ExactTarget  http://blog.exacttarget.com/blog/chip-house/0/0/highlights-of-mediaposts-email-insider-summit—day-1

by Chip House

Day 1 of the Email Insiders conference was perhaps the best ever. The day began with Stephen Greer who ran the online marketing campaign for Obama for America. Per Stephen, email marketing was at the “center of their strategy.” The core success of the program was likely due to its clearly articulated focus on “Messaging, Mobilization and Money.” Our President Elect owes much to Stephen and his staff who saw the value and power in speaking to the base, with a clear and relevant message.

Next on the agenda was the panel of “moms” moderated by Mike Bloxham, the Director of Insight and Research at Ball State. These moms are so busy that they don’t have time to think about marketing. One panelist said, “We are so busy that we don’t have time to use the internet….maybe 11:00 at night.” Moms (and likely homemaker dads) are looking for value that they can bring to their family, to help them serve their main goal: running the family. Marketers need to understand that value, relevance, and utility are musts for communicating to busy soccer moms. Also, like any demographic – using just the demographic data to try to describe the preferences of this group is inadequate. For example, while one mom of the five was a Blackberry user, a few others complained that technology changes too fast for them to keep up.

The third session included email marketers from NWA/Delta, 24 Hour Fitness and PCH. Brad Schleif of NWA really the highlighted the value of email marketing in a tough economy when he said, “This is essentially the third economic downturn/troubles in past several years. We’ve shifted much of our dollars from direct mail to Email. No segment is too small. Go super relevant!” I love that. An audience member asked, “What one thing would you change in 2009 if you could? One panelist said: “I’d like to understand if my subscribers are reading what they are supposed to be reading on mobile vs. email. For NWA, 47% read email via mobile devices, but they haven’t done anything about it. Only 8% use mobile to purchase.”

The lunch session was sponsored by ExactTarget and was titled, “No Executive Left Behind.” Panelists included Richard Castellini from Careerbuilder.com, Mike Bloxham from Ball State, Morgan Stewart from ExactTarget, and Joseph Jaffe, author of “Join the Conversation.” Joseph quipped on the value of email to an organization: “Email is too important to be left to email marketers. Everything that touches the consumer at some point goes through email. It is the first line of offense and the last line of defense.”

I’m looking forward to day two!

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