How e-mail marketing saved Zepto from cart abandonment, ET BrandEquity
Email marketing’s relevance is being questioned in this day and age as it is one of the oldest forms of digital marketing. A staple in the marketer’s playbook –many are questioning its relevance compared to other forms of digital marketing like social media marketing or SEO marketing. However, industry experts still rate email marketing as one of the most effective and cost-efficient ways to reach and engage with customers. There are many types of personalized messages that brands can send to their customers using email marketing. Some of them include welcome emails, emails personalized to their product preferences, abandoned cart emails, exclusive promotional offers, informative newsletters and so on. Quick commerce brand Zepto understood the importance and effectiveness of email marketing, particularly when it came to the space of abandoned carts.
In Zepto’s case, email marketing has helped nurture the relationships with its customers and engage with them effectively in a way that drives transactions. The starting point of the brand’s email marketing strategy is a robust database of customer data. Zepto is heavily reliant on first party data collected from customers who install the app and interact with the business.
Amritanshu Nanda, Zepto’s chief marketing officer called email marketing a low cost, high ROI medium. There are many users who are not comfortable sharing their contact numbers with a brand, but are more open to sharing their email ID. This audience cohort interacts well with email marketing messages.
The brand has allocated roughly one percent of its marketing budget to email marketing, but it’s still very effective. “The media spend per unit is very low. If I wanted to reach out and send mails to 10,000 people, it would cost me less than 100 rupees,” said Nanda.
Zepto approaches email marketing as a channel that helps it both retain and engage with consumers. Nanda called email marketing a highly evolved and effective performance marketing channel which makes for effective communication without being too intrusive. The different parameters that can be measured include email open rates, click through rates, conversion rates, traffic, and revenue — value of transactions completed from the email message.
For most marketers in the mobile or online space, abandoned carts are a big problem. Nanda and his team found that email communications that address customers’ abandoned carts in a personalized way is an effective way of ensuring the customer finishes the transaction.
When the customer abandons the cart without completing the transaction, they are sent an email with a set of relevant products similar to the ones added in the cart. In this case, the email mimics a subsection of the app – which Nanda calls an effective marketing tool in itself.
“Most marketers these days tend to view email marketing as an outdated tool but due to the extent of personalization that’s possible with email, the medium also has the potential to deliver high ROI. It is also one of the most measurable email marketing channels available to marketers today,” said Nanda.
One can expect a benchmark of anywhere between 15 to 20x ROI on an email marketing campaign. Nanda admitted that the channel is not scalable, but has a high rate of return on investment.
Everyone checks their email inbox at least once a day, so being present in that digital space – even without the user opening the email – aids brand recall. According to Nanda, open rates for email campaigns generally hover between 8-12 percent for brands which means that one tenth of the user base that’s receiving the emails is engaging with the contents of the email as well. Within that – the click to open rate can also vary from 10-20%, which he called a ‘phenomenal CTR’.
Designing the email message itself can be challenging and this is where the role of creativity comes in. When a well designed email with a relevant message and a witty subject line lands up in a consumer’s inbox, the chances of him opening the email, interacting with the brand and its offering increase exponentially. The cherry on top of the cake is the subject line for email marketing efforts. A captivating subject line can go a long way in prompting the consumer to open the mail and interact with the brand.
On any given day, a customer interacts with hundreds of brands. Even more so on digital platforms where ads are everywhere. The idea is to create recall within that email channel. This means sometimes that business growth or ROI might take a backseat, but the more deeply segmented the email campaign and its communication is, the easier it is for the emailer to stand out in the midst of all that clutter.
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