Email marketing is a personalised, direct and targeted way of communicating with your customers. Be it solving a problem that they might be facing, providing important updates about the products or services that you offer or sending newsletters, email marketing is the best chance that you have to reach them directly.
Sending mass emails is not email marketing
No, don’t get me wrong. There are people who send out millions of mails out to a huge list of email addresses scraped from somewhere with a generic email, hoping that the recipient might just open it out of curiosity. Most of these get classified as spam, thus serving no real purpose at all. I am sure that this is definitely not what you want to do! Email marketing is much smarter and sophisticated than this. It is a great way to communicate and stay in touch with your existing and prospective customers in a personalized way. The intention is not only to market the company’s products or services, but genuinely provide some value addition to the customer. This intention is your best bet that the customers will also expect the arrival of your emails, and actually open them when these reach his mailbox.
How email marketing works
1. Build an opt-in email list
As mentioned earlier, email marketing does not bombard random people with mails. Instead, an email list is carefully created using methods like an opt-in or double opt-in form. Some great tools like the WordPress Optin Forms plugin and MailChimp allow you to easily create email lists through your website.
When a user willingly subscribes to your email list, he willingly opts-in to receive your mails once in a while. Don’t send mails too often, otherwise you will also run the risk of irritating the customer who will never open your mails at all.
2. Personalise the emails
Once you have a list in hand, create the content that you would want to send via email. Remember that not all emails will be applicable to all the subscribers to your email list. Apply proper filters and then create the interest-based emails which address the customer as “Dear John”, and not just “Dear customer”. You should also personalize the subject line wherever possible.
3. Include appropriate links and attachments
You should not include all the information in the mail body itself. Any email that has too much of the text or images might hit the junk filters and get classified as spam never get noticed by the customer at all. To increase the chances of hitting the inbox directly, include an introductory text and then attach a link to an external resource like it a landing page or a website. You can also attach accepted file types to the mail, especially if it is a newsletter. When users feel that visiting that link opening that attachment is going to help them in a way, they will click on it. This will increase your click-through rates significantly.
4. Send it
Once the email is ready, send it immediately or schedule it to be sent at a future date. Again, there are tools and plug-ins that allow you to automate this process.
Email marketing is known to have a great reach and is your easiest bet for reaching the customer fast, as most people open their mailbox at least once in a day. Companies across the world are significantly increasing spending on email marketing, so including it in your digital marketing strategy is also a great idea.