Email marketing – how effective is it?
If you had to choose between social media and email to market your business, which one would you prefer? With the rise of new online advertising platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, many businesses have relinquished email marketing, giving it a stigma of being antiquated and out of date.
However, even today, email marketing is not only one of the most cost-effective ways to reach customers. Research has also shown that it’s more successful than social media. All it needs is a proper strategy, and email marketing will help grow your brand and boost your sales immensely.
Email marketing has clear advantages over other digital or online media channels. If you want to successfully improve customer relationships, increase sales and brand awareness, email marketing remains a must.
One of the main benefits of email marketing is that you don’t put your advertisement out to an unknown crowd. Subscribers of your email list have already indicated an interest in your business, service or product, so it’s much easier compiling information that will be relevant to them. You know who you are targeting and have control over who gets to see your content.
Increase your brand
It often takes people several exposures to a brand before they decide to purchase. Regular emails with content based on the needs and interests of potential customers will get that exposure and ensure you are always at the top of their mind. When the time comes, you will be the first one they think of and they are more likely to come to you for a solution to their problem.
Email marketing is by far the cheapest way to advertise your business. There is no cost involved for printing, postage or advertisement fees, making it the most cost-effective method of them all.
How to use email marketing effectively
The success of your email marketing campaign rises and falls with your strategy. There are a few simple steps that will help you create messages that your readers won’t send straight to their spam folder.
Ideally, people have disclosed personal data when signing up for your email newsletters. You can and should use this data to create messages with a personalized content such as using their name in the subject line. The more you respond to each potential customer’s needs and taste, the higher your chances of them connecting with your brand and choosing to do business with you.
If your subject line sounds spammy, salesy or boring it will probably go straight into the bin. To make sure it’s catchy but not over the top, experts recommend compiling a list of subject lines and choosing the one that works best. Remember that subject lines on mobile phones get cut off after about 50 characters.
When you’re sending your emails is just as important as what’s inside. Generally, there are 3 different types of marketing emails. Transactional emails should be sent immediately such as to welcome someone or confirm an order. Lifecycle emails are based on a customer’s behaviour and can include alerts or reminders for unfinished orders. Promotional emails are everything from sales to product launches and are best sent early morning (most people check their email first thing after getting out of bed) or late evening.
Frequency is also key. Businesses with one newsletter per week receive the highest open rates. The more you send, the more likely it’s going to be discarded as spam.
Sharing is caring
The more helpful the content you provide, the more likely your readers will want to share it with friends and family. Adding social share buttons is a perfect way to create word-of-mouth advertising for free, thus increasing your audience and online reach.
Optimize for mobile
It might seem more of a formality but adjusting your emails for optimal view on smartphones is almost non-negotiable. According to research, the number of emails opened on a mobile phone far exceeds the number on laptops, tablets and desktops. People love receiving their mails on the go, but the majority gets frustrated if the content doesn’t fit their screens.
Text-based emails are less likely to be read all the way to the end compared to those that contain video snippets, animated content or even audio files. Incorporating digital media enhances the experience for the user, provides visual guidance and valuable information which in turn makes them more susceptible for future engagements with your brand.