You want to attract new customers and keep existing clients coming back. But you can’t afford to invest the time or resources without the results you need. If this sounds like you, then email marketing is your answer!
What is email marketing?
Email marketing is promoting your business with email. It’s a strategy used to cultivate relationships with potential customers, keep current customers informed of your business and industry, educate your readers on your products or services, send promotions & coupons, encourage customer loyalty, and more!
Although some people think email marketing is an outdated strategy, 2020 is proving them wrong. It’s a powerful marketing tool that is more important now than ever before.
What is it used for?
Use email marketing to build trust with customers over time. Trust is essential to convert readers into buyers. It’s also an effective way to keep customers informed about new products, sales, or promotions you’re running, so they know when and what to buy.
What is an email marketing platform?
Email platforms like Get Response, Constant Contact, and Mailchimp allow a business to send bulk emails to lots of people at one time.
If you tried to send the same number of emails from your Gmail or Outlook account, you couldn’t. If you BCC email addresses you’ll be limited to sending and receiving 100 emails a day on Gmail. So sending directly from your inbox isn’t a user-friendly way of sending email to lots of people.
Mailchimp, ConvertKit, and all email platforms bulk send emails and monitor how subscribers interact with your emails. You can also measure analytics like click-through rates, open rates, bounce rates, and conversions.
Should you use email as part of your overall marketing strategy?
Yes! All businesses can benefit from email marketing, especially small businesses. This strategy can be relatively inexpensive and easy to track, especially compared to other digital and traditional marketing forms.
What is the benefit of email marketing over other methods of marketing?
94% of Internet users use email. With email, you’re able to reach more people even if they’re not on social media. Furthermore, an astounding 75% of online users say email marketing is their preferred marketing method!
Ready to make the most of your small business marketing budget?
The top benefits of using email marketing for small businesses
1. Builds strong customer relationships
People like to know you’re thinking about them. They want to know what’s happening in your business. Why wouldn’t you keep them up to date, if that’s what they want? Email marketing is the best way to reach out with a quick update for your customers.
Emails can include your latest product launch, your next big event, and news about your industry. These are all great categories for articles for regular newsletters. If a customer has opted to receive emails from you, don’t be shy about sending emails and building relationships.
Still not convinced? Consider that most people check their phones before they get out of bed. By sending an email, someone may think about your business very first thing in the morning!
2. Develop your unique brand
Email marketing is a great way to develop your brand. It gives you a direct line to the email inboxes of your customers or potential clients. Your emails should be consistant with your brand. Your logo and brand colors should be promintelty placed and used. The messaging style your brand uses should be continued through in your emails.
Create a brand guide and follow it with every email you send out. Regular emails will allow you to create a unique voice, style, and image for your subscribers.
3. Become an expert with expert content
Remember, email marketing doesn’t have to be about delivering coupons and sale information. In addition to driving traffic to your website, use email marketing to provide your subscribers’ unique content.
Videos are a great way to establish your brand as a thought leader in your industry; include them in your emails.
Content is one of your most valuable marketing tools. Useful content should be the cornerstone of your marketing strategy. If people love what you do, they’ll sign up to read more.
4. Email marketing is time and budget-friendly
As a business owner, you’ll have time and budget constraints. In most cases, there’s simply no way around this. While buying a Super Bowl ad would be nice, it’s not an option for most businesses.
Designing a professional email marketing campaign isn’t complicated or time-consuming and sending emails to a large number of subscribers is cost-effective.
5. Build credibility as a business
Building credibility is a big hurdle for any business. Why would someone choose your business over another? Use email marketing to stay in contact with your customers and keep them updated about your business.
Along the way, you’ll also build trust. The more people learn about your business, and the more they hear about your business, the more they’ll trust you and your business.
There’s plenty of data to back up the benefits of email marketing campaigns.
- 91% of US adults want to receive promotional emails from companies they do business with. (MarketingSherpa)
- Email is almost 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined to help your business acquire new customers. (McKinsey)
How does email marketing work with other forms of marketing?
Email marketing should be a part of your marketing strategy; it should not be the only strategy you have. Email works exceptionally well alongside social media marketing.
You can cross-promote your company’s social media profiles with social connect buttons so your email subscribers can follow you. Use social media to promote and grow your email list by running a giveaway or challenge, with people providing their email address to enter.
Create a post asking your social media followers to subscribe to your email list with a link to a subscription form. Pin the post to the top of your account.
How do you start an email marketing campaign?
Now you know what email marketing is and why it’s an integral part of your marketing strategy. But what steps do you need to take to get up and running with email and send successful email campaigns?
Step 1: Establish your goals
It can be tempting to sign up for an email platform like Campaign Monitor, Mailchimp, or SendinBlue and start sending your first campaign.
Remember, before jumping in headfirst; take a minute to think about your goals and what you really want to achieve with your email strategy. Your goals dictate the type of campaigns you send, who you target, the content you include, and how you measure success.
Step 2: Build your email list
Now that you have goals, it’s time to build your email list so you can make those goals a reality. The method you use to build your list may be dictated by the goals for your email list.
Build your emails by:
- Importing a list of known contacts
- Running a challenge on social media and requiring an email address to enter
- Giving away a free opt-in ebook in exchange for an email address
- Giving away a course sent via email
Step 3: Select the type of campaigns you want to send
There are many types of email campaigns you can use to connect with subscribers. The kind you choose depends on the goals of Step 1. These campaigns can consist of:
- Email blast – A one-time email campaign usually about one main topic of interest.
- Email newsletter – A regularly distributed email campaign generally giving news, articles, and promotions.
- Marketing offer – An email to drive a purchase or have the subscriber take some type of action.
- Announcement – This campaign is sent to your subscribers announcing a new product, feature, or service.
- Event invitation – An invitation to an event or an email designed to increase awareness of your event and encourage people to attend.
Step 4: Create your first campaign
By now, you have decided what your goals are, you’ve built a bit of an audience and selected the type of campaign you’re going to send. Now it’s time to start building your email.
Research shows that an adult’s attention span is, on average, eight seconds (shorter than a Goldfish). You can assume people aren’t reading your campaigns word for word with such a short attention span. Instead, they’re scanning them, looking for something of interest.
Therefore, writing long, text-heavy email campaigns may not be the best approach. Structure your emails to draw people into reading your content while guiding them toward the email’s call to action. Pictures are worth 1000 words.
Step 5: Measure your results
With your first email sent and getting opened and clicked by your subscribers, you’ll be able to start tracking results to see how successful your campaign is. The reports section of your email platform is the place to go to understand how people interacted with your email campaign.
To sum it all up
After reading this article, you should realize that email marketing is one of the best ways to give your small business a path to grow and succeed. Remember to take the time to build your email list and make writing your email campaign a priority. Figure out what your customers want from you, and give it to them in your email. But most of all, be consistent with your newsletters.