Ever fantasize about dinner while sitting in front of a computer? Imagine getting an e-mail with photos of spicy fajitas or New England clam chowder.

Jack Tar American Tavern and Fajita Grill are two restaurants that use e-mail to make customers salivate. Both tapped e-mail services provider Constant Contact, Waltham, MA, to market to the taste buds with rich media messages.

“We started e-mail marketing for an inexpensive way to reach our customers,” said Abby Weaver, director of marketing at Fajita Grill, Oswego, NY. “Mail was expensive, and so we chose to go with e-mail.”

Monthly e-mails drive store traffic with exclusive coupons that can be used in the restaurant. The list was generated organically by the restaurant, which has collected 1,300 e-mail names through its Web site and in the eatery. A loyalty program benefits frequent patrons.

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