This article is the last in a series of five posts on the basics of online marketing for small business. The series is designed to inform and empower small businesses about their online marketing options and give them the confidence to explore the potential growth opportunities that are available through online marketing.
With over 210 billion emails being sent daily, email marketing is still the preferred method of brand communication for 48% of consumers. As one of the more tried and tested avenues of online marketing, it has also become one of the most effective with the amount of small businesses using it to market growing by 25% annually.
What is Email Marketing?
Email marketing is the process of emailing to a database of customers or potential customers for the purpose of soliciting business, brand awareness or building loyalty and trust. It can typically take the form of a newsletter, promotion or educational sequence. Often these emails are heavily branded and focus on obtaining clicks through to a particular landing page or website.
Why You Should do Email Marketing?
Email marketing is one of the most successful marketing channels because it can drive a direct and measurable response. Like PPC (pay per click) advertising, it is also very easy to test and even easier to track data accurately, helping you to gain an understanding of what types of emails work and which ones don't. Furthermore, email marketing often demonstrates a great return on investment, offering a low-cost implementation and a potential for large returns.
What to Expect:
Depending on the type of emails that you decide to send, expect to receive a relatively quick response from your audience. Sending a monthly newsletter will help to maintain your relationship with your current customers and can even enable you to up-sell your services/ products to them.
If you are sending an email to potential customers, you may find that certain emails and strategies work better than others for lead generation. This will help you to gain necessary knowledge for optimising future emails that you decide to send, ensuring that your results improve each time.
When you're starting out, it can be difficult to build a loyal base of subscribers that have opted in to receive your emails. By implementing an inbound marketing mindset, you can entice visitors to sign up to your mailing list by offering a free download in exchange for their email address. Not only is this a great way to build your database, but it's also a great way to start nurturing leads with valuable content.
Email marketing has been labelled as passé by some online marketing experts due to it being one of the oldest methods used. Despite this, email marketing has had the time to mature and refine its best practices in comparison to relatively new channels like social media. Because of this email marketing is an incredibly effective and relatively easy marketing method to get acquainted with. As your mailing list grows, pay attention to metrics and make sure you're optimising your strategy to achieve the best possible results.