While some might disagree, I firmly believe that email marketing is still an important and effective facet of digital marketing. It can be a great way to build relationships with customers, provide readers with useful information, and gain visitors to your site.
However, it does take time and effort. You have to work at growing your subscriber list and really focus on delivering useful content. But, if you do so correctly, you can really increase your sales.
Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your email marketing efforts.
1) Choose a Provider
I wish I were kidding, but I’ve honestly had clients ask if they can send out giant email blasts through their Gmail account. Your personal email is not the place to be sending out newsletters or other email marketing efforts. You need to get a provider who specializes in email marketing.
Luckily, there are several out there that will be able to meet all your needs. Look at MailChimp or Constant Contact – these are two of the most popular email marketing providers and are very easy to use.
2) Build Your Audience
One of the best ways to leverage your email marketing is simply just to send out your message to as many people as possible. That makes sense, right? The more people you send it to, the more eyes it gets in front of, the more people you have to sell your goods or services to, the more money you make.
However, building your email marketing list isn’t always the easiest task. You really have to have a strategy in place to get them to sign up for your newsletter. You can’t just sit around and hope they will sign up. Instead, you have to meet them where they are and make your email marketing sound so irresistible that they can’t help but add their name.
So, how do you do this? Here are a few tips:
* Social Media – Social media and email marketing go hand in hand. You probably have followers on your social media pages that don’t know you have a newsletter. Share it on social media and get them to sign up. Also, add a sign-up button on your sites so that new visitors will know how to opt in.
* Pop Ups – You can add pop-up windows on your blog or site. Make sure you aren’t just spamming your readers, though, and that you show them your newsletter will provide real value for them.
* Events – This might seem like an outdated practice, but you would be surprised how many people you can connect with when you collect email addresses at events. This probably shouldn’t be your number one strategy when building your audience, but it is something to keep in mind.
* During Checkout – If you are an eCommerce business, consider collecting emails during your checkout process. The potential customer has already expressed interest in your company, so they should be more willing to sign up for your email marketing.
* Webinars – Hosting a webinar can be a great way to reach out to new people. By promoting your webinar, or even partnering with another company, you can get in front of more people who will be inclined to join your list.
3) Create a Premium Design
We are a very visual society. We want things to look nice and clean but still be fun and modern. While your content is extremely important in your email marketing, you cannot overlook the design aspect of it. If your newsletter is cluttered, people are going to be turned away and never even read your content. You don’t want them to click on that delete button before you can reach them with your copywriting; therefore, you have to catch their attention with your design.
Want some inspiration? Here are some really great email marketing designs to help get your creative juices flowing for your own designs.
4) Write Incomparable Content
People don’t want cluttered inboxes full of random newsletters and emails that don’t help them or interest them. If that’s what they are getting, chances are they are going to opt out of those emails as quickly as possible. Therefore, it is paramount that your content provides beneficial information to your readers. How do you do this? Let’s start at the beginning.
* The subject line is often overlooked, but it’s extremely important. Your subject line is your make or break point. This is your first chance to grab your reader’s attention, so it needs to be as compelling as possible while also staying under 35 characters.
* Next, you want to establish the purpose of the email you are sending. Every single correspondence that you send out should have a clear goal. Whatever that goal might be, it needs to be crystal clear to the reader. By making your CTA concise and to the point, the better chance you have to propel the subscriber down your sales funnel.
* As for the content of your email, make sure that you use short sentences and bullet points. People are busy – they don’t want to read paragraph after paragraph. They slim their emails and see if there is something worth stopping for. Therefore, make your sentences shorter and more concise. Don’t over think it – write like you were talking to someone in your office.
* One last tip – make sure that you add a social share button somewhere in your email. You want to promote your readers into sharing your content with their audiences. This increases the number of people who will see what you are sharing. Make sure this is a share button, not follow. While you do want your readers to follow you on social media, this is where you get them to share your content with more people.
5) Use Company Email
This can be overlooked at times. It might not seem like a huge aspect of your overall email marketing strategy, but it’s been proven that using a company branded email address is more effective.
When people think the email is coming from a real person at your company, the more likely they are to open the email. We trust what we consider a personalized sender over just a generic one from the provider. This is a simple trick but can greatly help your email open rate.
6) Test Your Times
Another aspect that is often overlooked is the time that you send your emails. People read their emails at different times. One of the worst things you can do is to just send out emails and expect people to read them. Instead, you need to really work to see when your readers are actually opening and reading your emails. The email addresses on your list are real people, and they are busy people. Work with their schedule.
You can start by sending your email to one part of your email list in the morning, and then have it go out to the rest in the afternoon. Then go into your analytics and see which time had the best metrics. You can then expand upon this. If the morning worked better, test out different times in the morning segment – send it out to one part at 8 a.m., then 9 a.m. and 10 a.m., and so on. This should tell you when your readers are actively in their inbox and more likely to open your emails.
7) Segment Your Audience
Segmenting your audience can be extremely effective and can help you to really understand who your buyers are. Not all of the people who sign up for your emails are the same. Some might have signed up to find out what type of events you are having, or to get updates on your blog. Some might just be there for a type of coupon.
The problem is most of your subscribers probably aren’t there for all three reasons. Therefore, by segmenting your audience, you can figure out what type of email they want and focus on sending them only those emails.
You can segment your audience by demographics, like their age, where they live, their gender, etc. You can also segment on behavioral data, like what they buy, how often they buy, when they open your emails, which emails they open, etc. By putting them into different categories, you start to understand their interests and can better promote your content to them.
Email marketing is still a big component of digital marketing – one that shouldn’t be tossed aside. When done correctly, it can be an effective way to build customer loyalty, increase website traffic, and drive sales.