So you’re ready to dive into postcard marketing (smart!).
If you don’t already have a campaign you can import, you’ll first want to build out a very simple campaign. And you probably want to start with the two biggest problems facing most ecommerce businesses: abandoned carts and first-time buyers.
The First-time Buyer Problem
This is something a lot of ecommerce retailers face, especially ones that aren’t subscription businesses.
Let’s say you're running marketing at Patagonia and you get your first order from a new customer. The average revenue off that order might be around $100. But you also need to factor in the COGS to secure the product, such as sales and warehouse costs. So let’s say the revenue off that sale is $50.
But you haven’t factored in the cost of acquisition. On a typical prospecting campaign, that can be high—around $40—leaving you with a gross profit of just $10, or 10%. If you subtract out whatever you're going to pay yourself, your team, and for rent, that quickly goes to zero. This is the first-time buyer problem, and it’s why a lot of ecommerce companies have trouble scaling: They don't make a lot of money on that first order. The solution is simple: Get your customer to make a second purchase.
A second purchase with a much lower customer acquisition costs (ideally zero) fetches you a lot of gross profit. You can then take that same customer and get him or her onto your email list, a Facebook marketing list or a postcard list. You're then left with a much higher gross profit on the second order.
How do you get that second order? You send out a campaign that pushes products that are cross-sold or related items to their first purchase. Patagonia has been sending out a “15% off your next purchase” postcard campaign for a while, and it's done extremely well for them in driving profits.
Using postcards to address this problem keeps sending costs low and the process automated. Setting it up is simple: Download PostPilot, create a second purchase campaign, and set it up to send a coupon or related item to every new customer, 30 days after their first purchase. Watch the ROI over time and adjust as needed.
The Abandoned Cart Problem
On average, about 70% of carts get abandoned—left sad and hanging, used as a wishlist or to check pricing somewhere else. Ultimately forgotten.
Many ecommerce insiders know that the solution is a cart abandonment campaign. These campaigns work for almost every ecommerce retailer, and data show that you can get a 10-12% lift in return customers.
Bonobos, a men’s clothing brand, solved their abandoned cart problem with a simple email prompt: “Hey, you forgot something! Come back and complete your purchase.”
Dollar Shave Club, which was bought by Unilever in 2016, made waves when it started running abandoned carts through their Facebook marketing.
And then there’s Boxed, the company that sells food and home supplies in bulk. A handful of years ago, Boxed was experiencing a high cart abandonment rate. Instead of turning to Facebook or Google ads or even email, they rolled out their abandoned cart promo via a postcard. They did really well with it.
Postcard marketing changes the marketing game. As long as you have a physical address for your customers, you can reach out to them via postcards. With PostPilot, it can be easier to set up than a Facebook or AdWords campaign.
The PostPilot app plugs into your Shopify account, pulls out your customer data, and allows you to design, build and send automated postcard campaigns. Set the campaign up once and then they run in the background. And if you’re not on Shopify, that’s OK too—you’ll just have to manually upload your customer lists. But you still get to see the dollars pour in.