As a consumer, you have probably received emails from various large, commercial corporations trying to alert you to a sale or new product. You might receive these emails after buying from an online store or if the cashier asks you for your email address at the register. These emails are highly obnoxious, and are probably one of twenty you receive each day that just end up in the trash. But what you didn’t realize is that email campaigns are actually an extremely successful way to market a brand.
Despite the increasing usage of different social media platforms, email still remains the primary form of communication for Internet users. For 94% of people, checking emails is the primary activity they do online. More people have an email address than an account on a social networking site. The numbers certainly overlap, but your chances of reaching a broader audience are much higher through emails.
Because of the popularity of emails, email marketing has a 4,000% ROI (Return on Investment). Combined with the relatively low cost it takes to produce and maintain an email campaign, this makes email marketing one of these most lucrative ways to promote your brand.
It’s not just J. C. Penney that can send out these emails. Local businesses should also send out regular email newsletters. Even if your business only has a small collection of email addresses, that audience is far more likely to buy a product than the larger group of people who visit your website or social media accounts.
Beginning an email campaign will take some work, and a lot of trial and error. Like other online communication outlets, it’s hard to know what your audience will respond to. Check out email marketing tools online, but also try some of these tips:
- Make it newsy – Email readers do not want product promotions constantly thrown at them. Eliminate this urge by making all of your email newsletters share news. Are you offering a new product? Then introduce it. Are you hosting an event at your business? Share it. Your emails should tell a story, not beg for customers to buy a product.
- Offer something your other sources don’t – Throw in a promotional, like a discount or coupon. You can also offer tips or information that your audience might find helpful.
- Keep it short – The attention span for emails might be longer than social media messages, but it’s still short. Make sure your reader doesn’t have to scroll too much.
- Share your other forms of communication – Include links to your official webpage and your social media accounts. If applicable, also share your business’s address, email, and phone number.
- Work on the subject line – You need catchy headlines and a call-to-action. Make sure your subject line is appealing and informative, but not too long. The subject line will convince readers to open your email.
- Plan for smart phones – A large chunk of your audience will be reading your emails from their smart phones. Before you send an email out, optimize it for viewing on a phone.
With these tips in mind, you are ready to start an email campaign for your local business. Just remember that any new marketing method takes practice, and email marketing is no exception.
Bennett, Shea. “SHOWDOWN: Email Vs Social Media Marketing – Which One Deserves Your Dollars? [INFOGRAPHIC].” http://www.mediabistro.com/alltwitter/email-vs-social-media-marketing_b27567. (19 August 2013).