5 Reasons Email Marketing is not Dead: And How to Use it Properly
Posted on January 15, 2015 | By The BIG Man | Leave a response
“Email is Dead!”, We’ve been hearing this expression for some time now, as internet marketers everywhere switch their marketing strategies to social and inbound marketing for the new “phase” of digital marketing. Balony! Email is well and truly alive and although it doesn’t hold the same marketing weight as it once used to, it should be considered an important element of all business marketing strategy. So lets analyse 5 reasons that it is still alive and kicking:
1: Everybody reads their emails!
You read your emails don’t you? If email was well and truly “dying” we’d have an alternative and main method of communication by now for everyday personal and business communication, but that hasn’t yet happened and email remains as the strongest form of digital business communication. A lot of the time you simply scan the subject line of an email and don’t open it to read further, but the main point is that you’ve read the subject matter and that email has had the chance of grabbing your attention, the same as other forms of advertising and social media posts. If your email reaches it’s intended target, most likely they will see the subject line at the very least, compared to that tweet you threw out there and was immediately lost. Email is targeted, a lot more so than social media! Moreover research shows that 50% of people on an email list are likely to open a promotional email.
2: You will generate more income from promotional Emails than other digital advertising!
Research has shown that emails generate more revenue per email than other forms of digital marketing. In fact, more than half of businesses generate 10% of their sales through email! That is far greater revenue than other digital marketing platforms are likely to get you for the same cost. Considering the low cost that is generally involved in the creation of an email campaign, this statistic makes sense and explains why businesses won’t give us this supposedly “dead” platform. If you are looking to invest in some form of digital marketing for your company then beating email ROI will be hard!
3. It has more Power than Social Media!
Social media is great, the digital and social marketing revolution! However as companies strive to create unique and engaging content and offers over social media to attract customers, often they focus too much time and effort on it and overlook the fact that email marketing is more powerful than social media and has been working for years now! Using social media you are relying on your audience to read your particular post at the time you post it and then subsequently share it with others in order for it to go viral and really become worthwhile. With email marketing you are already targeting people you know will be receptive of your email offer/list (granted your list is clean) and in most cases they will at least see your subject matter, which you may not achieve with social media as the potential for your post to be lost in the mass pool of chatter is incredible. Adding to this is the fact that there are 163 billion emails sent per day, compared to 10 billion facebook messages! That shows the popularity of email as a communication platform!
4. You can easily trace the statistics and performance of Emails!
Working with email doesn’t have to be a chore. It’s just as engaging as any social platform and you can monitor the engagement rates and statistics using excellent tools like Mail Chimp. Not only will this allow you to see who opened your email, it will also give you statistics as to how many people read the subject matter, marked as spam and even trashed it. No more hit and hope, you can track exactly how good your efforts are and improve on them using detailed data, even twitter won’t tell you how many impressions your tweet has gotten!
5. You have more creative freedom using Email
Your tweets and posts can be great, they can be written in a certain style and include pictures and videos, woohoo. Nonetheless you never really have full control over the layout of your posts, whereas with email you have a blank canvas, it’s an art, you can use html to make the email look just how you want and writing an engaging email that can hook clients and customers in, is really a top skill. Email engagement is measured by who opens and reads your mail, if you can write excellent copy in your emails and design them well, you have one very attractive platform for generating sales. This is where the trick is, as 64% of people say they open an email because of its subject line! So write, design and send, then adjust for your next campaign based on the engagement you received and repeat till you have a good engaging email writing style. As an added help use your email engagement rate as an overall measure of your writing style and efficiency; helping with blog posts and other written marketing materials.
How to use Email Effectively
You’ve got the why, now the most important points are in; the how:
1. Make sure your Database / list is up to date
Your marketing pool; the database. What use a database full of emails though if it is out of date and contains companies and individuals that are no longer active in the organisation. Making sure your contacts are active is very important as it means you have the maximum potential of where to market to. Once you start emailing and checking the statistics of who you’re reaching you can then start cleaning your database up. After a good few campaigns, leads that seem inactive and who show zero response, can be removed from your list as you’re most likely wasting your marketing efforts. Remember this is an ongoing process, it’s all about efficiency and effectiveness, and this will clean up your database for each corresponding campaign.
2. Revise your email collection practice
How do you get your email contacts? Do you have a newsletter box on your website? Have you bought an email list or do you email previous and existing clients only? Gathering your emails is one of the most crucial elements of a successful campaign and it forms the basis for future campaigns too. The idea is to have a list full of switched on businesses that will want to buy from you. So aim to gather only useful emails from people that are likely to be buyers and relevant to your industry. However you gather your email lists, there is always room to revise and improvise on them. Buying email lists can be a questionable practice, although you may get a lot of data for your money, it is rare that these lists are full of switched on businesses/consumers who are interested in your particular service, so be careful when choosing lists to buy. Email lists for sale tend to be built for any and all types of businesses and so you have no idea how well they are likely to receive your product/service. Instead focus on building a list of clients that want to engage with you and receive your special offers. A box on your website is a good idea as you are asking people to opt in once they’ve placed an order and already trusted your business. Make the marketing message for the email box fun and quirky!
3. Make It Stand Out!
Email isn’t as easy to do well as it once was, due to the popularity of other modern digital marketing platforms, more effort must be made for email to become effective and for people to read past your subject line. Use unique visuals in your email and position them well. Most importantly make sure you’re writing snappy subject lines to hook people in. Think of it as a first impression, you don’t get a second chance, so think about what would make you want to open that email and go from there! Another tip for writing style is to keep your sentences short and snappy. Use new lines to split up the topic and don’t be afraid to be a bit cheeky and witty, you are not begging anyone to buy from you or visit your website, you are suggesting your service and socialising a little at the same time, so don’t be a robot. You can judge the effectiveness of your email copy by analysing the engagement rate of your emails and whether after each campaigns, the rate is improving. P.S – an added tip, try using double or triple spacing for new sentences, it will stand out.
4. Make sure you have the right timing
Email timing is important! Again this goes away from the hit and hope tactics of days gone. Just like social media it is important to time your emails in order to get the highest engagement rate from them. Get it wrong and it is likely people will miss the email and not come back to it or even trash it as it is old. So consult this useful infographic, from the switched on peeps at Pure 360 Email, on the best times to send out email campaigns:
To sum it all up nicely, Email Marketing Is Not Dead, it is still a very effective form of digital marketing. It is however, harder to do well now, as people are more switched on and ready to disregard old and boring emails quickly. So follow the tips outlined above, track your campaigns, and you’ll do just fine.