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Case Study: Welcome Offer Testing – What’s the Value of an Extension Message?

post_stephanieWe at Fishbowl know that one of the most important best practices in digital marketing is systematic testing of offers and promotions.  In the case of this casual dine chain, the business challenge was to maximize Welcome Offer redemptions without increasing the unsubscribe rate.    Because this client doesn’t send out many offers, driving e-Club member engagement from the onset of membership is very important to the business strategy.

To address the challenge, Online Marketing Specialist Stephanie Congleton proposed a test, in which new members would receive an extended redemption window.  Here’s how the test worked:

  • New eClub members were randomly assigned to test and control groups.
  • The control group received the client’s standard Welcome series:  an initial Welcome promotion, and then a reminder message soon after.
  • The test group received the initial message, a reminder message, and finally an offer extension message which triggered when the reminder email coupon expired.
  • The subject lines and creative for the initial and reminder emails remained consistent for both groups.

What were the results of this test?  The offer extension created a 20% lift in redemptions during the test, and a 28% increase in net sales. In addition, the average check size increased by 8%.

caseStudy_offerTesting It’s interesting to compare this case study to another one of our clients. In that instance, the client also tested an extension message within an email campaign, but the results were quite different.  The extension message actually had a negative impact on net sales.  And yet, the overall result was positive, because the test included a third message – a reminder email, which offset the impact and drove an increase in net sales.

The variation in these results highlights the importance of testing.  What works and doesn’t work will be different for restaurant marketers because their business strategies are different.  One of these clients uses offers extensively; the other rarely. No doubt that difference played a role in how each client’s guests responded to the offers.  The only way to get optimal campaign results is to let your guests tell you by their behavior – which means you have to measure your results.