When market research firm iKnowtion set out to quantify the effects of e-mail outreach on purchases at Kodak.com, it got something of a surprise in the extent to which e-mail influences behavior in multiple channels, reports Jupiter Research. The e-mail customer retention program launched by Kodak’s Digital and Applied Imaging Group, which targeted registered users who’d opted in to receive marketing communications from Kodak, produced $8 in offline spending for every $1 spent at its online store.
Jupiter has predicted that web-influenced spending will be five times as much as revenues from online transactions by 2007. Yet, while marketers keep a close eye on how research on the web is related to purchases on the web, “They rarely study how Internet communication other than web sites–-such as e-mail-–impacts offline spending,” says Jupiter analyst Rudy Grahn.
As many as 65% of Kodak.com registrants said e-mail had prompted them to purchase Kodak products outside of Kodak.com. Most said they’d used Kodak.com to research the purchase. Kodak estimates that the dollar value of offline purchases that are influenced by e-mail is two to three times greater on an annual basis than the dollar value of e-mail-influenced purchases on Kodak.com. In fact, a significant portion of the group’s revenue is e-mail influenced and the majority of all revenue ultimately driven through registrants is captured outside of Kodak.com, the study found.
As Kodak’s experience demonstrates, an e-mail program designed to maximize only online dollars will pass up revenue from those who research, but don’t buy online, according to Jupiter. It will also pass up the opportunity to maximize offline spending, which may be the biggest slice of the pie, Jupiter adds.