What is Email Marketing?
To run a successful email marketing campaign, the first crucial step is understanding what is email marketing.
The general idea behind email marketing is to get commercial messages through to a target audience, using an email database.
It could be an email for sales, an email asking for donations, advertising content, or other promotional tactics such as discount coupons etc.
Similar to any other marketing platforms, it calls for a logical strategy, sided with well-defined commercial goals and target audience.
Additionally, research and incorporating the most recent tools increases the odds for better goal setting.
Due to abuse by spammers, this powerful marketing channel requires an authentic relationship with the client – where they willingly consent to receiving emails.
The quality of your content also helps to ensure that your marketing emails are not sent to the spam folder.
Apart from the general definition, the fail-proof answer to what is email marketing for a particular business differs.
Email marketing for an AI company, for example, demands more high-tech richness compared to an art dealer’s email campaign – that requires elegant simplicity, and a well-written and informative content.
Optimizing content, selecting target audience, attending to leads by up-to-date tactics, and many other factors affect an overall profitable marketing.
How Email Marketing works?
Emails are the communication links between a marketer and a group of target consumers.
While email marketing is known for generating a huge ROI, getting started on this communication channel may be rather intimidating.
However, by following a few simple steps, just about anyone can access the great many benefits of email marketing.
Here’s how it works:
Strategizing the Email Marketing
Having a straightforward marketing strategy is essential to all online marketing campaigns.
While email marketing strategy is often sided with other simultaneous digital campaigns, they must be compatible and in harmony with each other outlining a particular target audience and products.
It is best to take ito account all the costs and investments, promotion tactics and content along with profitability.
A good marketing strategy is a flexible one – with an ability to adapt according to frequent marketing reports and ROI rates.
Finding the Right Email Marketing Tool
Along with the development of innumerable online businesses, email marketing has developed greatly, specially in the areas of programming, software tools and automation techniques.
It is not enough to just pin down a reliable and reputable tool.
Email marketing tools must prove compatible with your business’s needs.
You will need to take into consideration factors such as database size, cloud storage, report frequency, email funnels, etc.
Building a Reliable List
The larger the list of email subscribers, the higher the conversion rates would be.
However, there is a catch.
As a marketer, you must keep in mind that maintaining a successful email list requires constant work.
Factors to address include:
- Growing of the subscriber’s list continuously
- Maintaining a database of interested customers
- Keeping the subscribers interested through content and incentives such as eBooks, free guides and trials.
There are many ways to keep an email list growing.
By keeping the subscription process easy and rewarding, a proper target audience remains compelled to receive emails and keep a track on their favorite business news and product updates.
Consistency is the key when it comes to physical or digital marketing.
Having a well-schedule email marketing not only impresses the subscribers and increases retention rates, it also creates convenience for future purchases.
Here are some advantages of email automation;
- Welcoming the new subscribers and sending thank you messages
- Applying sales strategy by using sales funnel replication programs
- Prompting for unfinished sales on eCommerce platforms
- Recording a customer’s journey and responding to his needs
- Requesting feedback/review
Collecting regular reports from a campaign helps the marketer to monitor and enhance a marketing strategy accordingly.
What is the perfect email marketing strategy?
How many of the welcome emails are turning to conversion?
How many of the shopping cart follow-ups are converting to sales?
The answer to these critical questions helps in shaping your sales strategy.
Regular analysis of these metrics and optimizations are a must for a successful emailing campaign.
Email List Optimization
While having many subscribers on the campaign’s database may seem promising, having an email list without optimization might backfire.
Maintaining an extensive list is profitable only if most of the subscribers are genuinely interested in a product/service.
Inactive subscribers are a usual phenomenon in Internet marketing, but those who have avoided a campaign’s email for over 12 months acts as a red flag.
While large list maintenance requires higher costs and efforts, cutting down on inactive users helps to invest in interested clients.
The above factors combined with a balanced strategy result in utilizing all the profitable benefits of email marketing, while keeping the efforts and process minimal.
Importance of Email Marketing – Is it still relevant?
Now that we have seen what is email marketing, let's have a look at why it is important.
The massive migration of physical business to the online platforms in the recent years had a great impact on the expansion of digital marketing.
Sided with the lifestyle adaptability of online shopping and use of emails, email marketing stands out among the most promising marketing tools.
As a communication channel, it creates an intimate way of getting the message across.
Additionally, the statistics show that most people in modern societies check their mailboxes at least once a day.
Some marketing experts have a greater focus on email marketing over social media platforms.
For one reason, email subscribers are more attentive while checking their mails compared to social media pages.
Another reason is the relatively lower numbers of social media users in contrast with Email subscribers worldwide.
Still not convinced?
Here are some ways that email marketing proves to be the backbone of digital marketing, almost in every field;
Email Marketing vs. Social Media
While social media marketing remains an important marketing tool, it is often overrated. Comparatively, email marketing stands out in many ways – quicker to convert sales, cost and time consumption, maintain one-on-one follow up.
Whether a newly started business or an established company- cost effectiveness is an inseparable part of business planning and strategic goal setting.
Finding a campaign platform to manage a list must accord to database size, demographic needs as well as the product.
Email marketing is much cheaper than having a banner hung at the town’s commercial center or running a TV commercial.
Besides traditional marketing, it has turned out more cost effective than most other digital marketing platforms.
Social media platforms or traditional marketing such as newspaper Ads target a large audience – whereas one of the main benefits of email marketing is the ability of personalizing emails for each client.
Email marketing tools can be automated to use subscribers’s reference, follow their personal customer journey, and provide specific responses.
If done well, personalized marketing contributes to a high ROI.
Easy Call to Action
Receiving personalized emails help to access one of sales’ greatest tools – call to action.
Whether to receive a gift by clicking a few links and increasing the website traffic, or allowing direct purchases and shopping follow-ups, email marketing is the way to go.
Reports and Metrics
Almost all the trusted email marketing tools provide accurate reports.
Keeping the metrics of your campaign in check helps to optimize your strategies and efficiency.
For example, including-in email contents based on frequently asked questions in reviews/feedbacks.
Most people receive email notifications on their cell phones.
Notices from the government, work, health and education related matters are traditionally handled via mail – in addition to friends and loved ones.
This is a competitive spot to be for a marketer.
What is an email marketing software?
Email marketing software is a digital marketing tool that offers services on handling and optimizing marketing campaigns via email.
Without it, email marketing is virtually impossible.
Some of the featured tasks are:
- Creating a trustable list
- Polishing the list by removing long-time inactive subscribers
- Sieving through customer journey for relevant email processing
- Providing reports
- Designing attractive emails
- Creating customizable templates and much more.
With hundreds of available email marketing software, choosing the best one for your business calls for thorough research and integration with your marketing strategy.
Among the features to look for while choosing an email marketing software is an extensive collection of templates.
Appealing emails and high-quality content add to the reliability and prestige of the marketer.
Templates that are suitable to your brand, and offer high-quality features and a variety of ready-to-use options.
Make sure to look for softwares with great usability reviews.
Aside from being time-effective, easy-to-use tools offer drag-and-drop options for quick and innovative email customization.
Lastly, mobile friendly features are a plus for all the digital marketing campaigns.
Email marketing strategy is an elaborate art that requires skills and reliable tools.
Choosing the right software is important for a long term profitable email marketing strategy.
7 Steps involved in Email Marketing
The active objectives of email marketing are the constant growth of an email list and maintaining a strong connection with the maximum number of existing subscribers. Of course, to address the underlying aim of promotion and turning prospects into conversions. To achieve this goal and develop a successful email marketing campaign, there are seven actionable steps that are involved.
1. Strategy and Email Marketing Software
Without a road map, no one would ever reach their destination.
Similar to all digital marketing campaigns, having an email marketing strategy ensures success and profitable marketing.
Having a clear-cut strategy helps to determine the purpose of your campaign.
It also specifies the target audience for a better study on the customer journey in response to their needs.
For example, emails that are reliable and offer something of value gain authenticity – and are rarely discarded as unread by the subscribers.
In harmony with the strategy, the email marketing tool is the foundation of running an email marketing campaign.
The right software meets all your business needs, in a cost effective, user friendly, and innovative manner.
2. List Building
To secure a well-noticed email campaign, building a reliable list is crucial.
Starting small is the key to building a solid list.
You can start building lists from the database from your already existing business.
If you are a newbie, you can use contact capture forms.
Offering free eBooks, discount code, free trial subscription or floating notifications on your websites for newsletters – whichever fits your product or services.
Personal email and social media accounts are other existing sources of leads that are often overlooked.
By investing only a few bucks, marketing managers usually have filtered databases that could potentially appreciate your services.
Growing a list from scratch enforces the foundation of a campaign with a high number returning future sales.
3. Nurturing the List
Having a reliable database is great, but keeping your email subscribers interested throughout the time is a significant part of email marketing strategy.
Relevant and innovatively designed content incites the receivers to remain subscribed.
4. Segmentation of the Subscribers
To deliver the most relevant content , product, service or promotion, to the target audience, the list should be divided into segments, based on the set data points.
Some of these criteria include:
- The geo-location of the subscriber
- Demographic information such as
- cultural backgrounds
- Customer’s journey of sales and purchases interaction.
Most email marketing softwares offer accurate segmentation, with a variety of customization options.
5. Creating a Campaign
Now that all the difficult parts are done, building and running a campion is quite easy.
Press the “Create a Campaign” button on the email marketing software and the motion is set.
It only takes a few simple steps to customize the segments, although it takes a bit of time and creativity to create the emails header, body and footnotes.
6. Autosender Activation
Autosender is a service-based program that optimises automated email whenever it is triggered.
Most common modes include emails as welcome, thanks, interval newsletters, post-sale, shopping cart suspension, etc.
However, using an autosender means more emails and more content to update – including creating original ones from the scratch or brushing up old content and re-using it.
7. Track and Monitor
Enabling the tracker option gives you an elaborate outlook into your email marketing strategy, and client’s return.
Details of sales and customer journey in response to your email campaign tactics show the advantage or disadvantages of an ongoing strategy.
Benefits of Email Marketing over other marketing methods
Digital marketing gurus regard email marketing as one of the most important and yet accessible marketing platforms currently available.
Here are some highlights on the benefits of email marketing;
To properly utilize the benefits of email marketing, there are a few other external factors involved, in addition to content and the email marketing strategy, which you need to keep in mind.
Over usage or untimely emails such as on weekends may have a negative impact on your marketing as well as in creating a good rapport with the audience.
8 Strategies for Successful Email marketing
As an email user, you must have come across the technological eras’ most universal issue – the inbox clutter.
In addition to non-stop effort of spammers who seek to trick their way into the inbox, the email marketing arena has become challenging for authentic marketers.
To address this problem, the customers must feel strongly about keeping a subscription and considering a campaign’s email somewhat useful.
Below, there are eight email marketing strategies for running a fail proof campaign:
1. Strategic Personalization of the Content
Personalization of the content in email marketing signifies delivering the most reasonable product/ services to a demographically compatible audience.
Providing information on their field of interests, offering eBooks on profession or education related subjects, product promotion to typical problems/hobbies, etc.
Earlier, using the client’s names in email marketing was a popular technique with commercial emails. With the spread of phishing emails with over friendly tones, name headlines have become rather less popular and distrusted.
Overall, a balanced content incorporates personal approaches without any invasive friendliness. Personalization should rely mostly on customer’s interactive data on email, call to action and purchases – put in a frame of high-quality content and target strategies.
2. Optimizing the Subject Line Length
Depending on the email marketing strategy, the length of characters in the subject line differs.
Longer subject lines are known best for raising a call to action or engage the reader to continue.
The statistics indicate that 60 to 70 and sometimes more characters receive better click-through rates.
Shorter subject lines are used when an email marketing strategy focuses on increasing the awareness of a brand, product or service.
Optimum range of characters for open rates is about 49 or less.
Exceeding the character limits for any of these strategies is known as entering the dead zone.
A term referring to non-beneficial length of character to overall ROI.
3. Right Time to Right Recipient
Based on your client’s demographic info, automated softwares sends out different batches of email in a 24-hours window.
However, the question remains: what is the best time to reach out to your clients’ inbox?
Some follow the traditional tactic of using the 9-5 working hours.
While most of the people may actually check their emails during these hours, working preoccupation may cause overlooking or disregarding a promotion email.
Recent studies have reported that late evening to midnights are the best time to send out marketing emails.
While 9-5 remains a very competitive window, the evening hours bid greater chances of visibility to the email’s content- figuratively, 22% higher rates in click-through traffic and ultimately sales.
4. Incentive Based Subscriptions
Who doesn’t like free things?
These handouts could be as information, or valuable freebies such as coupons and free trials.
As the rule of thumb goes, informative content that provides value to the readers keeps them loyal to an email marketing campaign.
Apart from creating loyalty, the mailing campaign creates a trustable information source.
Occasionally, you can provide downloads with subscription buttons for materials like free eBooks, up-to-date newsletters, product news, etc.
Other type of gifts are the more deliberate kinds, such as discount codes and promotion offers on products/services.
Free trials and holiday special discounts are other great tactics used to earn legitimate subscribers – with a genuine appeal to receive emails.
5. Detailed Segmentation
An advantage of email marketing is the ability for personalizing promotions.
The key is having a well-developed map of the customer's interactive journey.
This increases the receiver’s response and relatability to the content of emails.
Geo-related promotions greatly rely on segmentation, similar to age or gender-based products, ethnic goods, etc .
In general, the segments could include any of these:
- Segmentation by industrial category
- Account based segmentation, based on company’s size
- Sales and purchase history segment category
6. Mobile friendly email Marketing
With such a widespread usability of mobile phones in day-to-day lifestyle, opting for a mobile friendly email marketing campaign is a huge plus.
Studies report eye-catching rates on mobile conversions.
For example, most online sales are clicked while people are using public transport, waiting on a subway or in the middle of a lunch break.
Providing a mobile friendly user experience and easy navigation increases the odds of call to action, or sales.
Size and format of the texts, number of the columns in the template, following the IOS and Android compatibility guidelines, easy access to call to action, scrolling options, etc.
7. Running Tests and Improvisions
Like all other digital marketing platforms, performing a test run keeps you ahead of your game – by keeping your marketing strategy fail-proved, and offering maximum optimizations.
There are several ways to test your campaigns before clicking the final send button:
Usability of email contents, controlling the mobile friendliness in various devices, and most importantly, Email A/B Testing.
Split, or A/B testing, is a method to identify the best email for your particular campaign.
The tests include interactive data analysis, email variant check, contrasting plain campaigns to HTML campaigns, altering long or short subject lines, etc. such reports put together present the best modules for each campaign.
8. Maximum Automation of Email Campaigns
As a marketer, there is much on your hands to deal with already.
You may be involved with one or more of digital marketing platforms consequently.
Conducting research for the most recent tools, product and information related to the target audience is a full-time job for the new-era digital marketers.
All that aside, creating a compelling content that builds trust, provides value and returns an action requires focus and dedication.
Automation of emails is done by customizable options using a software.
By defining a trigger to the email marketing tool, it creates a prompt response to the customer.
Consistency, customer trust and on-time response helps to increase retention rates and strengthen the odds for finalizing or funneling a sale.
As one of the finest methods of digital marketing, email marketing demands skillful strategies and utilizing innovative thinking and tools.
Device optimization and well-mannered personalization of the content have an immense effect on conversion rates.
Research and running various tests safeguards a good email marketing strategy.
Not just at the beginning, but throughout the process on a regular basis.
Digital marketing strategies should be adaptable in response to campaign report analytics, and customer’s demands accordingly.
In conclusion, the answer to questions like what is email marketing? And how can you tap into this prosperous market? stands as a combination of marketing skills, research and incorporation of email marketing strategies.
Email marketing is the communication link between a marketer and its target audience.
Compared with other marketing platforms, email marketing ensures one-on-one communication, higher conversion rates and personalized content.
How effective this marketing method would be, greatly depends on a balanced marketing strategy and carefully following the fundamental steps.
There is no stone-set rule on how to apply email marketing basis to your particular business.
In fact, email marketing provides much space to explore creativity in approaching clients and content creation.
Although, it is necessary to have an understanding of the basic steps before starting and maintaining a campaign.
Below, there are some key takeaways on steps to running an email marketing campaign:
- Determining strategy and choosing a well-reputed software
- Building a database list that is reliable and consistent
- Nurturing the list by removing inactive users and encouraging new subscribers
- Segmenting the subscribers into easily approachable target clients
- Building a campaign, with great attention to designing attractive templates and content
- Automated email softwares to trigger email responses and avoiding attrition
- Tracking the campaign and monitoring the metrics to provide relatable/valuable material through emails.
Following these steps, combined with tips and tactics used by the most eminent digital marketers, guarantee a successful marketing campaign.
Another highlight of balanced email marketing is to keep away from overusing emails, cold-listing and incorporating low quality content.
These poor features often mark an email directly as spam.
Bearing in mind the high conversion rates of emailing campaigns and following the fundamental steps, it is difficult to go wrong with email marketing.