Direct Marketing Helps Retailer Increase Sales

A specialty outdoor furniture and garden accessories store had been experiencing slow sales over the last few years. More recently, they experienced even larger sales declines and wanted to find a way to boost sales before the fall and winter, which are traditionally slower seasons for them. They had a good database of customer names with purchasing histories, but didn’t know how to reach these customers most effectively to motivate them to come back into the store and make a purchase.

P3P helped this store create two different direct mail postcard offers: one to customers who had bought furniture in the past and one to those who had purchased garden accessory items. The mailers were each personalized gardenspecifically to the customer, noting their last purchased items and offering a discount on a similar item with an additional discount on other items in the store. The mailing was targeted to only those customers who had not purchased anything in the last three years.

The postcard also included a personalized URL which led the recipients to a website landing page with a few questions that were designed to help the store learn more about their clients’ interests so they could recommend certain products or even consider adding to their store inventory if it seemed they didn’t have what customers wanted. Shortly after visiting the website and answering the questions, the dormant customers received a thank-you e-mail from the store manager referencing their area of interest received from the survey. The e-mail also invited them to visit the store within a certain time period to receive additional discounts.

Store traffic was much higher during the specified time periods, and the store saw a five percent increase in sales for the month of September. Additionally, they realized that some of the customers had moved, so they deleted these names from their database to optimize budgets. Reports generated by the system used to manage this integrated
direct marketing campaign helped the company learn that many of the dormant clients were generally happy with the company’s products, but they just needed reminders of all the other items the store carried. Now the store does more frequent direct mail marketing to ensure that their customers keep coming back for more.

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