With the rise of social media over the past decade and the paid ads that it brings with it, many people have made a career out of predicting the demise of email marketing. The only issue with these theories is that email marketing is still alive and well!
Let’s delve a little deeper so we can see a) why people think it’s had its day, and b) why it’s still one of the most effective ways to market your business.
Why do people think email marketing has had its day?
The chief culprit here is the addictive quality of social media. When you look around, you’ll see virtually everyone checking their Facebook at some point during the day. This has led some to believe that it is the perfect way to reach consumers and target markets, and that nothing else can compare.
The only issue here is that people don’t necessarily go on their social media feeds to see ads, but they will still happily sign up for weekly newsletters that pop into their inbox on a Monday morning.
Not convinced? Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of email marketing.
It’s affordable to implement
Some will tell you that social media is the panacea every business needs because it’s free and comes with unlimited reach. Whilst there’s no denying it’s a powerful tool when used the right way, you can think exactly the same about email marketing when you break down the effort vs. reward.
An email marketing campaign is something that anyone can make a start on; and you certainly don’t need a dedicated marketing department to get your campaign started. With a whole host of easy to use pieces of software on the market you’ll be able to create some great looking templates and graphics with just a couple of clicks. However, the simplest thing to do would be to outsource this segment – doing email marketing really well takes some experience, and you don’t want to come off as spammy or pushy.
Your customers expect you to do it
This alone tells you that email marketing is stronger than ever!
The great thing about using a well-established and proven marketing technique is that you know it already works because consumers will actively seek it out. When you want to stay connected with a brand you can like them on Facebook, but you can also subscribe to their newsletter. This is often the preferred route for consumers who turn into repeat buyers. With a proven way to increase your outreach as a central part of your business’ marketing campaign, you can then include all manner of offers and free content to add value to the selling experience.
For example, if you are looking to promote your latest family cruise deals, you can specifically target the customers you know have children and would be interested in this kind of an offer. In other words, you will not be sending out emails to those who have no interest in what you have to say, which will increase your chances of a click and a conversion.
People still love email
With Whatsapp and Facebook you may be tempted to listen to the naysayers who proclaim the death of email but the numbers don’t lie. Everyone who’s online has a least one active email account, they check them daily, and the vast majority have notifications and push email that alerts them to new messages.
This gives you the ability to instantly connect with anyone in the world, and you have the added bonus of having more flexibility and more space to get your message out there than any other online medium.
Emails are a great way to add value
An email from a company is still seen as formal and respectable as a letter in the mail, and this will be your big advantage when it comes to adding value. By giving away free content, product previews, and anything else you can dream up, you’ll be able to entice your mailing list into taking action so that browsers become buyers.
The secret with this approach is to avoid the hard-selling approach when you can and focus more on adding value. This has been shown to be the most effective way to build brand loyalty. After all, when your customers trust you they’ll buy from you, and that is the end game we’re all working towards.
You can scale it with your business
One of the best ways to scale your business is to compile a mailing list as you grow your business. By using the contact information browsers hand over to your website, you can reach an ever-growing audience as your business continues to expand. As you grow further, your email address database will grow with you, and the circle is complete. This allows you to organically grow your business with little effort or outlay.
Perfect for businesses of all shapes and sizes, and particularly effective for fledging startups who are looking to expand quickly by creating a real sense of brand loyalty.
You can get scientific to find what works
The great thing about email marketing is that it’s relatively easy to get good at it. You can easily get a grasp on the basics and slowly build up your knowledge base. The secret is what the pros call A/B (or split-line) testing: a simple yet powerful way to refine your campaign as you go. The idea rests upon recognizing that you won’t know precisely what will work with your clients until you try it. By creating two emails offering the same content but packaged and written slightly differently, you’ll be able to track which one is opened more often, which one your consumers read, and ultimately which one is more effective. Do this half a dozen times and you’ll have created a master strategy that drives your entire marketing campaign in no time at all! This is basic 101 business psychology.
People love to click
The great thing about emails is that so many people read so many of them every day, that they see clicking on a link as completely natural, and they enjoy heading someplace new and exciting on the internet. If your aim is to direct traffic straight to your homepage or contact us form, then adding a link in some free-flowing email text is a great way to increase your digital footfall. Keep your calls to action short and sweet and you’ll see the difference in your analytics in no time at all.
If you’re searching for a proven way to connect with your customers and inspire brand loyalty, we highly recommend building your business’ marketing efforts around a structured email marketing campaign.
Michael has been working in marketing for almost a decade and has worked with a huge range of clients, which has made him knowledgeable on many different subjects. He has recently rediscovered a passion for writing and hopes to make it a daily habit.