Three Tips to Boost Email Collection Rates
By Jennifer Kras, Marketing Development Manager with AutoLoop
A name without an e-mail address is a wasted opportunity. For every 10,000 contacts pulled from dealership management systems, on average only 3,000 have deliverable e-mail addresses. This means that most dealers are unable to send e-mails to 70 percent of their past, current and potential customers.
That's money left on the table, folks. E-mail is probably your dealership's best form of marketing for response rates and ROI. Our research shows that if a dealership can increase their e-mail collection rate a mere 10 percentage points--from 33 percent to 43 percent, for example--they will see an average of $56,000 more in customer pay over a year.
The good news is increasing e-mail collection rates is not rocket science. It just requires focus. I recommend setting a goal for 2015: increase your dealership's e-mail collection rate by 10 percent. This is doable with a two-pronged approach: improve the list you have and improve your e-mail collection rates with new and existing customers.
Here are three best practice tips to get you there:
- Do an Email Append. Run your contact database against a national append database. These companies take the known customer data such as names and postal address and match them with current e-mail addresses. After you get the new e-mail addresses, we recommend running a campaign that introduces your dealership and lets your customers choose whether to opt in for exclusive specials and coupons, or to unsubscribe. Typically dealerships that do this will see a seven to nine percent response rate, which results in at least 700 more confirmed e-mail addresses per 10,000 contacts.
- Get Your Sales & Service Team on Board. Much like attaining an important sales or service revenue goal, attaining an e-mail collection goal is more likely to happen if it's a team event. Make this the topic of an all-hands-on-deck meeting. Explain the facts and figures, and ask employees' help to brainstorm e-mail collection processes. If you can get them involved, they're more likely to follow the processes.
Consider offering your employees an incentive. If your CRM or DMS has a tool to track ROI associated with e-mail campaigns, offer employees a quarterly or year-end spiff or gift card. If the dealership meets the email collection goal, the employees receive their reward. Schedule one meeting at the end of every quarter to track progress.
- Offer Customers An Incentive. Today's consumers are sophisticated enough to know that giving an e-mail address usually means they're opting into an e-mail list. Have your employees brainstorm a list of scripts to overcome objections, such as: "We occasionally e-mail coupons that we only make available to customers via e-mail. Are you sure you don't want to receive these exclusive offers?"
In today's world, e-mail addresses are no more personal than mailing addresses or phone numbers, and 81 percent of consumers surveyed said they were more likely to make a purchase as a result of a targeted e-mail (source: Harris Interactive). So get out there and start collecting! What do you think? I'd love to hear any feedback or your tips for better e-mail collection rates.