Silverpop - Make Coupons Work Better in Your Email Program
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Make Coupons Work Better in Your Email Program

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by: Loren McDonald (@LorenMcDonald)
07 June 2011

Are you thinking about adding or revamping a coupon program in your email marketing efforts? You certainly aren't alone.

The almost overnight success of local coupons via daily-deal sites such as Groupon or LivingSocial and the potential offered by mobile coupons are prompting more retailers to go back and look at this popular revenue and traffic driver in a whole new light.Jonathan Treiber, CEO RevTrax

Jonathan Treiber, Co-Founder and CEO of RevTrax, a leading provider of coupon security and cross-channel analytics, and I discussed important success factors and challenges for email coupons and covered specific examples of successful coupon programs in our recent webinar, "Key Techniques for Maximizing Results from Email-Based Coupons" (see the link below to download the recording and the slide presentation).  

Below, Jonathan lists some best practices to use with email coupons to help you realize the greatest success from your coupon program.

Best Practices for Email Coupons

1. Use personalized coupons.

"This makes a coupon specific to an individual, with their name, the nearest location and other details. Personalization has two effects: It typically drives higher user engagement and redemption because it's more relevant. And, because the coupon is personalized to the individual, it can deter that individual from any type of fraudulent behavior, such as Photoshopping it or reposting it."

2. Don't deliver the coupon via a downloadable PDF.

"We always recommend against that because it's not secure, promotes uncontrolled virality, and makes it very difficult to track and measure redemption," Jonathan said. PDFs can be altered, uploaded as files and shared without authorization.

3. Deliver the coupon on a landing page rather than in the email itself to avoid fraud.

"It's really best not to show the entire coupon in the email," he said. "Show the coupon only when the user prints it. Also, limit the number of times a coupon can be printed."

4. Test coupon values.

"This affords marketers with a way to constantly refine different strategies," Jonathan said. "They can identify whether a 20-percent discount offer is necessary to drive business goals, or is 10 percent off enough?"

5. Measure and track the right coupon activities.

"If a consumer prints a coupon, only 20 percent are likely to redeem it," Jonathan said. "A lot of merchants think that if someone prints a coupon, they'll automatically redeem it, but half of the time, they lost it or forget about it, or it sits on a counter and expires."

Many merchants don't track any coupon activity, he said. "They can't do it, or they don't have the time or resources. We encourage our clients to measure as often and as much as they can, because it's a key benefit. It provides a level of measurement not available or possible without a coupon."

What to measure? "Look at the number of redemptions, but also measure back to the particular marketing tactic. If you had 100 coupons redeemed, did these 100 coupons get redeemed from a marketing program on Facebook or from your email marketing activities, more specifically, from specific subscribers to your email rewards list?”

“Did redemptions come from a Google search on a particular keyword? What was the rate of redemption for each promotion? Those are the kinds of insights that clients want, but have not been able to get historically."

Download 'Key Techniques for Maximizing Results from Email-Based Coupons'

You'll find more of Jonathan's best practices and insights into email coupons when you download our webinar recording and slide presentation, which includes examples of coupon presentations run by Silverpop and RevTrax clients.

Got questions about email coupons? Post them below, and I'll get answers for you.


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