Everyday we flick on our phones, open up our laptops or power up our machines and we are assaulted by digital marketing: Emails, banner ads, pop up ads, promoted posts, tweets, updates, ‘native advertising’ (advertorials dolled up and prostituted as real content)…the torrent goes on and no-one is closing the tap on this flood.

With ‘Marketing done right’ I aim to point out and salute marketing that stands out from my daily diet.

Tsonga Shoes

Tsonga’s latest email newsletter has popped up in my inbox and made me pause for thought.

Tsonga email newsletter

I signed up for the following reasons:

There’s nothing revolutionary about this list, other than that it’s an example of an average list of reasons why people sign up for an email newsletter. For a representative list you can add:

I’ve received many emails from Tsonga since I’ve signed up. However, I don’t anticipate the emails, I have no idea if they come out monthly, bi-monthly or sporadically and I’ve deleted or failed to open just as many (if not more) as I’ve opened.

Once again, this is fairly par for course when it comes to email marketing. According to MailChimp’s email marketing benchmark report the average open rate for eCommerce emails are 22.2% and for Retail 31.0%. It’s a tough category to be in.

[box type=”info” style=”rounded” border=”full”]Sidenote: How awesome is MailChimp? Pretty super impressively amazing awesome, that’s how. Best email service I’ve ever used.[/box]

So why is this email an example of Marketing done right? Let’s take a look.

Tsonga Email newsletter Full View

  1. Custom header message that immediately let’s me know what to do
  2. Nice big image of the prize, playing into my self interest and making me want it.
  3. Clear statement of the mission, so you know exactly what’s expected of you.
  4. Tsonga politely asking for help and briefly explaining what specific action needs to be taken.
  5. Social Sharing buttons – to make this go viral yo!

Clicking through to the survey sends me to another delightful and easy to understand page.

Tsonga Customer Survey email


  1. Custom header message restates simply what you have to do. (answer: Choose your favourite)
  2. Further concise, clear instructions. (The resolution on this screen shot is a bit off – sorry) See box below for the fail report.
  3. Pretty pictures and multiple choice, making selection easy
  4. A comment box for further input and your details to enter the competition*

[box type=”info” style=”rounded” border=”full”]*I totally missed this instruction so my entry will not count – I was so looking forward to my home footcare session – and I’m surely not the only one. I would suggest replacing the comment box with a Name and email field to avoid confusion.[/box]

Lesson: Reward Your Customers

This email newsletter is an example of selfish communication by the brand done in a way that is not completely selfish (don’t get your panties in a bunch, all marketing is selfish – we want people to do something that benefits us). Tsonga want something from you. They want your opinion on what shoes you would rather buy. They want your opinion because they want to sell more shoes.

So, why again is this email a good example of Marketing?

Not bad.

 What would I possibly have done differently?

I’m greedy, selfish and self absorbed, just like most customers. I would’ve preferred a gift of a pair of shoes. If the reward was a pair of the shoes that I voted on (like a Kickstarter Reward) even better!

— Why am I wrong and did Tsonga got it even more right?

As a guy I would never wear the shoes in the survey. With the reward being unisex, they could incentivize more people to take part in the survey

— Why is this possibly the wrong thing to do?

Why would you want a male’s opinion on a product that they will not buy? Does my vote in this survey make the results better or worse?

These are the types of trade offs and questions you need to weigh when developing an email newsletter or campaign. No campaign is going to be perfect for every single one of your subscribers. You just have to try to satisfy most of them.

UPDATE: The perfect end – Tsonga follows up and ties a ribbon on the whole thing

Tsonga blogpost final


Read that work of art.

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