Claims that email marketing is no longer effective are simply not true.
Many marketers have been seduced by social media advertising, perceiving it to be not only ‘cooler’, but also more effective than email marketing. However, according to research by The Radicati Group last year, the number of emails being sent per day is expected to reach over 246 billion by 2019.
So does email marketing still work despite all the hype? The answer to that is yes, absolutely. Why? Because it’s personal, it’s mobile, it’s educational and it’s measurable too.
Since GDPR came into effect in May, your email campaigns can only be sent to people who have expressed an explicit interest in your company or in receiving your communications in the last 12 months. This means your subscribers want to hear about your news, offers or promotions.
Any campaign manager worth its salt will enable you to divide your list so you can talk directly about what’s of interest to them. A free initial consultation might be great for your new customers, but not for existing customers, so know your audience and get your message right from the start.
Include relevant content and customer experience reviews to build an instant rapport and create a connection between their needs and your solutions. Which reminds us of this fantastic quote from Nelson Mandela:
” If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart. ”
Messages on the move
Litmus tracked email opens between January and December 2014 and reported 28% of emails were opened on iPhone, with 16% on Gmail and 12% on iPad. Outlook had a rather lowly 9% and, while it’s not clear if Gmail webmail was opened via mobile or desktop App, the transition from desktop to mobile is undeniable. This represents a fantastic opportunity to reach your target audience pretty much 24 hours a day, in the office, at home or even when away on holiday.
Assuming where your audience might be when they open your email means you can target your message when it’s most relevant or likely to be most favourably received. And every email should be designed with mobile responsiveness in mind (small screens mean bitesize messages combined with a strong CTA (Call to Action).
Need to know
Think about educating your audience rather than entirely selling. What are their pain point and the solution, how can you help, educate and inspire them?
One highly recommended cloud-based provider to deliver your email campaign is Mailchimp. The platform tracks email opens, click-throughs, bounces and unsubscribers. All data is gathered, recorded and reported so you can measure the success of each individual email campaign.
OK, so you’re convinced that email marketing is still a feasible method of communication and should be a core element of any marketing mix. But, it’s not as simple as hammering out a few paragraphs of sales spiel and a stock shot and pressing ‘send’. As a key part of the marketing strategy, your email should reflect your business’s personality, your core messages and complement the look, feel and tone of your website and other client-facing communications.
Not just a pretty face
Never underrate the importance of brand consistency. Unless it’s a specific promotion or campaign, the overall look and feel should still echo your brand identity and tone of voice. When clicking through from the email message to your website it should be a reassuring user experience, not lead visitors to question if they’ve arrived at the right place!
Don’t mislead, ever.
Whatever you promise to deliver in your email make sure it is what users will find at the end of the funnel. There is nothing more frustrating for a user to feel they have been misled and if they do, you’ll find them opting out of all your future email marketing.
Timing isn’t everything
Experiment with sending your campaigns at various times of the day to see which works best for the audience you want to target. With the shift from desktop/office bound to mobile, there are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to good and bad times to send marketing emailers.
You may find emails sent on Mondays have the highest ROI but emails sent on a Friday might have a higher click-through rate. From our experience with client campaigns, early-morning emails have performed best, with evening coming a close second, but it’s worth trialling different days and times to see what performs best for you.
Subject lines are the ‘make or break’ of any email marketing message and a trial carried out by Hubspot revealed casual subject lines that sounded as though they were from friends performed best; ‘Hey, take a look at this’ was twice as effective as ‘Today, save an additional 15% when you book by…’.
Get the message right
Many email clients have images turned off by default so getting the content right without relying on imagery is key. Your email content should be created to appeal to your audience and any photos and graphics used should play a supporting role and be dynamic, relevant, and engaging.
And that’s where an agency like us can help you get more out of your email marketing campaigns! We are specialists at designing great campaign templates that maintain consistency and work equally well on any device from a desktop, tablet to mobile.
We can help you select the perfect marketing platform, and provide in-depth reports on the effectiveness of your campaigns. All you need to do is provide a list of ‘Opted In’ contacts and we’ll handle the rest. If you don’t already have a readily available list of contacts, don’t worry as we can help you with that too!
Our copywriting and content creation service will help you craft and deliver an effective message to your audience. So, if you’re thinking about starting out or improving your email marketing, send us an email or give us a call on 0800 689 0253.