Director at SWA Communications Ltd
07 June 2004 17:40pm
Email marketing is a rapidly growing business, and one that more and more companies are taking to the heart of their direct communication strategy. After all, it's inexpensive, quick and measurable, and perhaps most tantalising of all, it can be managed in house with little effort. But an area it's not yet touched heavily is the murky world of B2B marketing - more specifically, the world of B2B finance.
Investment Banks are vast, money-orientated businesses and with the advent of high-powered data networks, over which trillions of dollars are processed every single day, they are considerably more e-nabled that many of their retail peers. So it's quite surprising that communication techniques lag a long way behind.
Ok, so email is not particuarly well suited to the B2B finance world when it comes to product sales. After all, a large business client might be a little concerned to receive an HTML email encouraging them to buy or sell shares or currencies. But it is well suited to managing relationships, especially the relationships of time-starved clients. When you consider that the old 80-20 rule still holds true in this environment, and that a huge proportion of clients contribute relatively paltry amounts to the bottom line, the flexibility and ease of email marketing suddenly starts to look quite tempting.
In recent months several investment banks, based in the City, have begun to experiment with and install email marketing software. The preference seems to be with ASP solutions (understandable given the approach's infancy) and using HTML on a one-to-one basis as well as for campaigns. Video content is of particular interest as it helps preserve the client-manager relationship - nothing looks cooler to a client than a 1-minute briefing from their salesperson filmed at the desktop and delivered personally. The fact that the message was sent to 100 clients may or may not register, but the feeling is one of personal attention.
The next stage for those choosing to continue will be to integrate the approach into their client CRM systems. A huge amount of research gets sent out by email already, but it's generally not possible to see what the client does with it. Trackable HTML, or web-linked delivery would provide a picture of who's opening what and help inform the whole sales dialogue - potentially improving profitability etc.
Someone once told me that, on average, a trader or broker at a typical financial house (i.e. a target client for an investment bank) would receive over 500 emails per day and up to 2GB of content in their inbox.
The ability to cut through the noise with bright and strongly branded HTML content, and then see who is reacting to it, has begun to look very attractive to the Morgan Stanleys, the Deutsches and the UBS's of the world.
Account Manager at Tinopolis
08 June 2004 08:03am
Very interesting Jimbo, especially in relation to video content. I work for a company that has previously served UBS and Deloittes with streaming media applications. I like the idea of advisors being able to email investors with what appears to be a one to one session on share purchasing!
I cannot believe how much email those poor sods receive each morning, I certainly wouldn't appreciate 2GB of email! I can see some interesting opportunities in both e-marketing and video applications for the financial sector.
Thanks for the tip!
05 July 2006 17:45pm
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