When the award winning eCommerce department works together with the award winning marketing department you know you can expect something special.
The sale is the 'summer stopwatch' sale. I've heard this sale was already planned before they lost their franchise so there may still be hope that they'll do a proper closing down sale like GNER and National Express East Coast did that's open to everyone.
I've been told approximately 640k people have been targeted and the promotional email says 150k seats available so on that basis they're expecting only about a quarter of people to be interested although if they get a better response they'll be hoping that some people continue to book at full price if the sale fares aren't available.
Judging by the people I've asked on Twitter it looks like those chosen for this sale have either been selected randomly or they're using different criteria to simply how often you've booked before (there was a previous sale only aimed at those who hardly travel). There's been a mix of people, some have said they've not booked in a while and others that have said they're booking regularly.
Calling it a sale but then restricting who can benefit from it means that they lose an important marketing tool - word of mouth. If someone tells their friend there's a sale on, they log in and find out they're not eligible then it is just going to cause resentment.
If you're going to restrict the promotion to certain people then it needs to be clear in the marketing material. Say prominently "You've been selected for..." or "By invitation only" so that those reading the email realise that not everyone has this offer. I can imagine lots of people forwarding their sale emails to friends who will then be upset that they don't work.
So far the majority of people who've voted on the Twitter poll have not received this sale email.
— Save EC Rewards (@SaveECRewards) 29 May 2018
There's also been an issue for some people that the link that was sent in the email didn't work for them. So it looks like this was not tested properly. Being promised a sale and then finding out it's not working is a great way of annoying a customer!
This is yet another promotion that has failed on two counts, it annoys those who find out about it and have got it and it annoys those that got it if they're one of those it wasn't working for.