I went with the opposition recently and visited a shopping mall. Three in fact. The number of shops that had closed was testament not to the recession but email marketing. Even in the shops that were open there were short queues at the till. Crowds were thin. Yet most shops remained open and business seemed steady.
Despite being the archetypical miserable bloke when shopping, I have to say that the experience was far from depressing. The old days of crockery left on coffee shop tables have gone and I bought three DVDs that I could have found cheaper online. I was irritated at my lack of sensible shopping. I had fallen for the atmosphere of the mall.
There were bright colours in certain shops, others were rather laid back and all pastels. There were pretty pictures in some which suggested that I could enjoy a fulfilling lifestyle if only I would buy a certain (but not very cheap, pair of trainers.
Even at the till I was confronted by other offers. Despite being experienced in email marketing, I was not immune from impulse buying and picked an item on a whim.
So what do email marketing customers get when they click through to buy the product? Or more to the point, what do your customers see?
Most landing pages are austere and clinical. This was refreshing in the early days. Price and speed were everything, at least everything the high street was not. Perhaps now is the time to make the experience more friendly rather than just user-friendly.
As you leave high street shops you will see other offers. You do not have to read through them, take it all in and delay your exit. But you can if you wish. Email marketing’s biggest hurdle, getting the subscriber to open the email, has been completed. Do not waste the opportunity. Try pushing other items.
Care needs to be exercised. Do not slow the process. The tortuous routes to the check-outs; favoured by most mall retailers is not for us.
Shops have been at this selling lark for longer than email marketing has been around. Learn from them. Pinch their ideas.