Interview: Professor Mike McGuirk on How Brandwatch For Students is Used in His Classroom
By Olivia SwainSep 6
Published September 15th 2014
Business large and small can benefit from email marketing. Sending email newsletter communications is an excellent way for businesses to communicate with their clients and customers.
Email marketing has developed a stigma because of so much unwanted email and spam.
However, you can still use it to message your permissioned email lists and stay in touch with your consumers.
Even though you may think that email marketing is not a viable solution for your business, it can be, when you follow best practices and these 5 email marketing tips.
One of the reasons email marketing may have not worked for you in the past is because you waited too long before sending an email.
Customers may have deleted the message or forgot about you if it had been months, or even years since they purchased from you. Be sure to develop a regular pattern of sending emails.
Of course, there is definitely such a thing as “too many emails”, so if possible, ask how often your subscribers want to receive messages.
Let your subscribers know that this is your monthly, weekly, or quarterly communications so they know what to expect. It might also help them recall the last one they received.
Email personalization goes beyond adding your customer’s name to the greeting. Open and engagement rates improve if you include a name in the subject line or greeting; but in addition to that, personalizing the email and customizing it based on their order history or browsing history will help improve your results.
It also helps remind the customer who you are, how they interacted with your brand in the past, and lets them know that your communication is definitely not spam or unsolicited.
Here is a good example to personalize and customize your email communication. (Note that automated programs can help you do this.)
Email can be a tricky medium. You must have permission to email customers or subscribers, as automatically signing people up will likely get you into trouble with both email service providers and your customers. They will not appreciate you emailing them without their permission.
In some countries, like Canada, the law even states that you cannot automatically sign up customers to receive email newsletter communications, and you cannot even automatically have the box checked that signifies a newsletter sign up. Subscribers must click to opt in themselves. Inaction does not constitute permission.
Keep up with new and changing laws.
Also practice the good old Golden Rule, don’t partake in practices that would upset you as the consumer.
According to CanSPAM compliance rules, unsubscribe is supposed to be one click accessible.
In other words, customers should not have to enter their email address or confirm or answer anything in order to be removed.
You can definitely ask why they want to unsubscribe to gauge sentiment and engagement; just do not make it a requirement to answer in order to be unsubscribed. No one likes that!
Your unsubscribe page should have the option to receive less mail instead of unsubscribing altogether.
Another great feature to include on your unsubscribe page is links to other ways to keep in touch. You can link to your social channel pages, website, and offer other ways to receive offers or communications such as a loyalty club program or SMS text features. Here is an example of a suggested unsubscribe screen:
Any type of marketing should be tested, retested, and continually better results should constantly be implemented and tweaked. Email marketing is no exception.
In fact, there are likely more testable variables in email marketing that other forms of advertising.
You can try different email copy, different style email, different subject lines, different days, different times of the day, re-sending emails to opens or non-opens, and even sending new emails to those who did or did not open your email.
Email marketing should be something that your business at least tries out and tests.
It is not an expensive marketing campaign and the results can be tested and tweaked to improve your return on investment while also engaging with customers and staying top of mind.
Since so many people read email on their phone or mobile device, your emails should be mobile friendly. This also means that you have a greater window of opportunity for your emails to be read.
Subscribers don’t have to be in front of their computer to receive and look at your message. There are many email programs and tools available that make emailing easy.
Once you have an email program in place, in addition to sending out email newsletter type communications, you should also send out follow up emails relating to their order or purchase with your company. This can help increase the branding and engagement for your company, as well.
Although this type of messaging is different than permission based email newsletter communications, it is also important to mention that sending tracking or surveys regarding the last interaction as well as requesting a review of your product or service are other very helpful email communications your company should be participating in.