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Ever tried the 3C model to refine your email marketing strategy

If we'd ask you about your strategy, would you be able to clearly define it? We're just wondering, as most of the time we get no answer to that question. Or we get an answer to an entirely different question. Saying you want to ‘increase sales with 40% over a period of 3 years' is not a strategy. That's a goal. Stating you want to ‘help people differentiate themselves and help them build their own identity' is a vision. Saying ‘you want to keep your promise of a fulfilling lifetime ownership experience by offering the best quality possible' is your mission statement. And finally, if you think your strategy is ‘doing email marketing', well that's more of a tactic. But… what exactly is strategy then?

We were intending to give you our own definition. But then we came across this blogpost by Gerry McGovern,which perfectly defines what strategy is all about:

“Strategy is about trying to take control and trying to win. Strategy is about trying to predict the future or at least enough of that future to give you a competitive advantage. Strategy is about being specific. It is about helping you get from A to C by doing B. It's about putting your cards on the table, placing your bets. More than choosing what to do, strategy is about choosing what NOT to do. Because today, more than ever, there are far more things that you could do—but shouldn't. These things distract and create complexity. They take valuable time and resources away from what really matters. Strategy is about understanding what really matters and acting on it.”

But how do you start refining your strategy? 

And how do you apply this to your email marketing efforts? Well, it's not a one-day job. But to get started, you can improve your email marketing efforts with the 3C model. Read on and find out how to set it up.

1) Customer

The base of any company is its customers. Truly caring about your customers is the key to long-term success. A successful customer analysis provides great insights on which target groups are relevant for which product, where your customers are situated, what their shopping behavior is,… If you ask yourself the right questions, you'll start building great insights. Then use these insights to deliver great content, send messages at the right time, or reach the right persons.

2) Competitor

A competition analysis is not about looking at your competitors and copying what they do. It's better to find ways to differentiate yourself from them. Should we differentiate on product or on image? Who is our main challenger? What are their strengths and weaknesses? What is their market share? Having a matrix with all of your competitors and their approach is a valuable asset when building your strategy. Use their content and frequency as a testing environment. Should you be sending at the same moment they are, or would it be better at another time. Should you deliver other content, or talk about the same topics and work on a higher quality?

3) Corporation

Analyzing your corporation reveals your strengths and weaknesses. Key here is to focus on your strengths and continuously improve. By doing this, your competitive advantage will automatically increase. Look internally for inspiration for your newsletter. Your coworkers from logistics, administration or other departments can give you a different view on your product, which you can use to differentiate yourself.


You will already have an indication on how your email marketing differentiates itself, by doing this analysis you will have a well funded base to make decisions. This gives you a competitive advantage against your competitors and allows you to continuously improve.

Posted on
May 29, 2013