Enabling new methods of communication with customers is the most important benefit that organisations are receiving through their use of opt-in email and messaging, but it's not the only one. Following are a few other important benefits of opt-in messaging which many forward-looking companies have embraced and are now benefiting from:
Cost savings - Companies that use postal mail for direct marketing campaigns, billing and/or newsletters can dramatically reduce costs associated with these activities by using personalised email. Electronic messaging, though not free, is substantially less expensive than regular mail because it does not accrue printing or postage charges.
Immediacy - Whether communicating policy changes, special offers, stock price alerts, mortgage rate alerts or other time-sensitive information, electronic messaging is the fastest way to communicate with large numbers of customers via alerts, notifications, reminders, daily or weekly summaries, and the like. This type of personalised communication to large amounts of customers was previously impossible, now organisations can effectively and efficiently reach their customers on anything from the availability of discount airline tickets for the upcoming weekend, weather changes that could affect travel plans, or the availability of medical information that could save someone's life. These are just a few examples of time sensitive communications that are possible with opt-in messaging.
Short time to market - Organisations also benefit from the short cycle time of messaging. According to Jupiter Communications, 80% of email marketing messages are responded to within 48 hours, versus six to eight weeks for traditional direct marketing methods. This allows marketers to test multiple messages, adjust their offer, the creative, or their list segmentations for optimal results.
Control - Last minute changes to printed media are either impossible or prohibitively expensive. With electronic messaging, changes can be easily made minutes before the mailing goes out, giving you complete control without extra costs.
Broader Reach - Because the costs are so low, businesses can communicate with more customers, more often - and in a real-time.
Increased Response Rate - Compared to average click-through rates of .5% for banner ads and average response rates of 1-1.5% for direct mail, opt-in messaging endures an average response rate of a highly desirable 5.4% (Source: IAB, eMarketer, 2000).
Brand Building - Messaging allows an organisation to continuously to be in front of its customers - keeping them visible and improving brand awareness. As the ultimate "push" technology, messaging is virtually impossible to ignore. Branding can be achieved merely by having clearly labeled email delivered to a subscribers inbox on a regular basis. Additionally, the subject line can be used for branding purposes.
Improved Customer Satisfaction - Customers want to know status of their accounts, requested information, online orders, as well as current information and/or updates to products, services, etc. By providing this information in a timely manner and in the format desired by the customer, companies are more likely to retain their customers loyalty. The ability to send alerts, notifications, reminders, daily or weekly summaries, statements, account balances and the like are a few of the ways to touch customers, keep them informed and increase their satisfaction.