Despite the rise of social networks, email marketing is still one of the most effective ways of communicating with your audience. It’s not an optional process but a necessity for all kinds of online businesses.
When done correctly, email marketing can help a business increase sales, traffic, and maximize profits.
What is Email Marketing ?
Email marketing has become an essential tool for business ever since the introduction of the Internet to the world, however, some campaigns that make it through to our inboxes are absolute rubbish that we don’t take any notice of. This article seeks to explain what email marketing really is, why companies should use it, and how they should go about doing so.
Email marketing is a form of direct marketing that uses electronic mail as a means of communicating commercial or fundraising messages to an audience. In its broadest sense, every email sent to a potential or current customer could be considered email marketing. However, the term is usually used to refer to :
- Sending emails with the purpose of enhancing the relationship of a merchant with its current or previous customers and to encourage customer loyalty and repeat business.
- Sending emails with the purpose of acquiring new customers or convincing current customers to purchase something immediately.
- Adding advertisements to emails sent by other companies to their customers.
What are the 11 key benefits of email marketing?
Before you decide to invest in email marketing, it’s worth learning about its advantages. These are 11 of the main benefits that make email marketing the perfect choice for your digital marketing activities.
- Low cost
- Full Control
- Ease of Use
- The preferred marketing medium
- You can mobile device users
- Email is an owned medium
- Targeted and personalized communication.
- Ease to measure results
- Fully automated
- Excellent return on Investment
Types of Email Marketing :
1. Promotional Emails – these are the most common type of marketing emails, and their purpose is to make an offer to your email list. The offer could be promotional content, a white paper or webinar, a brand announcement, a new product release and more. A whopping 66% of consumers have made a purchase as a direct result of an email marketing message, so it’s no wonder promotional emails are so popular – they work!
2. Relational Emails – these deliver value to your customers by providing free content and information, such as subscriber welcomes, newsletters, blog articles, surveys, social updates and more. Relational emails may not make an offer, or sell a product or service directly, but they are designed to build relationships with the customer by adding value up front. For example, when your email subscriber receives a piece of high-quality content in your e-newsletter, he or she is interacting with your brand in a deeper and more meaningful way.
3. Transactional emails – these are sent in response to an action that a customer has taken with your brand. They include messages such as order confirmations, receipts, coupon codes, shipping notifications, password reminders and more. This type of email is often overlooked as an opportunity to give customers an idea of the voice behind your brand, and what it is like to do business with you. Do you deliver what you promised? Do you respect your customer’s wishes? The leads and customers on your email list are observing how you do business, and transactional emails are a big part of that!
The most popular email marketing tools to consider are:
- Constant Contact
How does email marketing work?
Email marketing is not a complicated process but it’s a process that requires a lot of A/B testing to find out how to best communicate with your subscribers in a way that is beneficial for them and for your business goals.
Here is an overview of how email marketing works:
- Sign up for an email marketing tool
- Create an email marketing strategy
- Build and grow your email list
- Setup automation tasks
- Monitor and improve campaign performance through A/B testing
- Regularly ‘clean up’ your email lists
Email Marketing Strategy
As with any type of digital marketing campaign, the first thing to do is to create a strategy.
Having an email marketing strategy in place before running any campaigns will help you to:
- Decide how email marketing will be used in conjunction with the other online marketing campaigns you’ll be running.
- Decide which email marketing platform to use and figure out your monthly costs.
- Decide on the strategies to use to grow your email list
- Decide when to use automation and what kind of messages to send and when
- Have the right reporting mechanisms in place to measure the effectiveness of your email campaigns
Why is email marketing important?
I’ve mentioned many times above that email marketing is important for your business. Let’s see below the reasons why.
- Email is used by 50% of the World’s population
- You ‘own’ your audience
- You can communicate directly with your subscribers
- Users voluntarily register to receive email messages
- Email Marketing has a high ROI
- Email is still one of the efficient selling tools
- Email marketing can be automated
- Performance can be measured easily and accurately
- It’s a great survey tool
- Increases the value of your online business