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  • November 27, 2008

AM Inbox: Sam's Club's twist on gift finders

>>Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

The Retail Email Blog monitors the email marketing campaigns of more than 100 top online retailers. Here are highlights from my inbox this morning:

Sam’s Club, 11/25 — Introducing the Sam's Club Gifter Stress Lifter
First of all, Sam’s Club gets bonus points for not calling their gift finder and “gift finder.” Instead of a functional name, they go for the emotional connection and name it the Gifter Stress Lifter. Essentially it’s a gift recipient profiler. You answer six questions about the person and it serves up recommendations. But instead of clicking the usual radio buttons next to text answers, you click up to three of nine images of activities/things to answer questions like “If they had to eat one meal for the rest of their life, what would it be?” and “What’s most likely to motivate them?” This makes answering the questions quicker and more intuitive and Sam’s Club gets around some word choice and language barrier issues. It’s very smartly done, and at the end of it you’re given a selection of recommended gifts for the person and—because they asked for the name of the gift recipient—the call-to-action under each item is “Buy for Kate” or whoever the recipient is. The personalized call-to-action is really unique.

Click to view this Nov. 25, 2008 Sam’s Club email larger

Wolferman’s Gourmet Bakery, 11/25 — 20% OFF select Holiday Gifts NOW!
Harry & David introduced Wolferman’s when they acquired the brand and have given their subscribers opportunities to opt in to receive Wolferman’s emails. Apparently they didn’t get the response they wanted so now they’re just sending Wolferman’s emails to Harry & David without an opt-in. I’m a firm believer that different sister brands require separate opt-ins. Forcing emails from sister brands on your subscribers is just asking for spam complaints and higher opt-out and tune-out rates.

Eddie Bauer, 11/25 — An important message regarding Eddie Bauer gift cards.
Just like Ann Taylor did last week (see Nov. 24 AM Inbox), now Eddie Bauer is trying to quell rumors that it’s going down the tubes and won’t be around to honor gift cards. There’s understandably heightened anxiety about the solvency of companies and consumers clearly don’t understand that retailers close (and open) stores as a part of regular business operations. That pairing is leading to some nasty rumors this year.

Click to view this Nov. 25, 2008 Eddie Bauer email larger

SUBJECTIVITY SCANNER: Select noteworthy subject lines
Sears, 11/25 — Black Friday Prices Starting on Thanksgiving
Sony, 11/25 — Sneak Peek: Sony Style savings start Thursday.
Macy’s, 11/25 — Free Shipping, extra 20% off + preview Thanksgiving specials!
Office Depot, 11/25 — The Thanksgiving Sale You've Been Waiting For Starts Friday!
Lands’ End, 11/25 — FREE SHIPPING: Extra gravy for Thanksgiving Weekend
EB Games, 11/25 — EB Games News: Some titles we're thankful for this week.
Sports Authority, 11/25 — Gift Trouble? Find the Solution at Our Gift Center + Get $25 Off $100
RedEnvelope, 11/25 — Avoid the crowds - Shop from Home and get Free Shipping
Abercrombie & Fitch, 11/25 — Have you met Colden and Wakely? [promoting new fragrances]
SmartBargains, 11/25 — You snooze, you win: Your Choice Bedding $39.98. Free Shipping.
Spiegel, 11/25 — EXTRA 25% OFF the Ultimate in Holiday Luxury... Our Signature Sequined Cashmere is Going Fast!

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