A fast casual restaurant brand

The Challenge
Email communications were sent in an ad-hoc manner without any attention paid to time of deployment or frequency.   In many cases, emails were deployed once a quarter and customers who had joined a loyalty program were not included in email marketing communications.  As a result, open rates had started to decline and 30% of subscribers had only purchased one time. There was no engagement strategy.  One of the largest concerns was that there was no effort to correlate email engagement with sales, so understanding the ROI was challenging.

Our Objectives
First things first… we needed to ensure that there was a way to connect email engagement to sales, as that was key to showing program success. Email remains the only channel with a clear, trackable ROI, so we knew this needed to be addressed quickly.
We had to develop a strategy that would  allow for emails to be deployed at the optimal time with a winning subject line to increase open rates.  We also wanted to encourage repeat purchases and determine at what point in the customer journey someone converts from a purchaser to a loyal/higher revenue customer.

Through a detailed analysis of email engagement metrics and customer data, we were able to track in-store and online purchases to determine the ROI.  We built a process that would allow for these metrics to be tracked on a go forward basis.
We found that subject lines with a softer sell would increase open rates by 28%. 
By developing a very targeted email segmentation strategy, transaction rates for first time customers increased by 28% and by 155% for those who had already purchased four or more times.  We also were able to determine that, once a customer purchases for the fourth time, they tend to purchase more frequently.