Why do four out of five marketers refuse to send abandoned cart emails even though they get 20% conversion rates? We don’t know. We’re asking you.

It’s the 80-20 rule for the majority of marketers. Even though abandoned cart emails have consistently shown to produce 20% conversion rates, more than 80% of marketers don’t bother sending them. They think that customers find the reminders bothersome. They’re wrong, says Jim Davidson, Bronto Software’s manager of marketing research.

“Only 13% to 15% of marketers send [abandoned cart] messages at all. That’s shockingly low considering that conversion rates on these are insanely high,” Davidson says. “This is when the consumer is so close to hitting the buy button. Purchase intent is close to its peak.”

This purchase cycle paradox has nagged at Davidson for years, and he’s regularly asked clients why they refused to send the reminders. Three responses always floated to the top: Their customers find them annoying, intrusive, and not helpful to the buying process. Davidson didn’t believe it, so he surveyed 1,000 online shoppers to see what they thought about “Did you forget something?” emails.

More than half of online shoppers between the ages of 18 and 50 said that, indeed, they found the emails helpful. Only a quarter of them deemed cart reminders intrusive and fewer than a third found them annoying. Most expected to receive the messages, in fact, some with the hopes of discount offers or added content.

“You have to make sure the message you send adds value to the buying process. Consumers who say they’re intrusive are worried they’re being used for data collection purposes,” Davidson says. “And if  shoppers truly made decisions not to make the purchase, they’d probably find that annoying. But you can do testing to determine how far along in the process they were. How many pages did they visit? Did they fill in their shipping address?”

Bronto broke out survey results in five age groups, another segmenting adjustment marketers can use to keep abandoned cart emails from causing ill feelings. More than half of those surveyed across all age groups said they figured on receiving the reminders. A third of those under 40 said they expected the emails to contain discount codes to coax them to push the submit button, and one out of five 50-plussers hoped for a free shipping offer.

Davidson counsels marketers have to use discounts wisely, however,  since triggered offers can form future expectations. “What we suggest is that you send the first message with a customer service theme, or with additional content. If that doesn’t cause them to take action, they you can send a second message with an offer, but at a limit,” he says.

The long-time observer of the email marketplace says marketers tend to fall into one of two categories concerning abandoned cart emails. The first are those who have been doing it for some time, but need to refresh their messages and introduce up-to-date technology to personalize content. The rest just aren’t doing it. For the second group, Davidson has a big sign saying “20% Conversion” and three words: “Just please start.”

This one is still a little bit fuzzy. Facebook has started a mobile ad network, meaning that developers will be able to sign up to have in-app ads sponsored by Facebook, who will of course get a cut of the profits, along with the developer. Things we’re still unsure about:

How the ads will be structured (though there are some who say there will be just 2 sizes available)

How the ads will be purchased (through Facebook’s current advert creator/power editor or through another venue)

What the pricing structure will be (Facebook currently runs mainly on a bid-per-click system, but most mobile display runs on a CPM basis)

By staying on top of current trends, you can make sure your brand is responding to the industry in a way that makes sense for your business and yet is still relevant to consumers. By implementing changes in response to these 3 updates, you can make sure you are still reaching your audience in the best way possible.

Americans spend an average of 21 minutes a day on Facebook, according to a study released today by eMarketer. That’s one third of all the time they spend in social media and takes up 6% of the time they spend on their digital devices. For that accomplishment, Mark Zuckerberg & Co. warrant nearly 10% of all digital ad spending in the U.S.

But is Facebook overhyped in the marketing community? Perhaps, according to eMarketer , which points out that video eats up 16% of people’s digital screen time—10 percentage points more than Facebook—but merits only two points more share of ad dollars at 12%. Likewise, online radio grabs but 4% of digital ad spend while accounting for 11% of digital attention.

The researcher predicts that Pandora will claim a larger portion of Americans’ digital day (7%) than Facebook in 2014, but will have to settle for one seventh of the ad dollars with a share of only 1.4%.

There may be good reason for the discrepancies, however. The eMarketer report qualifies that Facebook users are more focused on the content, where ads are hard to ignore. Pandora, meanwhile, is often background music in which ads are e

asily tuned out, and video ads can be skipped or shortened

Social media marketing is the most powerful tool in website promotion. In a society obsessed with social media, information travels faster and further than ever before. Users are able to use social bookmarking sites to link back to their favorite webpages. They can share these links with their friends, creating a viral marketing technique that is both fast and efficient.


Although email marketing can be one of the most profitable components of your marketing mix, effective and successful email campaigns don’t just happen by accident. They take careful planning and an understanding of what works (and what doesn’t) when it comes to email marketing.

That’s where SmartTools: Email Campaign Planner comes in. This online service is a step-by-step blueprint for quickly creating email campaigns that deliver the results you need. It will help you define your campaign goals and budget, segment your list to target the right prospects with the right message, create compelling calls to action, and evaluate your results.


Through eight simple to follow, well-defined steps, SmartTools: Email Campaign Planner will help you establish an effective email marketing program to gather and convert leads. With this online service you’ll …

Conceptualize a high-impact program based on your company’s value proposition.

Define objectives that directly support your company’s core mission and bottom line.

Set a smart, realistic budget that maximizes return and minimizes cost.

Define and segment your target market so the right messages can be delivered to the right people.

Create your call to action and enable clients to easily respond, so you can expand your list going forward.

Design compelling creative aligned with customers’ interests, including your Web site and landing pages.

Engage in best-practices list management so you can successfully build, refine, and maintain your list.

Measure and track your program’s success through comparative analysis and other meaningful metrics.


Our SmartTools product line is an interactive, online service. Rather than offering you an old-school Adobe PDF report, we created a Web platform where you can enter information, save it, and return later to keep working in another session. In fact, you can even create multiple versions of each project. This could be handy, for example, if you’d like to produce unique marketing plans for a few different products. 

Our SmartTools Web service allows you to jump around within your project, to print the whole thing (or just the sections you’re interested in) and to download supporting templates (Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, Microsoft PowerPoint slide decks or Microsoft Word documents, depending on which SmartTools application you’re using). 

It’s MarketingProfs’ version of cloud-based computing. The smarter, faster, easier way to get the job done. Our product development team is eager to hear what you think. Try it today!

Coca-Cola Releases ‘The World Is Ours’ By Aloe Blacc x David Correy For Brand’s 2014 FIFA World Cup Campaign

Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.

Working through the following four stages of starting a business, will also help you gather content necessary for your business plan.



Moneyball cover

Moneyball by Michael Lewis

"When the odds are stacked against you, you need to change the way the game is played."

— Craig Hanson (MS ‘07), Founding Partner at Next World Capital

Innovator's Dilemma cover


Content Marketing Is Essential

Spending on content marketing, video marketing, and social media content creation will increase by 15.1 percent in 2013 to total $118.4 billion. What does that mean?

It means more and more marketers are allocating their budgets toward content, and there is no sign of its slowing down.

Statistics that prove the value and power of content

1. Eighty percent of business decision-makers prefer to get company information in a series of articles versus an advertisement.

2. Seventy percent say content marketing makes them feel closer to the sponsoring company.

3. Sixty percent of consumers feel more positive about a company after reading custom content on its site.

4. Ninety percent of consumers find custom content useful, and 78 percent believe that organizations providing custom content are interested in building good relationships with them.

5. Nine in 10 organizations market with content.

6. More than 90 percent of CMOs think custom content has a positive effect on audience attitudes, strengthening the bond with consumers.

7. Seventy-eight percent of chief marketing officers think custom media represents the future of marketing.

8. Eight in 10 CMOs believe custom media should be an integral part of a marketing mix.

9. Eight in 10 people prefer receiving information about a company through custom media.

10. Twenty percent of users’ time is spent surfing the Internet on content-led websites.

11. According to 37 percent of marketing managers, the most important channel for engaging customers is content-led websites.

12. Seventy percent of consumers prefer getting to know a company via articles rather than ads.

13. Eighty-two percent like reading content from brands when it’s relevant.

14. Fifty-seven percent read content marketing titles at least once a month.

15. Thirty-seven percent visit content marketing websites at least once a month.

16. Sixty-eight percent are likely to spend time reading content from a brand they are interested in.

17. Sixty percent are more likely to be on the lookout for products when looking at content marketing.

18. Content marketing costs less than traditional, outbound marketing. Statistics show that content marketing costs 62 percent less per lead than outbound marketing.

19. People want to be in control of what information they receive, and it’s evident from these statistics:

Eighty-six percent of people skip TV advertisements;

Forty-four percent of direct mail is never opened;

Ninety-one percent of email users have unsubscribed from a company email that they had previously opted into.

20. Thirty-seven percent of marketers say blogs are the most valuable content type for marketing.