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The Popcorn Factory Email Grade: [B]
Clarity of Message
Call to Action
Sense of Urgency
August 21, 2014 –
For over 30 years, The Popcorn Factory has been providing customers with premium, freshly popped popcorn that is available in all-occasion tins, baskets, and popcorn towers. According to the company’s website, The Popcorn Factory pops more than 1 million pounds of popcorn every year, using only the finest corn that is grown in the United States. In addition to such popcorn flavor favorites as cheddar, caramel, and chocolate, The Popcorn Factory’s other signature flavors include Buffalo Ranch, Jalapeño, Almond Pecan Corn, and Cinnamon and Ginger Teriyaki Ranch. The Popcorn Factory is part of the 1-800-Flowers Family of Brands.
Missed Opportunity in the Subject Line
This email was sent to a customer who purchased a gift online from The Popcorn Factory a few years ago and has since continued to receive promotional emails from the company. The subject line — “Why Send a Popcorn Card … Just Because” — prompted this recipient to open the email. Never having seen or heard of a popcorn card, this email’s subject line piqued her curiosity to find out more.
Once opened, this subject line is congruent with the headline, “Just Because It’s Monday, Send a Popcorn Card.” The potential to perhaps drive even more opens was missed, however, by not incorporating one of the biggest selling points of this promotion into the subject line — you can send a popcorn card for only $5, which includes free delivery.
Preview Pane and Call to Action Could Have Been Stronger
The preview pane without images conveys the primary message of the email and provides an adequate amount of information to encourage recipients to download images. But alternative text could have been used more effectively, especially in the first image. Instead of “PF_horizontal_logo,” for example, a short promotional description of a popcorn card may have prompted more image downloads. Plus, providing a link in the image for the call-to-action button would have given interested recipients the opportunity to click through to the popcorn card landing page.
The eye path for this email works well — taking the reader’s eye from The Popcorn Factory logo, to the vibrant image of the popcorn cards, to the standout subhead (“Starting at only $5* delivered!”), to the centrally positioned, bright green “SHOP NOW!” call-to-action button.
Although the call to action is prominent and motivates action, shopping online can be a source of anxiety for some people. To help alleviate that stress, for example, a Paypal image, a short testimonial, or a Better Business Bureau logo could have been included in this email to help make the call to action even stronger.
Great Offer, But No Sense of Urgency to Help Drive Conversions
The offer is great — $5 for a delivered popcorn card — especially considering the cost of a standard greeting card and postage today. Free shipping with the use of a promotion code is part of the offer, which recipients don’t find out about until they click through to the landing page. Promoting the free shipping and promo code in the email would help make the message and offer even clearer to readers from the start. Plus, if free shipping was available only for a limited time, there would be a sense of urgency for recipients to take advantage of the offer, which likely would help drive more conversions.
High Credibility Helped “Get the Click”
The Popcorn Factory has high credibility with its customers. The company is known not only for its quality, made-in-the-U.S.A. products, but also for supporting American troops by providing free military shipping all over the world. We highlighted a few improvements that may have helped boost this email’s overall performance metrics. But the email did “get the click” from this recipient — along with a couple of purchases — and she wasn’t even in the market for a popcorn card before spotting the promotion in her inbox.
Disclaimer: FulcrumTech does not have access to the performance data relating to this promotional email, so any tests performed on this email can’t be reflected in FulcrumTech’s commentary.