Sep 25, 2008

New features

I’ve added a few new features on my blog, all of them available on the right hand side of this page.
First, you can now subscribe to my blog through a Feedburner RSS feed or by email alerts (Feedburner managed as well).

I also added an Email Marketing Calendar where I will announce all Marketing Events and tradeshows that I’ll be aware of.
If you organize an event or if anything’s missing, please send an email at and I will add it to the planning.

I will add some new features very soon, keep around !

Sep 24, 2008

All your base are belong to us

One thing funny with e-marketing in general and email marketing in particular is that it just became extremely simple to gather information concerning your users/clients, to process this information and use it to improve the way you comunicate with them.

Today it is possible to target emails to people according to very precise behavioural information, logged through email activity or web analystics.

Matching both just gets your strategy to another level since you can get a global view of your clients' taste or interests.
BUT all experts just get to the same point, being too precise in your communication can freak out your client.

Is George Orwell's 1984 the limit to one2one marketing?

Just to make it clear, you can for example track users visiting a product page without going to the basket page. Then it's kind of easy to send an email with a special offer on this product, presenting alternate products of the same type or cross selling, but what would be the user's reaction to see how you spy on him (and moreover how you spy on him namely - even though you might tell it in your confidentiality section).

Some advise you to explain the user how you got the information (by adding a "you receive this email since you did this or that on our website"), others tell you to just communicate as precisely as possible without getting too deep into details.

Finally another question is: Is one2one marketing a win win situation where YOU improve your R.O.I. and YOUR CLIENT gets relevant information? or is it a negation of your clients' freedom of browsing anonymously your website?

I would say it's a little bit of both...

Sep 19, 2008

Careers at Retrunpath

Hello readers,

Returnpath is currently hiring european workers for ISP relationships management.

If you don't know what Returnpath or ISPs are, then you probably won't fit the job :)

If you want to apply for the job, the entire description is available here.

Good night and good luck

Email marketing and social networks: friends or foes?

I'm subscribed to quite a few social networks among which facebook, linkedin and plaxo.

All these have groups or hubs that can be created by users and in which people can join (invited or not).
I myself am registered to several groups of pure networking, event driven or company/artist "fan" list.

On all those networking websites you then have the possibility to send announcements to group members.

For example, I'm in a facebook group created by a kindergarten friend who's now a famous French rapper and I often receive internal messages announcing his upcoming gigs.

How far this is from email marketing?

Of course some things can be done with an email marketing tool:
Data mining, targeting, statistics, automated emails, alerts,...

But some things are only true in social networking messaging system:
- 100% free (even though email marketing is by far the less expensive direct marketing activity).
- 100% deliverability.

Should this be considered a new way of keeping in touch with friends/relatives or a new marketing tool?

Sep 17, 2008

Is SPAM filtering fair?

I've been around for some time now in the email marketing business and struggling to get my own campaigns and now my clients' campaigns through to the inbox.

One sure thing is that reputation makes a great deal of the job.

First thing is the database quality and freshness; the other is of course the number of complaint. My questioning is on this particular point.

Are complaints reports evenly weighted whatever the sender name is?

Here's my point:
I would like to know if hotmail, aol, yahoo, spamcop,... users report in the same way as spam emails coming from 100% unknown senders (pick whatever you want in the following list: Online pharmacy, Big penis for your wife, Viagra cheap,...) and known online companies.

If I'm right, known companies get potentially more spam complaints of unhappyonce registered users than real full time spammers.

Therefore companies need to be 10x more cautious with their optin and unsubscribe processes or they will probably get a big load of complaints from unsatisfied users.

Sep 16, 2008

Case study

Please excuse me since what will follow will have little to do with email marketing.

I want to take some time and talk a little about what is according to me a great marketing campaign: The Stade-Français Paris Rugby club.

Before proceeding, for my unfortunate American readers not knowing what is Rugby: well it's just like American football for men ;-).

To start with I'll give a quick background, to understand the map of the problem you have to know a few things about Rugby and especially Rugby in France:

Rugby is an English ball game (as all ball games really). That came to France near the end of the 19th century.
At that time a game of students, it came to the Paris universities through student teams.
The Stade-Français was one of them.
Most of the first official championships where won byt he Stade-Français in these old days, but after a while, the north of France got back to Football (Soccer) and Rugby exploded in the south of France.

Progressively the Stade-Français got down the ladder and leagues. Until becomming a small club playing regional leagues.

At the end of the 1990's a man came, his name was Max Guazzini. At that time I was a Stade-Français player (Junior team) and I remember this Jet Set kind of guy standing before us telling how the Stade-Français would recover its status of major French Team.

This was kind of funny for us since Rugby was not a major Game in Paris anymore (and it hadn't been for years) - although The Racing Club de France won once the first league in the 80's.

To have a big club, you need supporters...
They push your players on the field and - of course - they are granting you a lot of money.

So the problem was then to get Parisians back to the Rugby stadium.

Compared to Football, Rugby is gathering a nice percentage of women to the stadium, the Stade-Français therefore had to bring women back to the stadium as well - this also helps gathering men... (It was the first focus made)

To make it simple I will try (out of memory) to give you a time lined list of actions Max Guazzini took... I'm still amazed :)

- Free entry to the stadium for women
- Calendar of naked Stade-Français players (Dieux du Stade) (this made a HUGE buzz and of course triggered women's interest)
- Launching half time cheerleaders shows (Men where then back in business)
- The stadium is kind of small (holding 12 000 people) and one of the greatest tricks Max Guazzini pulled was to rent the Parc des Princes and then the Stade de France for major games during the season with Superball like shows before and after the game. he did a lot of street advertising across Paris and radio stations. Everyone called him nuts but the stadiums where full each time.

The funny thing with all this is that I sometimes receive email announcements since I have (had in fact) season tickets but it always was announcements, never have I received any third party emails from the Stade-Français nor ever received any Stade-Français advertising from any other list...

Sep 12, 2008

AOL: America for sure is On Line

According to an AOL study made in the United States, Americans are addicted to email.

This survey - which details per city are available here - spots a few funny or just stunning answers.


Here's some facts available:

27% are so overwhelmed by their email that they’ve either declared “email bankruptcy,” deleting all their email messages to start anew, or they’re seriously thinking about doing so. Maybe it’s because 20% of users said they have over 300 emails in their inboxes!

24% admit they’ve signed up for a new email address.

69% of email users said they have multiple email accounts, up from 52% in 2007.

62% of at-work email users said they check their work email over a typical weekend

19% check email five or more times in a weekend

28% said they feel obligated to check work email while on vacation

19% choose vacation spots with email access.

More than 50% said they check their email while on vacation. It’s even higher among mobile users. 78% of those who have a mobile device check email while on vacation.

23% said as soon as they wake up

11% right when they get home from work

9% right after dinner

16% said they check their email from a mobile device

55% said they upgraded to a new cell phone in the last year so they could get their email while on-the-go. Unfortunately, 30% of mobile email users said that since getting a mobile device with email capabilities they feel “married to the office.”

41% of mobile email users said they keep their cell phones near them when they sleep so they can hear when a new email comes in.

49% of mobile email users said they check their email every single time a new message arrives.

Where do you read your emails?
• In bed in their pajamas: 67%
• From the bathroom: 59% (up from 53% last year)
• While driving: 50% (up from 37% last year)
• In a bar or club: 39%
• In a business meeting: 38%
• During happy hour: 34%
• While on a date: 25%
• From church: 15% (up from 12% last year)

32% have forwarded an email to the wrong person

16% have relied on email as a way to share uncomfortable or bad news with someone.

12% have used email to ask someone on a date

7% have broken up with a boyfriend or girlfriend over email

16% said they still keep email notes from ex-boyfriends and girlfriends!

60% said they’ve never gone more than 5 days without checking email

17% can’t go more than one day without email.

11% have even hidden the fact that they’re checking email from a spouse or family member.

The Most Email Addicted Cities in the Nation

1. New York
2. Houston
3. Chicago
4. Detroit
5. San Francisco
6. Sacramento
7. Orlando
8. Minneapolis-St. Paul
9. Denver
10. Phoenix

We Have Issues with Salutations, Sign-Offs & Spelling

When asked about email etiquette, nearly one quarter (24%) of email users said they don’t even use a salutation – they just dive right into their email messages! Meanwhile, 23% write “Hi Bob” and 20% say “Hello Bob” when they start an email to co-worker Bob.

“If you converse regularly – bantering back and forth throughout the course of your workday – it’s okay to leave out a salutation,” said Cherie Kerr, author of The Bliss or “Diss” Connection?: Email Etiquette for the Business Professional, “Otherwise, people can feel as though you didn’t care enough to write out their name. To really get someone’s attention, the best thing you can do is call them by name.”

As for email sign-offs, most people write “Thanks” (44%) or “Sincerely (12%). The most annoying sign-off among email users? It’s “xoxo” according to 25% of respondents. “Cheers” irritated 13% of users the most. Overall, 63% of email users were annoyed by some type of email sign-off.

Most respondents (88%) said that they pay attention to spelling and punctuation when writing emails, and 68% said emails with spelling and punctuation errors annoyed them. Interestingly, 74% said they excuse errors when emails are sent from a mobile device like a BlackBerry or iPhone.

“At the end of the day, it’s all about your image,” added Kerr. “Typos and poor grammar are the equivalent of walking into a room looking unshowered and disheveled. Good writing in an email shows you have both professionalism and class.” For Cherie Kerr’s top-five email etiquette tips, visit

From this analysis, Kerr came out with some tips :

Answer Email Within 24 Hours:
It’s good manners to reply to an email message within 24 hours. To wait three days to reply is disrespectful. In no other form of communication would you wait several hours or days to reply. You’d never do that in a spoken conversation.

Never Make Typos:
Never, ever send an email with misspellings or typos. Email messages are a direct reflection on yourself and your image. Typos make you look sloppy and unprofessional. Take the time to do a quick review of your email before you hit send.

Let Your Personality Shine:
Let your words in an email set a tone and build a rapport with someone. Those who receive email messages from you should be able to “read” you and your personality based on your words alone.

Be Concise, But Not Curt:
It should take the recipient no more than 10-20 seconds to read your email. Any longer than that and you’ll lose the reader’s attention.

Never Share Good or Bad News Over Email:
It means so much more to receive a sincere compliment or to learn of a passing friend or relative in person or over the phone rather than in an email message. So pick up the phone to share these types of messages.


Too bad for those wanting to break up with their girlfriend this week-end by sending some:
"Hey, hits owver CU"


Sep 1, 2008

SPAM can be fun :)

Ok, just for once, and believe me I will not say that ever again, SPAM can be funy...

I received just the other day a SPAM on my personal email and I just opened it because the title made me laugh...

The title was :
Doubts on Paris Hilton's virginity after the sex tape scandal.

The mail only contained a rude fake picture of Britney Spears (which was kind of deceptive for someone that might be interested in Paris Hilton) probably pointing to some pay per view porn site.

I must say Spammers all deserve jail, but for this one, I would just ask for indulgence :)