Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Restaurants Feast On Email Marketing

The article below (from the Center for Media Research) shows that restaurants are serving up solid results with email marketing. This is great for an industry rooted in repeat business. It's also something that BtoB marketers should take note of...why?

Well many restaurants use email marketing to feed loyalty programs and promote coming up events. BtoB companies should look to do the same with email-based lead nurture programs. Just remember the content MUST be solid -- educational or hard to find content is the best!

If you are not already using the approach give it a try, before your competition eats your lunch.

Restaurants Top Email Open and Click-Through in First Half

According to the Harte-Hanks Postfuture Index of comparative e-mail metrics for January-June 2006 among 13 industry categories, restaurants enjoyed the best open rates at 167.7% (open rates exceeding 100% occur by way of pass-alongs, and reopened e-mail) as well as the best click-through rates at 57.5%. Retail had the lowest open rate (35.3%), while the automotive sector had the lowest click-through rate (5.7%). All reported averages are unweighted.

Richard Merrick, managing director, Postfuture at Harte-Hanks, noting that behavioral targeting of messaging can raise metrics significantly, said "One large retailer achieved a 74.2% open rate, 24.1% click-through rate and 0.1% opt-out rate, just by synchronizing e-mail with in-store activity. Using transactional e-mail to make dynamic product recommendations produce, on average, a 148.8% open rate and a 20.4% click-through rate."

The 13 industries mentioned in the study (in order of descending click-through rates) are:

Restaurants (57.5%)
Publishing (55.6%)
Pharmaceutical (23.8%)
Travel and hospitality (23.4%)
Conference events (14.2%)
Financial services (11.0%)
Technology (10.9%)
Government (9.5%)
Insurance (9.5%)
Consumer packaged goods (8.6%)
Entertainment (8.1%)
Retail (6.0%)
Automotive (5.7%)

Among all sectors for all purposes of e-mail combined, the average delivered rate stands at 91.2% -- with an average open rate of 78.8% of those e-mail delivered, click-through rate of 18.4% of all e-mail delivered, and an opt-out rate of 0.4% of all e-mail delivered.

E-mail sent to consumers received the higher click-through rates of 19.9% and open rates of 78.9%, while business-to-business e-mail had rates of 11.2% and 67.7%, respectively.

More information about the Harte-Hanks study can be found here.

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