Case study: Don’t Tease Me


Sometimes, you just have to do as you are told.  It doesn’t matter how much you rationalise, provide evidence or analytics – the business wants you to do something so you have to do it.

Before the start of a major six month campaign, I was asked to start with a teaser email rather than wait for the new product to be available.  Indeed, even the new product specification was not fully available.

If you see Sid, tell him the future’s bright

There are few teaser campaigns that people really remember – the flotation of British Gas and the launch of mobile telco Orange are the two that spring to mind.
There were three elements that made both successful:

  • A long run-in before the product launched
  • A big budget to spend on TV, print, outdoor and ambient (in the days before online)
  • Good creative building genuine intrigue – in short, teasing

What doesn’t work is sending a single email to your customer base telling them ‘something’ will happen on an unspecified date.  Result: a large number of unsubscribes whom you can no longer contact once the product does actually go live.

A marketing email without a call to action isn’t a marketing email

I am a direct response man through and through – that’s why I moved to online (online = direct response but more rapid).
Every email should elicit some sort of response.  Unfortunately, when the only response is to unsubscribe, you have undermined the customer’s confidence that you will only send relevant, targeted and timely communications.  Not only have you lost those who did unsubscribe, you have also ensured a number of people won’t open your next mail. 

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