The Ins and Outs of Email Marketing
Updated: Jun 21, 2020
Have you been thinking about creating an email marketing strategy for your business or simply looking to give your current one a bit of an overhaul? Well no matter what we have put together a little guide on how to get started and why email marketing is something you should be seriously considering as part of your overall marketing strategy.
Why Email Marketing?
Email has been around a while but don’t you let this make you think it isn’t still effective. With over 3.9 million email users in the world [Statistica], email is not going anywhere anytime soon. On average, email generates $38 for every dollar spent [Hubspot] and email continues to account for a far greater share of new customer acquisition than social media [Mckinsey]
With the rise of the number of email marketing platforms and with 293.6 billion emails sent and received each day in 2019 [Statista] it can seem a little overwhelming on how to get started. To make life a little easier, we have put together a simple overview guide on how to get started or to revamp your current strategy.
Create a strategy
Knowing your target audience will allow you to personalize your content and inturn relate to your customers and increase retention. No one likes to have their email flooded with junk that has no interest to them!
What are you looking to achieve with your email marketing campaign? Is it to build brand awareness, loyalty, sell a product or all of the above? Email marketing is an excellent way to reach your audience and having goals to measure campaigns against will increase your chances of success.
Create a Schedule
Will you send weekly, bi-weekly or monthly? Decide beforehand and stick with it. This way customers know what to expect.
Create a great subscriber list
Now we can’t start an email campaign without emails can we? Gathering the right list can be a challenge but with a few of these tactics you might just create the perfect list of subscribers that can’t wait to hear from you.
Create a lead magnet
This is a simple tool that doesn’t have to cost you a thing. Who has been browsing Google or Pinterest and come across a guidebook or webinar and the only way to access it is to enter your email and name? This is called a lead magnet. Simple isn’t it?! A few things to remember however to remember when creating one. Make sure it’s:
Relevant and engaging - the lead magnet needs to interesting to your target audience
Consumable - Short, sweet and to the point. Use infographics, visuals and text to communicate the information.
Readily available - your prospect isn’t going to stick around if the resource isn’t available right away.
Inline with your goals - create a lead magnet that is going to add value to your product or service.
Use a opt in forms
Know those little boxes that pop up when you visit a website? Those are opt-in forms. They come in many shapes and forms, but we don’t know about you, but most of the time they can be pretty annoying!😅 Exactly why it needs to be relevant, attention grabbing and highlight a great offer. Harder said that done right? Optinmonster has put together an all encompassing checklist to an awesome opt-in form.
Find the right tool
With an endless list of platforms to choose from, how do you choose? There are many resources out there that list the benefits of many different platforms Hubpot has done a great job of outlining some of the top platforms out there. It is important to find the right tool to fit with your business needs. Most will have built in templates, social media integration and email scheduling.
Should you segment or subscriber list or not? We say yes. As we learned earlier, targeting the right audience with the right content is key to success. This where segmentation comes in. Breaking your list into segments based on subscribers' unique characteristics and interests allows you to personalise your emails even further and gives subscribers exactly what they're looking for.
Segmenting starts when building your subscriber list. By creating multiple tailored lead magnets and opt-in forms you can begin to build segmented lists from the start. Think of when you researched your target audience. How did you segment? Your audience can be separated by demographics, lifestyle, lifestyle or geography to name a few.
There are many ways to segment your list, but you ultimately know your customers best, so once you learn your target audience segmenting your list will follow in suit.
Build email content
Your copy will vary from email to email, but always ensure messaging is on brand and clear. This will build brand loyalty and awareness.
Visual communication is just as important as copy and essential in selling physical products. Choose images that are optimized for all devices and include alt text for each image. Alt text or alternative text that can serve multiple purposes but two biggies are for accessible emails and when images don’t load properly. In accessible emails a screen reader will read out the alt text for those who are visually impaire.
Call to action
The first goal is to have a high open rate, but the second is to have a high click through rate. Meaning you want your customers to open your email and then click through to your website or wherever you wish to direct them. This could be to a new product, blog or to increase followers on social platforms. This is done by including a clear and appealing call to action in your message that customers can’t help but click. Simple examples include: learn more, join us, and sign up.
This can be a tough one because this could make or break if your prospect opens the email However ultimately a subject line should be personalised and reflect the body of the email. Try testing out different types of subject lines that evoke curiosity, are humourous or just straightforward to see what gets a higher open rate. Like always though, it must be inline with your brand.
Email has become more accessible than ever with the introduction of smartphones in 1992 [Business2BusinessCommunity] and has transformed the email world. According to a study done by Adobe, smartphones continue to be the most commonly used device used to check emails at 85% of consumers. This means that ensuring any communication with consumers needs to be mobile-optimized. There is nothing worse than opening an email and not being able to read the email or attachment - we’ve all been there! 😅
Some key things to remember for mobile are:
The preheader text or “Johnson Box,” refers to the first line of your copy that appears beside the subject line before the email is opened. It gives the reader a sneak peak into the content of the email and can mean the difference between the email being opened or not. The preheader needs to be attention-grabbing and short and sweet.
Keep content short
When reading on a mobile, concise is best. If your reader opens a novel, they will lose interest in seconds. The idea is to draw the reader in and direct them to a website etc.
Once you have your concise content, create an enticing button rather than a hyperlink text. This will drawer the reader in and they won’t be able to help but to follow the call to action.
Design is also key when it comes to mobile optimization. Think about how your email is laid out- single columns work best for readability. A multi-column email may look appealing on a desktop but will make horizontal scrolling difficult on a mobile.
Don’t forget to analyze
Once you think you have created your ultimate email campaign don’t forget to analyse the results of each email. You can track the success of your campaigns through your email service platform reports and your website analytics tool. Try sending out weekly, biweekly or monthly emails to see to test open, click through rate and unsubscribe rate.
The legal stuff
Last but certainly not least ensure that you are following the legal regulations of sending emails to consumers. We want to build trust and relationships with our consumers and at the top of that is protecting their information. Before starting any email campaign, make sure to follow through and learn the correct regulations
If you are within Canada or sending an email to a Canadian consumer, check out the consent regulations at the Canadian Chamber of Commerce
Also, Introduced in May 2018, was General Data Protection Regulation or GDPR in the EU but even if you're outside the EU this applies to your business.
Lastly, there is the CAN-SPAM Act. An act introduced in 2003 and applies to any commercial email sent.
If you need support with your email marketing we can help you leverage compelling content and a great strategy to get you ahead! We offer free discovery calls, connect with us today!