Email marketing is one of the most effective methods for connecting with a sales prospect and existing customers. It's typically a companion product of marketing automation software and an integral part of your digital marketing strategy.
What is Email Marketing?
Email marketing is a powerful marketing tactic used to communicate with customers and nurture sales prospects. Sending helpful marketing emails can create meaningful prospect dialogue, create sales pipeline momentum and turn customers into promoters.
How to do Email Marketing
1. Make it Personal but not Awkward
There’s some subtle psychology at work when you consider the greeting of your email. Sure, if you have an established business relationship with the customer, one email strategy would be to use the name. However, if you’re not on a first-name basis, consider omitting the name altogether.
Of course, nothing’s worse than the “insert name here” notation you sometimes see. A database merge didn’t go well. Moreover, nobody cared to check. That said, the first name use could be awkward because it seems overly familiar. A better approach is the use of a customer’s purchase history for the sake of personalization.
Show that your company remembers the purchases the customer made in the past. Refer to the dog toys the shopper bought, the brand of golf clubs they favored, or the title of the last book they checked out. That’s a great way of reestablishing a relationship with little more than a product mention.
2. Effective Email Marketing Sinks or Swims with the Subject Line
With the greeting conundrum solved, consider a catchy subject line. Some marketers believe that more is better. Actually, that’s not always the case. Overly long subject lines might turn customers off. They won’t click through.
The magic number, if there is one, is 49 characters. Keep it short, sweet, and engaging. If you do, the consumer is far more likely to open the email. Even extremely short subject lines of about ten characters tend to do very well. They pique the interest of readers, which tends to boost email open rates.
3. Avoid Email Marketing Mistakes
It’s easy to make some mistakes along the way. Moreover, consider that your email will be rubbing shoulders with those of other merchants. This means that you have to stand out in all the right ways. Let’s find out how to build a better email campaign.
Sometimes, an email strategy falls flat because of small, technical mistakes. It has little to do with the content. However, success or failure could have everything to do with the font you pick, the time you send the email, or even the day on which you send it out.
4. Timing is Part of a Successful Email Marketing Strategy
You sit down at your computer to send out an email blast. Because you figure that your recipients are most likely to read email during business hours, you send your message early in the day. Is it a win? Experts at OptinMonster say the best time to send emails comes down to science.
In fact, after hours is by far the better time to send out your marketing communication. Because few companies send out competing messages after 9 p.m., it’s an excellent time to address the consumer. That said, your particular niche might be different.
Yet no matter what your niche favors, avoid the standard business hours for your emails. If you don’t, they might end up in the spam folder with all the other unread business emails.
5. Weekends are Excellent Days for Sending Messages
Speaking of the optimal timing for your email campaign, consider Monday through Friday as subpar. In contrast, marketing emails that you send on weekends have a better chance of being opened. This leads to higher click-through rates. Just as the time factor, remember that fewer businesses are sending emails on Saturdays and Sundays. You can capitalize on the relatively empty email inbox by filling it with your messages.
Moreover, many people have more time on the weekends to read the types of emails they might not pay attention to during the week. And, if your customer is thinking of buying a specific item, the weekend is an excellent time to consider the purchase and pull the trigger on it. Having your handy click-through link could be the deciding factor.
6. Customers Open Emails That Contain Free Offers
Free is almost anyone’s price range. Because there are so many messages piling up in the inboxes of consumers, many look for the extra bang. If you give something away for free, there’s a better chance that your email will be opened and read. Online tools are a great freebie to consider. They might help you determine how to build a better email campaign today!
Of course, your consumer base may be different. Maybe you can consider more tangible giveaways. However, few things do as well as these tools. The one possible exception consists of templates if this applies to your business model.
7. Mobile Optimization is Essential
Your email marketing might fall flat if you assume that consumers are sitting at their PCs at night, reading your message. It’s far more likely that they’re sitting in front of the TV, watching YouTube, and scrolling through social media and emails with their mobile phones. In fact, it’s fair to say that the consumer is now connected to the phone like never before.
Unless your emails look stunning on the phone screen, they won’t get much play. Therefore, do away with the cutesy fonts and emojis that don’t translate. Rather, design the text in a single column with a 44-pixel height and width. The middle of the screen is prime real estate. If it’s essential, it needs to be there. Most importantly, make the call to action distinct, easy to click, and separate from the body of the email. Repeating it is fine, too.
Do you remember when websites went to mobile optimization a while ago? Some businesses fought it. Consumers simply stopped visiting their sites with mobile technology. Because this is now the primary means of shopping on the go, these companies had to comply or lose a significant chunk of their website traffic. It’s pretty much the same with the emails.
8. Don’t Scrap You Email Marketing Strategy for Social Media
Everyone’s on Facebook. Any business worth its salt will have a strong and well-defined social media presence on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. In some cases, you might need all three to be highly visible.
Even so, consider that email marketing is still king. You won’t do as well if you forego the email messages in favor of a robust social media marketing push. While you might meet new potential customers, the conversion rate of emails is still far superior to what social media might offer you.
9. Court the Inactive Subscriber
Once upon a time, this customer subscribed to your email list or newsletter. Since then, you’ve never heard from them again. Should you drop them from your files after a specific time has elapsed? No, you shouldn’t.
Instead, find ways of courting them all over again. Remind them why they did business with you in the first place. Hinting at the products you previously sold to this consumer is a good idea. You might offer additional products that other people bought.
You might also promote changes to your website, product lineup, or services menu. It’s a great way of creating interest and causing the consumer to go back to your site. Why not feature several specials for returning customers? If dentists can host exclusive deals for new patients, you can most certainly do something similar for a consumer who makes a purchase after a long hiatus.
Over to you
Of course, you need to be smart about your email strategy. You may be a small business with fewer email needs or a big organization that's sends to a massive list. No matter your size, email marketing should have impeccable timing and well planned to fit the demands of your audience.
Remember the goal of any email campaign is to be helpful and human - no sales pitch.