Premium Brand Communication 101
Premium brands distinguish themselves from the competition not only in their products, but also in the way they communicate with their customers. One good example of this is in e-mail marketing. Although e-mail is growing and consumers are likely to opt-out if they feel the messages to be irrelevant or impersonal. There are more than 200 billion email messages sent each day, and of the 91% of consumers who opt out or unsubscribe to emails, 46% are driven to brand defection because the messages are simply not relevant.
As I culled through my morning emails, I noticed that of the many emails in my Inbox, 45 were from retailers! And what surprises me the most is there were repeat offenders—3 from Gap, 2 from Overstock.com, 2 from Godiva, etc. How in the world does Gap have enough relevant material to contact me three times in one 24-hour period? And why would I care three different times? Needless to say, I didn’t even open them. And others feel the same way apparently. According to a new poll from the Chief Marketing Officer Council, 64% of consumers say promotional offers dominate both the email and traditional mail they receive, and only 41% view these as must-read communications.
Knowing your customers, especially those who have enough positive disposition towards your brand to give you permission to contact them directly, is essential in building a premium brand. If you can’t be relevant, then why bother? The numbers don’t lie.
Liz Miller, Vice President, Programs and Operations, CMO Council, said “Irrelevant, impersonal communications… (do) not engage a receptive recipient… customers will disconnect and stop doing business with brands who continue to send messages that demonstrate a lack of intimacy, customer insight and individual understanding.”
In the end, there has to be some sort of strategic plan and knowledge of the individual consumer in place. If the powerhouse of social marketing hasn’t proven this already, each consumer wants to have a unique voice, and needs to be marketed to independently.
So, the question a premium brand manager should ask themselves is this: do you manage your information to keep things personal for your consumers? Or, are you just creating opportunities for them to opt-out of engaging with your brand?