5 Smart Email Marketing Strategies For Small Businesses
Email marketing is not dead. Despite all the hype around social media marketing, it’s very much alive and kicking.
In fact, email marketing has ranked highest in terms of ROI compared to other marketing strategies. 78 percent of consumers consider email as the preferred communication method.
However, you can’t just blast out a bunch of emails to your list and hope for the best.
Here’re five ways to use email marketing strategically to maximize its impact on your bottom line:
- Put In Consistent List Building Effort
Customers’ needs change and people unsubscribe. If you aren’t consistently getting new subscribers your list size won’t stay the same – it’ll dwindle.
Plus, it takes the same effort to send an email to 100 people as to 10,000 people… wouldn’t it make sense to make your effort worthwhile?
Here’re some ideas to grow your list:
- Have your customers to register to set up an account, save their shopping cart, or make a purchase.
- Run contests and giveaways to collect leads.
- Create lead magnets that require submitting an email address to download.
- Host webinars that require registration to attend.
- Offer reward or coupon club that requires registration.
- Set up a private forum or community that requires registration to access.
- Ask for an email confirmation for posting comments on your blog.
- Install lead capture mechanisms, such as sign up box, pop-up, scroll box, smart bar etc. on your website.
When you send out your campaigns, remember to respect your subscribers’ time and inbox. Don’t spam your list, and if you use the emails for marketing purpose, make it clear that your list is opting in to receive promotional emails from you.
- Maximize Every Touch Point
Running dedicated campaigns is just one of the many things you can do to use email marketing to build relationships and increase sales.
Other emails you can send out with next steps, calls-to-action or up-sells include welcome notices, account approvals, purchase receipts and shipping confirmations.
It’s been found that optimized welcome emails can lead to four times increase in open rates, five times increase in click-through rates and nine times increase in revenue.
You can also take the opportunity to ask for feedback, participation in polls or engagement on social media.
- Test And Fine-Tune Your Email Campaigns
Gain insight into what appeals most to your customers so you can improve your campaigns to maximize their effectiveness to get more sales.
Here’re a few ways to hone in your communications:
- Before finalizing your emails, test your design and content with focus groups and surveys.
- Send your campaigns to employees and executives before sending them to your list. Have your test group view the emails using different email clients, browsers, and devices to make sure layout and features show up as intended.
- Use email A/B testing, which is available from most email service providers, to collect metrics such as open rate, click rate and conversion rate so you can make improvements based on how your list interact with your content.
- Provide Value And Build Goodwill Before You Ask For The Sales
Nobody is going to pay attention to you if you constantly talk about yourself or try to sell your stuff.
Before you pitch your products and services, build trust and relationships by providing value.
According to a study conducted by GetApp, a digital resource for email marketing software, two of the top three reasons for unsubscribing are “spam” (17.2 percent) and “irrelevant content” (15.8 percent.)
Follow the 80/20 rule: 80 percent of your content should deliver valuable and useful information, and 20 perfect should be devoted to your offers.
- Identify The Best Time And Optimal Frequency For Sending Your Emails
Research by Experian shows that even though open rates vary by industry and quality of the lists, emails sent in the evening (e.g. between 8pm and midnight) get the highest open rate and conversion rates.
Besides sending your emails at the right time, you also want to show up at the right frequency.
GetApp’s research also found that 46.4 percent of unsubscribes are due to “too many emails” in the recipients’’ inboxes.
If you send your emails too frequently with little added value, you risk becoming a nuisance and cause people to leave your list. If you send your emails too infrequently, you’re not staying top of mind and losing the opportunity to be seen as a trusted expert who provides value.
There’s no hard and fast rule to how often to send your emails. Test your frequency and analyze your metrics to determine the best frequency for your list.