Email marketing isn’t dead and it hasn’t been replaced by social media.
In fact according to a new study by Blue Kangaroo forty percent of consumers enjoy getting marketing emails from preferred companies. It’s a great way to engage and build relationships with your subscribers with smart, targeted communication, and it’s not difficult to get started.
Here’s how to start an email marketing campaign in five easy steps.
1. Decide on your goal
Before you start any email marketing campaign, you need to decide what you are trying to achieve. Will you be writing a regular email newsletter to build relations, writing a free six part e-course to build your database or promote specific products/special offers? It’s important to be clear on your goal as it will impact and guide the rest of your email marketing campaign.
Just like any other marketing campaign, set a clear goal for your email marketing campaign and try to make it SMART.
2. Choose your email marketing software
There’s a wide variety of suppliers of email marketing software, from those with CRM functionality to those with campaign management services. The most common ones are Mail Chimp, AWeber and Constant Contact, and some creative/web agencies, such as Spindle Tree, will have their own email marketing system. The best systems will have free online training and support to help you.
Spend some time researching each system to help you decide which functions you need and which ones you don’t need to help you achieve your email marketing campaign goal.
3. Build your database/subscriber list
It doesn’t matter if you start your first email campaign with 10, 100 or 1,000 contacts in your database. But contacts will unsubscribe at about 1-2% per month so it’s important to continually focus on building your list.
Set up your subscriber forms on your website and Facebook business pages with information that is relevant to your campaign. In addition, try offering an incentive that encourages your target audience to sign-up such as this free eBook produced by the Hub.
4. Write your content
Content is still king. If you want your subscribers to look forward to receiving your emails and open them you need to engage with them by writing content that gives them what they want to know. This may be a thought provoking article, tips on how to….. or a special offer. And don’t forget those all-important specific calls to action.
If you’re struggling with what to write, get ideas for content by brainstorming your most common questions from customers.
5. Monitor your results
There’s a traditional saying, “If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” So don’t forget to monitor your email marketing results at least once a month, then you’ll be able to see what is working in terms of content, subject lines and click throughs. You might also want to measure items such as opt-outs, forward to friends and your social reach (mentions on social media channels).
Start by creating a simple spreadsheet to monitor open rates, bounces and click throughs to help you identify trends over time.
Lots of small business-owners have realised just how cost-effective email marketing is for marketing and growing their business. And the ability to tailor messages to your subscriber’s interests and preferences means that this type of relationship marketing will help keep you front of mind, increase your sales and grow your business.
Today’s Micro action
Get started today by deciding on your email marketing goals.