickMail Marketing


    FTC Seems Satisfied with Self Regulation...For Now

    In last week's eec/DMA webinar, Peder Magee, Esq., FTC Privacy and Theft attorney for the Bureau of Consumer Protection joined DMA's VP of Government Affairs, Jerry Cerasale, and a panel of email privacy experts to discuss the latest thinking at the agency.

    For now, that stance seems to suggest that the self regulation of the industry is working. Magee noted that some concepts "transcend the medium" when it comes to self regulation. "Transparency, prominent notice, use of personal data, and providing the ability to opt out easily" all are areas the FTC continues to watch.

    Certification and feedback loop programs were noted by panelist Tom Bartel, CPO of Return Path, as an example of how the industry cooperates in order to make self regulation work. Especially for certification programs, "Email marketers put themselves forward voluntarily to be held to high standards," Bartel says. "Including the things Peder listed about prominence. Once they are vouched for by the third party, the ISPs can make good decisions about what to do with email from those senders.

    "Participation in these programs shows marketers are willing to go way past the law, and well past best practices," Bartel states.

    The FTC remains aggressive about prosecuting offenders under CAN-SPAM. Magee says, "CAN-SPAM and some of the filtering technologies have reduced the spam that consumers were getting a lot more of." He notes that the agency also brings cases against phishing scams, often initiated through email. Webinar moderator and DMA VP of Government Affairs Jerry Cerasale noted, "The FTC is the most active regulatory body in this area. Opt-in laws in Europe have not resulted in as many cases as the FTC."

    Download the recording (free until this Thursday) and read the summary of the event.


    Make It Pop!: From the Inbox to the Store: Using Email to Bring People into Retail Locations

    For too long, too many marketers have underestimated the value of email's impact on offline retail. Some believe that email marketing boosts only online sales, when in actuality cross-channel messaging carries high value across brand sales, reinforcing relationships with customers and, when optimally leveraged, alerting them to brick-and-mortar sales and events.

    We've been seeing a wide range of approaches to retail store messaging in email. Here are some noteworthy tactics to try:

    In-Store Discounts: Entice subscribers into stores by telling them about a special deal that they can't get online. Victoria's Secret advertises a lotion giveaway only available in stores. Betsey Johnson's email alerts subscribers to an in-store-only "spend more, get more" gift card offer, where customers receive a gift card with their purchase, increasing in amount depending on their spending level. QFC invites subscribers to check out sale items at their local store, since deals vary across locations.

    Printable Store Coupons Bar Codes: Including barcodes or printable coupons in email, like Half Price Books and Janie and Jack, is becoming more common. It provides a way to measure the success of email in bringing people into stores, and is an effective way for email marketers to show marketing managers how the value of email reaches beyond online sales. The Container Store email gives a bit of a tease, asking subscribers to click to find out what the in-store offer is. While this has its charm, the extra step of requiring subscribers to click and download might deter some.

    Exclusive In-Store Products and Events: Email is an excellent way to spread the word about events or special offers happening only in stores. Starbucks sends a local events calendar that not only promotes the opening of a new store, but also demonstrates Starbucks' interest in their larger community. Pottery Barn Kids includes a module at the bottom of their retail customer messages about upcoming events at local stores, and REI promotes one of their free classes in a dynamic module.

    Promoting the In-Store Experience: Detailing excellent customer service offerings, such as the personal shopper touted in this J.Crew message, encourages subscribers to come in and interact with a brand representative in real life. This J.Crew message did miss an opportunity to dynamically populate the email with the subscriber's local store info (I know J.Crew has my address). Similarly, Apple reminds subscribers both of their great in-store service by including a picture of a blue-shirted expert alongside store offerings, and also by using beautiful store photography to make subscribers eager to experience in-store shopping.

    In-Store Charity Events: Using email to spread the word about in-store charity events both encourages involvement and reinforces a positive brand image. Gap's Give and Get program offers subscribers a printable coupon. White House Black Market invites subscribers in for "A Special Evening to Give Hope," during which shoppers received a discount and a portion of proceeds went to the organization Living Beyond Breast Cancer. The invitation makes the event seem like a special experience that subscribers don't want to miss.

    Prominent Store Directions: It's becoming more and more common for emails to include subscribers' local store info, as in REI holiday email and this Crate and Barrel email. When brands don't have subscribers' location information, most include links inviting subscribers to find their local store, as at the bottom of this Pottery Barn email.

    Invitations to New Store Openings: When brands have subscribers' location information, email is an effective way to spread the word about new store openings. Williams-Sonoma includes a special offer to encourage subscribers to come check out their new space. Urban Outfitters' store announcement takes it up a notch. Their creative shows a theme that fits city, includes an early bird offer to ensure a crowd when the doors open, and shows their commitment to the community by announcing their donation to a local scholarship fund.

    Personalized Invitations to Loyal Subscribers: The least common (but most awesome!) way email is used to get subscribers into stores is a personal email from a sales associate to loyal customers. Nordstrom personally invited their most loyal customers in for a sale screening before their anniversary sale.

    Get the most bang from the inbox by optimizing cross-channel marketing opportunities. Remember that there's likely much overlap between your most loyal email subscribers and your loyal store visitors, and when there isn't overlap, aspire to create it!

    Faithfully in Email and In-Store,
    Lisa Harmon and Alex Madison, Smith-Harmon

    –>Read other Make it Pop! posts.


    A Message From Our Founder

    I wanted to take a minute to thank you for all of your support of the eec so far. Thanks to fantastic people like you, the eec continues to grow in both size and stature within the email industry.

    Over the past three years, the eec has been able to create a community that offers those from all areas of the email marketing industry the opportunity to come, learn and act collectively in positive ways that help change increase the respect and value that email receives from the marketing and advertising worldl.

    Collectively, we have helped increase the ROI of email marketing, lobbied for better laws, stronger relationships with ISP's and better integration into other channels like social marketing, mobile markeitng and even search, display and TV. A few of us even wrote books about it!

    With all that we have accomplished, we can't sit back and be satisfied. We need to strive for more! More effective email campaign results, more impactful creative, more leverage with ISP's, more innovation with the technologies we use, and more networking to strengthen our collective spirit.

    It is with this call for MORE that I am pleased to extend a personal invitation for you to join me at EEC09 in Scottsdale, Arizona, February 9-11th. Use discount code JAN09 to register for just $999* (register at

    Join me, Jeanniey Mullen, as well as our well respected powerful keynote speaker and father of Direct Marketing: Stan Rapp, along with David Daniels, Bill Nussey, Kath Pay, Peter Horan, David Baker, Stephanie Miller, Dela Quist, Ali Swerdlow, Loren McDonald, Stefan Pollard, Jeanne Jennings, Dave Hendricks, Bill McCloskey, Skip Fidura, Dylan Boyd, Aaron Kahlow, Chris Baggott and many other email superstars at this year's event.

    In challenging times like these, attending conferences that offer insights and actionable learnings is critical. And, sometimes the networking that happens at the event proves to be even more beneficial. You have my word that you will not be disappointed at this event.

    I really hope to see you there. And, if you can make it, drop me an email when you register: I would love to say hi at the event and spend some time with you.


    Jeanniey Mullen
    eec Founder and Executive Chair

    *Only applies to new registrations


    MAKE IT POP!: Email Takes on the Economy

    We all know that America's economy is hurting and that a lot of people (even those who aren't personally feeling the crunch) are worried enough to slow down their virtual and in-store shopping trips. Retailers aren't lying down and waiting for the storm to pass, though. Let's take a look at some of the interesting marketing emails that have been delivered by retailers working to push through the slump.

    Creative Sales. Many retailers have responded to slow spending by getting more inventive with their sale techniques and infusing great deals with a sense of urgency.

    Old Navy's "Early Columbus Day Sale," with its 1,492 items priced at $14.92 or less, takes the cake for creativity in the sale category. Who would think that Columbus Day could feel like cause for retail excitement? It's early and limited-time, so it feels urgent, too.

    Threadless also has a sweet deal with a deadline, selling Girl's Tees (usually $18) starting at just $12 until Oct 12. The urgency and the significant savings strengthen the sale.

    Moosejaw's sale email generates extra excitement with its exclusivity, sending each subscriber their very own secret code that yields one of (what we must assume is) a selection of discount offers.

    J. Crew and Horchow are just two of many retailers who have been pushing limited-time free shipping messages over the past couple weeks. J. Crew's include the cute seasonal touch of asking subscribers to enter code "ACORN" at checkout, and both Horchow and J. Crew have sent multiple reminder count-down emails.

    Straight Talk. Some have opted to confront the economic downturn head-on by mentioning it and even joking about it.

    Restoration Hardware sent a one-day-only "spend $400, save $100" voucher with a bailout theme on October 2. They may have missed the mark—as a joke, it's a bit off-color and politically-slanted. They were using current events creatively, which can be clever, but they probably should have played with something less controversial and stressful for many subscribers. launched a new Real Estate service on October 2, which they introduced in a letter at the bottom of this email beforehand. In the introductory letter, they remind subscribers that is committed to helping subscribers save money, and the letter makes their new service seem on-brand and sincerely subscriber-focused.

    Splendora also takes a branded attitude towards the economic crisis that is gutsy and dismissive, urging subscribers to check out the upcoming trends that they'll be able to shop after this "little rough patch."

    Spend and Save. In line with Restoration Hardware's discount approach (but without the bailout theme), Bloomingdales, Boden and Neiman Marcus, among others, offered limited-time, "Buy More, Save More," offers (as Bloomie's called theirs). These not only encourage higher spending; they also encourage spending NOW, before the offer expires. The messages warn subscribers that their offer isn't waiting for Wall Street to stop reeling, and neither should you.

    Many retailers are feeling the squeeze, and we're sure to see more and more unique approaches to email as the situations unfold.

    Still spending,
    Lisa Harmon and Alex Madison of Smith-Harmon

    –>Read other Make it Pop! posts.


    Help Us Spread the Word about the eec Speakers Bureau

    Please help us get the word out about the eec Speakers Bureau by including the following item in your next client newsletter or on your blog:

    Email Marketing Experts Available to Speak at Your Next Event

    Do you belong to an organization or group whose members could benefit from learning more about email marketing? Then please tell them that the Direct Marketing Association's Email Experience Council wants to help. The eec's Speakers Bureau has experts available across the U.S. and Canada who have committed themselves to helping email marketers maximize their return on investment and avoid pitfalls such as CAN-SPAM violations and being blacklisted. These industry veterans have waived all speakers' fees and can talk on a wide variety of topics, including…

    ● How Email Compliments Other Channels
    ● Obeying CAN-SPAM and Other Laws
    ● Getting and Maintaining Permission
    ● Ensuring Your Emails Are Delivered
    ● Growing a Large and Active List
    ● What to Send to Your Subscribers

    To learn more and to request a speaker, please visit the eec's Speakers Bureau.

    *Help us spread the word about this initiative by re-running this item in your client newsletter or on your blog. Thank you.


    Turning Subscriber Worry into Advantage

    When consumers and business professionals worry about the economy, marketers find themselves squeezed. Such is the state of affairs these days as we head into the busy Q4/end of year/holiday season time.

    Email can help if it's used effectively as part of a subscriber loyalty and relationship effort. Sending more of the same old batch-and-blast promotions will only flood the inbox, depress your deliverability, destroy your brand trust, and annoy good customers who are worried about their own bank accounts. Resist the urge to think of email as "free"—it's not free. It's cost-effective, certainly, but a mindset that characterizes the channel as free quickly leads to over-mailing. What you want is less email—but messages that are more effective because they are more relevant.

    Who wants to be reminded to spend, spend, spend when we are worried about our financial health? Instead, take an active interest in helping your subscribers, and make sure your content and contact strategies are aligned with what the subscriber needs, not what you have to sell.

    In a recession, your best buyers and loyal clients are even more important. When customers are easily distracted by lower prices or free add-ons at the competitor, it's even more important to make clear the benefits of staying with your brand. This does not mean offering more discounts, although that certainly can be an effective short-term strategy. Instead, expand your loyalty program and use email to provide both sizzle and steak. Replace just two of your generic, batch-and-blast messages this month with tailored messages around the benefits of sticking with your brand. Spend time on the subject lines and the copy (keep it brief) to make sure it resonates.

    Then, deliver the benefits via email—a very efficient and effective way to connect. If you are ecommerce, add a Buying Guide or Gift Guide to the loyalty package. If you are B2B, invite your best customers to participate in online events and interactive networking—help them build their business and they will continue to support yours. Be sure to tap the next tier down of buyers and expand the reach of your program. Invite current members to bring a friend or colleague along, and reward them both.

    Test these ideas with a control group this month. Segment a small portion of your file (maybe 5%) and send half as many promotional messages, but replace 25%-50% of them with relevant content, tips or interactive offers. See if revenue increases or decreases. Also watch deliverability, complaint rates and activity per subscriber. Let me know if you want help constructing the test and measuring results.

    Use the results of all these ideas to make the case for stronger subscriber-centric approaches to email marketing. If email doesn't contribute more now, then we can't expect to remain at the center of the marketing mix, or budget.

    —Stephanie Miller of Return Path


    Seminar on Email Compliance on Nov. 3 in New York

    This 4-hour seminar in New York is part of a ground-breaking series of email compliance-focused events. This specific seminar will cover the LashBack and UnsubCentral processes and deliverables within a framework of educating participants as to the need for comprehensive compliance process as a foundation to successful email marketing and email reputation protection.

    Participants will learn the 10 Guidelines of CAN-SPAM compliance, with drill down on unsubscribe compliance, unsubscribe processes including suppression list best practices, the new FTC unsubscribe rule and compliance's overall impact on reputation and deliverability.

    Email Compliance: The Foundation of Reputation and Deliverability
    Produced by the Email Experience Council and the Direct Marketing Association
    Monday, Nov. 3 at 1pm
    eec/DMA Seminar Center, New York

    John Engler, Vice President and General Manager, UnsubCentral
    Bennet Kelley, Esq., Founder, The Internet Law Center
    James O'Brien, Director of Marketing, LashBack

    This seminar is $99, but eec members can get $20 off using the discount code "eecM."

    >>Register Now for this seminar!


    Can We Talk? The eec's New Speaker Bureau

    From the eec's Member RoundtablesAsk me what I do for a living. Go ahead. Ask. I love to tell people about email marketing, and so do most of our eec members. So after a lot of discussion and effort, we're proud to announce the launch of the eec Speakers Bureau. The concept is a simple one, but with tremendous power behind it. While most of us in the eec live and breathe (and dream and sweat) email marketing, that's not necessarily the case with all marketers everywhere. Many companies either don't do email marketing or worse, do it badly.

    The new Speakers Bureau will match eec members with speaking opportunities at events that without our support would have little or no programming about email marketing. The goal of the Bureau is to spread fundamental best practices by proactively reaching out to communities where our message of responsible, permission-based email marketing can do the most good.

    But we need your help to make this a big success. We want to expand the roster of available speakers to be able to provide assistance to conference organizers large and small. Please join the Speakers Bureau and register to be considered for speaking requests in your community.

    Additionally, let us know of any conferences or events that would be an ideal platform to deliver marketers information about email marketing best practices. We'll match up the organization's needs with a speaker. We would also appreciate it if you let us know about articles, whitepapers and other free resources related to the topics covered by the Bureau that can be distributed to support and extend our presentations.

    Many thanks to everyone on the Communications Roundtable who worked long and hard to get us to this point. We look forward to making the Speakers Bureau beneficial for eec members and the organizations we reach out to, providing lots of information about email marketing at its basic and its best.

    —eec Communications Roundtable co-chair Kay Cavender of Silverpop


    How Email Impacts Society

    I want to share something inspirational that's happening in the email industry (Oh, and you can learn some best practices too!). It's a recap of the Email Experience Council's current Nonprofit Project. The project originated as a manner to enable peers and competitors in the email marketing industry to put business aside and work as a team to create the best email efforts for a good cause.

    In 2007, the eec selected the Women's Bean Project as their project focus. Stephanie Miller, from Return Path, volunteered countless hours to lead this initiative and its team on behalf of the eec. I spoke with Stephanie about this effort to get the inside scoop on the project:

    The Women's Bean Project (WBP) helps women break the cycle of poverty and unemployment by teaching workplace competencies for entry-level jobs through employment and by teaching job readiness skills in their gourmet food production business.

    The WBP was sending one-off donor and volunteer announcements from a database created in FileMaker.

    The WBP came to the eec with the following needs and goals:

    1. Efficiency: Communicate effectively and efficiently with donors, volunteers and buyers (online and offline).

    2. Impact & Choice: Retain donors and buyers through a higher number of touch points—ensuring that each touch is meaningful but also reducing costs and the amount of staff time required for each. Also, allow each customer/donor to select the method of communication (online or offline) that works best for them.

    3. Cost Savings: Continue to reach every customer, even as the number of buyers increases by 30% each year (raising the costs of printing and postage significantly).

    4. Practicality: Launch and manage a program on a very small staff—literally one-quarter of one person was dedicated to email marketing for all three audiences (donors, buyers, volunteers).

    It is a testament to the email industry and the eec membership that very quickly we had 15 talented professionals volunteer to help, and several vendors step forward and to provide tools and services free of charge. ExactTarget provided a free basic sending license and also graciously donated nearly 15 hours of support throughout the project. Return Path donated a free rendering and deliverability account. Other companies represented included Blackbaud, BlueHornet, Future Integrated Marketing, Industry Mailout, Leapfrog Enterprises, Merkle and Wolters Kluwer Financial Services.

    The team focused on six specific areas to create the program—content, design, infrastructure and list growth.

    Content Strategy:
    ● Identified ways that email can support the WBP mission
    ● Developed a content strategy
    ● Debated and finalized permission standards (DOI)
    ● Developed a calendar for promotions around the holidays, including promoting some local events and fundraisers
    ● Advised on sending an email counterpart for the annual appeal to donors (direct mail)
    ● Promotional content recommendations: (1) special offers: 10% discount for National Soup Month; (2) developed concept, copy and photography for a Valentine's Day email that would have viral impact; and (3) developed a year's worth of promotional themes based on holidays in order to boost sales during non-peak months (e.g., soup sales in summer are very slow)
    ● Set up Google Analytics so WBP could measure success of the email program for driving sales and page views
    ● Helped train the WBP team to review campaign results with an eye toward optimization

    ● Developed wireframes for four types of emails
    ● Designed templates for newsletter, postcards, DOI/welcome and donor appeals
    ● Loaded the templates into ExactTarget and tested them
    ● Helped launch an inaugural issue—which included list hygiene and deliverability with an old file, as well as an opt-out strategy for the existing database

    ● Worked with the team to set up an ExactTarget account
    ● Upload the templates; Access the self-service training
    ● Testing and mailing
    Course Correction: Aligning with with Yahoo! Store and cleaning up templates

    List Growth:
    ● Starting point: 75% valid records
    ● Developed organic, offline and viral list growth ideas
    ● Recommended ways to optimize data capture on the website
    ● Reviewed the subscription flow for permission clarity and growth optimization

    Wireframe Sample:

    Here's a quick rundown of the results:

    1. We launched a program! It is practical, earns results, garners the praise and kudos of subscribers, donors and the WBP Board of Directors and has legs—the WBP can continue this email program when the volunteer team disbands.

    2. Subscribers love it! The inaugural issue of the newsletter generated:
    ● 32% open rates
    ● 15% clickthrough rate
    ● 3.1% bounce rate on new data (25% bounce rate on old list data)

    3. Subscribers are great WBP customers! Page views from email subscribers are two times higher than other sources.

    For more details on our work with the Women's Bean Project and past Nonprofit Projects, visit the Nonprofit Project page on the Email Experience Council's website.

    —Jeanniey Mullen of the eec