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The measuring of the ROI, the real one

Del: 08/06/2007

The ’ROI’ is a concept that each one of us interprets in his/her own way, according to his/her own business. In the digital world it is usually measured referring to the email openings, to the clicks on a link/on a banner. In the “off-line” world, though, the clicks are not worth much, because the measuring is carried out on the sales or on the users that have really showed their interest in purchasing a product.
Therefore, it becomes important to measure also the online actions in business numbers. The measuring of the click and of the openings leaves space to the ’post-click’: what do the users do after they have been convinced to open an email and click on a link? Do they buy? Or do they exit without reading anything? Or do they just take a look, then go to see the sites with similar products, do some research and comparison and then go back and ....maybe purchase something? The analysis of these actions shows the ’true result’ of a digital marketing campaign. Actually, there are 1.000 clicks that lead to 10 purchases and there are 1.000 clicks that lead to 1 purchase... If we limited ourselves to count only the clicks there would be 2 plans, 2 messages, 2 creativities with the same result.
In the case of the email marketing, being able to rely on one sending tool that also allows to measure the behaviour (and the conversion) ’post click’, it becomes fundamentally important to understand the variables that make the real difference in the e-mail advertising of a company.

E-mailing in the tourism sector

The most interesting case histories in the digital direct marketing sector are those linked to the businesses that find a ’conclusion’, or better an online ’conversion’ . Therefore, they are particularly linked to the e-commerce sector. An interesting example (and important for the results that it generates) is that of an important player in the travel sector for which we have planned a mixed use of generic newsletters, personalized travel information and outline survey. Besides sending the generic email to everyone, (but segmented in function of the fact that a user is only a prospect, a client or a reliable customer), a logic of ’service’ emailing was adopted through so-called triggered actions, that is, automated in function of the user’s actions: - after the purchase, the upselling dispatches of complementary products to the same travel destination follow; - before departure an email is sent with the weather forecast; - once back from the trip the traveller is asked to fill out a questionnaire to know his/her level of satisfaction. The user will also be able to give suggestions on the visited location, that will be eventually used again in the future by other users who purchase a trip to the same destination (integration of the email channel with the UGC concept - User Generated Content). All the dispatches are integrated with a reporting system that, besides all the openings and clicks on newsletter results, it also analyzes the post-click activity (the purchase) and the user profile ( it is possible to understand if the activities of opening/click are mainly made by men/women, etc.). This kind of analysis is fundamental in the moment in which an intense activity of A/B testing is planned, because it allows to understand the answer logics while segmenting the targets.

Massimo Fubini
AD Tomato Interactive
srl ContactLab


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