• Matt Illston

Manufacturers - 5 effective ways to grow your B2C marketing database

There has been plenty written on this subject, so let's focus on what I've found works in real life.

The benefits of having a useful, clean database are clear - particularly during uncertain times. Email addresses of customers allow you to communicate directly, but also target groups of similar potential customers by tapping into their social networks.

The problem - your email database needs constant attention - studies have shown that your database degrades on average by 22.5% per year. This is caused by unsubscribes of course, which you have a little control over, but also people moving email addresses for whatever reason.

Manufacturers of goods who sell through retailers have an added problem because they don't often have direct access to those buying their products.

1) Reinvigorate a stale email list with an opt-in campaign

Do you have an older list that you suspect has mostly decayed? Create an engaging opt-in message and send it to your old list encouraging contacts who wish to re-opt-in -- promising to remove all contacts who don't respond. Though it might seem counterintuitive to remove folks from your email lists in order to grow them, emailing only engaged contacts could improve your deliverability and increase the odds of your email getting shared with those outside your current contacts database.

2) Use a cash back or incentive offer system

This works well - particularly for those businesses that would like to market post-sale support, products and services to it's clients. Offering a simple process to allow customers to claim a cash back or other incentive, driven by packaging inserts or retailer displays can massively grow your direct marketing database and provide incentives to buy your product in the first place.

3) Improve your product registration process

So many products have registration cards / stickers, but often the process is terrible for the end user, not user friendly (particularly on Mobile) or simply a pain to gather up all the information required. Some customers will battle through, but many will drop out and not bother.

Make the process simple, mobile friendly (*mobile first) and try to incentivise.

4) Create online resources

Provide them with a portal giving them lists of spare parts, or accessories plus manuals and extra information about their products. Build a simple mobile app that integrates with your product which contains extra features or benefits and tie it into the user account that they have created.

5) Create a new lead-generation offer

Develop a free ebook or whitepaper and host it on a landing page that asks visitors to provide their email address in order to download it. This is called a "gated offer."

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