Not long ago, I received this email from a vendor that I’ve done business with in the past:
It’s been awhile since your last order from www.primerastore.com. As a valued customer, we would like to invite you to take advantage of this exclusive offer available only to select customers.
Save 10% on your next order on www.primerastore.com!
To activate your savings, just enter your promotional code at check out. PrimeraStore.com is a great place for purchasing ink cartridges, approved media and many other Primera products.
Promotional Code: xxxxx
This discount is valid through March 28, 2008, and is offered only for billing and shipping addresses in the USA.
Primera Technology, Inc.
Two Carlson Parkway North
Plymouth, Minnesota 55447 U.S.A.
They should be congratulated for noticing that I haven’t bought anything from them in a while, and of course, for going beyond that and making the effort to contact me and make an offer to get me to order again.
But…it sure isn’t very personal. Let’s look at where they could have personalized it a bit more:
1) They have my email address and ALL of my contact information. Yet they only chose to use the email address. Why not “Dear Mark” instead of “Dear Friend”.
The “friend” reference reminds me of all the sterile emails I get from my “How do the presidential candidates use their websites and email” project. Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, McCain and others asked for my name and/or email during the “send me candidate news” signup process, yet they don’t bother to personalize the emails using my name or where I live (they can easily figure that out using common automated tools or services).
Only Ron Paul has sent personalized, location-specific emails – and even with his campaign, it isn’t done in every email.
2) They signed the email: “Primera Technology”. Not “Bob Smith, Northwest Sales Manager”, or “Mary Jones, Lost Customer Search Team” or anything along those lines. Whoever happens to be running this campaign should have included their name and contact info in case I have questions, problems etc. The email response address goes to their generic sales email address, and the other contact info provided is similar to that. Generic, generic, generic.
3) How is the success of this offer being tracked? Thankfully, they seem to be prepared for this by using the promotion code. Perhaps they are sending some of these emails out with personal names and from a specific person and they are testing the response to each option using the promotion codes.
I doubt it, but I hope I’m wrong.
Learn from every promotional piece you get. Analyze how you would have done it differently, as well as what was done wisely. Use them to make your promotions better.
And most of all, keep track of how long it has been since I last visited your store. Don’t let me get lost.