Posted to Ben Finklea's blog on November 4th, 2009

E-mail and Social Media Preferred Marketing Channel

In a recent study published by smartFOCUS, e-mail (62%) is the preferred marketing channel of communications for US consumers, followed by direct mail (23%), and social media (13%).

The survey, conducted in Boston, MA, in October 2009, also showed that e-mail communications frequently led to purchases, with 75% of respondents indicating they have brought products as a direct result of an e-mail from a vendor.

The most common items purchased from a marketed e-mail were clothing and accessories (82%), followed by purchases from restaurants and coffee shops by nearly half (49%) of respondents. Other items that initiated purchases were e-mail campaigns of grocery items (40%) and electronics (38%).

Social media marketing, although coming in third as a preferred channel, was found as a significant area for growth. While 40% of people responded that they had received messages from vendors through their social profiles on sites like Facebook and Twitter, nearly one in five (17%) had volunteered or requested that companies actively contact or update them through these platforms. This is 17% response rate from people “friending” a social profile of a company or brand that wants to engage and receive information. For companies still scratching their heads over growing their current consumer base, this one seems like a natural move towards forward-thinking communications.

In light of these (somewhat predictable) findings, here are five catchy and creative e-mail marketing subject lines that may fuel your own creativity:

1. Sometimes all you need is a little vase lift (retailer selling vases)

2.We’ve got you covered from head to toe (retailer selling hats, shirts, pants and boots)

3. Take your pick: Our 9 Favorite Dresses (retailer suggesting by popularity)

4. Party Like it’s 1999 Aged Cabernet Special (wine retailer)

5. How La Perla Got its Name (retailer selling lingerie, telling a story inside the e-mail)

E-mail and social media marketing can be very important to the holiday sales goals that your business is setting. There is going to be a lot of online shopping this season, most likely more than ever before. You could be surprised how many items your business can sell through a well-written, well-targeted e-mail or Facebook campaign to your audience.