Case Study of the Week: A Solution for Unopened Emails

May 30, 2022

Marketing Communications

You are the director of customer relations and the marketing communications specialist for Unique Gifts, a catalog and online retailer. Unique Gifts sells products for kids and adults, home accents, entertainment items, art, books, do-it-yourself kits, games and accessories. More than half of the products are handmade by independent artists and artisans.

Customers are able to sign-up for home delivery of the quarterly catalog on the Unique Gifts website. Also, any time an online or telephone order is placed, the customer is added to the catalog mailing list. If a customer places a gift order, the recipient is also added to the catalog mailing list. When an order is placed, the customer must provide an email address. Unique Gifts sends weekly emails to all customers in the management system. The emails feature new products, special promotions and information about the artists and artisans.

The marketing department has determined that half of the weekly Unique Gifts emails are left unopened. Upon further review, it was noted that the same customers are not opening the Unique Gifts emails week after week, although they are not opting out of the program. In addition, the customers that do not open the Unique Gifts emails have not made any recent purchases.

In an effort to remind former customers of the amazing products available at Unique Gifts, the director of marketing wants you to develop a direct-mail piece that will be mailed to the customers in the management system that repeatedly do not open the weekly emails and have not made any recent purchases.

The director of marketing wants you to develop an effective direct-mail letter that will reinforce the company’s service orientation, build and maintain relationships, and offer an incentive for a future purchase.


Randi Bibiano
Competitive Events Specialist

Randi Bibiano is DECA's competitive events specialist. In this role, she conceptualizes and authors role-play scenarios for the collegiate and high school division’s competitive events programs. She also manages DECA's online competitive events and serves as a liaison to volunteer efforts at DECA's educational conferences.

Discussion Questions

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Classroom Connection

Career CLuster:


Instructional Area(s):

Customer Relations

Performance Indicators:

Discuss the nature of customer relationship management
Build and maintain relationships with customers
Reinforce service orientation through communication
Discuss the nature of effective direct-mail copy