DRIP MARKETING POWERFUL MARKETING OPPORTUNITY


By
Prof R K Gupta
BE (Hons), MBA, FIE
Aravali Institute of Management
Jodhpur (Rajasthan)
E-mail :
cityju@rediffmail.com / rkgupta_India@hotmail.com
URL :
www.Geocities.com/rkgupta_india
 


DRIP MARKETING POWERFUL MARKETING OPPORTUNITY

Like the drip irrigation system in which water in small controlled quantity is fed to the plants over a sustained period of time so as to economize on water and resulting in peak health of plants, drip marketing is also a tool to remain in touch with prospects and is also called by the term "nurture marketing". It is very frequent experience of senior sales executives that a blitz of one time mailers or customer contacts has very poor rate of return. In experience of the author , emails evoke very low response , may be to the order of 3-5% and the Snail mail or post mail may evoke response not more than 7-10 % at its best. The reason is simple to understand. First time the customer may simply ignore that communication or may not even notice it. Even in traditional theory of advertising the exposure required are suggested as 2+1 or 1+2 whatever way you look at it.

Then, in direct marketing one can't expect results better than even well designed TV advertisements. Can we? The answer is in negative. A number of software programs are now available that automize the direct marketing messages dispatch and tracking of customer responses.

Learn this from estate agents. How by repeated contacts and mailers followed by phone calls, they manage to develop familiarity and eventually get the customer (Prospect) make up his/her mind to deal.

Most agents expect a single mass mailing to produce results. It almost never does. Instead, drip marketing (i.e. repeated contacts over an extended period of time), followed up with personal contact produces the best results. Unfortunately, most agents give up before they make the necessary six contacts required before a warm lead will do business with you. In the case of working with the Internet, it may be necessary to "drip" as many as 37 times before you can expect to see any results. When you're considering costs, remember, six traditional mailing contacts is a lot more expensive than 37 "e-mail drips."

There is another rule: Rule of 29 that says that 29 contacts are necessary before a prospect takes action. These are not validated rules by scientific studies but definitely point to the need of planned approach in step by step feeding the prospects information and driving home the message, particularly in direct marketing technique.

Another common mistake people do is Sending out long farming newsletters or fancy personal marketing brochures

This is a 1990s approach that has seen its day. Spending thousands of rupees on "personal marketing" as a means of gaining market dominance is a waste of money and postage. First, people scanning their mail give advertising about three seconds of attention. This is enough time to read a snappy post card, but anything longer simply doesn't get read. Second, the personal marketing approach usually takes two to three years to achieve results. Third, if it's not followed up by personal, face-to-face contact, mailing almost never works. Remember, prospects are most likely to do business with the agent they have most recently seen face-to-face. {Bernice Ross; Realestate.com}

Some marketers believe: we're all farmers at heart. Whether it is apples or customers, unto all things, there is a season. There is a time to plant and a time to harvest.

"Customers invariably go back to a place where they have been made to feel special
 


(The above introduction on front page of a marketing consultant's website explains the theme very well.)

PROCESS OF NURTURING CUSTOMERS:

There is a process that successful producers go through to create a successful sales effort. That process begins with targeting a market. The next step is for the producer to position themselves in the minds of that target market. Positioning is a marketing concept that simply stated, means establishing oneself as a valuable resource for the target market. What is the message that you need to communicate to your target market? Finally, it is necessary to communicate your value to that target market directly. This is often through mail seminars, affinity groups or association marketing or other means. It might even be advisable with some target markets to communicate that value to the target markets' advisors who would then refer you to the client.

This whole process is then tied together in a system. The system keeps track of the contacts, generates the follow-up activity and produces the invitations or letters to the target market. This is an ongoing process that is designed to deliver a maximum number of "marketing impressions" communicating the producers' value to the target market. The result is successful marketing and more sales.

MarTechSM developed and supplies a series of insurance specific, relational "nurture marketing" sales and management systems known as The Marketing Auto-Pilot Sales SystemTM or MAPS.TM   

MarTech'sSM insurance-specific systems provide agency producers with innovative tools to increase prospecting activities, appointment activities, and increase their new sales along with client retention all because of a decrease in the time spent on essential but mundane tasks.

MAKING CUSTOMERS RETURN:
Obviously, once a customer has made a purchase, you want them to return to your site often for more purchases. This concept is called nurture marketing to help make this happen.

Nurture marketing means that once a potential customer gives you their email address, you "nurture" them to turn them into a loyal customer by sending them relevant information regularly. Remember, this is not "spamming" - this system is used for customers who are interested in your products and services and would like this information.

To begin the process, the seller creates an email form that allows visitors to click on the kind of information they want to receive (i.e. "How to stay young and healthy" or "Why am I always so tired"). Once the firm compiles this information, they can send mass emails to each category of visitor or any combination of categories. By updating these people regularly with new studies, product information, etc., the firm is "nurturing" them into becoming steady customers.

SUMMARY: Drip Marketing" Campaigns

Drip Marketing is the opposite of a marketing blitz: It's a slow, steady flow of marketing materials or advertising directed towards a specific target market. The objective is to create a steady dynamic growth in your organization's sales revenue, rather than big bursts of growth separated by lengthy non-growth periods.

For the obvious reasons much of the discussion in this article is focused on web based direct marketing.

A number of Group emailing and other related software are now available including several examples for Microsoft CRM packages and systems.
 


Prof R K Gupta
BE (Hons), MBA, FIE
Aravali Institute of Management
Jodhpur (Rajasthan)
E-mail :
cityju@rediffmail.com / rkgupta_India@hotmail.com
URL :
www.Geocities.com/rkgupta_india
 

Source : E-mail April 3, 2004

 

B A C K

 

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