Friday, 11 September 2009

Three highlights from our email inbox

A few emails in particular caught our eye this week. First up, from fashion cataloguer Brora:

This email alerts recipients to the Colourfinder tool on the Brora website. You select the pattern or colourway of the item you’re interested in, and it will show you all the products available in that shade and coordinating shades. No more worries about whether the blue of a certain cardigan matches the blue used in the floral pattern of the dress you’ve had your eye on. I imagine that this feature will reduce inbound service calls and help increase order sizes.

Next, from menswear mailer Brook Taverner, an email with the subject line “How to Tie the Perfect Half Windsor Knot”.

The email opens with several model shots and a paragraph with links to specific brands. This segues into a discussion of ties and knots. “There are different types of knot and which you use is not just a matter of taste but of getting the right knot for the right tie and shirt collar,” the copy states. I wasn’t aware that certain knots worked only with certain collars--and I’m not sure my husband is either. “The absolute definitive to master is the Half Windsor,” the email continues, “a symmetrical and triangular knot which can be used with any formal shirt and which lends itself to most ties in a light to medium weight fabric…” What follows are step-by-step directions complete with illustrations. The subject line encourages even those not in the market for a suit or other piece of attire to open the message; the nonselling information bolsters Brook Taverner’s credentials as a source for stylish, quality menswear.

Last but not least is the I Want One of Those (IWOOT) enewsletter.

Each issue of this newsletter tends to be several screens long, but it’s well worth scrolling down to the end—not simply to look over the etailer’s latest offers and odd new gadgets but also to read the fun facts featured in a section titled “Things We Didn’t Know About…” a particular subject. This week’s subject, in honour of the start of the school term, is “studies”. Thanks to IWOOT, I now know that Margaret Thatcher “was on the university science team which developed the first portable ice cream machines used in ice cream vans”. And then there’s this anecdote: “Seventy percent of the entire final mark of a Sociology A Level final exam was based on one question,'What is the bravest thing you've ever done in your life?'. One student wrote, 'This.', got up and walked out. He got an A.” Sheer brilliance all around.--SC

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