by Courtney Eckerle
At the start of summer 2013, Koyal Wholesale, which is responsible for shipping 50,000 products to more than 100 countries as the world's largest wedding and event supplies company, introduced a broad campaign to market a range of new products.
For Shreyans Parekh, Co-Founder, Koyal Wholesale, education is a top objective of all of the brand’s channels. Not only is the constant challenge to ensure customers know how to best use the décor to make their event special, but to be the leaders in doing so.
"We want to be at the forefront of the wedding and events space — and to be the innovative leaders in the space," Parekh said.
This summer, Koyal Wholesale needed to market a range of products that were slated to be introduced to its two main email segments: wholesale and retail.
Koyal Wholesale's wholesale and retail email segments consist of two communities: DIY brides and event planners.
"The wholesale segment is particularly for the larger wedding and event planners who opt-in to our wholesale newsletter," he said, adding that this segment has the opportunity for buyers to take advantage of bulk discounts on products.
Publishing newsletters on a weekly basis, Parekh said the team created a series of five summer product release emails.
The emails put a renewed focus on the products, using tried-and-true methods such as coupon codes and creative samples, as well as a new emphasis on integrating social media content. For the first time, the new products were featured as a prize in Koyal's seasonal engagement photo contest, as well as utilizing YouTube DIY videos showing the products in use and links to social media channels in emails.
Step #1. Customer-centric tactics
In the summer product campaigns, Parekh said they decided to use some tactics they have identified as best practices through past campaigns.
Such tactics include creative graphics of the products, and showing the products in use to spark the imagination of the customer, as well as displaying multiple styles or colors.
The products they wanted to push in the summer campaign were:
One email send
- Colored Mason jars
- Chevron-patterned table runners
- Sequin table runners
displayed different sized Mason jars surrounded by sketched mason jars, under the title, "totes in love with mason jars," before encouraging them to "Shop now" and click through to the website.
The email also offers 10% off orders over $150 with a coupon code.
"What we decided to do across the duration of the summer is we wanted to really highlight these products in use by current customers. So current customers would submit photos and we would recognize those planners in our emails and social media posts," he said.
For this campaign, Koyal Wholesale's newsletter sends also switched from twice a week to three times a week. However, the third email was only sent to customers who had opened one of the first two emails, but not clicked through.
"Our motivation for doing that is to really retarget those subscribers who had expressed interest in initially opening up the email," he said.
Step #2. Integrate email and social channels
A contest for engaged couples Koyal Wholesale was running was integrated into the email content to promote the new summer products, according to Parekh.
Every season, Koyal Wholesale runs a contest for engaged couples to submit photos from their engagement photo shoots. Oftentimes, the prizes consist of various personalized gifts sold on the site, as well as coupon codes that can be used on the site.
With this summer campaign, however, Parekh said it was decided to roll some of the new products into the contest. Contestants were given the option to select from the new products as a prize.
The marketing team wanted to give traction to both the contest and the new products, and felt that one of the best ways of doing that was to incorporate them into each other and subsequently, the content promoting it.
"It was the first time that we did that sort of thing where we introduced a new product and then we integrated those into our giveaway or engaged couples contest," he said.
Since sharing is a large element of the contest, the products would get social traction as well. Koyal Wholesale has a Facebook contest tab
titled "Photo Contest," and the email content regarding the contest leads to it. There is a "like" gate on the contest, so email subscribers who click through are encouraged to also become Koyal Wholesale Facebook fans. In addition, the Facebook page has a tab encouraging fans to become newsletter subscribers.
That aspect of driving email subscribers to Facebook to enter and then share with their friends was critical to promoting the contest, and the products along with it.
Not only did the team want customers sharing the contest on social networks, but it was important that emails be shareable as well. Ensuring the graphics and photos used were consistent across both email and social networks was also vital, Parekh said.
"By integrating photos of our new products, those would also be shared across their networks. I also advise that with our emails. Our emails often get forwarded to friends and family, and we wanted our products to be also posted there," he said.
Step #3. Integrate video content into sends
Koyal Wholesale boasts one of the largest YouTube channels for DIY wedding content, with more than 200 videos on its YouTube channel, more than 9,000 subscribers and 6 million views. Mostly the videos feature DIY tips and tutorials displaying the best and most innovative ways to utilize Koyal's products, both new and existing.
To capitalize on that popular content and repurpose it, it was integrated into the email content in the summer product campaign.
"[The videos] are very engaging … we post them through our social media channels whenever we produce a whole new batch of YouTube content, we like to advertise it through our emails as well," Parekh said.
For example, one of the emails
sent as part of the summer product campaign showcases chevron printed and sequin table runners, but beneath the pictures of the products is a graphic headlined, "New video" that displays a screenshot of the video, and says, "Dessert Table Décor: Glass Apothecary Jars."
The video integrated into the email content is specifically chosen to show off ways that the product, in this case the table runners, can be used and paired with existing products.
Importance of integrating social media
With the prevalence of social media in the wedding events space, interacting in that space is absolutely critical, according to Parekh.
"It's important for us to be able to insert ourselves in those conversations and be able to show the brides and the planners all the new products that we're introducing," he said.
Integrating content from Koyal's social space into its email program allows customers to interact in multiple spaces, and begin a conversation with the brand from any point of origin.
"With our email blasts, because we have over 200,000 email subscribers worldwide now, it's important for us to leverage our email platform to then cross over to and promote our social media channel," Parekh said.
Whether it is promoting content on Facebook to allow email subscribers to then move over to Facebook, or vice-versa, the key objective is always educating the consumer.
"Our email platform has been a great way of promoting this interaction and education as well as the content that we provide on our main social media platforms as well," he said.
Parekh credited combinations of elements such as the content and discounts that are generally promoted with Koyal's emails, as well as the unique elements added specific to this campaign, such as the contest and DIY content featuring the new products.
"Just mixing up the content and being fresh with it was a great asset for us during this time," he said.
By integrating new product-centric content with its existing email tactics, the results Koyal Wholesale was able to achieve were:
- 12% lift in open rates
- 10% lift in conversion rates
- 16% lift in revenue
Something Koyal will be implementing in the future is fine tuning its content to appeal to different segmented groups.
Emails will reach out to "not only the DIY and bride segment or the event planner segment, but also the corporate planner segment, the restaurants, universities [that] may also be engaged with the new products that were coming out. So, if we'd planned our messaging a little bit more in a comprehensive way, we could have also targeted those demographic groups as well within the summer," Parekh said.
- Product email
- Contest tab
- Video integration email
Related ResourcesEmail Marketing Relevance: Personalized important occasions campaign by online gift retailer achieves a 39% open rate Email Marketing: Online jewelry retailer grows total revenue by 51% with re-permission campaign Email Marketing: Business voice system provider increases lead response rate by 100% Email Marketing: How charity: water increased donations by $800,000 using video, increased send schedule Email Marketing: Change in incentive offer causes a 25% increase in email subscribers in one day for nonprofit