Iain Moss
Iain Moss
Posted 29 January 2021

How Emma Bridgewater drove new customer acquisition during COVID with the help of email

In this session Sam Marsh, Ecommerce Manager, and Bao Tang, Email Marketing Executive at high-quality pottery brand Emma Bridgewater, explained the strategy behind their successful “summer sale” email campaign.

Pre-COVID-19, Emma Bridgewater put a large budget behind promoting its sales with paid social and search alongside catalogs mailed out to consumers. The national lockdown meant a scaling back of budgets and the business had to adapt its approach.

To promote the 2020 summer sale, it chose to use email. The goal was to focus on customer acquisition and the strategy was based on identifying three key segments with potential and creating a custom, automated campaign for each.

The first targeted segment were disengaged email newsletter subscribers who had not opened an email in the past six months. The business slowly eased back into contact via a re-engagement automation campaign that would trigger after a period of disengagement and offer a free delivery incentive. 

The second segment were leads acquired during lockdown. Emma Bridgewater’s website enjoyed increased browser traffic during this period but needed to convert activity to sales. This audience received a “price drop” email campaign to let them know that items they had browsed back in April were now on sale.

The third segment were visitors that had browsed during the last sale and looked at key category pages. To engage with this audience the business created a “category browse” campaign with a content-led approach that told the story of its key collections.

Emma Bridgewater reconnected with more than 7,000 leads and generated more than 250 orders from the unengaged group during the sale. Together with the price drop and category browse campaigns, the automated activity drove 44% more revenue when compared to performance during the 2019 sale. The new acquisition strategies of the 2020 summer sale drove an increase of 76% in new customer revenue and 63% more first-time orders than the equivalent sale the previous year.

Key lessons: 

  • Sales periods provide a great opportunity to engage with key segments
  • Invest in an automated reengagement campaign that allows you to activate prospects year-round
  • Update your automated campaigns in line with peak periods
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