Email is a major marketing tool
More online consumers use email than social networks for brand interaction, according to a new study from US digital marketing firm ExactTarget. A majority of online consumers (58%) start their day by checking email, and 88% of online consumers check email at least once per day. Another 20% of online consumers start their day on an online search engine or portal, and 11% begin on Facebook. Much smaller percentages start their day on a news site, their company’s website, or other site/online resource. This enthusiasm for email as a marketing tool is reflected by New Zealand e-commerce specialists. “I really rate email marketing,” says Tristan Marris, a director of Auckland-based 96black. “I don’t think it’s used enough. It’s low-cost, it’s measurable, and it comes across really professional when you’re sending out nicely designed emails with good information in them. It’s great for sales-orientated organisations, specifically because you can understand what your target market is interested in; you can get statistics on who’s actually looking at what specific product or service that you’re offering, and you can then take that back to a sales team and follow it up with a phone call if you want.” Timing is crucial in an email marketing campaign. A well-crafted and targeted email may lose impact if you send it on the wrong day. Online media company Gather (www.gather. com) says numerous studies show that mail sent on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays has the best chance of being opened. But that’s not a hard-andfast rule. For example, Monday is also a good day because after a long weekend, many email users make it a priority to organise their inboxes. “This means there is a good chance that they will run across your message and open it,” said a Gather blog post.