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How can email marketing help your company or organization?
As one of our clients, an architectural services firm stated to me, “We need to give our enewsletter credit for recent new business. We received a call from a library client that we were not successful with at first but the director said our continued updates via the enewsletter led him back to our company. Email marketing really works!”
Permission-based Email Marketin
Anyone with an email account has firsthand knowledge of what email marketing can do. You open your inbox and “voilà” there appears a message from a company you do business with and trust, with news that matters to you. This is what permission-based email marketing is all about
There is also the opposite side of the coin. ‘Non-permission’ email marketing that tries to promote every product under the sun, and that forces you to hit the Junk or Delete button. You don’t want to be in this category.
I want to focus on the positive, the permission-based email marketing, which can have tremendous results if handled correctly. There is no better way to generate ongoing sales than starting with a loyal group of customers who want to hear from you. Now it is up to you to make this work to your advantage.
3 Key Considerations in Email Marketing
1. Start with good content and easy-to-view graphics for your email marketing. Remind readers of the value of your products and services, especially if they take your advice and find it works for them. With a professional approach, the results can be very effective.
2. Communicate regularly to build brand loyalty. This shows you care about your customers and want to keep them up-do-date on the latest developments impacting their businesses. Set up an ongoing timetable and stick to it.
3. Use the trackable features of email marketing to find who is opening the emails, what your customers/prospects are most interested in, and what links they click on (actions they are taking). You can then effectively gauge the results of your efforts within a day or two to fine-tune future email marketing plans
Benefits of Email Marketing
Here are some important considerations of how email marketing will help your organization.
Cost Savings – Marketing via email has many of the advantages of traditional direct mail but with much lower costs. These include no postage and no printing, and thus, enhance your return on investment. You reach out DIRECTLY to the people who matter most to your business – the ones who want your products and services.
Speed of Delivery – YOU can control when to get your messages out to your lists. If you want to reach 1,000 contacts in a matter in minutes with breaking news, it can be quickly achieved. Or you can do implement a calculated, segmented emailing to select customers, first gauging their interest before embarking a larger campaign.
Easy to Use – Once your database is in place and you have your email marketing plan in place, it is relatively easy to write content, obtain images and develop the graphic coding for each issue. It becomes a matter of implementing your email marketing on a regularly scheduled basis.
Push vs. Pull – Websites are based on ‘pull’ marketing. You put up information so that people will visit your site to find needed information. However, they might not know of your updates, so give them a reason to come back and see the website on a regular basis. With email marketing you send messages that drive traffic to your website, thus reminding and re-engaging readers.
Segmented Approach– The better and more detailed the database list, the more messages can be tailored. You can develop several versions of one email marketing message to see which one works with different subject lines, calls to action, various images, etc. Or you can send the same message out but have it come from different people in your organization. For example, if you have 4 regional sales managers, the email can come directly from each of them to their individual customer base.
Viral – It’s easy for people to forward your email marketing message to others, furthering your marketing reach. It sounds better and is more believable when it comes from a trusted friend or colleague.
Tracking – You can monitor everything from how many emails were opened, through to individual link clicks, so you can hone techniques and messages to improve performance.
Complementary Approach – You can use email marketing to support all your other marketing activities. When you roll out a new product with new advertising, website updates, trade shows appearances, and public relations, use email marketing to cement the message in a very direct way.
I did my first email marketing newsletter for a client back in 2003, which at the time was a novel idea. We had been doing a printed newsletter for many years prior to that, but were looking for ways to get news and messages out faster and save on some external costs. The instant feedback was impressive. It was effective, so other divisions in the company also wanted an enewsletter. Today, this has become one of the best tools marketers have in their arsenal.
I am just at the tip of iceberg in describing what email marketing can do for you. One question that I’m asked often is “What should we present in our email marketing?” So in another blog I will offer a list of editorial possibilities that will whet your appetite to launch into successful email marketing campaigns. Stay tuned.
Email me should you wish to talk further on email marketing and your other content marketing communications needs. That is what we do.