Growthletter

+64% Retention Rate with Handwritten Postcards

How we used handwritten postcards to create an unforgettable shopping experience.

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The article you're reading is edition No. 3 of our Growthletter, the newsletter where we publish advanced ecommerce strategies every week

Hello,

In this article, we’ll explore two topics:

First, I’ll explain how and why it’s important to create unforgettable shopping experiences.

Then, we’ll examine a case study of an ecommerce where we used handwritten paper letters, resulting in a +64% increase in the conversion rate.

(Yes, you read that right, “paper letters” and “handwritten”; words that may seem absurd in the world of marketing automation)

Have you buckled up? Ready, set, go!

The main concept I’d like to start with is this:

People no longer just buy products; they buy:

  • Experiences – the feelings they have before, during, and after the purchase.
  • Transformations – the result they will achieve with the product after using it.


Understanding this is crucial for an ecommerce.

Without fully applying this concept, your ecommerce is doomed to fail. I’m telling you this bluntly.

My agency specializes in creating unforgettable shopping experiences.

To do this, we divide and measure the experience into 3 phases:

  • Onsite experience – the user experience on the site, where we intervene with CRO and UX/UI activities.
  • Product experience – the experience from the moment the product is received, from unboxing, to the actual use of the product.
  • Offsite experience – the journey the user takes with all our communications outside the site (email, SMS, paper letters, etc.). In the ecommerce world, this experience is closely linked with marketing automation and customer care.

But how do you create unforgettable experiences?

“An unforgettable user experience is perfect in every aspect.”

WRONG ❌

Scientific research has shown that when remembering an experience, we ignore most of what happened and focus mainly on specific moments.

So, to become unforgettable, we don’t need to be perfect in every single aspect; we just need a few unforgettable moments.

If you want to create an unforgettable shopping experience, you can focus on creating individual wow moments!

And that’s exactly what we did in this case study:

Project: Be Your Bag is a company that handcrafts personalized bags.

Goal: Retention of new customers.

KPI: Conversion rate from the 2nd to the 3rd purchase.

Starting point: In the last 3 years, the repurchase rate from the 2nd to the 3rd purchase has always been around 25%.

As you can see in the graph above, there’s a 75% drop from the 2nd to the 3rd purchase.

For most ecommerces, this might be a normal drop.

For Be Your Bag, our goal was to expand the base of loyal customers.

We identified this metric as a potential bottleneck.

So, here’s what we did:

1) We identified new customers who potentially could become VIP customers.

Our goal was to understand which new customers could become brand enthusiasts in the future.

We did this by analyzing the behavior pattern of current VIP customers, using the RFM Matrix.

Our definition of Potential VIP New Customer was:

  • A person who had made 2 purchases within 4 months.
  • The value of these purchases was at least €180, meaning they likely bought at least 2 bags (and not a bag and then a smaller product like a pouch or keychain).

After defining the customer segment, we needed to create the wow moment.

The idea that came to us was to send these customers a handwritten paper letter just to thank them.

But since we’re automation maniacs, we wanted to automate this activity as well.

That’s right…

We created an automation that sent a handwritten paper letter (including the person’s name) to a customer’s home without any human intervention.

Here’s the recipe to make this possible:

  • A good dose of creativity, genius, and madness 🤪
  • Klaviyo, which identifies the segment of potential VIP new customers.
  • Make, our favorite tool for creating the most complex automations.

Handwritten, a company that creates and sends handwritten paper letters using 3D printers that simulate human handwriting.

I won’t go into the technical details of how we achieved this, but here’s a screenshot of the Make automation if you want to see the various steps.

And here’s the letter the customer receives at home:

As you can see, it’s effectively a handwritten letter 💌

I also want to share the copy we decided to write:

Hi Thomas,

By now you will know that at Be Your Bag we care a lot about tradition.

That's why we thought of a note in the letterbox to say THANK YOU.

Thank you for choosing us, for supporting Made in Italy and craftsmanship, for knowing how to wait.

We hope we have reciprocated your trust by creating a Be Your Bag exactly as you wanted it and that it was love at first sight!

See you soon, Elena and Giacomo

No sales copy, no coupons, just heartfelt thanks.

Imagine how unforgettable it is for a customer to receive such a letter directly at their home, signed by the company founders.

This is truly a wow moment!

Let’s look at the results this activity brought:

The Conversion Rate from the 2nd to the 3rd purchase, since we started this strategy, has risen to around 41%. Thus achieving an increase over the last year of +64%.

We also received many thank-you messages and posts from our customers, all were amazed.

And you, in your ecommerce, have you already created a wow moment like this?

I recommend from now on to work on creating unforgettable moments in the purchase journey.

You don’t necessarily have to use an advanced automation like this one that sends handwritten letters.

There are many other strategies you can use. Here are some additional tips and sources to explore further:

  • You can handwrite letters yourself, 5 letters a day take about 15 minutes between writing and shipping. In a month, that’s 150 customers left amazed.
  • You can also test Bonjoro, to send personalized video messages.
  • In this article of mine, you can find other examples and case studies we have realized.
  • I also recommend this book, where you can delve further into the topic.

Wishing you good growth,

Thomas

we wave, you grow

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