March 14, 2015 Michael Bickerton
Email marketing is the most powerful tool for marketers today. At times consumers indicate that it can be somewhat of a nuisance, that generally occurs when marketers “abuse” or don’t properly “evaluate” the value of their list.
We recently blogged about the “Changing consumer” and one of those changes is that consumers have choices. They have many opportunities and we suggest that should a consumer remain on your email list that it’s really quite an honor. As such, treat your email list entrants with respect, dignity and provide them real value.
Email does allow marketers to provide messages, in fact, as a marketer; it’s your message to your target on your timetable. No other marketing tool allows for this. No other tool. Yet, we are constantly amazed on the misuse of email lists. Consumers don’t want to hear about you, your cat videos or your latest fake sale or fake discounts. Marketers need to provide value, special offers, and even closed-door events to the email entrants. Treat your email list to specials and rewards, and by doing so you’ll prove your value, engage your audience and drive both in store visits and sales. It’s all about respect.
Going to send a message? Make sure you think about how it will be received. Is the offer valuable, engaging? Will your consumer act on this exciting offer? If not, then don’t send it. As they say, you can’t make a silk purse from a sow’s ear, so make it a good communication.
Here are nine reasons why every marketer should integrate email into their marketing plans:
There are more than 3.2 billion email accounts today, yes lots. According to an article on Capterra, 95% of online consumers use email and 91% of consumers check their email at least once a day.
Email has become such a normal and routine part of our lives. It’s a way to keep in touch and receive updates on brands, coupons and contest offerings. No one will give it up because it is such an integral part of our lives.
It is important to keep in mind that reach on Social Media and on Email is completely different, they serve different audiences, and purposes and the opportunities vary.
When we refer to social media we utilize the term “potential reach” to refer to the number followers. For example if an account on Twitter has 15k followers that means its potential reach are 15k.
It can be argued that their subscribers open, say only small portion of emails, which in all fairness is true. With email, the message will always get to its intended destination, whereas with social media you only reach a fraction of consumers. Developing a “good list’ takes time, and keeping a good list takes “good marketing” techniques. The point is to, provide value, provide engagement, and make it interesting and fun. Your email has to be special if you want your users to continue to subscribe and continue to open your communications.
3) Life Span
No matter how annoying email can be we have to admire its tenacity.
Email refuses to die; it has to be deleted. It just sits there in your inbox until you acknowledge its presence, unlike Twitter, whose popularity can be determined within the first five seconds of being posted. The take away here, is that we can track opens and clicks, and measure click through rate.
As well, even emails that are not opened have value as they have to be removed, so make your subject lines interesting. Ensure that your primary message is in the subject line. Email provides branding opportunities beyond the metrics.
In a recent study, Wisemetrics (via SproutSocial) revealed that 75% of Facebook post impressions were achieved in just two hours and 30 minutes and 75% of the “Reach” happens in only one hour and 50 minutes. Email can be opened in days, weeks and sometimes even months later, giving its branding opportunity leverage by comparison to social.
According to a 2013 Email Marketing Benchmark Report, 60% percent of marketer’s believe that email marketing is producing ROI, and 32% believe it will eventually pay off.
Contrary to popular belief, email and social media both have costs. Wait what did I just say? Social media has a cost? Yes. These days, because of the saturation of social media, it’s hard to gain organic growth. In fact, the social platforms are now “controlling the stream” in an effort to monetize their properties. As an example, Facebook has new styled Facebook ads with the opportunity to buy now, claim the offer, shop now.
Twitter as well has a buy now function, which means that it competes with email. However, it doesn’t have the low cost opportunity that email provides.
Email is easy to keep track of and provides solid metrics and measurement opportunities. These are the standards for email: Growth, open rate, click rate, complaints, unsubscribes and bounces. You can take these results, and track sales and revenue directly to a specific email, should your team utilize analytics.
Small businesses should use email as the number one tool you use to engage with your consumers as noted above. Email allows for one on one interaction and communication with those who have expressed their compliance by joining your list.
Ensure you follow email marketing guidelines. Today in Canada marketers need to consider the CASL compliancy issues.
As an example, sending email campaigns with a “no reply” address is not legal in Canada. We suggest that marketers use professional tactics or hire an agency to assist with your email sends that will provide value in a variety of ways.
Social media and email are very social and can work together like peas and carrots. Not only can your programs be provided to your email list, but your social followers. Marketers will often tailor the messages to the specific platforms. Analytics will also allow you to measure the effectiveness of each channel on a campaign-by-campaign basis.
Email is viewed as a very private portal, and many consumers understand that email is, for the most part is private. Email is a perfect tool for providing a valuable offer, a coupon, or a special event; as such it’s the perfect marketing tool.
Email is great! It has so much power! To send out one piece of content to thousands of people, and maintain some level of personalization: Dear Fred, Dear Mr. Smith, any way you’d like to address your consumer can be done as long as you have the data to back it up.
The wrap up here is clear. Email works, and is even more effective when you treat your email list entrants with respect, dignity and provide them real value.
Want to learn more? Check out ways to Maximize Marketing Data with email.
Michael Bickerton, Raven5 Ltd. March 2015