Is email marketing dead?
Not quite, in fact one study revealed that email marketing was still more effective than social media marketing, but it’s all about obtaining the right balance of giving and receiving.
Here is how you can boost your email marketing strategy:
1.) Build an Email List
There are a number of ways to build a list but here are the most effective:
- Pop-Ups: Having a pop up box may be annoying, but they work. The trick is to have your pop up display around 8-10 seconds after they have entered your site. This way you are only receiving engaged sign ups but you will have more of their attention. Usually when pop ups display immediately, users are more likely to dismiss them.
- Sign-Ups: Offering an additional or free services such as an e-book or subscription is a great way to collect email addresses. One thing to keep in mind however, are the different laws surrounding this type of opt-in. In Canada for example, it is against the law to collect an email for one purpose and then use it for marketing another.
- Partner Up: It is quite common for similar companies to partner up and share email lists. One thing to keep in mind here is privacy- would your customers really appreciate you sharing their information? Usually this type of strategy works best for smaller, niche companies.
- In-Person: There is nothing wrong with collecting email addresses at trade shows and events and then adding them to your email list, especially if they are interested in your products or services.
2.) Maintain Your Email List
No matter how good you think your emails are, you cannot please all of the people, all of the time. Here are some effective ways to keeping your List intact.
Unsubscribers: When you send an email out, watch how many unsubscribe, this will be an excellent way to determine if people are liking your content. You will need to do some testing here- what works? What doesn’t work?
Group Your List: Don’t be afraid to stop sending emails to people who are not engaged. You don’t need to delete these subscribers, but you can put them in a group that you don’t send to, or you don’t send as often to.
Avoid Trickery: If you deliberately mislead your users to sign up for the email list, chances are they will unsubscribe immediately. Even worse, they may label you as spam.
3.) What a Winning Email Contains
The bottom line when it comes to email marketing is this- if you keep hounding users with “buy, buy, buy” they are going to stop opening your emails. One, because its annoying and two because they know what to expect. Email marketing is a delicate balance between offering and then asking- giving and then receiving.
Subject Title: It all starts with the subject title. An engaging title is one that is not vague, but also one that doesn’t give away all the information either. Posing a question and using their name in the subject title has shown to be most effective.
Preheader: This appears after the subject line and offers a brief snippet about what the email is about. Write something simple but also something relevant to the content in order to tease them.
Layout: The best and most tested email layout is one header image, text, a secondary image some more text and then the call-to-action (CTA). You don’t have to stick to the status quo and follow this layout exactly, but the trick is here to keep it simple and clean. It has also been proven that the less options you give your subscribers, the more likely they are to take your desired action.
Timing: Studies have shown that emails are most likely opened on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. This makes sense as often on Monday people have a packed inbox and on Friday, most people don’t have the time. One case where this would be different however, is if you are offering something that users can take advantage of on over the weekend. For example, a popular take away spot had fantastic results by sending emails on a Friday offering consumers a weekend take away coupon.
Content: A good email offers your subscribers valuable information that is more advanced or more detailed than what they can find on your site. Your emails also need to indirectly elude to the product and service you are selling. While it is fine to include a CTA more often than not, you don’t want your subscribers to feel that they are constantly being sold to. Be creative with your email list too. If you offer some type of business coaching service for example, why not send them a weekly tid-bit of inspiration or some uplifting quotes? If you are selling cosmetics, why not send a video review or tutorial on how to create a certain look?
By offering your subscribers quality content, that shows that you care about them and genuinely want to provide information, they are more likely to stick around, more likely to buy and more likely to trust you.
4.) Email Strategies
You have your weekly newsletter or weekly email blast, but what about having other strategies to help boost your chances of a sale?
Follow Up: When someone has purchased a product from your site, why not send them a follow up email suggesting other similar products that you offer? This is best done within a week of them receiving their initial product. Don’t just make the email about a sale, instead include necessary information about the product they bought, frequently asked questions and maybe even throw in a chance for them to write a review.
Partials: If a customer enters their details but doesn’t complete the transaction you have a partial sale. Add their email to your list so you can re-target them in the future.
Action Based Campaigns: If you notice certain trends in your email list, start catering towards them. Don’t assign everyone the same email if they are acting differently. Spend some time to observe people’s actions and then work out a way to target those actions directly. This may take some trial and error but can be highly effective.