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The Business Owner’s Quick Guide to Email Marketing
With the rise of social media platforms, email marketing might sound old-fashioned. People tweet and post on Instagram. Does anyone still reach potential customers via email?
The answer is a resounding yes.
According to a recent Campaign Monitor survey, there are currently 3.7 billion email users in the world. The number is expected to rise to 4.1 billion by 2021.
If those numbers aren’t enough, marketers say that they see a return of $44 for every $1 they spend on email marketing.
Needless to say, email marketing can be a complete game changer for your business. In this blog post, we’re going to discuss how you can get started in email marketing.
Let’s get started.
What is email marketing?
Email marketing is the use of email to market a specific product or service. It allows you to reach potential customers in a more personal manner.
If you have an email address, you’ve most likely received a commercial message at one point or another. Businesses use it to tell potential customers about:
- new products
- and so much more
Let’s say you have an Amazon account, and you purchased a few thriller novels. Since they have your email address, they’ll soon start sending you emails about thriller novels you might be interested in.
Unlike social media, email marketing gives you full control. Another platform’s algorithms don’t control who sees your email and when they see it.
You can also see results right away and adjust accordingly. For example, the email marketing automation platform MailChimp lets you see the following information:
- Open rate – The percentage of people who opened your email.
- Click through rate – The percentage of people who clicked on a link inside your email.
There are other factors you need to consider, but the open rate and click through rate are among the two most important ones.
If you have a low open rate, it means you have to reexamine your email marketing strategy. Are your subject lines not interesting enough? Do your emails somehow end up in your subscriber’s spam folder?
Knowing your open rate and click through rate helps you determine how successful your email marketing campaign is. No matter how great your content is, it’ll be useless if people aren’t reading your email.
What to Include in Your Emails
Now that you know what email marketing is, it’s time to determine what your emails should be about.
What do you hope to achieve with your email marketing campaign? Your goals can be any of the following:
- Do you want to generate more leads?
- Do you want to gain more subscribers?
- Do you want to inform current customers about new products?
- Do you want to increase your open rate?
Whatever your goal is, make sure it’s SMART. The acronym stands for:
- Specific – Don’t just say you want to gain more subscribers. Target a specific number or percentage.
- Measurable – You won’t be able to tell you’re improving if you can’t measure it. Define how you’re going to measure your progress.
- Achievable – Setting up impossible goals only sets you up for failure. Ensure you’re goals are ambitious but attainable.
- Relevant – Examine where you are now and set your goals accordingly. If there are outside factors that could affect your progress, take them into account.
- Timely – Set a deadline for your goals so you can break down tasks and measure progress accordingly.
For example, wanting to gain 100 more subscribers in three months could be your SMART goal.
Get to know your audience.
No matter how hard your work on your emails, all your efforts will go to waste if you don’t know who you’re trying to reach.
A millennial and a fifty-something would respond differently to the same email. Your target audience should dictate your entire newsletter’s content. These include:
- The tone you use in the email copy
- The time you send the email
- The images and colours you use
To get to know your audience, ask yourself the following questions:
- How old is your ideal customer?
- Where do they live?
- What are their strengths?
- What are their pain points?
- What are their likes and dislikes?
Break down your email into parts.
Once you’ve defined your goals and your audience, you can begin creating content. Start by breaking down your email into three parts.
This is the sender subscribers will see every time you send them an email. Most companies use their business names. For example, whenever users receive emails from Amazon, they see Amazon as the sender.
Some companies choose to take a more personal approach and use an individual’s name as the sender. If there’s a person who can be considered the “face” of your branch, you may want to consider this option.
Determine which will work best for your business. If you’re unsure, you can try both and examine your results afterwards. Which gets you more open rates, using the company name or a person’s name?
Your email’s subject line is of great importance. No matter how excellent your email body is, it’ll be pointless if people don’t open the email.
If you’re worried about writing your subject line, you have to keep three things in mind.
First of all, your subject line has to be short. A SendGrid survey discovered the recipients are more likely to open an email if the subject lines are three words long.
Next, your subject line has to be specific. Don’t just say that your email contains valuable information. Tell recipients exactly what they’ll learn from you. For example, instead of saying, your store has a clothing sale. You can say that your store has a 50% off sale on all blazers.
Lastly, don’t forget to experiment. The great thing about email marketing is that you can see results right away.
Low open rates tell you that your subject lines need more work. You can refine your subject line so the next email you send gets better results.
Before you write your email content, review your goals. Generating more leads requires completely different content than building brand awareness.
If you’re trying to reach potential new customers, you could tell them about a free ebook or course you created. You can show your expertise without asking them to pay for anything. They can then see whether they’d like to purchase from you or not.
If you’re trying to inform current customers about other products, send out product announcements mixed with tips.
No matter what you’re writing about, you must keep formatting in mind. Don’t send recipients an email that looks like a gigantic block of text. Your email should have a lot of white space, making it easy for readers to comprehend.
Email marketing could yield incredible results for your business.
Done right, it propels you closer to your business goals and helps you develop more potential relationships with recipients.
Statistics also show that it generates more results than other online marketing strategies at a cheaper price.
To get started in email marketing, keep three things in mind. Define your target audience. Refine your subject lines. Write emails that help meet your SMART goal.
Don’t forget to experiment. If your efforts were ineffective the first time, you can always revise things in your next email.
Need help with your digital marketing strategy? Cornerstone Digital is a digital marketing agency in Sydney. We would be glad to create a five-star strategy for you. Call us on (02) 8211 0668 or email us at [email protected]
A self-professed book and digital marketing nerd, Darlyn Herradura focuses on building trust between customers and businesses with the written word. She understands that creating valuable content is the best way to get found online and happily spends her time doing that.