But wait! You might be surprised at the reason behind the noise. It isn’t just the coolness factor the “Hey wow!” of streaming video or audio that makes this campaign notable. Instead, it’s the information gathering, the tracking possibilities that make this type of messaging really stand out.
Opus2 Direct, a portfolio management company based in Toronto, wanted to run a campaign that would generate interest in potential clients. Not having much experience in email marketing, they tried a couple of email design and management firms, but they weren’t happy with their final product.
The design and the content weren’t well married; the piece looked good but didn’t perform well. The content was front-heavy, and the tests showed the information was more than end-user modems could handle.
Luckily, says Martha Powell of Opus2 Direct (okay, I know you ClickZ readers are curious, her title is a mouthful: Senior Vice President Marketing and Client Experience, so I tried to get away with calling her a spokesperson), by word of mouth her group came in contact with Interactivebyte, an email marketing tool from Innovative Information Technologies International Inc. The Interactivebyte folks took over the project and reworked the multimedia Flash email.
One important task was optimizing the message for delivery over 56Kbps connections. Munir Panjvani, a partner at Interactivebyte, notes that this is the most prevalent type of connection today (and, of course, anyone with even higher bandwidth easily can read messages meant for dial-up modems.)
Another task was to rework the way content was delivered within the message. The original piece had a link to a web page, but in Interactivebyte’s rendition, the email essentially contains a web page, blurring the lines between the web and email.
The message looked like this: Upon opening, recipients see a message area that shows the Opus2 Direct logo and a notice informing them this is a Flash email. (If users don’t have Flash, which is evident from a small box in the message, they can link directly to the Macromedia Shockwave site. Plus, they can link to a web page if they can’t view the page within the message.) Click on an arrow, and what resembles a well-designed web page pops up in the message with menu links, streaming text, and colors that are easy on the eye.
But looks aren’t everything! What matters is what the results were, and how tracking can be used to improve future results. That’s the other important element of the case study. So, drum roll please!
The message was sent out to 6,120 people. Keeping in mind that the target audience was potential clients (those with whom Opus2 Direct had no prior relationship), the unique open rate of nearly a third (32 percent, to be exact) can only be considered successful. (Another open-rate tracking stat shows that most people opened the mail in the first nine days, which is not too surprising, nor is the fact that so few individuals opened this email on nonwork days.)
Another piece of the tracking puzzle revolves around tracking which links and areas within the message were accessed. Powell says Opus2 Direct is planning another campaign later this summer that will show those results, but unfortunately, in this case study, we can’t see results because Interactivebyte didn’t build the message from the ground up and therefore, it didn’t log those stats.
But you can see the type of tracking capability firsthand and find out how smart you are at the same time. Test out your IQ on this Brainteaser. Interactivebyte will track ClickZ reader results which questions are viewed, that is. You’ll know immediately whether you’re Mensa material, and I’ll post the data next week.
Calling All Marketers: Do you have an email marketing case study that might be featured on ClickZ? If so, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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