The 4 Ps of E-marketing

By Stefan Eyram


(Part 1: Introduction and Permission)

(Part 2: Privacy, and Profiling)

(Part 3: Personalization, and e-Marketing Examples)
(Part 4: e-Marketing; Insurance Applications)

If you have studied marketing or have read any basic marketing books you are undoubtedly aware of the four Ps of marketing – Product, Place, Promotion & Price. As marketing paradigms change, the four Ps are also changing. Today we need to look at a new list – the 4 Ps of e-marketing – Permission, Privacy, Profiling and Personalization!

Email is arguably the fastest growing marketing tool available to top marketers today. More than two-thirds of them use email marketing in one form or another – one-third believe email is the most effective marketing tool. And while many marketers concede that their budgets are dwindling, 61% admit that they plan to spend more on email marketing in the coming year.

If done properly, e-marketing offers some of the best marketing ROI that can be found. As often published, good email campaigns generate unique open rates of 30-50% (that means 30-50% of recipients opened the email at least once) while average unique response rates, as measured by click-throughs, can range from 5-15% or more! Compared with other measurable marketing tools such as direct mail (<1%-3% response) email and other e-marketing executions are most often much less expensive. Typical direct mail campaigns, including printing and postage, range in cost from $1.00 or $1.50 per piece to well over $3.00. Additionally, using a website as a central destination for your marketing efforts allows a corporation to quickly and cost effectively make changes or respond to opportunities.

The reasons for using e-marketing as part of the overall marketing mix are varied. Many see it as an efficient and cost effective tool in an era of tight budgets. Others like the relatively fast time-to-market and response. Everyone likes the fact that website visits, email and banners can all be tracked through every stage of a marketing campaign for accurate ROI calculations


Most marketers think of “permission” in terms of email marketing – getting permission or opt-in to avoid being accused of sending SPAM (unsolicited commercial email). In today’s world of integrated marketing and ever-stricter privacy laws, we shouldn’t be focused on acquiring “email permission,” but instead, “marketing permission.”

In 2002 in Canada, the province of Ontario proposed tough new legislation covering privacy and personal information. In a nutshell, the new laws will require all marketers targeting residents in the province to acquire explicit permission from people BEFORE collecting any personal information and using it to market to these people. Technically this will apply to email, tele-marketing, dynamic websites, direct mail or any other medium using personal information, or data, to target specific individuals with marketing messages. If passed, this legislation is likely to form the blueprint for future laws across the country.

Permission is often tough to acquire but once you have it, and are able to keep it, you possess a valuable marketing asset and competitive advantage. As every other marketer seeks permission from the same people, it will get more difficult to get it. At some point “permission fatigue” will set in and the average person will refuse to give their permission to anyone else. It is imperative that you collect permission from your best customers and target prospects�before permission fatigue and before the competition does!

Stefan Eyram is Senior Director at Connectus Direct Solutions, a provider of best-of-breed e-marketing technology. For more information please contact Mr. Eyram via email at or by phone at 416-944-3760 ext. 228.