Casual Connect, July 26, 2012.

Please excuse spelling mistakes and the rough nature of this post as our updates during the IGDA Summit and Casual Connect this week are pretty much liveblogged. This session just ended.

Speakers:

  • Damian Borichevsky, Vice President, Professional Services, PulsePoint
  • Wendy Yu, Sr. Director of Marketing, Kabam

Why care about email:

  • Window for communication with player directly is limited to when in game
  • Email is effective brand building tool
  • Effective email programs create interest and help drive first week retention
  • Inexpensive, highly measureable and very effective
  • Allows you to create cross and up sell opportunities
  • Enhance game experience – tips, news, etc.

Fundamentals

Point of collection

  • Be clear in setting expectations
  • Send a real time welcome/trigger
  • Provide options, opt ins
  • Ask for a good address by incentivizing, so you don’t get spam catcher

Have a balanced messaging mix

  • welcome series
  • game driven triggers
  • lapses/reactivations
  • milestones
  • cross promotions
  • newsletters

Branding

  • Maintain consistent branding between the game environment and mail content

Messaging purpose

  • Don’t just send to send. Have a purpose, don’t be annoying
  • segmenting recipients:
  • active/lapsed
  • payers/non-payers
  • openers/non-openers

List maintenance

  • Make unsubscribing easy, respect their choice
  • OK to sell down though

Kabam case study

  • Lifts seen in 1D and 7D retention:
  • Retention over holdout 5% > 7%
  • ARPU over holdout 16% > 36%
  • *holdout population doesn’t receive emails (a/b testing)

What players want:

  • relevant valuable information
  • tips, tricks
  • offers, promotions
  • Timeliness, based on in-game events (under attack, building complete) is key
  • Target appropriately – don’t send gratuitous real time emails to heavily lapsed players
  • Use predictive paying model to send unique conversion offers – 33% lift over BAU email performance
  • Best time of day to send emails:
  • Before smartphones, easier to say, generally when people get home
  • time of day is less important now with the web being everywhere, but still don’t want to send mail at 5 AM
  • Varies with game and campaign