• To Text or Not To Text
    Email marketers Wednesday continued to wrestle with how aggressively to use text messaging -- either as a way to obtain email addresses or as part of an integrated campaign.

    SMS offers huge potential in that people have their cell phones with them most of the time. But marketers suggested it’s a very private arena and they run the risk of appearing overly intrusive when they use it.

    On a panel, Chip House, vice president of marketing services at ExactTarget, endorsed using SMS as "another tool" to build an email list, and "not as a promotional device."

    He ...

  • Making Commitments
    In our panel "A Call to Action" this morning with Jack Hogan of LifeScript and Brad Bacon of Weather Channel Interactive, we asked attendees here at the Summit to commit with us, as an industry and as individual practitioners to a number of best practices.

    The first and perhaps the hardest is to commit to taking the long view. We are all under pressure to deliver short term results, while balancing the need for long term best practices around subscriber experience. Jack gave a few examples of hard decisions that he’s had to make to preserve the subscriber experience ...

  • Email Oscars
    Lifecycle Creative Awards are being handed out in five categories:

    As a treat, each category has a celebrity nominated in addition to two retailers. Then again, maybe celebs are retailers these days...

    Categories, Nominees and Winners follow:

    -ACQUISITION (includes preference centers, email sign-up marketing)

    Nominees: Tommy Bahama Anthopologie Brad Pitt (for some reason)

    Winner: Tommy Bahama

    -CONVERSION (includes welcome series and shopping cart abandon functionality)

    Nominees: REI Amazon Angelina Jolie

    Winner: REI

    -GROWTH (includes newsletters and enhanced transactional messaging)

    Nominees: Verizon Pottery Barn Kids Johnny Depp

    Winner: Verizon


  • Email Not E-mail
    Return Path's Stephanie Miller has asked email marketers to make a series of commitments.

    Among the seven is: "I will ensure that subscribers who opt out of my email messages will not receive another email they don't want. Period."

    The last one? "I will never place a hyphen in the word 'email.'

  • Stay Focused on Consumer Temperatures
    On the panel about "How You Can Truly Move the Needle on Email," Brad Bacon, the distribution director at the Weather Channel Interactive, warned Summit attendees to avoid focusing too much on the advertiser with email programs.

    "We've made the mistake before," he said, "(where) in retrospect, several years back, we kind of took an advertiser-focused approach to building out an email program that we could monetize."

    He added: "We have two customers we serve … the consumer through any and all channels and the advertiser ...

    "Beware of focusing your efforts solely on the advertiser … ...

  • Make Sure It's the Right Meal
    Stephanie Miller, a vice president at Return Path, is moderating a panel and focusing on the importance of ensuring email campaigns offer relevant info to consumers. But she said marketers often overlook the preferences of their target.

    "We're giving them broccoli, when what they really want is pizza," she said.

  • Text Messaging Integration Deal
    While many at the Summit are pondering how best to take advantage of new opportunities with text messaging as a complement to email campaigns, Montavo Inc. said Wednesday it has a deal with SinglePoint to facilitate that.

    Montavo said the SingleBrand Ad Marketplace will allow it to use messaging inventory and weave branded messages into SMS/MMS text messaging that are linked with TV programs carried on networks such as Bravo, MTV and the CW. The SinglePoint inventory will be added to the Montavo mobile mDeal-Finder.

    Montavo CEO Brook Lang said: "Mobile devices are fast becoming the dominant marketer-consumer ...

  • Geer's Still Churning
    Even as the Email Insider Summit moved into its final day, attendees were still buzzing about the opening keynote by Stephen Geer, the head of the Obama campaign's email marketing efforts, and mulling over detailed issues he raised.

    One that piqued the interest of Fred Tabsharani, vice president of marketing at Port25 Solutions, and others was which commercial MTA (message transfer agent) -- an outbound message gateway that delivers outbound messaging as well as providing detail on inbound messages -- the Obama campaign used for its emailing efforts.

    Tabsharani wrote about Geer's talk: "What an opportunity for the ...

  • When is an individual not an individual?
    The answer may be when it comes to privacy.

    Listening to the final session of the morning today at the Email Insider Summit there was much talk of the abiity to take and leverage data based on the behavior of individuals - obviously a boon from a targeting perspective, but to some at least, potentially contentious on the privacy front.

    While there is no doubt that the means of harvesting data from multiple sources will continue to proliferate and inform how messages are targeted across different media will continue to proliferate, questions from the audience (and the responses ...

  • An Insight Trio
    Jim Sterne, the founder and president of the Web Analytics Association, delivered the keynote address Tuesday. Asked later in an email exchange to list three points email marketers should take to heart, he responded succinctly:

    1. Test and measure continuously.

    2. Know the value of acquiring an email address so you know how much to spend.

    3. Convince your management by showing them that which matters to them, not to you.

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