The main lifeline for a company to survive is generating new sales and repeat business from existing customers. Without existing customers staying connected and engaging with you and new leads entering your sales pipeline you company will stay stagnant and not grow. However, implementing a well planned email marketing strategy can help your business generate new leads and nurture existing clients to ensure continued growth.
Nearly everyone uses email and it is continuously growing and evolving. Email marketing is a drip marketing technique which is a direct marketing strategy. It involves scheduling promotional messages with relevant and specific calls to action sent via email. It is a campaign spread over a period of time.
5 things to consider with email marketing
Everyone has heard the saying 'Do not run before you can walk', well the same applies to email marketing. Any email campaign must have best practices implemented before any social media integration. If your email campaign is poor it does not matter how much social integration you have, it just will not work. So, here are some basic guidelines.
# 1 Start with a clean database
Make sure your contact database is clean and complete as this determines how successful your email marketing campaign will be.
# 2 Keep it personal
Always make your emails personal so your readers know you are human and feel like you are personally addressing them. Rather than starting 'Dear friend' or 'Dear customer', use the greeting 'Hi John' as this will go a long way.
# 3 Compose a catchy subject line
As soon as the email lands in the inbox of the recipient it is the subject line that will stand out next to the sender's name. Ensure the subject line is catchy and will compel the reader to open the email. It is the subject line that will make or break your email.
# 4 Educate and Captivate
Never hard sell in your email. Remember, your readers subscribed to receive email communication that has valuable content – not emails that are sales pitches.
# 5 Design your emails for mobile devices
Mobile and Smartphone's are now capable for both personal and business users. More and more people are using their mobile devices to read emails and browse the web. Ensure your email is correctly designed for mobile users.
Benefits of Social Media and Email Marketing
Social media has exploded in the last few years and more and more people are using sites such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. This explosion has transformed the way people communicate online and more importantly how companies market their products and services to their target audience.
3 ways to combine Social Media with Email Campaigns
Social media can be integrated into your strategy in a number of ways. However, the method that you choose depends on what you want to achieve. For example if your goal is to syndicate your content online then you will want to target your campaigns to encourage readers to share your content on their social networks.
In 2010 Aweber conducted a survey. The results shown that 36% integrate social media into their email marketing with the purpose of asking readers to send the email on to their social network followers.
The three main tactics for implementing an integrated social media and email strategy to share your newsletter content are as follows:
1. Include 'Share' buttons in your newsletters
Including social sharing links in your email newsletters is a great way of combining social media with email marketing. It is also a great way of encouraging your readers to share content. Most websites have a share button on them to make it easier to share. Five tips you should consider:
1. Identify the most relevant social networking sites.
2. Integrate the 'share' icons in your newsletter templates.
3. test the new newsletter template with a focus group.
4. Roll out the news letter template to the rest of your database.
5. Track shared article metrics.
2. Increase your social following through email campaigns
As well as including the 'share' icons in your email newsletters, it is equally as important to include links for your subscribers to follow you on social networking sites. Add call to actions including 'Follow us on Twitter' and 'Like us on Facebook', even 'Subscribe to our YouTube Channel'.
Also change your email signature to include these 'follow' links.
3. Promote your email content in the social Media Platforms
Be confident and cross promote your email marketing and social media. Just like you inform your subscribers to your email marketing list about your social media profiles, you can do the same on your social networks informing your followers of your newsletter.
Remind all your Facebook fans, Twitter followers, Linked In Followers and YouTube subscribers that you have a great email newsletter and encourage them to subscribe. Email marketing should be used as a catalyst for starting conversations online about your brand.
Email marketing is the least cost method of marketing but the most measurable, most effective and easiest to implement as part of your online marketing strategy. More importantly, by incorporating social media into your email marketing strategy you can boost your business, keep your audience engaged and enhance your brand reputation.