27 Sep E is for… Email Marketing
Your A-Z of Marketing Essentials
E is for… Email Marketing
We should all strive to create really effective email campaigns. But why?
Everyone is doing it. Email marketing is free (well, almost), easy, and you can send vast numbers of personalised emails in one go at the press of a button. There couldn’t possibly be a better way to reach your target audience surely?
In many ways email marketing has become a victim of its own simplicity. We’ve all experienced bulging inboxes inviting us to buy this or subscribe to that, offers you simply cannot afford to miss and the latest widgets and spigots newsletters. However, I don’t know about you, but most of my bulging inbox is deleted without so much as a cursory glance.
Nonetheless, really effective email marketing is still the best way to communicate with your customers and potential customers, as well as nurture relationships with your market that are founded in credibility and trust.
Crafting your message
The old-fashioned batch and blast method of sending the same message to your entire database of contacts is highly likely to do your reputation more harm than good. You’ll probably be caught by Junk filters and may even fall foul of the SPAM Act. Today’s recipient demands that you put their circumstances, interests and requirements at the centre of your marketing effort by sending them material that is tailored to their needs. If your email speaks directly to the recipient as an individual, then they are more likely to engage with it.
Mailchimp offers some useful email crafting features, including something called Subject Line Researcher that will help you craft a stand-out subject line.
(Present participle), divide into separate parts or sections.
You know your market well and understand that different age-groups, different genders and even where or how people live will make a difference to the way they engage with your products and services, and you should reach out to them accordingly. If you operate in the B2B space then you might want to divide your data according to market sector or company size. If you are marketing to previous customers then you should be able to sort them into categories according to what they’ve already bought or shown an interest in. All these factors will have a bearing on what you say next and help you to create really effective email marketing campaigns.
Using a CRM (Customer Relations Manager) app is a great way to not only store data about your market, but it also provides an easy way to segment the information according to the filters that are most relevant to your business. ZohoCRM is a nice to use, customizable piece of software that includes a feature rich Freemium edition.
Measuring and Controlling
Einstein defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”.
So, you’ve crafted engaging content for your emails and you’re pretty sure that you’ve tailored it to suit the recipients. Furthermore, you’ve carefully divided up your data and assigned the most appropriate email content to each section. Or at least you think so. How can you be sure that you’ve made the right decisions?
Choosing the right metrics is important here. You’ll need to be measuring URL clicks, completions and bounce rates to name a few. You could also consider doing a ‘split-test’, creating two versions of the same message, and measuring the effectiveness of each one. Whatever you decide to measure one thing is certain, doing so will give you more control over what to send and how to send it, so that you really engage your audience and feed your sales funnel.
To help you get started here are a few of the email systems that are available today to help you in your business. Most offer a free trial period so you can try before you buy.
Michelle Roberts (MCIM), is the managing director and founder of The Creative Marketing Agency. She is trained in both digital and traditional marketing through the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). She is also a member of the CIM and a Certified Practitioner in the Watertight Marketing Expert Community, both of which provide access to an additional wealth of knowledge and experience.