Opt-in (or permission-based) email marketing is earning its stripes time and time again as companies achieve outstanding response rates.
On- and off-line businesses in South Africa are starting to realise the value of building and maintaining customer databases for regular and interactive email communication. With so many advertisers competing for eyeballs via print, TV, DM and web; companies who understand and engage their customers 1:1 are being rewarded with customer loyalty and repeat sales. One such company capitalising on the value of opt-in or permission-based email marketing is Boschendal wine estate.
Boschendal's aims were to profile and grow their database, to increase brand awareness and to gain a better understanding of their customers, and they selected Digital Fire as their online marketing partner. Digital Fire's profiled opt-in data list enabled Boschendal to target high LSM wine drinkers, resulting in a highly focused campaign. A luxurious weekend away in Franschoek as well as R5, 000 worth of wine selected by the winner was offered. Of the 13,000 consumers who received the mailing and saw the brand; 7,014 opened the email (54%); 24,425 passed it on to their friends virally, and Boschendal ended up with 10,885 unique entries (87.7% interactive response) which were added to their database.
All entries were profiled via a questionnaire on a branded microsite, such as: what type of wine they drink, how often they drink wine and what magazines they read for example. Such detail now assists Boschendal with targeted new product launches, promotional offers and above-the-line campaigns.
Boschendal's Marketing Manager, Ina Basson, says that they are now using email marketing as one of their primarily advertising tools and broadcasting one page campaigns as well as viral campaigns to increase their customer database. Ina comments that "Digital Fire's permission-based email campaigns have enabled us to not only acquire new customers to grow our own database, but also reinforce the brand, create one to one communication and interact with each consumer personally to reinforce loyalty to Boschendal."
Digital Fire has 250,000 highly profiled South African consumers who have given their permission to be emailed information that interests them, from property to travel to investments to sport to health and fitness to mention a few. Permission-based email marketing is the fastest growing advertising medium in the UK and Europe due to its response rates and ROI (PWC/e-consultancy 2006). Digital Fire, a division of Spencer Boyd New Media Consultancy with offices in London and Cape Town, has brought these skills and expertise to South Africa from the more advanced markets abroad.