Each week, the experts on our strategic services team summarize articles and trends they’re seeing for our clients. We think they’re fascinating — and bet you will too! Here is a peek into what they’ve been talking about lately.
We continue to monitor an average sample of 28 U.S. retail brands to provide insights about email activity during the pandemic. Open rates experienced a variance of 9% in the most recent week; 19% above the rate obtained the same week in 2019. Click rates increased 75% compared to the week of March 29; 64% above the rate scored last year during the same week.
Engagement also presented a significant variation of 34% compared to the previous week, scoring 18% above the average rate seen in the weeks of 2019. When looking at the behavior of online sales, this week it shows a lower performance when compared to the week of March 29. Transaction rates dropped -18% week-over-week; and scored -7% below the rate obtained in the equivalent week of 2019. Revenue per email showed a -22% variance when compared to the week of March 29; -14% below the rate of 2019 year-over-year.
To be watched...
As the quarantine continues, subscribers appear to be interacting more with email content, but not necessarily transacting. Engagement rates peaked during the week of April 5, whereas transactions fell from their previous mark
Year-over-year weekly mailing volume
For the whole time we have been tracking (2/2 through 4/11), the overall volume for our sampled brands has increased by 4% in 2020 compared to 2019. Recent weeks, however, have seen a decline, as volume has dropped -10% year-over-year from 3/22 through 4/11. For the week of April 5, there was a -7% drop in volume, and 48% of our sampled brands had a lower year-over-year weekly volume. Continuing a trend we saw last week, 60% of the tracked brands sent fewer campaigns during the week of April 5th in 2020 than they had in 2019.
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Grocery sales through all channels jumped nearly 26% in March, the highest rate in at least 25 years, as consumers race to stock their fridges and pantries while staring down indefinite stay-at-home orders. But other non-essential categories saw big declines.
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Terrain and Zales — Virtual Mother’s Day
Terrain and Zales both put some virtual commodities at the disposal of their subscribers to support their engagement with promotional content for Mother’s Day.
Terrain bets on entertainment, by offering wallpapers for Zoom. A way to build an emotional attachment with the readers and drive their attention to articles for shopping.+
Zales, for its part, focuses on enabling virtual services that bring continuity to the shopping assistance that its customers now require in an online context.
Aerie — Sharing positivity
Aerie attempts to help ease the distress that people from its audience may be experiencing during the quarantine, by asking them to share a video/pic of what they are up to these days, and a brief sentence about what the brand feels like to them.
The landing page contains several example videos from the Aerie’s team to inspire people interested in sharing their own. This initiative serves as a way to stay close to the customers in times when commercial dynamism slowed down. This markets the brand to a broader audience than strictly subscribers and generates interesting content to build a strong sense of community.
Men’s Wearhouse — Luxury without the fuss
Men’s Wearhouse sends a timely email about their machine-washable products as the crisis has shut down some dry cleaners while customers are simultaneously limiting outings.
Reaching out with relatable copy and positioning is favorable over sending basic promotions that may seem tone-deaf amid the COVID-19 era. Subject line: Machine-washable suits only $199.99.
With Mother’s Day approaching and in-store shopping at a standstill for most, emails are full of ideas.
More companies are partnering with nonprofits to lend their support.
We’re all in this together
More brands are extending return deadlines, promoting additional sales, and aligning their values with causes they support.
Your home office needs some love! As employees settle into their temporary space, they’re seeing some additional needs and these emails arrive at the perfect time.
Want to see more? Get in touch with us. We’re happy to help and talk about how we can best work together.
Brittany Luebke is a Content Marketing Strategist at Cheetah Digital. You can find her writing through our corporate social media channels, so follow Cheetah Digital on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. She has worked with email marketing programs since 2007, and her work has won awards from dotComm, Hermes Creative, and MarCom, as well as recognition from Really Good Emails.