It has been a thrilling year for our client, The Transforming Center. We launched a new website in July as part of the process of helping them build a solid electronic communication platform. It really bore fruit in our Christmas appeal – with the year-end giving doubling from the previous year. I haven't received a final analysis of the appeal, but I am pretty confident I will be celebrating again as I expect to see some real growth in new donors. Of course this is only one aspect of their development picture, and I can assure you there are many more hurdles to get over, but I am proud of the Spire2 team and want to celebrate the victories.
We’re happy to announce that a simplified sending process has been released across all accounts. The new one-page sending process allows you to:
What we love about electronic communication (web development and email marketing) is that one gets real data on what is happening. If the strategy is working, it can be seen. If it is not working, the numbers don't lie. The Downtown Wheaton Association is great to work with because they are open to new ideas, they trust Spire2, and have been committed for the long haul. We were more than pleased when they asked us to provide them the numbers for their annual meeting. If you hear a horn tooting in the background while reading, we apologize.
- Downtown Wheaton Association's website traffic increased 37% over the last year (20,000 eyeballs).
The Shoppers' Club email marketing program continues to flourish:
- The last 5 campaigns had an average open rate of 52% (national average open rate is 19%).
- Membership in the club has grown 190% in the past year.
- Merchant participation increased with more than 27 merchants making submissions.
So how did we get these results? There are no shortcuts. It takes, time, effort and creativity. Growing a good list is hard work, but if one takes the time, it will deliver the results. Are we totally satisfied? Nope. I want better results. We are working on some ideas to bring more attention to all the good things that are going on in Downtown Wheaton. Stay tuned.
So are you getting the inside scoop on what is going on in Downtown Wheaton? Are you getting exclusive deals and offers from local businesses? Join the Downtown Wheaton Shoppers' Club right now!
Spire2 was nominated for the Wheaton Chamber of Commerces 2011 Gammon Awards for the work we did for the Downtown Wheaton Association.
As part of our Spire2's redevelopment of www.downtownwheaton.com Spire2 recommended that the association start an email marketing program. Spire2 created the Downtown Wheaton Shoppers' Club program. This free club with a monthly newsletter creates a channel for the association to communicate on behalf of membership while enhancing the image of Downtown Wheaton. The club is also critical in driving traffic to the website to learn more about upcoming events and news from stores.
The results have been incredible. The first five campaigns averaged an open rate of 61.9%. The club grew almost 400% in the first 12 months and continues to grow with new members joining on a daily basis. "As other forms of advertising continue to be less effective, developing a house list has become a strategic move in helping us stay connected with Wheaton residents and those who are passionate about the value of shopping locally," says Noel Wiedman, manager of the Downtown Wheaton Association."
Along with creating and managing the program for the Downtown Wheaton, we helped the Downtown Wheaton Association develop some strategies to promote the club. The most visible and unique was the creation of the sidewalk decals (shown above). These proved just as effective in building awareness for the Shoppers' Club to merchants as it did for residents. Thanks goes to The Sign Authority for their help in finding a material that lasted well beyond the manufacturer's guarantee – making these a very cost-effective promotion.
The awards are chosen by the public, so I will post the link for voting as soon as it goes live. If you shop in Downtown Wheaton and you are not part of the Downtown Wheaton Shoppers' Club, sign up and you will be automatically entered to win a $100 gift certificate.
CLICK HERE TO VOTE : I am the third option under the "Nathan Lewis Best Marketing of the Year Award" You don't have to live in Wheaton to vote!
It is an exciting time. How people communicate and connect, not to mention any ever-changing landscape of communication tools, forces a marketer to constantly challenge assumptions about communication.
To stay current I listen to podcasts, read books (yep, started reading on an iPad this year), and monitor blogs and feeds. My clients depend on me to weed through the ocean of marketing options to decipher how best to use print and electronic communication to reach prospects, donors, and customers.
I share insights, ideas, and inspiration here and through my quarterly email Inspire. If you have never received Spire2's Inspire, it's because I only send it to those who give me permission (I practice what I preach about permission marketing).
To start 2011, I am entering all Inspire subscribers into a drawing for a $100 gift card to Amazon. My way to encourage you to grow and learn. That will almost buy you a Kindle or make a dent in your book wish list. The way to win is to add yourself to sign up to receive Inspire.
My big advice for 2011 is the same as 2010 — Build your house list. Mass marketing is dying quicker than you think. If you aren't actively building and communicating with your own house list, you are effectively shrinking your market.
Happy New Year!
Spire2 is out to prove that promotion doesn't have to cost a lot. We created little cards (check out moo.com) and sent out Valentine's greetings to prospects and customers. I texted a bunch of these to my wife from the list we gathered at the office and the overall effect was positive. So I am challenging you to get your phone out and text a couple to someone special in your life. Happy Valentine's Day. And let me know how it goes.
Here is the list we gathered:
Do you believe in love at first sight, or should I walk by again?
Didn't I see you on the cover of Vogue?
You make me melt like hot fudge on a sundae.
Were you in Boy Scouts? Because you sure have tied my heart in a knot.
Hello. Cupid called. He says to tell you that he needs my heart back.
I think you're sweet.
Did it hurt when you fell from heaven?
I like that shirt.
I lost my number. Can I have yours?
Hey there, sugar
If beauty were time, you'd be eternity.
If I had a nickel for every time I saw someone as beautiful as you, I'd have five cents.
You're so beautiful that you made me forget my pickup line.
I was wondering if you had an extra heart. Mine seems to have been stolen.
You look beautiful today, just like every other day.
You make my heart sing.
All you need is love.
Do you have a Bandaid? Cuz I just scraped my knee falling for you.
You're eyes are bluer than the ocean, and I'm lost at sea.
How was Heaven when you left it?
Was your father a thief? 'Cause someone stole the stars from the sky and put them in your eyes.
If a star fell for every time I’ll think of you, the sky would soon be empty.
I think you’ve got something in your eye. Oh never mind, it’s just a sparkle.
Oh, that’s why the sky is so gray today. All the blue is in your eyes.
I don’t know how to say this, but I think you have stolen my heart.
Did the sun come out or did you just smile at me?
Hey beautiful...that is your name, right?
Do you have a map? Cuz I just got lost in your eyes.
Posted in News
I spoke to Cheryl, my contact at Community School of the Arts (CSA). She called with a question and casually shared with me some news. A whopping 40% of their new students came through the new website this fall. At their teachers' retreat the director shared that many community art schools are letting teachers go and cutting programming back. It is a different story at Wheaton's CSA; they are blessed to have a waiting list. Cheryl said, "We have gotten a tremendously positive response to the new site, and appreciate the marketing counsel you provided."
I am proud of the Spire2 team – thanks Andrea and Andriy.
And, Cheryl, call anytime. I am happy to answer any question – especially if you want to share things like: "your work is responsible for solving world hunger," or "I have five contacts who own companies that need your marketing expertise," or even, "I am buying you a large quantity of chocolate and it will be at your office this afternoon."
The Downtown Wheaton Association's new website is now live. Right now if you visit the site and sign up for the Downtown Wheaton Shoppers' Club, you will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 gift certificate to shop in downtown Wheaton. You can now easily find out about events and happenings in downtown Wheaton along with a Q&A feature on a DWA member. The first feature is the Paper House, another Spire2 web development client. The directory shows you where stores are in downtown with Google maps and will sport other enhancements rolling out over the next couple of months. Check it out.
Posted in News
Spire2 started the engagement with Community School (CSA) of the arts looking at all of their marketing to build a strategy around helping CSA engage more visitors to take action instead of just providing information. Very early results have been strong. People are taking the small steps, giving CSA the opportunity to nurture leads instead of waiting for them to call. Check out CSA's site, and sign up for their free Early Arts Club and get a complimentary listening guide for kids put together by CSA faculty.
Posted in News