Updated: Dec 7, 2022
The average person receives over 100 emails per day! And as a consumer, it’s easy to feel annoyed with brands that seem to incessantly bombard you with emails. It makes a person wonder, Is email marketing dead (or, Should it be)?
No!—Well, so long as a brand is strategic and thoughtful in its marketing tactics. Honestly, whatever marketing platform you utilize—whether that be email, Instagram, YouTube ads, or old-fashioned mailers—it is imperative that brands develop strategy around their efforts instead of simply throwing everything to the wall to see what sticks. Time is money. And, especially for small businesses, strategic marketing tactics may make or break your bottom line.
So, back to email marketing. While over-spamming your subscribers is never advised, the right email marketing game plan can have significant return on investment for your business. While social media marketing is an excellent lead generator, email marketing is a great way to nurture those leads, connect with loyal customers, and drive sales. Over 90% of Americans like receiving promotional emails from their favorite brands. When an unexpected email is personalized, informative, and announcing something great such as a deal, product launch, or other newsworthy update, what’s not to love?
Both from a brand and a consumer’s perspective, email is one of the most effective modes of marketing.
6 Reasons Why Email Marketing is Still Relevant
1. It’s an all-in-one platform.
With email, you can do so much in terms of educating readers, engaging followers with surveys and feedback requests, direct-linking websites, including multimedia content, sharing news, analyzing metrics, and facilitating personalization. While every word, image, and link needs to be intentional, with email, you’re not limited by characters, time, or space. Out of nearly all the marketing channels out there, email allows you to easily pack a lot in.
2. It’s efficient.
Compared to paying for advertising on TV, in print, or even on social media, creating an effective email marketing campaign can be time and budget-saving in comparison. Plans through email marketing platforms like Flodesk start out very low and gradually rise as your contact list and business grow. Additionally, such platforms allow you to automate email blasts so that you can do all your prep work ahead of time.
3. Metrics will help streamline your marketing.
Campaign insights (from whatever email marketing platform you decide to use) will help you understand what’s working, what’s not, and how to better meet the needs of your customers. You’ll be able to analyze data on clickthrough rate, conversion rate, bounce rate, and more. So, while your email marketing is marketing, it also serves as research to keep your company learning and growing.
4. No one else can use your content.
Since you’re not posting on a specific platform, with email marketing you own your content. When it comes to social media, technically the platform doesn't *own*your content. BUT in the Instagram terms and services it states, "We do not claim ownership of your content, but you grant us a license to use it." That means Instagram can use your posts, contact lists, and conversations for its marketing purposes. With email, no third party platform has the ability to use the content you worked so hard on.
5. You’ll boost your sales.
Email marketing enables you to create a dynamic campaign so you can focus on acquiring new customers, re-engaging clients, and targeting specific messages to specific subsets of people (by location, age, interests, etc.). Additionally, email marketing gives readers the opportunity to click and purchase right away. It’s no wonder 60% of consumers have made a purchase thanks to a marketing email.
But, like we said, while utilizing email marketing is a good idea, you need to do so with tact. Here are some of our best practices for strategic email marketing.
Best Practice for Strategic Email Marketing
1. Make your emails personal and professional.
Using an email marketing platform like Constant Contact or Flodesk enables you to personalize your emails (not just with the reader’s name, but with specific formatting and calls to action based on lists you’ve derived from prior data). Sending your email from a “human” sender (i.e. email@example.com vs. firstname.lastname@example.org) and signing it as such will add to this sense of personalization. In terms of professionalism, make sure your subject line, main message, calls to action, and hyperlinks are all clear and concise. When it comes to aesthetics, don’t use more than 3 typefaces throughout the entire message, keep emails between 500-650 pixels wide, clearly feature your brand logo, and include all relevant buttons linking all your social media channels.
2. Earn and respect your subscribers.
Consumers are more vigilant than ever about their personal data, and jeopardizing this trust is a surefire way to lose credibility. Even if it takes you a bit longer to build your base, do not purchase a contact list or send marketing emails without consent. This is different from paid advertising in that users have the opportunity to opt-in to communication from your brand. For that reason, email marketing feels more like a relationship between brand and buyer instead of an in-your-face ad. Additionally, acquiring a bulk list of (possibly uninterested) contacts will skew the analytical data of your marketing campaign, leaving you with unhelpful information for you to base future marketing plans.
3. Curate everything.
Even though you have seemingly infinite space and no character limit in an email, every word, image, and link still matters. The more fluff you include, the more diluted your message becomes. Make sure your subject line is captivating but not click bait—it should provide accurate information of what’s in the actual email message. You want to get all your key points across, but remember: less is more!
4. Optimize a preview on multiple devices.
People can access email on their computer, tablet, cell phone, and sometimes even smaller devices like smart watches. Be sure to test how your email looks on each of these interfaces to ensure nothing gets mangled.
5. Review, revise, and review again.
Take a beat before shooting off your email campaign. Ideally, sleep on it and come back to it the next day, or—even better—have a colleague offer a fresh set of eyes to scan it over. If you’ve been working on a project for some time, it can be easy to gloss over simple mistakes (typos, price or date errors, etc.). We are all human and little mistakes are bound to happen, but cross-checking your work can save you from looking unprofessional or spending extra time and energy having to clean up/clarify any errors after the fact.
Ready to get started with your own email marketing campaign? Click here for a great how-to guide from Hubspot.