Given its early beginnings, email isn’t as shiny as some newer channels like messaging and social, but it is an effective way to build an owned audience that gets results. Your customers don’t give their information lightly, and — if used right — email marketing can be both a relationship-building and profit-building tool.
You should use email to build upon an existing relationship with your subscribers and leads by providing relevant, valuable information that will help them take action on their goals.
Now let's review when you should use email marketing and some benefits and statistics that support the reason why email marketing is so valuable.
What is Email Marketing
Email marketing is the process of targeting your audience and customers through email. It helps you boost conversions and revenue by providing subscribers and customers with valuable information to help achieve their goals.
When to Use Email Marketing
There are many ways to use email marketing — some of the most common including using the tactic to:
- Build relationships: Build connections through personalized engagement.
- Boost brand awareness: Keep your company and your services top-of-mind for the moment when your prospects are ready to engage.
- Promote your content: Use email to share relevant blog content or useful assets with your prospects.
- Generate leads: Entice subscribers to provide their personal information in exchange for an asset that they’d find valuable.
- Market your products: Promote your products and services.
- Nurture leads: Delight your customers with content that can help them succeed in their goals.
Email Marketing Benefits
- There are 3.8 billion email users worldwide, so if you’re looking for a way to reach your customers, email is the perfect place to find them.
- On average, email generates $38 for every dollar spent, which is a 3,800% return on investment.
- Two thirds of customers have made a purchase as a direct result of an email marketing message.
- Only 20% of leads that are sent directly to sales are qualified, meaning they need to be nurtured via email and great content.
- When it comes to customer acquisition, email is 40X more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined.
- Perhaps the best reason to use email marketing is that you own the channel. Outside of compliance regulations, there is no external entity that can impact how, when, or why you reach out to your subscribers.
Getting Started with Email Marketing
Let’s break down a few key steps to get you started building a strong email campaign that will delight your customers. You can think of these steps as the way to create a successful email marketing strategy.
Create an Email Marketing Strategy
If you don’t take the time to develop a strategy, your emails will get lost in crowded inboxes, or worse, be sent to the spam folder.
You can learn how to build an effective email strategy and send emails that people actually want to read. It just takes a plan (one that can be broken down into a few key steps).
Think of the following five steps as an outline for your email strategy.
- Define Your Audience
An effective email is a relevant email. Like everything else in marketing, start with your buyer persona, understand what they want, and tailor your email campaign to your audience’s needs.
- Establish Your Goals
Before you come up with your campaign goals, gather some context. Research the average email stats for your industry and use them as benchmarks for your goals.
- Create a Way for People to Sign Up
You need people to email, right? An email list is a group of users who have given you permission to send them relevant content. To build that list, you need several ways for prospects to opt in to receive your emails.
Don’t be discouraged if you only have a few people on your list to start. It can take some time to build. In the meantime, treat every single subscriber and lead like gold, and you’ll start to see your email list grow organically.
- Choose an Email Campaign Type
Email campaigns vary and trying to decide between them can be overwhelming. Do you send a weekly newsletter? Should you send out new product announcements? Which blog posts are worth sharing?
These questions plague every marketer. The answer is subjective. You can start by learning about the different types of email campaigns that exist, then decide which is best for your audience. You should also set up different lists for different types of emails, so customers and prospects can sign up for only the emails that are relevant to them.
- Make a Schedule
Decide how often you plan to contact your list, inform your audience upfront so they know what to expect, and stick to a consistent schedule to build trust, and so they don’t forget about you.
- Measure Your Results
This should come as no surprise. As marketers, we measure everything. Being meticulous about every key metric will help you make small changes to your emails that will yield large results.
Now that you understand the steps to creating an email marketing strategy, we'll look at what's involved in building your email list.
How to Build Your Email List
There are many creative ways to build your email list (and, no, purchasing emails ain’t one). Tactically speaking, list building comes down to two key elements that work cohesively to grow your subscriber numbers: lead magnets and opt-in forms.
Here's how to get started building and growing your email list.
- Use lead magnets.
Your lead magnet is exactly as it sounds: something that attracts prospects to your email list, usually in the form of a free offer. The offer can take a number of formats, should be valuable to your prospects, and is given away for free in exchange for an email address.
There’s just one problem: People have become hyper protective of their personal information. You can’t expect to receive an email address without exchanging it for something valuable.
Think about a lead magnet that is relevant, useful, and makes your prospects’ lives easier.
Here are a few types of lead magnets you could create:
- Report or Study
- Webinar or Course
How to Create a Great Lead Magnet
Remember that your lead magnet should be relevant to your prospects. Here are a few guidelines to ensure you’re creating a valuable asset for your potential list.
Make your offer solution-oriented and actionable.
Provide practical information that solves a problem and create a realistic way to achieve the solution.
Ensure that the asset is easy to consume.
Lead magnets should be delivered in a digital format. Whether it’s a PDF, a webpage, a video, or some other format, make it easy for your new lead to obtain and consume it.
Create your offer with future content in mind.
There’s nothing worse than signing up for a great offer only to be disappointed by the content that follows. Make sure your offer is aligned with the value that you will provide throughout your relationship, otherwise you risk damaging trust.
Treat your lead magnet as a stepping stone to your paid solution.
The point of your email list is to eventually guide subscribers to a paid offer. You offer free content to demonstrate the value that you provide as a company, and those free offers should eventually lead to your product or service.
Create offers that are relevant to each stage of the buyer’s journey.
Every new lead will be at a different stage of the buyer’s journey, and it’s your responsibility to know which. Segment your list from the beginning by providing separate opt-in offers that pertain to each stage of the buyer’s journey. You can tell a lot about a prospect’s mindset by the content they consume.
- Create an enticing opt-in form.
Your opt-in form is how you get a prospect’s information to add them to your list. It’s the gate between your future leads and the incredible asset that you created with them in mind. Here are some tips for creating an enticing opt-in form:
Create an attractive design and attention-grabbing header.
Your form should be branded, stand out from the page, and entice people to sign up. You want to excite readers with the offer.
Make the copy relevant to the offer.
While your goal is to get people to enter their information, it isn’t to deceive them. Any information on your form should be a truthful representation of the offer.
Keep the form simple.
This could be one of your first interactions with your prospect. Don’t scare them away with a long form with several fields. Ask for only the most essential information: first name and email is a good place to start.
Set your opt-in form for double confirmation.
It may seem counterproductive to ask your subscribers to opt in to your emails twice, but a study on open rates proves that customers prefer a confirmed opt-in (COI) email 2.7X more than a welcome email.
Ensure that the flow works.
Take yourself through the user experience before you go live. Double check that the form works as intended, the thank you page is live, and your offer is delivered as promised. This is one of your first impressions on your new lead — make it a professional and positive one.
If all goes well, you’ll have built a robust list of subscribers and leads that are waiting to hear from you. But you can’t start emailing just yet unless you want to end up in a spam folder, or worse, a blocked list.
Good Commerce Email Marketing Campaigns
We believe email marketing should work to enhance your overall digital marketing strategy. That’s why we take a holistic look at how you market your business, your target audience and industry. We use this data to custom build a strategy that works for you. We offer the following email marketing services to our clients:
Automated Email Design – We can design automated email campaigns that are triggered when customers perform a certain action on your site.
Email Copywriting – Let us handle the heavy lifting of crafting memorable emails your customers will interact with.
Email Campaign Design – Includes design, personalization and execution of your next campaign
Email Marketing Analytics – Custom-built URLs that allow you to measure the effectiveness of your emails
Ongoing Optimization – We analyze the impact of each email, fine-tuning our approach to maximize the open and click-through rates of your outreach
Interested in hearing how Good Commerce can elevate your email marketing? Contact us to book a Brand Discovery session and let’s start achieving your business goals together.