Not too much, not too little… Just right. Some thoughts on after-sales follow-up activities.

On Friday evening I placed an order for knitting yarn at I was impressed with their website and the 15% off your first order pop-up that kicks in when you might be thinking of leaving the site to compare prices elsewhere. And the fact that they got me to sign up for a newsletter in order to receive this discount. I was even more impressed when the yarn arrived on Sunday (yes, Sunday) beautifully packaged along with a nice note offering me 10% off my next order.

So Top Marks, Love Knitting, for have excellent customer relationship building mechanisms in place.

But, one day on from taking delivery of the yarn, I’m already receiving what I believe to be a tad too many newsletters.

Good grief, they’re not even giving me time to cast on let alone complete the jumper I’m about to knit. And I’m a slow knitter.

As a result I’m a little concerned that when the time comes to order again, I might be fed up with all these emails. I might even decide to opt out.

Yes, newsletters and special offers are a great way to keep in touch with customers and especially new customers.

But the trick is to get the level of contact just right. Email them too little and they may forget who you are, email them too often and they may feel swamped and opt out.

The other trick is to target different groups of customers in different ways.

For example new customers who – in the case of the knitting yarn website need time to knit whatever they’re knitting before thinking about re-ordering – might prefer to be emailed relatively infrequently with, say, news and not money off their next order and / or free delivery.

A few months on when these customers are at the stage when they should have almost completed a project, then that’s the time to send a key email to get them to place another order.

The trick is to gauge it just right. To intelligently work out what stage your customers are at and target them in a relevant way, sufficiently frequently so they don’t forget you but not so often that they get irritated and opt out.


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