Want to reach your customers (and potential customers) affordably and effectively? Of course you do! Email marketing is a great way to do just that.
Although email marketing is fairly straightforward, it’s not something you can do without a little planning and A LOT of professionalism.
Before you pull the trigger on your first email campaign, keep these 10 tips in mind.
1. Don’t add people to your list unless you get permission
You’ve probably been added to an email list without giving permission at one time or another. Maybe you gave your business card to someone at a networking event. Maybe you sent a contact form request through a company website. Whatever it was, you didn’t sign up for daily emails.
It’s frustrating, right? Of course it is.
Don’t stoop to that level. Only add people who genuinely care about your business and want to be on your list. What good does it do to have someone who’s not interested on your list anyway?
2. Make it easy to sign up
When it comes to signing up for things, people are all about taking the easy way out. They don’t want to have to leave their mother’s maiden name and social just to get a download of an ebook. They don’t want to have to click through several pages on a website either.
Make sure your email list is easy to subscribe to and easy to find. Here are a few recommendations to make it easy to join:
- Add a prominent sign-up form to your website
- Don’t require too much info (name and email should suffice)
- Add a sign-up form to Facebook
- Share a link to your sign-up form from time to time on social media channels
3. Explain what people are getting into
If you’re going to email new blog posts each week, make sure subscribers know it. Same goes if you’re going to email hot deals and discounts.
You’re not doing anyone any favors by misleading subscribers, so make it clear from the very beginning.
4. Keep it clear and concise
Everyone’s busy. Most people don’t have time to read long winded emails, so your best bet is to keep yours clear and to the point.
Try your best to make each email scannable and impactful even if a reader doesn’t have time to make it through to the end. Here are a few ideas to help make this happen:
- Put the most important content at the beginning
- Use calls-to-action to inspire readers to do something as soon as they see it
- Don’t try to fit too much into a single campaign. Send multiple emails if necessary
5. Edit, edit, edit!
It’s all over as soon as you click “send,” so don’t do it until you know the email is up to snuff. Have a colleague look over the content to make sure there are no typos or grammatical errors before you let it fly.
6. Represent your brand
It would be weird if a company sent out an email that didn’t match the personality of the business. Chances are if someone joined your email list, then they have a good idea of who and what your company represents. Be sure to make your email campaigns reflect that.
When designing email campaigns, we work directly with business owners and marketing directors to make sure every thought, image, and word matches the company’s personality. No email should be sent without this kind of attention detail.
7. Segment your lists
Not everyone on your email list needs every email you plan to send, which is why segmentation is essential.
For example, you may have a list that is dedicated only to blog subscribers. You could use that list to send an RSS-driven campaign each week that contained each new blog post from your website.
You may have another list that is for current customers who have shown interest in a particular new product. Use that list to send updates about development and specials regarding that product.
Although some of these subscribers may cross over between lists, they don’t necessarily need to receive all the emails from each list.
8. Measure and evaluate
There’s no point in continuing to do something if you’re not seeing results.
Email management programs like Mailchimp or Constant Contact make it easy to monitor which email campaigns are working and which users are engaged.
After each campaign, be sure you take a gander at the metrics to help plan future campaigns so they are even more impactful. Here are a few things to be on the look out for:
- Open rate
- Click rate on important links
- Bounce rate (both hard and soft)
- Unsubscribe rate
- Abuse reports
- Amount of forwards
- Top link clicks
9. Make it easy to share
The easiest way to grow an email list is to get subscribers to share it. Here are a few simple ways to do it:
- Add a “forward to a friend” button on each email campaign
- Include a “tweet this” link on important pieces of content
- Add social media share options to every campaign
10. Clean regularly
Cleanliness is next to godliness, right? At least when it comes to email marketing!
If you want your email marketing efforts to be all they can be, make sure you clean and organize your lists regularly. Here are just a few ways to maintain a healthy email list:
- Make unsubscribing simple and obvious (if they don’t want you, then you don’t want them)
- Don’t add ANYONE to a list unless they gave you permission
- Email all subscribers consistently…but not too much
These email marketing tips are applicable to any small business. If you’re ready to get connected with your customers via email, but you’re not eager to do it yourself, get in touch. We’re happy to help! Contact us anytime on our website or give us a call at 317.438.6280.
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