Many business owners are finding that one of the most important ways of engaging with clients is through the use of social media with sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. But for most industries this shouldn’t be your main channel even though some people claim that email marketing is no longer an effective tool due to social media.
However, there are many misconceptions that do not have any proof. Research shows that there are 3 times more email accounts than there are Facebook and Twitter accounts combined. And that email open rates are in the range of 20%-30% depending upon industry which means your message is likely to be seen 5 times more than that of a Facebook post.
Email marketing is one of the best ways a small business can market their products or services to potential customers. It makes the conversation with their customers more personal since the message is delivered directly to a client’s inbox.
Here are some reasons why email marketing should be one of your top priority marketing tools in your business.
It builds relationships
Building brand loyalty and trust in customers takes lots of patience and hard work. Email marketing lets you build relationships with potential, past and current clients by contacting them directly about your brand through their inbox. You do not have to feel that you are invading their private space since they go through their emails at their most convenient time. If you have any new products or services, you can introduce them to your email subscribers by sending them newsletters, discount vouchers and information about events via their email inboxes. If each email you send to your clients makes them feel valued, then your marketing campaigns should be able to result in higher sales.
Sending out emails as a form of marketing is much lower in terms of costs than other types of marketing tactics. Since this form of marketing is scalable, you can choose to commit much or less of your time to email marketing. In Australia one of the most preferred free email marketing tools is MailChimp because it has some excellent features, an easy to use interface and the basic version is free for smaller email lists. I also use Constant Contact and Campaign Monitor.
One can choose to opt out anytime
Marketing via email should come with an opt in protocol in which people who willingly subscribe to your mailing list are expected to click to confirm their subscription. You should always ensure you have an unsubscribe function for customers and most software these days has an automated system installed to ensure authentic subscriptions. Business owners need to send well thought out emails that add value to their subscribers to lower unsubscribe levels.
Email marketing allows a business to measure its effectiveness better than any other type of direct marketing. You can easily track each opened mail, bounced emails, click through, emails shared, unsubscribes and track through to the actual sale conversion. This is one of the main advantages over direct mail where its hard to tell who values your communication. With email marketing, you can report on a variety of areas and further segment your list into client interests. This lets you learn from your experiences and use the feedback to customize your email activity to the needs of your customers.
There are many ways to now automate email responses to enquiries that come into your business. From a simple automatic email response from one of your website enquiry forms through to complex automation flow decisions trees. These can be based on the interests and clicks of a customer as the process better understands their likes, wants and needs.
It outperforms social media
In a recent study, email marketing was found to have 40 times more conversion rates when compared to Facebook. This could be because with social media, posts are easily “buried” while one can easily log into their email accounts after weeks and still find their emails waiting for them. Of course, we cannot overrule the importance of social media in marketing. However, it’s important to remember that targeted email marketing is still a major tool in marketing your small business.
Written by Harlan Marriott – Leenane Templeton
Need help with business marketing Call Harlan Today on 02 4926 2300