Is email marketing dead?
If you think email is dead, you’re missing out on the real metrics. The truth? Email marketing is still going strong and is possibly the best possible strategy to grow your business.
Email marketing is still ranked as the most effective marketing channel, beating out social media, SEO, and affiliate marketing.
Why is that? With all the hype over new channels, why is decades-old technology still one of the most effective marketing strategies?
Despite the rise of social, people use email more than other platforms. After all, what’s the good of marketing to someone if they’re not there?
Data shows that most people are on email—and the number increases every year.
In addition, with email marketing you own the connections — you don’t have to worry about algorithm changes tanking your reach.
That’s why building a successful email marketing campaign is more important than ever.
But there’s a problem—most people don’t know how to do it right. (In fact, you’ve probably seen those people in your email box.)
What is Email Marketing?
Email marketing is the act of sending promotional based messages to people in mass quantity. It typically is for the purpose of generating sales or leads and it may contain advertising.
Remember—You’re a Guest in Their Inbox
People are inundated with interruptions, pitches, and advertisements everywhere they look.
Though you might think your email is special. But to the reader, your email is one in a million — and not in a good way.
This is why it’s important to remember where you are and use good manners.
Getting into someone’s inbox is like being invited to their home for dinner. If they ask you to take your shoes off, you respectfully do so.
It’s the same with email marketing, so before we begin I’d simply like to remind you to be on your best behavior at all times and remember… you’re a guest in their inbox.
Now, let’s talk about how to build your email marketing strategy from the ground up.
Email Marketing Step 1: Build Your List
Before you can start sending out emails, you need people to send emails to. So, how do you get started building your list? Start by adding a banner or form to your website simply asking people to subscribe.
Then, follow these tips.
Offer an Incentive
Think of email addresses as a currency — you wouldn’t give money away for free, right? Offering an incentive is the simplest way to gather email address.
There are many ways you can do this, of course. Some prefer to give something away for free while others simply offer a newsletter or product updates.
Search Engine Journal uses a small form in their right side bar offering daily news — they also ask about what topics they user is interested, which helps them send more valuable content.
You can also offer a checklist, ebook, white paper, or another downloadable asset. Contests and giveaways are another great way to convince people to share their email addresses.
I can’t tell you which is the right or wrong path for your business, but I can tell you that it’s important to have a clear purpose when asking for an address.
This is where a strong call to action comes into play, and copywriting is super important.
Establish your credibility, explain what the emails are for, and get people interested in receiving them.
Simply posting “enter your email for updates” isn’t going to get anyone excited. Instead, share specifics.
By sharing a specific call to action or benefit to providing their email address, you can get more people to subscribe.
Some common ways to entice people to sign up include:
- email series
- free downloads
- free white papers or eBooks
- update lists, like new releases and product updates
Whatever that incentive is, make it clear and enticing, and don’t be afraid to promote it.
Follow Email Marketing Laws and Regulations
Don’t let all the legalese scare you — just make sure you never buy email lists and consider using double opt-in options so people know what they are getting into. Finally, make it easy for people to unsubscribe.
Email Marketing Step 2: Provide Great Content
Email marketing is all about expectations, and it’s up to you to set them.
If your call to action is strong, and your follow-up is consistent, then you can count on a successful email campaign.
However, if you promise to send one email per week and instead send them daily, then you’re setting yourself up for failure.
On the contrary, if someone is expecting daily updates or critical product updates and you don’t deliver, then they are likely to be just as upset in that case, too.
This is why the first follow-up email is so crucial to the success of your email marketing efforts.