When it comes to multichannel marketing, timing matters. Just ask our clients. We always encourage our customers to invest in testing to determine which messages, channels, and timing get the best results for them.
Does this require an extra effort? Yes, but it’s worth it. Just ask one of our telecom clients, which did both customer profiling and A/B testing of its channels and timing. It found that if it sent out emails immediately after a customer had shopped on its website or visited one of its stores, then followed up with a targeted, personalized direct mail offer within 24 hours, it got double-digit improvements in its response rates.
This timing was carefully crafted. Based on months of testing, the telecom determined that if it got the direct mail follow-up out within 24 hours, there was a 30% chance that the customer would make a purchase. For every day that it waited, however, this chance dropped by 50%.
Those are some incredible numbers!
The company also tested channels alone. Some customers got direct mail only. Others got email only. In the end, the telecom determined that, for the majority of its customers, the two channels work better together. Of course, there are some customers for whom the company doesn’t have email addresses, so they get direct mail only. There are also customers who have opted out of direct mail, so they get email only.
This is why it’s so important to be using both direct mail and email effectively. Ideally, you should use them in an integrated program, but for certain customers and situations, you should have standalone programs ready, as well.
Results will vary based on your individual market and customer base, so don’t rely on the channels and timing that work for someone else. For some companies, email followed by direct mail is the way to go. For others, direct mail is most effective when it is followed by email. The days, times, and length between messaging will vary, too.
To get the best out of your marketing, test and refine both your channels and your timing to see what combinations work best for you.