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BizReport : Email Marketing : June 28, 2011

dotMailer report reveals shocking email personalization stats

Today's email marketers have access to customer data that enables them to better target their messages but, according to dotMailer's annual Hitting the Mark report, few in the UK are making the most of this valuable pool of information.

by Helen Leggatt

dotmailer logo.gifdotMailer's annual report has been updated this year to analyze whether British retailers are using the customer data available to them to personalize and better target email communications.

Their findings are, for this day and age, quite shocking. Over two-thirds (69%) of emails sent were found to contain no personalization whatsoever.

It gets worse.

A whopping 87% of emails sent to customers following a purchase were not tied to that customer's previous purchase behavior and were found to be no different from emails sent to cold prospects.

Hold on to your hats for this last stat.

Just one retailer - - followed up an online purchase with an up- or cross-sell email tailored to the original purchase.

This really is a wake-up call for Britain's email marketers, says Tink Taylor, Managing Director at dotMailer.

"By their nature, online sellers should have access to customer data that can allow them to dramatically increase the relevancy and impact of their email marketing communications with customers," said Taylor.

"In this tough economic climate, marketers who are not actively collecting and using that data to create targeted email messages that drive related sales are really missing a trick."

There is a glimmer of hope in dotMailer's report. Over two-thirds of brands (67%) kept customers informed of order progress via email and the vast majority (93%) used triggered email to "reassure and build customer loyalty". But, 3 of the 25 retailers failed to send order or dispatch confirmation emails.

"We hoped by now to see the big brands embracing and mastering these techniques: dynamic content, triggered emails, post-sale retention and repeat purchase marketing. But we found the opposite - too few retailers are doing too little in the way of effective pre and post sale targeting," concludes dotMailer's report.

"Whether this is because marketing data is simply not being collected, or whether it's because the data that these business hold won't support targeted email marketing, the outcome is the same. Opportunities to drive growth, revenue and loyalty are being wasted."

Tags: consumer data, customer retention, email campaign, email marketing, email personalization, loyalty

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