Adventures in Mobile Marketing

Why & How Regional Emails Work

Geographic email programs are very, very successful. They are difficult to get, as email marketers, since we can’t determine locale from email address. I’ve had discussions on discussions about matching an email list with ISP and there fore region, but the false-positives outweight the real positives. The old saw is, the massive amount of Vienna, Virginia folks who are AOL subscribers (and do not reside in Vienna). First, though, why is it worth the trouble, and lastly, how to determine geographical location.

What rocks about regional campaigns

As usual, don’t believe me, do your own test. Take a randomly selected control group, and then a targeted local group, and serve local content, and serve diffuse general content. You will see the response rate- opens, clicks, purchases- skyrocket in regional campaigns. Lately the Obama campaign has been regionally SMS’ing and emailing, anything from “call undecided states,” to “meet-up at Temple bar for the debates.” Past clients have further created regional relationships with other businesses to bring potential customers in the door with discounts, or invitationals.

I think regional works so much better than non-regional campaigns because, as consumers, we already have a host of relationships, impressions, and brand recognition with those regional businesses and locations. So when a new brand makes an association they can leverage off of all of those positive feelings, and one major feeling is trust. As all CRM customers know, if you can bring more trust into the relationship you are farther towards a successful one.

How to get Region?
This is tough data to get for an email marketer. Various methods of receiving region:
- Phone number is regionally located (see Obama SMS campaign for getting mine)
- Positive activity on regionally focused emails – you can provide an email campaign with a list of regions, and whoever clicks on X region can generally be considered interested in that region. Note, your email system has to be sophisticated enough to segment on clicked links.
- Asking for zip code (generally considered by consumers as less identifiable and easier to get) in a contest or just outright, for regional email messages
- Changing the online sign-up or registration information to get this initially

Last tip: Please put the region in the subject line. Show off that you know it, and that this email is tailored to the recipient!

Examples:
Williams-Sonoma. They have targeted me as San Francisco Bay Area, but they neglected to put it in the subject line, which have really pushed me to open it.

(2076 unread) AT&T Yahoo! Mail, anna_billstrom
Uploaded with plasq‘s Skitch!

Of course regional campaigns are a travel company’s baileywick, but even here they do a kind of silly goof:

(2074 unread) AT&T Yahoo! Mail, anna_billstrom
Uploaded with plasq‘s Skitch!
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Written on Wednesday, 08. October 2008 at 17:17 In the category CRM, campaigns, mechanics, segmentation, techniques. Follow the comments via RSS here: RSS-Feed. Read the Comments. Trackbacks- Trackback on this post. Share on FriendFeed

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1 Comment »

  1. Google’s Blog alert sent me to this post because of the term “regionally.” This article should be useful to the subscribers of Regional Community Development News, so I will include a link to it in the October 22 issue. It can be found at
    http://regional-communities.blogspot.com/ Please visit, check the tools and consider a link. Tom

    Comment: Tom Christoffel – 10. October 2008 @ 8:49 pm

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