Emails are an essential marketing tool for every industry, but when was the last time you felt truly engaged and entertained by something that landed in your inbox? Chances are, it’s been a while.
FirstFunding, a Dallas-based financial services company, is taking a new approach to cut through the noise and connect with clients. For the past few months, the firm has been sending out animated shorts on various products and announcements, all created in about an hour with PowToon, a user-friendly software platform.
“It not just another boring email,” said Nate Clear, FirstFunding senior account executive. “The videos convey at least one of the important points we want to highlight, and we are able to solicit that toward our investor partners or prospective customers or existing customers. It has given us a lot of flexibility to touch a lot of people and have a much higher percentage of them actually open it and look at it.”
So far, the response has been strong. A popular recent short on the importance of 1098s roughly doubled the number of customer inquiries compared to previous years, according to Clear. While FirstFunding has marketed 1098s with traditional email blasts for about a decade, the PowToon short made the difference.
“A lot of people were calling or emailing us with additional questions,” Clear said. “It’s interesting to see so many people reaching out as if they had never heard about it. That was one where we saw significant impact.”
Each short is also posted on FirstFunding’s Facebook and LinkedIn pages, where they get even more clicks.
Clear said PowToon is a definite winner – not least because the software is relatively inexpensive and easy to use. A one-minute short takes about an hour to produce, and PowToons offers many options for customization. The midrange monthly subscription plan costs $59 for 10 GB of storage, full HD resolution and unlimited royalty-free music.
“As a small company, we have to be nimble to be successful at what we’re doing,” Clear said. “We had previously done a commercial with a live person and a green screen behind, and that was pretty expensive. It was about $500 for the talent and another $500 for the video and the editing and putting it on different media platforms. We are trying to accomplish the same thing with these mini-commercials at a reduced cost.”