The case for success: How Dell increased  revenue by 109% with a GIF

Email marketing is a powerful tool that can help businesses of all sizes connect with their audience and drive conversions. But how do you create email campaigns that actually work? One way is to study email marketing-related case studies to learn from the successes and failures of others.

In this article, we'll explore one of the most interesting and engaging email marketing case studies, so you can get inspiration for your own email campaigns.

Let’s get into it.

A little history on Dell…

Dell is a legendary technology company that has been pushing the boundaries of innovation since its inception in 1984. It was founded by Michael Dell, a successful entrepreneur, businessman and author, born in Houston, Texas. From desktops to laptops, servers to storage devices, Dell has been at the forefront of the computer technology industry, constantly striving to create faster, more efficient and more powerful products that make customers’ lives easier and more productive.

However, Dell is much more than just a technology company. It's a global leader in sustainability, committed to reducing its carbon footprint and using environmentally responsible materials in its products. If you’re interested in environmental issues, read more about how eco-friendly email marketing best practices can reduce carbon emissions and contribute to a healthier planet.

Dell is also a pioneer in customer service, providing 24/7 support to ensure its customers are always satisfied. It’s a champion of e-commerce, leveraging the latest digital marketing techniques to reach customers and boost sales.

In short, Dell is a powerhouse of innovation, sustainability and customer satisfaction. It's a brand that has earned the trust and loyalty of millions of customers around the world and it shows no signs of slowing down.

Now that we know more about Dell, let’s get into our case study.

How Dell’s GIF-centric campaign did the trick

Background: The Challenge

Before Dell designed the XPS 12 Convertible Ultrabook, the company knew they had to put innovation at the core of their latest gadget, to manage the expectations of an ever-evolving customer base.

The rise of smartphones and tablets had led to a decline in PC sales and customers were looking for more versatile and portable computing options. Dell recognised that it needed to create a device that could cater to the needs of modern consumers and stand out in an increasingly competitive market. They had to develop a device that was lightweight, powerful and versatile, without compromising on performance or functionality. Dell rose to the challenge and created the XPS 12 Convertible Ultrabook – a device that offered the best of both worlds, combining the power and functionality of a laptop with the portability and flexibility of a tablet.

The XPS 12 was a game-changer, setting a new standard for convertible laptops and re-establishing Dell as a leader in the PC market.

However, here is the challenge that they didn’t prepare to face: Marketing a convertible laptop wasn’t going to be a walk in the park. On one hand, it was a totally new type of device that would stand out from the sea of previous laptops and tablets. On the other hand, it was going to be so different that it would be difficult to explain it to people who had never seen such a device before.

“No one knows what a convertible is yet. It is not synonymous with products like the tablet is now or anything along those lines,” said David Sierk from the Email Strategy & Analytics department at Dell.

How was the team going to explain what the new device is in an email campaign without having to write tons and tons of copy?

This is what they did…

With their creative tagline, "Go from dreaming to doing in a flip," Dell knew they needed a visual element that would bring it to life. That’s where the Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) came in. They decided to create an animation that showcased the XPS 12 Convertible Ultrabook flipping effortlessly from a laptop to a touchscreen tablet.

It was a simple yet effective way to demonstrate the versatility and functionality of the device, and it perfectly complemented their catchy tagline. With the GIF in hand, Dell was able to capture the attention of potential customers.

Now, customers could visually see and understand what the convertible was and how it was going to benefit them.

“It’s a great way for a customer to get a full understanding of how that product is going to work in their hands,” David said.


Image Source: Dell

The above image of Dell’s campaign shows the XPS 12 Convertible Ultrabook in motion but not only that. They also paired it with highly engaging and persuasive email copy that was designed to convert readers into buyers. The copy was written with a clear understanding of the target audience.

In the copy, you can also see that the team also made use of a promotional incentive — every marketer’s best technique to motivate their customers to buy their products.

How it worked out…

The outcome was truly remarkable. They had:

  • 6% increase in email open rates
  • 42% increase in click rates
  • 103% increase in conversion rates
  • 109% increase in revenue

Upon this, David said, “We want to make sure we are providing an experience for our customers that is engaging and they want to click on. We know that they aren't going to buy from every email we send, but we certainly want to make them exciting enough that they want to open every email we send."

Dell's campaign was deemed successful after a performance evaluation that compared it against internal benchmarks. As you can see in the results above, David’s team achieved remarkable results, achieving a conversion rate increase of 103% and a revenue boost of 109%.



In conclusion, Dell's launch of the XPS 12 Convertible Ultrabook was a true success story and a testament to the power of innovative marketing and product design. By recognising the changing needs and preferences of consumers and creating a device that met those needs, Dell was able to re-establish itself as a leader in the PC market and increase revenue by an impressive 109%.

Their use of a GIF and persuasive email copy was just the icing on the cake, helping them to reach a wider audience and connect with potential buyers in a more engaging and memorable way. The XPS 12 was a game-changer, setting a new standard for convertible laptops and proving that even in a competitive market, innovation and creativity can pay off in a big way.

If you've been itching to try out a new marketing tactic but you're feeling a bit apprehensive, don't be afraid to take the plunge! Sure, there's always a risk that it might not work out as planned, but honestly, you might learn something new, gain some valuable experience and even have a bit of fun along the way. So why not give it a shot? You never know - it just might be the thing that propels your business to new heights!

Let us know how it goes and feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.


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