Hi folks, first post here on the think tank.
I’ve been toying with the idea of signing up with Constant Contact and creating a VIP club for my shop and have a few questions for those of you using this service, or one similar to it.
I’ve had a website for a little over a year, but it wasn’t until the last 3 months that I really started to push it. I want to start a VIP club and I was wondering what some other operators offered in their emails. As it stands now I usually have about 4 rotating coupons on the website and was thinking about reducing that down to 2 and maybe offering 2 exclusive coupons, any upcoming specials and introducing any new menu products to the VIP club first before advertising them to everyone else.
What do you put in your emails? How often do you send out emails to the club?
Emails should be a key part of your marketing…Because they are inexpensive and timely…
Do you have a sign up link on your website…This should be promoted aggressively…
Why just VIPs?..You may send different offers to them but you should send something to your entire database every so often…Internally you can have as many lists as you want and cater each email to some or all of your lists…
How often will get figured out in time…Watch your opt outs…If they seem high then maybe you are doing to many…Do something to keep your data base from shrinking like offering a free draw every so often with a grand prize draw once a year…
PS…I use Constant Contact and love it…There is lots of useful tips on their website…
Royster, I don’t have anything up on the site about it yet, still looking into it, but am going to sign up for the free trial soon. At this time I haven’t collected any customer emails so my thought was to use the link on my website to sign up for the VIP club. I guess what I’m saying is that anyone that submitted their email would be in the VIP club, does that make any sense?
I’m a small independent with a great reputation and a healthy business. We’ve been in business for 35 years now and I don’t think anyone in the family has ever taken a good hard look at marketing, I’m looking to change that.
Have an online AND in-store sign up form that offers customers a “Free Something” for signing up for your weekly newsletter. Each week be sure to sound out an HTML email with pictures and coupons to your customers…this will keep them returning for more of your food instead of going to competitors.
I run a mobile coupon service called OfferLounge and whenever I want to communicate with my accounts, I use an email service called Mad Mimi (www.madmimi.com). They are a lot cheaper than Constant Contact and are ideal if you are just doing basic email marketing.[/list]
We use constant contact aggressively. Click on my link and you can see where my sign up box is on our site. Now I can blast little ads out like crazy in just about every publication in our area for the same price of one large one. We also have online ordering which is also a motivator to blast the URl. I feature " Why wait for the paper to get coupons and specials, receive them by email!" People around here love getting emails, and I have an extremely low opt out #, out of approx. 1500, 21 opted out. I call all my members VIPs, and have them print out the emails and bring them with them to receive the offers, I have piles of them every night. Basically it saved my restaurant. To farm email addresses use comment cards in your place, we get a lot, and it makes almost certain repeat guests. also I’m putting lettering on my truck again to blast out the website. I can’t tell you how many catering jobs I’ve gotten by using CC, I’m booked almost every weekend all summer for Weddings or something. Please feel free to join my email group to see what I’m sending out. If you use it correctly, you will be very pleased.
If you can roll your own, and your web-serving ISP allows it, Dada Mail is free and works great.
Ok Hannahbanana, I’m in, don’t sell your email list now