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Internet Marketing Series: Email marketing written by Claudie Clot, CEO of

Email marketing is fast emerging as the most effective Internet promotional tool. It's fast, cost-effective, and it allows marketing managers to execute Internet-based promotions with unparalleled precision.

With email marketing, you can deliver your message to the right target to generate high-quality traffic to your web site. The best part: you only send your message to the people who want to know more about your products and services. No junk email, no spamming. As a result, this promotional tool has generated higher-than-average response rates (15 percent and even higher for some companies).

Such superior response rates are due in part to two distinct characteristics of email marketing: (1) recipients have elected to receive information about specific product or service categories. This makes an audience more responsive to the marketing messages it receives. When a member decides s/he does not want to receive promotional email messages anymore, s/he can simply opt-out or unsubscribe from the list. (2) Email marketing is relatively new. Again, the novelty aspect has made audiences more responsive to this form of marketing.

But the environment is changing rapidly. As the excitement for this Internet tool builds, it is rapidly reaching the status of main stream marketing tool. This means recipients receive more messages every day; consequently, response rates drop. While 5 to 15 percent response rates were not unusual 24 months ago, today the average return is closer to 3 and 4 percent.

Nonetheless, the fact remains that email marketing still represents a cost-effective way to reach your target market. By carefully planning and executing your campaign, you can still achieve high return rates. As you will see, paying attention to a few details can mean the difference between a 5 and 15 percent return rate.



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