AWesome Emails: Rita’s Water Ice

They say the fastest way to a man’s heart is his stomach, but around AWeber it’s more like the fastest way to make friends with one of the many ladies in the office.

Bring Kelly a Starbucks Caramel Macchiato and she’ll be your friend for a week. Have leftovers from last night’s dinner for lunch? If you don’t give Erin a taste, you’re in serious trouble.

Our love of food has helped us stumble upon excellent email marketing campaigns before (hello, we realized that California Tortilla’s emails rock while eating lunch there!). This time the awesome emails come from Rita’s – the best water ice that just happens to be 3 minutes from our office.

Read on to see how exclusivity, charitable causes and involvement in social media sets Rita’s apart from other water ice chains, and how you can do the same with your campaign.

Their Messages are Exclusive

When you sign up for emails on the Rita’s website, you’re not just signing up to a boring, humdrum email list that sends out random company updates. Instead, Rita’s makes their emails enticing by turning them into an exclusive birthday club.

As promised on their sign up form, subscribers receive offers year round, a special birthday treat and the latest scoop on Rita’s, plus a coupon just for joining:

Take Note with Your Own Campaign:

  • Make your messages exclusive. Use personalization to address subscribers by name and inspire instant recognition. Then, create a defined campaign that focuses on something trackable, like birthdays or anniversaries to excite new subscribers and keep them coming back for more.

They Embrace Charity

Throughout the year, Rita’s supports a variety of causes and encourages their email subscribers to do the same. When you’re on the Rita’s email list, you aren’t just a member of an elite club of water ice aficionados. You actually have the opportunity to help charities and give back to the community.

If you are sending email marketing messages, you have permission to contact every person on your list. Why not use that opportunity to make a difference?

Take Note with Your Own Campaign:

  • Ask your readers to give back. Work on creating a responsible community of email subscribers. Your cause doesn’t have to be as large as Alex’s Lemonade stand, you just have to convey your passion and inspire your readers to contribute to a worthy cause.

They Get Facebook and Use Email to Promote It

In 2010, 54% of online marketers in North America surveyed said that combining social media with their email marketing led to better results.

Yet, lots of email marketers remain confused as to how to integrate their email campaigns with social media. They know it’s important to connect socially with their subscribers, but they aren’t quite sure how yet.

Rita’s is one of the companies that is doing it well. They embrace Facebook, and use the social media platform to run contests and engage fans. Once their contests are up on Facebook, they announce them via email:

Take Note with Your Own Campaign:

  • If you haven’t yet, now is the time to create a Facebook Page. Then, promote it in your emails and test different strategies to find the one that works best for your campaign.

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  1. Zama

    4/5/2011 10:03 am

    Awesome! I like the way Rita’s interwoven approach of different activities and events in their email marketing.

  2. Aaron Schulman

    4/6/2011 10:19 am

    Hi Rebecca-

    Thanks for the ideas here- just a few questions-

    1) Is there a way to track and automate birthdays somehow with Aweber?

    I imagine you could build some kind of dropdown on your opt-in- and then segment-

    But I have never seen a feature like this in Aweber –

    2) Is there a work-around for it?

    3) Also- what are some other good ways to integrate FB and twitter in ways that you can clearly see who has “liked” “followed” or friended and then work that into the Aweber system so you know who is on your list and also on your “FB friends” as well as following you on twitter?

    Is there a workaround for this as well?

  3. Franky Greens

    4/6/2011 12:18 pm

    I have to say I agree with this type of marketing it is something worth taking the time to look at. You want to engage your audience and make them feel special so remember them, and use their name.

  4. Mi

    4/7/2011 11:27 am

    You give great free advice on email marketing! Im currently giving away free organic product samples from my website and it seems to be working well. My list is growing nearly every day. Its a high initial cost for me but I believe its going to pay off in the long run.

  5. Stan Dubin

    4/8/2011 4:14 am

    I’ve been getting Rita’s newsletter for quite some time and I have to agree: it always stops me in my tracks when I see it and I give it a good read.

    I’ll admit to a sweet tooth, but it IS an engaging newsletter and I like the fact that it’s personalized. The two-for-ones don’t hurt either!

  6. TonyS

    4/9/2011 11:12 am

    I liked this post a lot. I learned a lot from it and it gave me a fantastic idea for a local business.

  7. Linnette

    4/17/2011 4:31 pm

    Love the ideas!!! Even I want to go to Rita’s and I live in Miami!!!