The digital world is constantly evolving, with more ways to reach audiences than ever before. With so many options to choose from, including social media, SEO and video, you might be wondering if email marketing is still relevant now.
In fact, email marketing may be more relevant than ever; roughly 80% of marketers reported an increase in email engagement over the past 12 months.
Whether you are looking to increase leads, get more sales or build relationships with your customers, email marketing is still one of the most highly effective digital marketing strategies out there. A recent study found that email marketing generates an average of $42 for every $1 spent, providing a return on investment of 4,200%.
But although email marketing can provide a great return on investment, it is also important to get it right, or you risk sending emails that go unopened, or even lose potential customers who can unsubscribe at the click of a button.
In this blog, we’ll be sharing email marketing tips to ensure you make the most of the opportunities presented by email marketing.
According to a recent Hubspot survey, over 80% of email marketing agencies have seen an increase in email management over the past 12 months.
What is email marketing?
Email marketing is when a brand communicates and markets itself to its customers via email. It is a direct way to reach your customers, communicating regularly with your brand’s subscribers and keeping them updated with your latest offerings. Having a strong email marketing strategy allows you to stay at the forefront of your customer’s minds and also helps to raise brand awareness.
The most common way to build an email list is through pop-ups on your website, usually offering an incentive in return for an email address.
There are a huge number of email marketing campaign softwares – however, they all essentially act the same. These softwares allow you to store all of the collated email addresses together, and send out regular emails to your subscribers list, at once.
Email marketing is used by businesses of all sizes across the globe. If you are one of the 4 billion daily email users in the world, it’s likely you’ve been on the receiving end of an email marketing strategy.
Depending on a business’s goals, their email marketing strategy may look different. For example, it could include:
- Exclusive previews and promotions
- Sneak peeks of new product launches.
When done correctly, email marketing achieves the same goal as other types of digital marketing, driving sales, increasing brand awareness and improving conversions.
How does email marketing work
Although email marketing isn’t the new kid on the block, email marketing tools have become increasingly sophisticated. Most businesses use email marketing tools which can allow you to send emails to a large number of people and provide valuable insights such as open rates, click throughs and engagement.
These email marketing platforms allow you to schedule your emails for certain times of the day and see if certain emails perform better than others. Some of the most popular platforms offering email marketing tools are MailChimp, HubSpot and ConstantContact.
Since the GDPR legislation of 2018, it has become a requirement for customers to first ‘opt-in’ to email communications from brands, and be able to unsubscribe if they want to. The legislation meant that many brands had to rethink their email marketing strategy, and work harder to keep their audiences engaged.
But GDPR has also provided benefits to businesses; if someone is receiving emails from you it is because they have opted to do so, meaning that your emails are directed to an audience that is already engaged.
The benefits of email marketing
- Building strong relationships with customers
Email marketing is different to other forms of digital marketing as you are communicating with people who have opted to hear from you, therefore you are already speaking to an audience who have some interest in your brand and will be receptive to what you say.
Emails also tend to be longer than social media posts, meaning that you have more space to share what your business is all about, and engage your customers. You can also use emails to conduct polls and ask for feedback from your subscribers, all of which can provide you with valuable insight and build even stronger relationships with your customers.
- Increased conversions
According to a report by Marketing Week, email marketing generates around £29bn in retail sales annually. Email marketing can help you to increase sales, as you are showcasing your products and services directly to your customer’s inbox.
To increase your chance of getting sales from your email marketing campaign, make your CTA (call to action, i.e a link to your website) stand out. You can do this by using bold fonts or a different colour to the rest of the text.
Retargeting campaigns can also work to drive sales if a customer has shown interest in your product or service, but not followed through with purchasing. Your email follow up may spark their interest again and encourage them to take action.
- Improved SEO rankings
Although email marketing doesn’t directly impact your SEO, it can be an effective strategy to drive traffic to your website and shares. More visits to your website and shares can be an indicator to Google that your website deserves a higher ranking, therefore indirectly boosting your SEO.
- A very high ROI
Email marketing is one of the lowest cost marketing strategies, and therefore offers one of the best returns of investment.
Although you may need an email marketing agency, like Social Chameleon, to come on board and set up the channel, design the campaigns and automate the email marketing, the costs involved are relatively low compared to other forms of online marketing.
With the help of established email marketing providers such as Mailchimp, small businesses can send a limited number of emails completely free, each month.
- More people will see your message
A new email subscriber should be celebrated much more than a new Facebook follower.
Because 90% of email gets delivered to the recipients email inbox, compared to the 2% of Facebook fans that actually see your posts. Facebook limits your post reach in order to encourage businesses to use their paid advertising service.
This means that your message is 45 times more likely to be seen by your audience on email than it would be on Facebook.
Albeit, by subscribing to your email marketing mail list, the customer has already told you that they want to hear from you. Therefore, this boasts a higher CTR (click through rate) and offers an increased potential that they will take action.
Tips for email marketing success
- Optimise email for mobile
Nearly 55% of global website traffic is generated from mobile devices. Therefore, it’s more than likely that a lot of the email marketing campaigns that you send will be opened on a mobile device. But if your campaign isn’t optimised for mobile, meaning that it is hard to read on a mobile device, you could risk missing out on sales. According to HubSpot, mobile-friendly email is the second most used tactic that marketers use to improve the performance of their emails.
- Try segmented campaigns
In the past, businesses may have got away with sending the same emails to all their mailing lists, but this doesn’t cut it any more. Instead, email marketing platforms allow you to segment your emails, sending emails to different groups depending on their behaviour, and boosting results in the process.
Although tailoring your emails to mean they are as relevant to your audiences as possible may be time consuming, it more than pays off; marketers who use segmented campaigns note as much as a 760% increase in revenue.
- Use analytics to your advantage
The analytics provided by your email subscribers is a great window into how your customers behave and what they engage with most. Make sure to keep an eye on your email analytics to find out what emails perform best, what subjects your audience are most interested in and what day/time your open rates are the best.
- Get personal
The power of email marketing lies in how you can offer personalised marketing directly to your customers. Email marketing platforms allow you to personalise messages, adding a first name in the subject line.
- Try new things
The best email marketing strategies are all about experimentation. Try new things in your email campaigns to see what your subscribers react to best, such as embedded video content and different subject lines. Methods such as A/B testing, where you send two different types of email to different audience groups and see how they perform against each other, are a popular way to test out new strategies and learn more about your audience.
- Get help from the experts
With the number of global email users set to grow to 4.48 billion by 2024, email marketing isn’t going anywhere, and will remain a key aspect of digital marketing from SMEs and professional services alike.
At Social Chameleon, we have worked with hundreds of businesses on their email marketing strategy over the past seven years. We work with our clients to understand their target market and use this along with industry benchmarks to create a bespoke email marketing strategy that produces real results.
From regular newsletters and campaigns, to curated user-journeys or automation flows, our team can work with you to develop a successful email marketing strategy, repeatedly gaining our clients results that exceed their industry benchmarks.
Learn more about our email marketing service by getting in touch with our digital marketing experts today.