Spa & Salon Email Marketing: Are You Doing It Wrong?

Spa & Salon Email Marketing_shutterstock_362228114-1Special to GrouponWorks from Rachel Whitting of Spa Standard

GrouponWorks is thrilled to bring you some amazing content from Spa Standard, a social educational experience for spa and salon owners. Spa Standard is also offering an exclusive 25% discount on Professional or Business level memberships for GrouponWorks readers. Read to the bottom for your special discount code.

Read all the content from Spa Standard here.

Continue Reading ❯

How to Segment Email Lists

junk mailOne of the biggest marketing trends right now is customization – and I don’t mean offering monogram services, either. I mean sending your customers the right information at the right time based on their past behavior – purchasing, browsing-but-not-buying, or other activities.

Integrating a customized approach into your small business isn’t hard. The best way to start is email segmentation. When you break your email list into groups, you will see a much higher return on your email marketing efforts. Continue Reading ❯

Holiday Email Marketing 2015: 5 Things to Know

holiday email marketingI know it isn’t even Labor Day yet, but are you ready for the holidays? If you’re a retailer, the answer is probably YES! You already have a staffing plan in place, new products are on their way, and the decorations are coming out soon.

But is your email marketing plan ready? Continue Reading ❯

6 Automated Emails to Boost Sales & Customer Loyalty

email marketingDogs may be man’s best friend, but automated emails are a small business owner’s best friend.

Think that’s a bit of hyperbole? Well think about it this way: Instead of trying to follow up with each and every customer after they make a purchase, automated emails can do it for you, freeing up precious time while boosting sales and customer loyalty.

Here’s how automated emails work: Continue Reading ❯

#TBT The Emoticon

smiley face emojiWith all the hubbub surrounding the new set of emojis provided with iOS 8.3, it’s important to pay homage to the three keystrokes that started it all – the emoticon. While some argue emoticons appeared as early as 1648 in this poem by Robert Herrick, it’s generally accepted that the emoticon as we know it was invented by Scott Fahlman, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University, the New York Times reported. This early use of the emoticon eventually led to the more colorful and quirky emojis that become more popular every day.  Continue Reading ❯

3 Steps to High Email Click Through Rates

email click throughConstant Contact analyzed more than 2.1 million customer emails over the course of 13 weeks – and they made some stunning discoveries around the length of text and number of images that can make or break email click through rates (CTR) for both B2C and B2B businesses.

For B2C businesses (that is businesses that serve customers, as opposed to businesses that serve other businesses), there are three rules to keep in mind: Continue Reading ❯

Email Ideas for After the Purchase

email marketingYour small business spends a lot of time and money attracting new customers, but are you forgetting something? Like maybe your current customers that you already won over?

Every purchase your new or returning customers make is a great chance for you to further build on that relationship, develop loyalty, and really drive sales. SilverPop put together a fantastic email marketing guide on the subject, so I read through it and pulled out the top six post-purchase email ideas that any small retailer can use. Some of these ideas will work best for brick and mortar businesses, some will work best for online businesses.

1. Post-first purchase welcome messages

If someone subscribes to your email list during their first purchase (maybe right before or after check-out), write a unique series of welcome messages that build on your new relationship and encourage a repeat purchase.

The first email can thank them for their purchase and remind them of what makes your shop unique. The second email can offer a discount on their next purchase; these types of emails are called Bouncebacks, and they can be used after any purchase to encourage repeat purchases (they work, too, so definitely use them!).

The third email can remind new customers of where to connect with you on social media and what type of information they can expect to see/receive – or they can include one of the following four ideas.

2. Reminder to complete profile

For e-businesses, you don’t have to send a “complete your profile” reminder out after a new customer’s first purchase, but it’s the best time to do so, as their experience with your brand is still fresh in their minds.

In your email, explain that a complete profile allows you to provide them with relevant content and offers that they are actually interested in. In the profile, ask for brand and category preferences, general interests, and demographic information.

3. Product review/ratings

Did you know that reviews and ratings have been proven to drive purchases? Two or three weeks after a purchase (or once the customer has sufficient time to use the product), send an email requesting a quick review.

Allow customers to rate the product on a sliding scale for quality, functionality, and other factors that are important to your audience, and give them space for a brief write-up.

4. Cross-sell or upsell

Cross-sell and upsell emails recommend other products or services based on a recent purchase; talk to your web developer about setting these up. Like asking for a review or rating, timing can vary. Just be sure to include photos of the recommended products (bonus if you also include a recent review!).

5. Share your experience

Ask customers to share their experience using your product on social media (GoPro has built their business on this concept). Obviously, the experience needs to be something fun (cooking, traveling, adventure sports, etc.).

In your request, mention the product and ask specifically what kind of story you’d like and where to share it (Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram).

6. Win back

If the Bounceback email (to encourage the next purchase) did not work within a specific timeframe, break out a Win Back “We Missed You” email. Highlight some cool new products or services, top sellers, or a sweet discount – whatever you think will resonate most with your audience.

If you are a retailer, what else do you do to drive repeat purchases?

Monika Jansen is a copywriter and editor who is happiest pounding out blog posts, website content, and other marketing materials for her clients, who tend to be startups and professional service providers. She is a blogger for GrowSmartBiz and the managing editor of UberStories. You can follow her on Twitter (@monikacjansen) or find her on LinkedIn.

Any views, opinions, advice, or endorsements herein are the author(s)’s and are not necessarily the views of Groupon or its partners.

Email Marketing Ideas to Boost Holiday Sales

holiday email marketingEmail marketing is one of the best and most affordable ways to reach your customers during the frenzied holiday season – and stay on their minds. If you are looking for some new ideas to use in your email marketing campaign to boost sales this holiday season, we got ‘em.

With only about 60 days til Black Friday, it’s never too late to get your email marketing campaign planned, designed, and scheduled!

1. Offer a pre-Black Friday guarantee I saw this tip on the Vertical Response blog, and I have to say, it’s a very clever way to drive pre-holiday traffic to your store. Just let people know that if they find the same item you carry for less at a big box store, you will refund the difference.

2. Provide gift ideas by segment You can go beyond the general categories of “For Her/For Him” and get really creative. Segment by:

  • Family members (new parents, pre- schoolers, grandpa)
  • Interest (bakers, cooks, foodie who doesn’t cook)
  • Favorite activity (skiing, snowboarding, snow-shoeing, cross-country skiing)
  • Skill level (novice, pretty good, expert)
  • Age (pre-teen, teen, college)
  • Price (under $25, $50, $75, $100)

3. Highlight top-sellers Highlight your top selling or most popular items or services. Gather staff picks, and if you have enough, divide items into different categories (see above!) to get more mileage out of the idea.

4. Advertise in-store events or services Whether you host carolers or Santa, hand out free hot chocolate and cookies every day during the shopping season, or offer free wrapping or foot massages on weekends, give people a reason to visit your business.

5. Promote gift cards In 2013, $118 billion was spent on gift cards in the US alone, and by 2015, it is estimated that gift cards will account for 18% of holiday spending.* You do the math!

6. Offer daily deals You could offer a daily deal from Black Friday to New Year’s Day or offer one deal for 12 days, a la The 12 Days of Christmas (which actually begins on Christmas Day, but we’ll take creative license here).

7. Send a holiday card Work with a graphic designer on a beautiful holiday card that ties into your brand and thanks customers for their loyalty. Short, simple, and genuine is the way to go.

8. Bring shoppers in post-holiday Get your post-holiday emails ready to go now rather than December 26. Remind people to treat themselves and shop your sale to get what they really wanted.

What else do you have planned for your holiday marketing campaign this year?

*Stats courtesy of the Executive Board.

 Monika Jansen is a copywriter and editor who is happiest pounding out blog posts, website content, and other marketing materials for her clients, who tend to be startups and professional service providers. She is a blogger for GrowSmartBiz and the managing editor of UberStories. You can follow her on Twitter (@monikacjansen) or find her on LinkedIn.

Any views, opinions, advice, or endorsements herein are the author(s)’s and are not necessarily the views of Groupon or its partners.

Personalizing Content to Increase Sales

personalize and customize marketing contentOver the summer, eMarketer released a fascinating Content Personalization Roundup report that was pretty eye-opening, especially for B2B small businesses. The report had ramifications for B2C (aka regular businesses) as well.

There are three data-backed reasons to personalize your communications:

  • Consumers prefer relevant, personalized offers (per a survey conducted by International Data Corporation).
  • Consumers spend more money with brands that send them targeted offers (per a study conducted by Conversant).
  • B2B companies said it is effective and helps them reach their marketing objectives (per a global survey conducted by Ascend2 and NetProspex).

Here are some suggestions for how to personalize those communications:

Use a loyalty program Loyalty programs are extremely sophisticated. They will not only track behavioral and demographic information, but they will also allow you to send the right messages to the right people at the right time.

For example, you can send an SMS text at 3pm on a Wednesday to everyone who has come to a happy hour in the last month with an offer for a free appetizer that night.

Send emails based on past behavior Your point-of-sales (POS) system is also pretty sophisticated and can track what customers purchased over the last month, 6 months, and year. Use that information to personalize emails.

For example, email a discount offer to a customer who hasn’t made a purchase in six months or up the ante and email a customer who buys a lot of shoes to let her know that a big shoe sale is coming up.

Allow customers to set their preferences Turn the tables and put some of the work in your customers’ hands. Allow them to set preferences for the frequency, type, and subject matter of the emails they receive.

For example, I might only want to hear from you once week with special offers and events from the location that is closest to me.

Have any questions about personalizing content? If you already personalize content, what else do you do?

Monika Jansen is a copywriter and editor who is happiest pounding out blog posts, website content, and other marketing materials for her clients, who tend to be startups and professional service providers. She is a blogger for GrowSmartBiz and the managing editor of UberStories. You can follow her on Twitter (@monikacjansen) or find her on LinkedIn.

Any views, opinions, advice, or endorsements herein are the author(s)’s and are not necessarily the views of Groupon or its partners.