There have been many rumours on the digital grapevine over the past few years that email marketing is on its way out. Some claim it’s outdated, or not as visually appealing as it used to be.
However, news of e-mail marketing’s death has been greatly exaggerated. In fact, the list of reasons for small businesses to take advantage of this superb platform just keeps on growing.
1. It’s cost effective and potentially offers a great ROI
Depending on the email platform you use, it’s relatively inexpensive to send a high quantity of emails to your database. With measurable results, you can easily see how many people have gone through to the website, resulting in a conversion. Measure this against the worth of your products or services and you’ll see a clear indication of the success of your email campaign.
Email marketing is said to be 40 times more effective at acquiring a new customer than Facebook or Twitter, so complement your social media strategy with an effective email marketing plan.
2. It can be personalised to the individual
Email marketing allows you to personalise your communication and show offers tailored to the recipient. Take, for example, this email sent two weeks ahead of the recipient’s birthday offering an exclusive 20 per cent discount:
And this excellent piece of email marketing by Boots, which actually tracks the recipient’s pregnancy and provides relevant information and products:
Of course, big businesses have big budgets for their email marketing campaigns, but these principles can still be applied by smaller businesses through thorough planning and some technical know-how.
3. It directly drives sales and traffic to your website
A targeted email campaign allows you specifically to show your best offers and services to your audience, meaning they’re more likely to convert as you’re showing them content which is specific to them. Offering incentives, such as ‘10% off through this email code’ or ‘Free month trial of our product’ will encourage interested recipients (as they have already opened the email) to convert.
Screwfix is an example of a company with a great understanding of its customer base of tradespeople. It uses its email campaigns, like the one below, to offer new daily deals to its customers.
3. It is specifically targeted to your audience
Utilising the customer data you already have, from newsletter sign-ups on your website, or simply asking in person, means you can tailor the content of your email campaign to the right audience. These recipients are then much more likely to convert based on the content of your email. 78% of consumers also rank email as their most preferred form of communication.
Unsubscribe options then allow your database to tell you that the content you’ve sent hasn’t been relevant to them. Although unsubscribes can seem a negative metric to measure, it’s actually important information. The more unsubscribes you receive, the more likely it is that your data list needs updating or the content you’re sending out isn’t relevant or enticing enough for your audience. A clever and easy way to see why people are unsubscribing is to ask for a reason when they choose to no longer receive your emails. Options could include:
- “This email is not relevant to me”
- “I am no longer interested in your services”
- “I think this is spam”
4. It’s highly measurable
There are a number of metrics which are important to measure when deploying an email marketing campaign:
- Open rates
- Click through rates (CTRs)
- Bounce rates
These metrics offer vital information to evaluate the success of your campaigns. For example, you may be receiving a high number of open rates, but lacking in CTRs. This indicates that although your subject line may be enticing, the content of your email hasn’t captured the attention of your audience.
Similarly, high bounce rates are indicative that your email list needs improvement as it may be outdated. Actively managing your databases by cleaning them up and choosing quality over quantity will improve your success rate of driving conversions and maintaining recipients’ interest.
And remember, unsubscribes aren’t always an indication of the quality of your email; this could also be related to the quality of your data lists.
5. It increases brand awareness and customer loyalty
An added benefit of email marketing for small businesses is the opportunity to increase brand awareness, especially if you’re just getting started and are looking to promote yourself quickly and efficiently.
Utilising email marketing is fast, effective, and highly measurable. For small businesses especially, it’s the perfect platform for getting your brand message out there, encouraging your audience to complete conversions, and drive traffic to your website.
Even if you’re not an ecommerce operation and your customers are other service businesses, email marketing is a great way of keeping in touch, staying front of mind with clients and offeirng thought leadership and advice. Here’s a recent example of one our enewsletters:
Ensure you plan your campaigns properly, utilise best practices (including good data protection policies), and understand your audience. If you’re a small business looking to boost your email marketing efforts, contact Freshfield today to see what we can do for you.