Hansgrohe refines his B2B e-mail marketing with EVALANCHE

This company, founded in the Black Forest town of Schiltach in 1901 by Hans Grohe, has developed into Hansgrohe Group and one of the few global players in the international sanitary sector in recent years. The bath and sanitary specialist currently employs more than 3,200 men and women at its headquarters and branch offices in 37 different countries across every continent. Approximately 2/3 of the employees are in Germany.

The targeted expansion of its international market presence is just as important for the success of the manufacturer of showers and fixtures in the Black Forest. In 2010 branch offices opened in Abu Dhabi and Brazil. The internationalisation of the market development is supported with innovative tools used throughout the group. The introduction of an innovative e-mail marketing solution has played an important role in recent years.

The Initial situation

Hansgrohe previously relied primarily on traditional media and Internet publications for their marketing. The use of direct mailing instruments was more reserved in some areas. Individual subsidiaries had had positive experiences with e-mail marketing. This lead the company to decide to introduce an e-mail marketing solution for the Hansgrohe Group that could be used in all parts of the company and that had to meet a demanding list of services:

Client-capable for all areas under a master account

Worldwide Software-as-a-Service in all languages

Top usability with simple use per CMS and browser

Central management for releasing drafts and content

Integration of existing CRM for campaign management

Top availability, as well as security and quality standards

Integrated cross-media per click as HTML e-mail, web, PDF, audio & podcast

The Implementation

International Rollout

Hansgrohe’s Swiss subsidiary, which communicates with its customers in German, French and Italian, was the pioneer for the multi-lingual introduction of the e-mail marketing tool. Based on the experiences gained in Switzerland, the company was soon able to start using the tool productively in 24 subsidiaries and for two central departments at the company headquarters thanks to strategically planned training campaigns from SC-Networks.

The Advantages

Initial Experiences

The international introduction of e-mail marketing proved to be the right decision immediately after the rollout. Thanks to the top usability offered by the intuitive EVALANCHE platform, the company was quickly able to successfully manage 231 international mailings. The average open rate was above 50% and less than 1% of recipients opted to unsubscribe from the newsletter. Compared to the practice of direct marketing by post used in the past this is a big step forward. This is all the more true considering the reduced effort needed and the fact that the success rate feedback is more transparent than ever before.

Range of Uses

Hansgrohe currently uses e-mail marketing to support broad marketing campaigns, for event invitations and for various newsletters. The target groups are direct sales partners like wholesalers, plumbers and retailers, as well as architects, interior designers and journalists. The newsletter frequency varies greatly from one target group to the next

Quality Control

The e-mail marketing solution offers a wide range of integrated test functions for quality control. This allows many tests to be conducted before the e-mails go out, such as: W3C conformity of the HTML code, spam check, e-mail client check, mobile check, text quality and eye tracking. Campaigns are released centrally per test distribution run from the Marketing department to the managing director of the respective subsidiary, where the final success rate monitoring takes place based on comprehensive and informative statistics and reports.

Future Plans

Following the successful first phase of the rollout in 2010 more branch offices and departments at the Hansgrohe headquarters will start using the tool this year. There are also plans for more in-depth use of the tool for B2B communication on events and trade fairs and for sending out invitations and processing responses. The 2nd step of CRM integration, in which processes for processing responses and the creation and integration of web forms on the Internet are planned, is also important. An example of this is newsletter subscriptions with automated reply e-mails and a double opt-in procedure. These are integrated components in the e-mail marketing solution and will be transferred from there directly to CRM.