Our top priority is our people
Tough times remind you what truly matters. For us, it’s the safety of our team and their families.
That’s why we made the decision to implement a remote working policy for our entire team. We were well prepared, with many of our staff already working from home. optilyz has operated with distributed teams and flexible work practises for years so the necessary tools and processes were already in place.
Our customers are reassessing their marketing setups
Along with our employees and their families, we care deeply for our customers and partners. Over the past few weeks, we’ve spoken with many CMOs and Heads of CRM whose companies we work closely with. We discussed what the current developments mean for business and how we can all navigate together in these uncertain waters.
An economic downturn is inevitable and that means there will be a need to cut/control costs and stabilise revenues. Some fashion CMOs have already experienced a 30-50% store revenue drop and others, like grocery delivery service CMOs, reported a massive increase in online orders. Our clients in the tourism industry are hit the hardest.
Most companies we have talked to are currently splitting their marketing budgets into “optional” and “must-have” categories. Anything without an immediate and measurable profit contribution (such as out-of-home advertising) is considered “optional” and eliminated. Anything that directly helps to stabilise revenue is classified as a “must-have”.
This goes hand-in-hand with an increasing focus on CRM, which can generate more predictable and immediate revenues than broader marketing efforts. This is not a new trend. Customer acquisition has become much more difficult and expensive over the last few years. The most successful companies are those that manage to not only win one-time-customers, but actually turn them into loyal shoppers.
Direct mail will radically change
That’s why direct mail will play such a crucial role going forward: As a CRM channel, it enables companies to reach almost all their customers directly in their homes.
At the same time, it will no longer be feasible to take a “business as usual” approach to direct mail. With reduced budgets and an increased need to generate profits, it is key to reassess how to use this channel:
- Untargeted mass mailings to hundreds of thousands or even millions of customers will need to be significantly reduced (especially as many end-customers consider this wasteful)
- Unpersonalised one-to-many campaigns where all customers receive essentially the same content will no longer be accepted
- Expensive agencies managing the direct mail channel (and charging high daily rates just to coordinate printers or manually segment data) will need to be removed
Months ago we began assessing a possible recession. We started to explore what this meant for how we work with our customers. Our teams have worked tirelessly with our customers to develop the processes and the software features necessary to help them achieve the fastest possible impact.
The times of CSV files and expensive agencies are over. Both create unnecessary costs, limit agility and thus stand in the way of a better return on investment.
Companies that want direct mail to become a key success factor in CRM will have to run it like an online channel, in a software-enabled and performance-driven manner:
- Event-triggered mailings instead of mass mailings
- Mailings as part of cross-channel customer journeys (and thus aligned with online marketing)
- Buyer persona-specific and hyper-personalised mailings with customer-individual content instead of one-to-all communication
- Enhanced A/B-testing and continuous optimisation
Now let’s run the numbers and assume a company…
- sends 1 million mailings
- generates an average order value of €50
- with a conversion rate of 4% (status quo)
Based on our work with over 300 companies, we predict the following conversion rate increases:
- 13% via customer journey mailings
- 3% via better cross-channel coordination
- 9% via buyer persona-specific mailings
- 16% via hyper-personalised content (e.g. product recommendations)
- 4% via enhanced A/B testing
This boosts revenue by over 50% – that’s €1 million!
We’re by your side
These are threatening and scary times. We have however always seen ourselves as partners of the companies we work with, not just providers of a powerful software tool. Let’s tackle this challenge together.
Martin & Rob