The Cricketer Magazine is famed for being the authoritative voice on international, domestic and club cricket, written by people who live the game, for readers who love the game. Founded in 1921 by “the Grand Old Man” of English cricket, Sir Pelham ‘Plum’ Warner, The Cricketer has retained its position as the world’s number one and best-selling cricket magazine. A guaranteed entertaining and informative read, each issue combines the sharpest cricket minds on the events, teams and players that define the modern era, with a nod to the traditions and values that made the game great.
Citipost Mail presented a solution to the magazine’s subscription renewal challenges in the form of Digi-Mail.
Up to four subscription renewal letters are sent to subscribers at key stages during their subscription lifecycle, at monthly intervals from three months prior to renewal, to the month after.
Traditionally, subscribers due for renewal were identified using the magazine’s online subscription management solution and addresses transferred into letter templates prior to printing using the office printer. The process was manual labour intensive: members of the subscription team would fold and insert the letters into envelopes, which were then franked and taken by hand to the local Post Office for posting 2nd Class. This process was also time-consuming, with each renewal file taking 2-3 days to complete for despatch.
How Digi-Mail delivered the solution:
The Cricketer was accustomed to using branded envelopes and inserting business reply envelopes as an optional response mechanism for subscribers. There was a concern that subscription renewal rates might suffer through the changes; that subscribers wouldn’t bother to renew without business reply envelopes and switching to generic, unbranded white envelopes would lead to renewal letters being unopened. However, the decision was taken to test Digi-Mail anyway, due to the significant time and cost savings on offer through externalising the print, fulfilment and postage.
A user account was set up within the Digi-Mail online portal and The Cricketer selected a member of its subscription team to control the upload of letters to Digi-Mail.
Once created, the mail-merged letter file was simply ‘dragged and dropped’ onto the Digi-Mail portal, print and mail options ticked and submitted for print and despatch via 2nd Class (Citipost Mail Down Stream Access).
What typically took two to three days to complete had now been reduced to just a few minutes.
The outcome and benefits:
Firstly, costs for production and mail have been reduced by almost 50% by implementing Digi-Mail. In addition to the cost savings, there is a significant reduction in the amount of time taken to mail out the subscription renewal letters, from two to three days down to a matter of minutes. This facilitates better use of staff resources to focus on core business tasks rather than print and mail fulfilment.Above all, subscription renewal rates increased by 10%. This increase has now been sustained for more than a year. It is believed that sending the letters in a generic ‘transactional-styled’ envelope, with the look and feel of a utility bill or bank statement, increased opening rates. Removing the business reply envelopes drove more subscribers online to complete their subscription renewals and led them to explore other content on The Cricketer website.
“The switch to Digi-Mail has played a large part in the continued improvement in The Cricketer’s subscription function. Not only is the standalone process quicker, cheaper and more effective, it has also freed up time for my staff. The usability of the service is excellent, and if any questions are in need of answering, the support team at Digi-Mail is very friendly and responsive.
We achieved our best-ever Christmas campaign in terms of subscription acquisitions, and the groundwork which we have carried out with Digi-Mail means we have the best possible opportunity to retain a greater number of these subscribers.”