Cengage Learning Successfully Integrates Email Marketing into a Direct Mail Renewal Process


Cengage Learning


ICS Product/Service Areas: Email Marketing

The Challenge:

  • Cengage Learning, a leading provider of reference publications, textbooks and learning materials for the academic, professional and library markets, wanted to integrate email into their paper-based renewal mailings and billing process.
  • Customer subscription, renewal and billing information are contained in multiple databases.
  • Customers have multiple subscription contracts under the same email address.
    • Each subscription contract must receive a renewal email, yet an email transmission cannot contain duplicate email addresses.



The Solution:


  • ICS designed a customer data management strategy for the monthly email transmission
    • Subscription contracts that belong to the same email address are divided into separate transmission lists
    • Each customer record generates a renewal email that contains:
      • A unique subscription contract number
      • Renewal information for the publication(s) associated with that contract
      • Billing information
      • Special message information
  • ICS designed a process whereby any Cengage customers who had a publication subscription contract up for renewal in 30-120 days received an email
    • The email contained a link to a landing page built by ICS to capture renewals
    • Customers who renewed online received a confirmation email
    • Cengage received a notification email for each customer who completed a renewal online
  • Each month ICS compiles a report tracking the results of the renewal email.  ICS updates and resends this report multiple times per email transmision.  The report includes:
    • Delivery metrics
    • Bounce back records with contract numbers
    • Landing page stats, URL stats, and more!

 The Results:


Cengage has seen a high rate of response to their renewal email campaign.  Their renewal rates are up ... which represents an increase in their revenue stream.  By taking these steps to transition their paper-based system to email Cengage also reduced processing time and postage costs.