Social media has brought forward many questions in terms of running a business, including the comparative effectiveness of email marketing. Although social media is a common marketing strategy, email continues to be a direct line of communication between businesses and consumers. Most individuals check their email daily or sometimes multiple times a day, and therefore email marketing is a powerful tool that must not be overlooked. This article will provide some basic information and guidance in regards to successful email marketing.

The Basics of Email Marketing

What is email marketing?

Email marketing is a marketing method used by businesses to communicate commercial messages to their consumers. These messages often use promotions such as special offers and newsletters to engage consumers. Email marketing can be used to advertise anything from upcoming events, to blog post updates, to special offer deals.

What are the benefits of email marketing in comparison to alternative methods?

  • For the business: By using email marketing, businesses are able to reach a large population of consumers efficiently. That is, in a short amount of time and for a low cost. Email marketing allows businesses to not only deliver information to consumers but also collect valuable information from their consumers. This is done through analytics that measure variables, such as when the consumer opened the email, what links the consumer responded to, etc. Businesses can use this information to cater content towards these consumers more effectively in the future.
  • For the consumer: Through email marketing, consumers are able to have valuable information delivered to them at their own discretion. Consumers are given the freedom to engage in whatever content they want, at whichever time works best for them. Additionally, the information is presented to consumers conveniently through their inbox and the content is easily accessible through a simple click of the mouse.
  • For the world: Since email marketing is digital, less paper is being used and more trees are being saved. Email is a greener alternative to other marketing strategies such as traditional mail and flyers, which delivers content by using vehicle transportation that releases greenhouse gasses.

A Guide to Success on Email Marketing

Email is an effective marketing tool when done correctly. There is a delicate balance to email marketing that must be achieved in order to successfully communicate and engage with consumers. When done incorrectly, email marketing can be detrimental to consumer trust and commitment. Consumers may regard such marketing attempts as “a waste of time”, “annoying” or “spam.” Therefore, it is important to take steps to ensure that consumers are interested, satisfied, and engaged by the email.

The Message

In order to guarantee that consumers respond positively to email marketing, the message must be presented in a manner that is clear, professional, interesting, and easy to engage with. Quality is much more important than quantity.

Here are some tips for successful presentation and content:

  • Create an attractive subject line that encourages consumers to open the email
  • Use a distinctive and unique voice to make the email stand out to consumers
  • Implement substitution tags to personalise email content for each consumer
  • Present the content in a simple, clear and concise manner that is accessible on many devices including desktops, tablets, and mobiles
  • Review the email for spelling and grammar, structure and design, links and content, etc.

By using these techniques, the content of the email will be of high quality and will encourage the consumer to not only engage with the business further but also share their positive experience with other potential consumers.

Your Audience

Since email marketing is aimed at communicating to consumers, it is important to consider this population when creating the email. In order to have a positive interaction with the recipient of the email, businesses must lay a strong foundation for the relationship.

Here are some tips on building a relationship with consumers:

  • Gear content to consumers based on demographics, behaviour, interests, etc.
  • Provide consumers with email preferences such as the frequency and type of contact
  • Build trust by providing quality content that respects the consumers’ time
  • Open up a dialogue with consumers by posting questions and prompts for engagement
  • Express gratitude and appreciation for consumers by offering special VIP deals

Establishing a strong relationship using these tips will promote consumer satisfaction and will act as a defence mechanism against complaints of spam, negative responses, and unsubscribes. Businesses should follow the idea of giving to the consumer before taking.

The Time of Day

Timing is a key factor in the success of email marketing. Emails that are too frequent can lead to consumer dissatisfaction, and emails that are not frequent enough can lead to consumer disinterest. Testing and monitoring certain statistics will allow the business to discover what timing is optimal for sending out content to consumers.

Here are some metrics to keep an eye on:

  • Open rate indicates how often consumers open the email
  • Click-through rate indicates how often consumers engage in the email content
  • Unsubscribe rate indicates how often consumers unsubscribe from future contact

Businesses must find a balance that maximises consumer engagement while minimising consumer disregard. These rates provide valuable information to businesses in regards to what timing is optimal for email marketing to be sent to consumers.

Final thoughts

Research to succeed

Businesses are unique and have different needs depending on the size, type, and goals of each company. While this article has outlined basic information regarding email marketing, there are many other aspects to consider, such as:

How does email marketing work alongside other marketing strategies?

What is an appropriate goal to set for success?

Which email marketing software is the best to choose?

These are just a few of the many questions that are beyond the scope of this guide. Businesses must do extensive research to determine what is right for their company and what email marketing strategies will best direct them towards success.

Thanks for reading!

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Posted on May 10th, 2017